BUSINESS ON THE WORLD WIDE WEB

March 27, 1997 On-line Advertising/Promotion and Electronic Commerce


Transcript of the live chat session that took place Thursday, March 27, 1997, noon to 1 PM (US Eastern Time) These sessions are scheduled for noon-1 PM every Thursday.

These sessions are hosted by Richard Seltzer. If you would like to receive email reminders of our chat sessions, simply send a blank email message to businessonthewebchats-subscribe@yahoogroups.com or go to http://groups.yahoo.com/group/businessonthewebchats and sign up there.

For transcripts other previous sessions and a list of future topics, click here.

For an article on how to make "business chat" work (based on this experience), click here.

Since the chat itself happens at a rapid pace, it's often difficult to note interesting facts in particular URLs as they appear on-line. Here's a place to take a more leisurely look. I've rearranged some of the pieces to try to capture the various threads of discussion (which sometimes get lost in the rush of live chat).

Please send email with your follow-on questions and comments, and suggions for topics we should focus on in future sessions. So long as the volume of email responses is manageable, I'll post the most pertinent ones here for all to see.


Threads (reconstructed after the fact):


Today's Participants:


Introductions

Richard Seltzer -- The scheduled chat is on Business on the WWW. If you are here for that discussion, please identify yourself.

We're here to share experiences about doing business on the Internet -- particularly the World Wide Web. What works? What doesn't work? Why? What are the trends that matter? How can you/should you adapt to the Internet culture and environment?

I work for the Internet Business Group at Digital Equipment in Marlboro, MA. In that capacity, I end up talking to people from large companies about how they can use the Web for business.

I also have my own personal Web page -- which is content rich and no frills -- which I do for practically nothing and draws a fair amount of traffic and attention.

NEW SITE

Since last July we have been holding these chat sessions at boston.com Now boston.com is unable to provide transcripts, which are essential to us. Hence we have moved to this new site. Web-net is a free business networking user group -- people who learn, share and grow using the Web. It seems like an excellent match for this kind of discussion, and they have been extremely helpful in getting this set up and tested very quickly.

MECHANICS

The software at this new site looks a lot better than what we had to cope with at boston.com. As before, all you need is a Web browser (no special software), but now the screen will automatically refresh after 45 seconds (default), or a longer rate if you choose. There is no need to keep clicking on an icon -- and *** provided you chose FRAMES *** that doesn't interfere with your typing messages.

Another pointer about the mechanics -- if you have posted a message and want to write another, just click on CLEAR FORM.

The chat room will be open at all times, but the scheduled time is when we'll all plan to be there.

Since it should be a lot easier getting the raw material for transcripts, I'll try to post today's transcript today. That will give more time/opportunity for followup discussion via email.

Ed Jaros hello all

Tom Dadakis What is today's topic?

Richard Seltzer -- Hello, Ed and Tom -- Today, we plan to focus on On-line advertising/promotion and electronic commerce. What are the best places and ways to to advertise? What are the best advertising strategies? What results can you expect? Is it worth it? Alternative ways to promote your site/business. Advantages and disadvantages of designing your site to run advertising.

Richard Seltzer -- NB -- over the last couple of days, I received several very helpful and detailed messages, with pointers to lots of related articles. Those are now with the transcript at http://www.samizdat.com/chat34.html

Sudha Jamthe Hi Richard, How are you doing?

Richard Seltzer Welcome, everyone, glad so many of you have found it to our
new home. I really like the look and feel of this.

Richard Seltzer -- Just this morning a received an excellent and lengthy memo from Kaye Vivian, who can't join us today. She provided pointers to lots of articles related to today's topic. I added her note, with hyperlinks to the transcript at http://www.samizdat.com/chat34.html#links Unfortunately, I have not yet had time to read them all. 


Mechanics of this new site/new software -- fodder for an FAQ

Tom Dadakis--I think to day's topic may end up getting used to this new site & how it works

Richard Seltzer -- Tom -- Yes, we do have to get used to this.

