Category: E-Commerce

Product Categorization (Taxonomy, Ontology)

By , October 27, 2010

Creating the right structure of categories and attributes for the products in your online store is a critical step that many online merchants ignore. Read more »

Strategies for Optimizing AdWords Campaigns

By , October 12, 2010

I’ve optimized Google AdWords PPC-search campaigns for dozens of clients. I’ve been doing online marketing since 1997, paid search since 1999, and Google AdWords since the service launched. Read more »

Free Affiliate-Program Advice for Merchants: 11-Part Series

By , May 19, 2010

In November 2007, I posted a series of articles sharing my most common advice given to advertisers (merchants) who had hired me to advise them on the design and launch of their affiliate programs.  Below are links to the whole series in proper chronological order. Read more »

Evaluating Landing Page Quality

By , August 15, 2009

EngineReady‘s ConversionCritic web site helps you evaluate your landing page’s quality, measured by “Marketing Effectiveness,” “Offer Clarity,” “Readability of Copy,” and “Engagement with Visitor.”

ConversionCritic poses an excellent series of questions. However, the implication of the questionnaire is that a “yes” answer is better than a “no” answer, which is not always true. If you visit the site at and complete the questionnaire, you’ll be given a detailed report that includes additional explanations for each question. Read more »

Are Real-World Bookstores Doomed?

By , July 25, 2009

July 24, 2009 — I decided this week that “real-world bookstores” really are doomed to a much smaller role in our society. Read more »

Web Site Checklists for Merchants (draft)

By , December 11, 2007

This is a “work-in-progress” checklist that I created in December 2007, but never finished. It is essentially a list of “issues” to consider when evaluating a merchant’s web site. Read more »

Should We Buy “Guaranteed Traffic” or “50,000 visitors”?

By , May 24, 2007

It really is “too good to be true.”  Several dozen web sites promise to deliver 10,000 to 100,000 visitors to your web site, for a low fee — much less than one cent per visitor, which is the cheapest you could ever draw traffic through Google’s AdWords program.

Paying for “guaranteed traffic” is a complete waste of money: Read more »

In the Company of Good and Evil (by Winn & Power)

By , February 21, 2002

February 21, 2002 Last October, I praised an extraordinary book called Dot.Bomb, an entertaining chronicle of the rise and fall of Value America by J. David Kuo. At that time, I wished for more information about Value America’s technology, and a more detailed account of the pre-IPO days. Be careful what you wish for. Read more »

Dot.Con (John Cassidy): Worthless

By , February 10, 2002

February 10, 2002 — Late last year, I read a truly awful book: Stephan Paternot’s A Very Public Offering, a poorly-written account of the rise and fall of  The company has consistently been cited by critics as one of the worst/best examples of absurd internet-stock mania, but this book by the company’s founder offered no real apologies, and provided very little insight.  I don’t blame Paternot, a young man who was willingly manipulated by “market makers,” and who clearly is not a professional writer.

But John Cassidy can make no such excuses for Dot.Con: The Greatest Story Ever Sold. Cassidy offers no insight, and even fails to identify the “con” promised by the book’s title. And his sloppy writing, riddled with factual and typographical errors, insures that the book can’t be accepted even as a “digest” of the events he reports. Read more »

Dot.Bomb (J. David Kuo)

By , October 26, 2001

(October 26, 2001) I read a great book today, cover-to-cover, and I strongly recommend this book to anyone who wonders what really happened in the dot-com explosion and collapse.  Indeed, I’d recommend it to anyone who is interested in business; heck, I recommend it to anyone, period.

The book is called “Dot.Bomb ” (beware, it’s one of two books released this fall with the same title). The full title is “Dot.Bomb: My Days and Nights at an Internet Goliath,” by J. David Kuo. (I decided to buy the book after reading a brief comment about it in the fall issue of Brill’s Content magazine.) Read more »

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