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The Search Light Newsletter - Vol. 1 Issue #2



                THE SEARCH LIGHT

          Guiding your web site to the

            top of the search engines...



7 August 2001                                       Vol 1 Issue # 2

Editor : Kalena Jordan, CEO, Web Rank


 Welcome to "THE SEARCH LIGHT".

 You are receiving this monthly newsletter because you
 are one of our clients, you've subscribed, requested
 a free ranking report via our site, sent us an FAQ to
 be answered or someone has forwarded it to you.
 UNSUBSCRIBE instructions are at the end of this

 If you like this publication, please forward a copy of it to any
 friend or colleague who is responsible for a web site and
 would like to improve their ranking in the search engines.


    =>  Editor’s Message

    =>  Feature Article – Are You Targeting The Wrong Keywords?

    =>  Industry News – US FTC To Investigate Search Engine Practices

                                                       - Search Engine Marketing Now Seen as Vital

    =>  Search Engine FAQ's – Hyphenated Domains

    =>  Site Spotlight - Free Stuff For You!

    =>  Customer Feedback  

    =>  Subscribe / Unsubscribe information


Hi readers!

As most of you will be aware by now, Web Rank has been
busy launching into the Australian market. Last week we opened
a brand new office on the beautiful Gold Coast of Queensland
and also hired sales staff in Brisbane.

Believers in the “deep end” school of training, we recently unleashed our
eager new sales staff on an unsuspecting public, by having them visit
the popular Internet World Australia Exhibition in Sydney from 18-20 July.

Judging by the huge response we’ve had since the show and the
number of business cards these guys brought back (not to mention free
coffee cups – thanks Julie!), we can safely assume the trip was a huge
success. Look out for our booth in 2002!

Thanks to all our current clients for your patience during the office transfer
and transition period. We are now back to our regular business hours.
Those of you who have requested free ranking reports via our sites,
please be assured we are wading through your requests and hope
to have them to you over the next few days.  

Till next month…

Kalena J

Check out our new contact details :    



Are You Targeting the Wrong Keywords?

            by Kalena Jordan

A journalist asked me recently to name the most critical element of any
search engine optimization campaign. I didn’t hesitate to respond “keyword

Like it or not, the keywords and phrases you select to describe your site within
your META tags and body text can make or break your listings in the search
engines. It’s a sad fact that most companies are targeting the wrong keywords
and losing traffic as a result.

Even sites that have excellent rankings will not benefit if those rankings are
for unsuitable keywords. Let me give you an example:

A few months ago, we had an Australian client who wanted us to implement
an optimization campaign to improve their search engine rankings, but without
jeopardising existing rankings they had achieved for two particular search
phrases: “Internet solutions Australia” and “online banking solutions”.

Can you guess what products and services this company sells? The search
phrases don’t really give much away do they? In fact, this company is a
distributor of web site design software that is specifically tailored for banks.
Now ask yourself this: if you were a bank looking for this company’s products,
would you have typed in either of the phrases above to find their site? I doubt
it. You would type in something more logical like “web site design software”
or “web sites for banks” right?

This company was clearly targeting the wrong keywords and phrases. Their
top ten rankings for these phrases were irrelevant, because nobody was
searching for these phrases in relation to the products this company was
offering. The phrases they had chosen are what I call “jargonised”, that is,
they are filled with industry jargon and buzz words.  Take “Internet solutions”
as an example. Such jargon has found its way into our language with the
onset of the digital age and is bandied around boardrooms and marketing
departments everywhere. However the definition of this phrase is very
broad and could be used to describe anything from a dial-up connection
to a web site itself. It’s not a logical choice for searchers and is therefore
useless as a key phrase to target.

To prove my point, I researched the client’s chosen phrases using Keyword Discovery
keyword software and then did comparison research using the more logical
phrases above. The results were crystal clear: the logical, simplified phrases
were many times more popular than the “jargonised” ones. Once I
demonstrated this to the client, they were more than happy for us to conduct
more thorough keyword research and start their search engine optimization
campaign with a clean slate.

When selecting the keywords and phrases for your site, remember to select
search terms that describe your products and services in the most logical,
simple and specific way. By doing so you’ll not only increase the search
engine traffic to your site, but you’ll ensure your visitors are highly qualified
to buy your products and services when they arrive.


The above article may be re-published as long as the following paragraph
and URL link are included at the end of the article :

Kalena Jordan, CEO of Web Rank, was among the first
search engine optimization experts in Australasia and is
well known and respected in her field. For more of her tips
on search engine ranking and online marketing, please visit:


U.S. FTC To Investigate Search Engine Practices  

In a shock move, sure to have an impact on search engines and the SEO
industry as a whole, Ralph Nader, consumer activist and former
presidential candidate, filed a complaint with the US Federal Trade
Commission last month, regarding the search engine's practice of
incorporating paid placement listings into their standard results.