Richard Seltzer -- Barb -- You can set the refresh rate at whatever you prefer. But
to do so you have to go out and come back in again. You see the choice when you sign in.

Richard Seltzer -- All -- if there are any mechanical aspects of this new
site that you find confusing, please speak up, so we
can try to clarify.

Barbara Hartley Seltzer -- Richard, what is the recommended refresh time for us slow readers?

Richard Seltzer -- FYI -- I have my settings FRAMES and a refresh rate of
20 seconds.

Tom Dadakis -- This new site isn't bad for us "technologically challenged". Afterwards, I'll spend some time checking out what they have to offer.

Gisela Bauerle -- Hi. Just finding my way around with the frames.

Richard Seltzer -- Gisela and others -- Keep in mind that you can move the Frames boundary by grabbing and dragging it with your cursor. Also, go to Options in your browser and eliminate any unneeded items (like location, etc.) to give you as much
screen real estate as you can get.

Barbara Hartley Seltzer -- I seem to be distracted by the constant flow of this person has signed on, this person has signed off.

Gisela Bauerle -- Richard, where do we reset the refresh? the default 45 sec is too slow.

Richard Seltzer -- Sorry, folks. I lost my connection for a few minutes. "illegal operation" -- I suspect that all the automatic refreshing can fill up disk cache. Better to set it high.

todd moyer -- I just got bit by the chat interface. I typed a msg and hit "new msgs" instead of "send msg". It lost my msg and back dropped me from the chat room.

Sudha Jamthe -- Richard: I think we shd compile a FAQ help for this chat after this session.

marcus -- I'm using frames and every 45 seconds when there's a refresh the sudden jump to the new message is disorienting. How can I turn the auto refresh off?

Richard Seltzer -- marcus -- I just heard that if you set the auto-refresh at zero, that turns it off. Then you can click on New Messages to get what's new when you want it.

Bob@CottageMicro.COM -- Opps I thought putting a name in the Sent to: would just display their name. Instead it sent a private msg. New site will take a little time to get used to.

Web Merlin -- Richard - FYI on this new chat software. I tried "View Occupants" and got quite a screenfull of something other than a list of participants. Set for frames. Looks like it's listing when so-and-so last refreshed.

Shirish Jamthe -- Hi Richard, I have fixed the chat program to allow users to set the
refresh rate while in session (no need to logout.) Su said we should remove the automatic messages of users logging in and out. What are your thoughts.

Richard Seltzer -- Shirish -- Great on both counts. We don't need to see all the comings and goings, and it would be great to be able to adjust the refresh without logging out. Come to think of it, in answer to that earlier question, is it possible to turn the auto refresh off and just use clicking on "new messages" to refresh?

Shirish Jamthe -- Yes Richard, If you give refresh rate of 0. It turns off the refresh rate
Its an undocumented feature which should me told to users! 


NY Times -- "Some Media Organizations Pull the Plug on Web Sites

Ed Jaros -- I checked out the NYT article you recommended. [March 25 issue, search at http://www.nytimes.com ] Interesting info. It seems that what we have been discussing in the last few sessions holds true: Most are looking to the net for information and not to buy...initially. although business' are trying to look at it from another standpoint. Interesting dilemma. What to give to get.

Barbara -- I'm looking at Web Sites as more a marketing tool than a place to sell things.

Richard Seltzer -- Ed -- re: NY Times article -- to me it confirmed that the biggies -- the large media companies -- still don't understand the Internet environment, are stilll hung up with trying to mimic their old business models.

Don Shegog -- I think that the web should be viewed as more than simply a marketing tool. Rather it is a new way of doing business. Marketing, sales, product information... it can all be facilitaed by using the resources and capabilities of the web.

Richard Seltzer -- Barbara -- I agree that the Web is great for marketing. It's also great for building relationships -- carrying on dialogues with potential partners and customers. Also for
providing valuable/useful services. Also for saving costs. Direct on-line sales is just one small piece.

Richard Seltzer -- Don -- Amen. It's an entire new environment.

tbarnes -- Richard:I just read parts of the NYT article you recommended. Any ideas why even the big co's are losing money advertising on the Net?

