Some of the most powerful tools for internet marketers are available free of charge. Every marketer should be using these resources right now:
Compete.com offers competitive metrics for every site on the internet. Use the information to ‘spy’ on your competitors. In their own words, ‘Track your Competitors. Then eat their lunch.’
Skype allows users to make phone calls to others over the internet. Calls to other members of the service are free and calls to landlines and mobile / cell phones can be made for a fee. Why don’t you make it easier & cheaper for it’s 300 million users to contact you – sign up for an account and add your skype contact details to your website & email signature.
8. Google Maps
Google maps is a web mapping service that powers map based services – and it’s particularly useful for businesses with a physical office or store. To implement on your site, you’ll have to get a Google API Key.
7. Podcasts on iTunes
Podcasts are audio or video ‘shows’ which you can subscribe to (via iTunes or other podcast software) and consume at a time convenient to you. Listen to them on your computer or on an MP3 pr MP4 player. You’ll find podcasts on a wide range of topics. Why not record your own podcast related to your niche and broaden your audience reach?
NetVibes is an personalized start page like MyYahoo or iGoogle. Use your private page to subscribe to your favourite rss feeds and keep up to date with all the latest news relating to your business.
You can also use the public page to create a content rich news portal for your industry, like we have for the internet marketing category.
5. Google Webmaster Tools
Webmaster tools provides statistics, diagnostics and management of Google’s indexing of your website. It helps you find errors and broken links in your site, helps Google index all the content of your site, and allows you to request that your site is re-included in their index, if you have been banned.
XML Sitemaps are a way of giving information to the big search engines to help them find and index your pages. You can create a sitemap for free (up to 500 pages) at XML-Sitemaps.com; then submit it to Google, MSN & Yahoo.
Add This is a bookmarking and sharing button for websites and blogs, which helps spread your content on the big social bookmarking, news and networking sites like Digg, Facebook, MySpace, Delicious, Technorati, and Twitter.
WordPress.org is a blog tool and publishing platform. You can create a professional, search engine friendly website or blog in 5 minutes. WordPress is used as the ‘foundation’ for your website. After you upload the software, you can search for ‘themes’, which will alter how the site looks (there are thousands of free ones or you could pay about $50 for a professional one) and all sorts of ‘plugins’, which will increase the functionality of the website.
1. Google Analytics
Google Analytics offers detailed statistics about your website visitors. Use it to track where your visitors came from, how they found your site, and how effective your site is at satisfying their needs. Similar analytics packages from other companies costs hundreds of dollars per month. Google’s is free. If you’re not using it already, start now. (otherwise, just give up internet marketing altogether).