In the report, Mr Nader’s consumer watchdog firm Commercial Alert has
labelled the search engine’s practice as "deceptive advertising", claiming
they are violating US federal laws by not revealing the results as paid

"We are asking the FTC to make sure that no-one is tricked by the
search engines' descent into commercial deception. If they are going to
stuff ads into search results, they should be required to say that the ads
are ads”, a spokesperson for Commercial Alert said.

Named in the complaint are - MSN, Netscape, Directhit, HotBot, Lycos,
Altavista, LookSmart and iWon, all of whom happen to use paid listings
as part of their search results. However the search engines don’t believe
they are doing anything misleading, claiming that the paid results are
distinguished from unpaid results via separate headings. Whether
or not consumers understand the distinction between the two sets of
results seems to be the sticking point. We await the FTC’s investigation
with great interest.

More :,3811,2368117%5E442,00.html


SE Marketing Now Seen as Vital

The search engine marketing industry is finally getting the respect it
deserves, according to industry guru Danny Sullivan.

In a recent article on his widely respected Search Engine Watch site,
Sullivan claims that a recent acknowledgement by Jupiter Media
Metrix signals a long overdue change in the attitude toward search
engine marketing. By recently affirming that paid search placement
is now a successful advertising model, he claims Jupiter Media Metrix
is the first major research firm to declare how important search engine
listings are as part of any company advertising budget.

The industry, it seems, has turned a corner. Previously misconceived
as the “poor cousin” to banner advertising, or an area dominated by
“dodgy” operators, search engine marketing has often been overlooked
as one of the most viable and effective methods of promoting a web site.

For years, misinformed marketing departments have been channeling
most of their site promotion budgets into expensive banner ad campaigns
and off line promotions, not realizing they could have had a better and
more cost-effective impact by concentrating instead on their search
engine listings.

According to Sullivan, the success of GoTo has had a lot to do with
the turnaround in attitude. If the Internet bubble burst over 12 months
ago, nobody told GoTo. The fact that a company solely reliant on income
from search engine listings is continuing to post profits in these lean
times is a strong indication of the viability and robustness of the industry,
especially when compared with many advertising models that are
failing to compete.  

“If you are marketing a web site, search engines are not an afterthought
to your banner ad spend”, says Sullivan.


“They are not even something you can consider after you build your web
site. Search engines are something you think about from the very
beginning, and they remain a priority for as long as you plan to market

More :

         *-----------------HOT TIP------------------*

             Stuck for keyword ideas? Visit
            your competitor’s site and look
            at their META tags to see what
            keywords they are targeting.

         *-----------------HOT TIP------------------*     

SEARCH ENGINE FAQ'S : Hyphenated Domains

Web Rank answers your search engine questions.
Please submit your FAQ's  :


From: Andrew Logan  

We are about to buy a new domain for our business,
which imports toys from Japan for sale in the U.S.

I suggested that we buy a keyword filled domain to
improve our chances in the search engines as I had
heard this helps with ranking. Everyone has agreed on
this but a colleague said to me that it would only work if
the domain contains hyphens between the keywords e.g. I’m not convinced and

I also think the un-hyphenated version would be easier for
our customers to remember. Who is right?



~~~~~~~~~~ Kalena's Response ~~~~~~~~~~

Hi Andrew

In fact you are both right! Keyword filled domains can
improve your ranking relevancy on some engines for
searches containing those keywords.

It’s true that many engines can’t distinguish the individual
keywords within a domain name unless they are separated
by a hyphen. BUT some search engines can, by using
what’s called “partial matching” within their search
algorithms. It’s also true that an un-hyphenated domain is
usually more memorable than its hyphenated version.

To combat this, all you need to do is buy both versions and
use the un-hyphenated one on all your marketing material,
business stationery and email signatures and submit the
hyphenated version to the search engines. Voila!


Please submit your FAQ . We can't give a
personal reply, but we will do our best to answer as many
questions as possible via our newsletter.     



Would you like to get your hands on loads of
software downloads, tools and resources
to assist you to market your web site online?

Look no further – we’ve spent weeks searching
the web to come up with a comprehensive list
of resources for the benefit of our clients. The
best thing is they’re all FREE!

Click Here to check them out:


"The search engine optimisation carried out by Web Rank has
proven to be invaluable. We have seen a substantial increase in
both site traffic and quality inquiries being generated direct from
our sites. We are now confident that we are competing on an even
playing field with our competitors."

Steve Pickering
Brand Manager
Tourism Holdings Limited
(Owner of Britz and Maui Sites Worldwide)


The information presented in The Search Light has been compiled from
various sources for the benefit of our clients. You should not rely on
the information contained within this newsletter as detailed advice.
No part of this newsletter may be copied without permission from
Web Rank, the copyright owners 2001.  You may forward this
newsletter, as long as it's kept in its entirety.



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