Richard Seltzer -- tbarnes -- I suspect that the biggest mistake the big media firms are making is providing all the content themselves -- hiring large editorial staffs and running on a treadmill to produce new info all the time. To win on the Internet, I believe you have to connect to your audience and create ways for your audience to become information providers for you. This chat is that very kind of thing.

Ed Jaros -- How about this for a motto for web success "The amount of money your website makes you is in direct proportion to the amount of value you create"

Don Shegog -- Ed Thats more than just a web success motto. Thats what a successful business has to do. If you business/web site creates no value. Why bother with it.

Richard Seltzer -- Ed -- love that motto. Lots of the newcomers (especially the large ones) seem to think that this is a landrush or goldrush and there's easy money to be made. Nothing's easy. The best sites are people-intensive with lots of interaction.

Ed Jaros -- Don.. exactly. The website is a virtual business. Richard: thanks

Tedres -- Richard, I agree that large editorial is expensive and many times it will bring a web publisher down - I think that SUCK laid off its first employee last week, and the various Guide and Directory services have been wrestling with the issue for years.

Tedres -- The gold rush has been over for a while - there are still a pockets left for the newcomers, but mostly there is hard work and planning.

dj Speaking of the goldrush, what is the overall opinion of all of the get-rich-quick web sites that I keep seeing? Personally, I don't want to have to sort through this to get to the information that I am looking for.

Ed Jaros -- Are there any companies that are taking the web seriously with full time web marketing and tracking staff or person?

Barbara Hartley Seltzer -- Ed, most companies just have one person who is not really completely dedicated to the web marketing job and has to work with another department to get what he needs changed on the Web Site. It is the age of departmentalization. Bye for now.

tbarnes -- Richard: that's an interesting point about the big media companies...about this chat room, it is not generating revenue, tho, is it?

Bob@CottageMicro.COM --tbarnes -- Richard is probably not get revenue from this chat, but I bet it generates indirect revenue in some other way. i.e. material for his next book or contacts that turn into clients. Just my .02

Richard Seltzer -- tbarnes -- No one is getting any direct revenue from us doing this chat. But think of this as a model for how to generate interesting content for a Web site. The live interaction itself can be valuable for building a community among your audience. And, if you have good substantial discussions -- like these -- you get lots of content that you can post as transcripts. This is not your totally packaged, every I dotted kind of info you find in a magazine or a book, but it is very current, and can be very useful (especially when you can followup later with email to the host or to participants.)

Bob@CottageMicro.COM -- tbarnes-- I bet 60% of my revenue is created indirectly. My priciples are: network, communicate, follow up, care and give.

tbarnes -- Bob: Thanks, I thought that might be the case, indirect revenue generation, which is great!!

Ed Jaros -- Richard... I would have to say this site is gererating revenue. Not necessarily short term now but long term definitely. Heck, anyone i talk to about searching I am recommending they check out your book.

tbarnes -- Richard: Please forgive me, but what's the title of your book?

Richard Seltzer -- The AltaVista Search Revolution (Osborne/McGraw-Hill)

tbarnes -- Richard: I think community building is very important in an e-comm environment. It would be great if there were a way to combine the great things about this chat room with a commercial (Web) environment, don't you think?

Richard Seltzer -- Amen.


How to Promote a Web site?

Sudha Jamthe Ed: What kind of promotion do you provide from websitepros.com? I just happen to see it just now.

Ed Jaros -- Sudha, I love the game of getting my clients website seen by those who should see them. In fact i finished up reading Richards book (Loved it)and got some great ideas on how to put my clients on the first page of the search engines.

Barbara Hartley Seltzer -- Don, what resources do you recommend to promote a Web Site, i.e., I work for Elcom Systems, an electronic commerce software company that specializes in business-to-business electronic catalogs.

dj -- Hi everyone. I have the same question as Barbara. Whether you are marketing or promoting, what things have worked to bring people to your web site and interest them enough to return?

Bob@CottageMicro.COM -- "Marketing on the Internet" The real question is are you marketing a WEB site or a business. Getting found on the Internet is one small step in a marketing campaign.

