PLRHeadquarters Blog Mitch Claymore's Private Label Rights weblog

14Jan/10Off

Change change and more change

I was sharing a cup of coffee with a good friend and long-time client last week, and the familiar topic of watching TV/Movies on the Internet came up.

I admitted that after years of successfully avoiding watching ANY entertainment on cramped computer screens, I was finding myself sporadically having to do so, most often after forgetting to record something on the DVR. People like me have a fondness for BIG screens, not itsy ones. But lately I’ve come to notice how many pieces of video are only available on the web – especially the short, controversial (frequently hilarious) ones.

My friend was more easy-going. His kids keep sending him links, he keeps clicking on them; the consequential lean-forward viewing is inevitable. He’s gotten used to it.

So we are both arriving at the same conclusion: like so many other facets of present-day media, the value of resisting change seems to fade and disappear ever more quickly. PC Magazine, for example, advises against ever buying another old-fashioned DVD player (at the moment it’s surrendered to Blu-Ray, and soon enough online streaming will destroy them, too). Tweeting’s another case in point: fad or not, its allure is undeniably strong…enough to cause a planetary sensation. For a web owner to refuse to even consider its possibilities (especially the commercial ones) is about as defensible as a newspaper media buyer refusing to check out circulation statistics.

The analogy to Private Label Rights is direct. To succeed on the web, a site has to do more than greet visitors with the information or entertainment they’re after. It won’t even get the chance in the first place. It has to ‘get found’ first — and the proliferation of sites makes the odds of that happening by accident highly unlikely.

Originally, anyone could live with the straight-out-of-the-carton Company Web Site (just a Home Page housing the Company Blurb and the Stuff Being Offered;  or maybe a premium version with a captive search box leading to the Exact Stuff Being Offered).

No more: to keep up with today’s changing search requisites, the Company Site has got to pump iron, bulk up with current content of pointedly relevant interest, and then keep on keeping on! Change change change!

But seeing as the Company keepers of the brand are correct to insist that the Company Blurb never change, and seeing as the Home Page really needs to provide exactly the same kind of visual continuity so return visitors feel warm and comfy — keeping fresh becomes problematical. If a Home Page looks and reads the same to the loyal customer, it also reads the same to the not-so-loyal search engine spiders (and they don’t like that so much). True, the Stuff Being Offered may or may not change – but unless that Stuff is totally unique, by itself those edits arent likely to score big points with Google or Bing or their arachnid minions.

Updated content (and PLR is only a very convenient way of achieving it), when created intelligently, and integrated gracefully, rewards the visitor with the latest in what he was seeking – which is exactly what the SERPs are designed to list.

However awesomely web site owners may have created their original sites, if they haven’t kept abreast of the search engines’ demands for new, changing content, they are increasingly likely to find themselves pitted up against competitors who have.

Like giving in to laptop video or tweets in the afternoon, accepting change means keeping time with the changing marketplace and its customers. And — who knows ?– if we hustle to the front of the parade, we might just become a leader!

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2Jan/10Off

Less than a 2009 PLR ‘Top Ten’ List…

The year just over — so what have PLR users and providers learned? I’ve been trying to compress the jumble of change and growth into something less breathless than a ‘Top Ten’ list. In fact, I’ve decided it’s more useful to just chuck the list and acknowledge the single preeminent trend: the now (finally) undeniable ascendence of web search knowhow as the clear in-your-face marketers’ top-performing gottahaveit Skill Set of the Year.

You hear the term ‘Web Informatics’ to describe the greater arena, but it’s all really devolving into ‘web search’, or ‘web search-for-marketing’, or — to be rigorously honest – ‘web search-to-snag-new-customers-to-keep-the-doors-open’.

Nowhere we traveled in 2009 could we find much more than a vestige of earlier reluctance to recognize the merit of practical PLR to focused search engine optimization strategies – most notably among proprietors of smaller businesses. The SES last March in Manhattan was an early indicator, for it turned out to be more than the usual nice excuse to spend a few days in the City. Despite the economy, the floor was fairly mobbed with small shop entrepreneurs; they looked and talked less like techies and more like business people; and many of them seemed a bit longer in the tooth than in previous gatherings. Most seemed focused and determined in a distinctly non-hobbyist sort of way and not nearly as distracted as usual by the Gotham diversions  (and keep in mind this was long before we knew that even the Tavern on the Green would find itself among the fallen!).

We chatted and eavesdropped and observed. By the final day, we’d seen what amounts to an economics-driven sea change in web enterpreneurs’ perspective. Whereas two or three years ago a typical small company website may have been gathering dust as little more than a vanity accessory for the boss (or else a project to keep Junior interested in the family biz), by the end of the year just about every content consumer we deal with had redrafted their priorities: the site had to be more than competitive – it had to PULL, it had to RANK; it had to PRODUCE!

Sigh. Here we’re in the content, not the web redesign business.  But the number of sites that now have to actually perform means, quite often, sites that have to be redesigned from the ground up, because now it’s really serious.

But of course it always was.

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