I think there should be different approaches to Marketing different things. Just getting your WEB site in the top of all search engines is a turnoff to those who are actually looking for something specific. Targeting and Point-to-Point are the key actions that I consider for my clients.

Richard Seltzer -- Bob@Cottage -- makes sense. focus on your business. the Web site is a means to an end. simply driving random traffic to you site doesn't really accomplish anything (except perhaps drive up your costs). figure out who you are trying to serve and what they need and carry on dialogue with them at your Web and evolve your business accordingly.

Barbara Hartley Seltzer -- Bob, what is point to point?

Bob@CottageMicro.COM -- Barbara -- Point to Point can be one on one, person to person, or business to business. Meaning that there is a relationship developed between you and others that is more than just "SALE" SEND MONEY. 


Importance of being listed in search engines and directories

Barbara Hartley Seltzer -- Is it better to be listed in directories or search engines? Which search engines, besides Alta Vista, of course, are the best to be listed on?

Don Shegog -- I think for consumers, yahoo is one of the best search engines. It is easy to use and well organized.

Ed Jaros -- Top search dir... IMHO (in my humble opinion) are Altavista, Yahoo, Webcrawler, Lycos, Exite, Infoseek. I really don't pay much attn to the rest but usually have my clients listed in the top 100. Do you want a list?

Barbara Hartley Seltzer -- Ed, a list would be helpful. Thanks.

Barbara Hartley Seltzer -- Don, I tried submitting my WebSite to yahoo three times. Per an email yesterday, my company may finally be listed in its appropriate category, but I haven't checked today yet. This has been a 6 month process. With directories, people can get confused about where to look for the listing they want.

Tedres -- For those who remember me from earlier chats, I no longer represent Excite. I think that they offer a great service, but I would recommend that you check out all major Search Engines. I believe that promoters need to start with the major search tools (Look at the Netscape search page for a pretty good list.)

Tedres -- But the key is that is only the start. The next step is registering with all the major affinity ones. For an example of affinity directories, there are literally dozens of insurance directories out there - they all have names like InsuranceNet, Insure.net, InsuranceOnline, E-Insure, etc, Some do charge though, so you have to decide if it is worth the money based on their traffic.

Richard Seltzer -- Tedres -- What company are you with now? What's your focus?

Tedres -- These days, I am... An outside consultant :-) I am working with some companies and their web developers to create online marketing programs for them. In my experience, many web developers are more interested in actually creating the site - the graphics, the scripting, the design, etc. This is a good thing - that is what they do best. But they do not want to spend the time on promotions and ongoing marketing of the site to their key audiences... That is what I do best 


Newsgroups for promotion

Web Merlin -- Has anybody addressed what a wasteland Usenet has become? Unless, of course, you're looking to get 75-100 spams in your mailbox as penalty for posting to a unmoderated newsgroup.

Richard Seltzer -- Web Merlin -- These days I access the newsgroups by way of
AltaVista. That way I can set the criteria I want -- just the topics and/or groups; do specific searches; basically create my own private newsgroup. Works great. http://altavista.digital.com Select Usenet instead of Web. I find it great as a market research tool. The info is far more current and candid than what you find on the Web.

Web Merlin -- Hmmm. Clever, Richard. Much grass. 


On-line bookstore targeted at African Americans

Don Shegog -- I am still exploring what resources to use. I am a student at UNCG and I am looking into starting an on line bookstore. From what I've seen, its best to find out where people you are trying to contact search. For example, I,m planning to target my store toward African Americans so I plan on contacting a number of the online African American sites and having them place a link to my store

Richard Seltzer -- Don -- interesting idea. The challenge, I believe, is to create an on-line community, an environment that will attract your target audience and get them interacting with one another as well as with you. By doing so, people will
choose to come to you rather that going to that massive bookstore in the sky -- Amazon.com One tool you should look at very carefully is Firefly --
www.ffly.com

Tom Dadakis -- I agree with Richard that the key is creating a community where like minded people can communicate with each about topics that they are especially interested in, like what we are doing now.

Sudha Jamthe -- Don: You should also announce your site in related newsgroups and mailing lists.

Richard Seltzer -- Don -- In particular you should send a notice to H-Africa, which is
an excellent and very active Listserv for teachers and students of everything having to do with Africa.

Don Shegog -- Richard, H-Africa, I have never heard of it. Who is it run by?

Richard Seltzer -- The listserv address is h-africa@msu.edu You need to join to post. But if you email to that address, you'll get their standard message telling what it's all about. I subscribe. Books are a frequent topic of discussion.

Don Shegog -- By the way, if anyone has the time, please look at my online bookstore and give me your opinion and suggestions: http://www.uncg.edu/~drshegog/books.htm


Promotion with Majordomo and Listserv

Ed Jaros here is a topic that hasn't been discussed yet in detail. Is anyone using tools like Majordomo or Listserv to generate business?

Tedres -- Hi, Back after an extended absence. Regarding Majordomo - I have bought airline tickets as a result of subscribing to Continentals's "cheap specials" mailing list....

Sudha Jamthe -- Don: I think a mailing list like Majordomo is a very great tool. It allows interaction but also allows you to keep track of your interested prospects with a certain topic. I personally think it allows different people to join discussions in different pace as it suits them. Do you see many business sites use Majordomo lists? I know
many which are free or non-profit sites.

Ed Jaros -- Here is something to check out... not self-promo but FYI. http://www.majordomo.com makes setting up a list easy. All the details are there.

Sudha Jamthe -- Ed: I'll at your site. I am fascinated by the concept because I remember how we had to look at various providers and web hosts to find a mailing list for our site. Some gave majordomo, some listserv, some had their own version of lists. With majordomo.com, do we need our ISP support to setup our list or is it off your site?

Ed Jaros -- Sudha, to use the interfaces i have set up you need to host with me; however, majordomo itself is free. I am not the main guy that supports it here but let me know if youhave interest and I'll have someone get in touch. The nice thing about my interface is that you are empowered. Ideally, after all is set up you never have to deal with me.

Don Shegog -- Ed, Please email me some more information about your service. By the way, who are you with?

Ed Jaros -- Don: I am with SparkNET's Website pros division... but don't want to tie up this chat with my business. I'll E-you with some quick info after the chat. Thanks :-) 


Updating content to get people to come back

dj -- Speaking of content on a web page-how often do you update a webpage to keep people coming back?

Sudha Jamthe -- dj: How often you update a content site depends on the content. A news site needs to updated many times daily compated to a company info page. The general thumbrule is that your viewer should not see the same unchanged page more than for 2 visits.

Barbara Hartley Seltzer -- Sudha, My company web page is for information to potential customers (at this point). It doesn't seem necessary to update as often as you are suggesting.

Don Shegog -- I disagree with you Barbara. Even an informational website needs to be updated often. If the information seems old or just put there to take up space, many people will ignore it

Sudha Jamthe -- Barbara, I agree with Don. You might not feel a need to update company info often. But, when a visitor comes to your site and sees the same information many times, they wouldn't be motivated to visit again as they won't be sure if they'll find the new info on the site.

Richard Seltzer -- Barbara -- Regarding updates... yes, your basic product info/company info stays constant. But there ought to be somewhere at your site where you provide answers, where you have some kind of interaction with visitors and, ideally, allow visitors to interact with one another. At the very list, keep on-line a frequently updated list of trade shows you'll be exhibiting at, and add to that anything special you'll be doing there. And have a "customer of the week" or "tip of the day" -- some excuse to provide new and useful info and pointers. Have fun.

Gisela Bauerle -- Don, your point about updating your site is true. One of my former companies, has done little to update much of anything on their site for quite some time, but develops and markets software with web capabilities. Their message is confusing to the Internet world.

Barbara Hartley Seltzer -- Don, I not saying we don't continually add new information, i.e., press releases, articles related to our industry, but I don't think we have to update every other day. Every other week seems to feel right, but I could be wrong. Does anyone else work for a large company? How often do you change the content? Richard, how often does Digital change its content? The purpose of the web site is to provide information for new people who don't know about our company. We don't need them to be constantly checking our website. This will change as our customers and partners need more input, but we are not quite at that stage yet.

Tedres -- More updates are better than fewer. But you also have to consider - Is your site the kind that people are going to frequently - One of my clients is an insurance agency - you can get free quotes by filling out a form on their site. I would say that there is less a need to constantly update the content when most of their potential clients are going to come by only once or twice. If it were a news site or some other site that is centered on online publishing, then yes, updates are required to bring back people.

Richard Seltzer -- Barbara -- Quick suggestion -- why not provide forking paths.
Go this way if you are new to Elcom and want to find out who we are and what we do.
Go this other way if you know who we are, have been here before, and want to see what's new. 


Link Exchanges

Sudha Jamthe -- Hi Folks, I notice many discussions on search engines. Do you believe in link exchanges? Any good or bad experiences?

Barbara Hartley Seltzer -- What is the criteria for link exchanges? Do you just link to partners and customers or do you also link to certain search engines or who?

Web Merlin -- Sudha; I find negotiating links and crosslinks to be a VERY worthwhile marketing exercise. Delivers pre-qualified traffic rather than just "hits." But I always like to have my clients doing well in the engines prior to that phase.

Sudha Jamthe -- Barbara, link exchanges show mutual ads of their members on your site and show your ad in exchange on other's site for every 2 visits you get on your page. So, if I get 100 visits on my page I show ads of link exchange members and get my ad shown 50 times. I can pre-select the category of sites to show my ad. Check http://www.linkexchange.com They claim to have 70,000 members.

Tedres -- I am looking into link exchanges. I think though, that personally targetting the pages that you feel are best bets for exchanging links is a another good step - One of my clients provided me with a list of their offline partnerships, and I am contacting those webmasters about exchanging links. 


How to track/analyze traffic?

dj -- How can you know for sure what kind of people are coming to your website? Is this from their responses or is there a software tool to keep track of users?

Gisela Bauerle -- Like dj, I'm interested in the analysis of web site traffic.

Sudha Jamthe -- Gisela, There are many shareware that do web site analysis. Net Genesis's software is by far the most sophisticated web analysis tool. What are you looking for?

Ed Jaros -- Website traffic can be traced. One of my Perl programmers designed soem software i use internally that will track who is coming from your site from where (Typed in "bamboolzle" in Yahoo and found your site that way ) And it will tell you how many people came to your site from what links.

It's a great tool to help my customers see what activity they are getting on their site other than tracking HITS (read an article defining as "how idiots track success"

Bob@CottageMicro.COM -- WEB Traffic analysis is one complicated subject. I believe if you want full controll, you really need to have your own server. My server provider supplies me with a complete server transaction log on a daily basis. Now how do you analize all that informtion. AND it has to be downloaded daily. So, I just track responses and new business generated from the site over a period of time.

Sudha Jamthe -- Bob, You don't have to download the log off your server. You can have some CGI to look for specific information from the log and show it on a web site. Some tools likeAnalog can do this for you.

Gisela Bauerle -- Su, we want to look primarily at visitor frequency, visitor path analysis.

Gisela Bauerle -- dj, I've recently been looking at some info about tools. ZD Net had a feature review recently. see www.zdimag.com/content/anchors/199703/24/1.html for the article.

Sudha Jamthe -- Giesela, as for analysis, you can check these from Analog. But Net Genesis will be better to have a cool GUI whereby you can check all these as new graphs for different time frames. 


Advice on setting up own server

Don Shegog -- I am interested in setting up my own server. Does anyone know of a site on how to do so? please email me and let me know.

Sudha JamtheDon: Setting up your server: You can get a server hosted by a web hosting service and they'll maintain it for you all round the clock. I'll send you email with a list of such providers.

Richard Seltzer -- Don -- There's a startup in Cambridge, that's suppposed to go live on April 11, I believe. http://www.mainspring.com There's some preliminary info there now. they intend it to be a high-priced subscription service, with lots of book-like info on the kinds of things you'd be interested in. I believe it will be free for a trial period. Take a look. It isn't associated with any particular vendor.

Bob@CottageMicro.COM -- Don -- you might consider a co-hosting arrangement where you lease a physical machine with software. They install the server software and you just do the administration. This limits your initial expense and you get backup, technical support and a backbone connection. The one company I have talked to about this is DIGEX at http://www.digex.net/


AltaVista Search

Ed Jaros -- Richard... does ~ make a difference with altavista?

Richard Seltzer -- Ed -- I don't think I understand your AltaVista question. You mean the character "~" ? Aside from in a URL, I believe that would be treated as punctuation.

Ed Jaros Richard: http://www.sparknet.net/~userpage Does altavista treat this URL any differently when indexing?

Richard Seltzer -- Ed -- I believe that AltaVista would treat a page with such an address just the same as any other. Have you tested to see?

Ed Jaros -- Richard: The reason I ask is that I had a customer who tried to index with altavista and had some problems. This was the only difference i could think of... although he might have been doing it wrong.

Richard Seltzer -- Ed -- When you submit a page at AltaVista (by clicking on ADD URL and simply entering the address), within a second or two you get a message back saying that the page has been retrieved or that there was some problem with the address. If it was retrieved, the info should be in the index by the next day.

Ed Jaros -- Richard: That's what i told him. Not sure what the problem could have been. If I see it again I will let you know.

todd moyer -- Richard - It looks like AltaVista is no longer claiming to index the whole web. Any idea how much is not being indexed? How does it pick what not to index? It seems to particularly dislike ~ in Urls.

todd moyer Richard - Is AltaVista indexing the whole net and if not, what criteria does it use to filter?

todd moyer -- If you have content people want and they find you once, they will bookmark you and come back again. I'm frustrated with getting the initial contact. I think AltaVista and the other indexers are filtering me because I have a ~ in my url.

Richard Seltzer -- Todd -- AltaVista indexes the "whole Web". The only exclusions are technical. It cannot index info that's behind a password/registration entry, or info in a database, or even info inside a FRAME (that's true of all of today's major search engines). And it doesn't index pages with the robot exclusion on. It sends out 1000 threads, which simultaneously and continuously crawl, and anyone can add any page at any time by clicking on ADD URL. If on a second visit a page is no longer in existence at that address, the info is automatically erased from the index.

todd moyer -- That may be the key. If a server is down temporarily when AltaVista comes around and the page gets dropped, it may then need references from other pages to find it again. That may be why it looks like AV is discriminating against the little guys.

[Richard Seltzer -- while editing -- No, the only way a page is dropped is if the error signal says the page does not exist. If the server is just down temporarily, nothing is changed.]

tbarnes -- Todd--are you selling your content on the Net? I ask because if you are you could use a different type of search service.

todd moyer -- tbarnes - I'm not selling yet. It this point it's a hobby/experiment. 


Job Opportunity

Sudha Jamthe -- Everyone: Do you know of someone who will be interested in joining a startup as the marketing Expert? I am trying to help some MIT/Harvard students who are starting a bio-tech business on the web and are looking for such a person. Email me later if you have any leads. The firm will be physically in Cambridge, MA. 

Cybercorp by James Martin

tbarnes -- Has anyone read James Martin's Cybercorp book? If so, what do you think of it? I read it and have mixed feelings... 

Morgan Stanley's "The Internet Advertising Report"

John C Green Jr -- In the 30 minutes I've been here nobody mentioned Morgan Stanley's "The Internet Advertising Report". It came out for their clients in December and was put on their Website in January. Anybody have any comments on it?

Richard Seltzer -- John C. Green -- I haven't seen that report. Do you have a URL? Sounds interesting.

Bob@CottageMicro.COM -- John -- Do you have a url for Morgan Stanley's report ?
Thanks

John C Green Jr -- Bob, I downloaded a copy when it came out and haven't looked since. Of course Morgan Stanley's main URL is www.ms.com. 


Wrapup

Web Merlin -- Duty calls - Thanks for the forum, Richard. CYA all next week, caveats about creeks rising, etc. Phileos.

Richard Seltzer -- All -- on the one hand the discussion today seems to have
ranged all over the court. On the other hand, I'm learning a lot. I'll have to check when doing the transcript, but I feel we have more active participants than usual. My sense is that this topic is far from finished, and that, especially if we can find the time to read some of the articles referenced in the transcripts, we could and should continue this next week. What's the consensus?

Tedres -- Richard, OK by me. I should have a website that I can point people to by then.

Don Shegog -- I agree. This is a great idea. I definitely think we should continue this thread next week.

Barbara Hartley Seltzer -- I'm always interested in how to promote my site. Any information on sites that promote electronic commerce sites would be helpful.

Sudha Jamthe -- Richard: OK by me. Tedres: Good Luck

Gisela Bauerle -- Richard, yes we've wandered but let's continue with today's thread next week.

Ed Jaros -- I am liking this topic. E you all next week.

Richard Seltzer -- The hour is up, but the chat room will stay open, and I'll stick around for awhile with those who would like to stay. Everyone -- before you leave be sure to post your email and URL so we can keep in touch. And remember that I'll post the transcript later today at http://www.samizdat.com/#chat All -- also please remember to send me email at seltzer@samizdat.com for followup comments etc. to add to the transcript.

Sudha Jamthe -- Richard: The email and URL shows automatically if we'd typed it in whe we joined the chat. See you next week. Thanks Richard. 


Followup

List of Top 100 Search Engines and Directories (Alphabetical)

From: Ed Jaros <ed.jaros@websitepros.com> Date: Fri, 28 Mar 1997 07:39:52 -0600 Ed Jaros, Website Strategist, http://www.SparkNET.net

Web Advertising Stats

From: "Kaye Vivian, ABC" <kvivian@cloud9.net> Date: Sun, 30 Mar 1997 14:04:27 -0500

Maybe I'm online more time than I thought...or maybe my reading habits just orient me in the direction of your chat topics...but here are a couple more timely and relevant articles that will further fuel next Thursday's discussion...which this time, I'm happy to say, I will be able to attend! :)

Kaye Vivian

-- In e-mail survey results released this week by the Association for Interactive Media (AIM) for its Industry Leaders Index series, 70% of those surveyed now consider online advertising at least somewhat important for promoting their interactive projects. Roughly 38% currently place ads online, while an additional 46% say they will probably place online ads in the future. Of those polled, 21% now meet ad revenue goals for their online activities, and another 29% expect to meet their goals within the next 12 months. This means that 50% of them expect to meet their ad revenue goals for this year. You can find the release at AIM's site (http://www.interactivehq.org/).

-- The Internet Advertising Bureau (IAB) also released ad revenue figures this week. IAB, a 160-member trade organization put year-end totals for online ad revenue at $267 million, which is lower than the figures Jupiter Communications recently released. Barter deals accounted for 3% of the spending, with the rest primarily in computer products, consumer-related, new media, telecommunications and business services (only 6%!). Details at the IAB site (http://www.iab.com/home.html).

-- There's a new web site that opened early this month and it's being used by a number of larger companies to deliver coupons and promotional offers...CoolSavings (http://www.coolsavings.com). Visitors must register and provide household data, but they can then print out negotiable coupons at home without cost. The visitor database of information is available to advertisers that want to target additional offers to more specific audiences.


Previous transcripts and schedule of upcoming chats -- www.samizdat.com/chat.html

To connect to the chat room, go to www.samizdat.com/chat-intro.html

The full text of Richard Seltzer's books The Social Web, Take Charge of Your Web Site, Shop Online the Lazy Way, and The Way of the Web, plus more than a hundred related articles are available on CD ROM My Internet: a Personal View of Internet Business Opportunities.

Web Business Boot Camp: Hands-on Internet lessons for manager, entrepreneurs, and professionals by Richard Seltzer (Wiley, 2002). No-nonsense guide targets activities that anyone can perform to achieve online business
success. Reviews.

a library for the price of a book.

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