Affiliates Summit West 2010, Las Vegas, NV
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Well, the journey to the 2010 Affiliates Summit West in Las Vegas has officially begun. I am currently blogging from my iPhone while sitting in YVR waiting to board my flight to Vegas. We have an action packed 4 days while at the conference, and I'll be sure to update this blog as often as I can.

Update - 9:30pm, Sat Jan 16, 2010. We checked into the Palms Casino and went over our schedule for the next 3 days. Off to grab a bite and hit the poker tables.

Update - 9:00am, Sun Jan 17, 2010. After walking over to the Rio Casino, Kevin and I check in at the registration desk, pick up our goody bags and then head over to the buffet for some breakfast.  We spend the next 2 hours going through the itinerary and discussing some business ideas about our current and future website projects.

Update - 12:30pm, Sun Jan 17, 2010. I just sat in on Joshua Zeiring's presentation Primer on Search Engine Optimization in the Brasilia room. Below are the notes that I took:

Analyze, Dominate and Track.

Which search engine should you optimize for? Optimize for the best (and most popular). Below are the ratios of the search engine market (data compiled in 2009):

  1. Google - 66%
  2. Yahoo - 16.7%
  3. Bing - 8.8%
  4. AOL - 3%
  5. The Rest - 7%

Picking a Domain Name

  • Use the Google Keyword tool to find highly searched versions of your main keywords.  Look for 8000+ global monthly searches under the "Exact" match.
  • No excessively long domain names.
  • Dashes are okay, as long as they are strategically placed. Avoid lots of them.
  • Geographic regions in the domain name are good for targeting that region, but bad for expanding outside of your targeted region.

General SEO Musts

  • Main keyword in the Title Tag.
  • Always have your title embedded within an <H1> tag.
  • Always utilize Meta Descriptions Tags.
  • Always have a sitemap (a properly formatted sitemap XML file that gets submitted to search engines).
  • Keywords in the first 250 words of the page content.
  • Content Management Systems and excellent at automating most if not all of these crucial tasks.


  • Google Sitemap Generator
  • All in One SEO
  • Popular Posts (for the last X days)
  • Themes (Elegant Themes, Woo Themes)
  • (managed hosting with themes, backup, updates for $15/month)

Google Keyword Tool

  • Use the "Broad Match" option.
  • Use the ~ operator  before and between your queries for related terms.
  • Calculate the page load times for your site (utilize page caching to speed it up).
  • Increate time on site with "Related Posts" or "Additional Products" at bottom or somewhere on page.

Off Page Optimization

  • Get Relative and Authoritative links back to your website.
  • Google uses "Page Rank" to determine how authoritative a site is. Fun fact: Page Rank is named after Larry Page, co-founder of Google.
  • Don't freak out about Page Rank.  Focus on building a profile of high quality one way authoritative links back to your website.

How to get Links

  • Guest posting on other people's blogs, linking back to your site.
  • Social bookmarking (Digg, Stumble).
  • Various profiles (YouTube, Slashdot).
  • Twitter Aggregators.
  • Facebook fan pages.
  • Sites that you make (mini nets).
  • Link Bait.

Link Bait

Any media that gets people excited, in any capacity, about the content of your site and then links them back to the relevant page.

Example: 13 Year Old Steals Dad's Credit Card to Buy Hookers was a parody story that had a disclaimer indicating that the story was fake, but ended up driving hordes of traffic to the online article and eventually resulted in a massive amount of clickthroughs to a credit card company in Europe (

Link Bait isn't just phony.  It may sound like a bad thing, but if it's interesting or fun, it doesn't have to have negative connotations. BE EVOCATIVE. With creativity there's no subject or website that you can't write creative link bait for.

Options for writing creative content:

  • The Downfall - think about your niche and what would devastate it.  Write or preach about the devastation in a fictional story.
  • The Savant - take a normal person (or a child, but don't take advantage of children please) and make them really good at something related to your niche. Make it happen.
  • The Dream - think of something you wish existed in your niche, and make it exist. If it doesn't fake it, then make it.
  • The Hero - be a hero, make the hero, or make the hero look like a douche. Say whatever someone else won't.


  • Blog comments are great ways to link back to your site.
  • Look for footprints if you find something worth sharing on.
  • CommentLuv - DoFollow plugin for WordPress.

Social Media

  • Submit great content. Diggers can be snobs, they expect the best. Give it to them.
  • Twitter followers want to link to great content. Don't mislead them, keep your tweets on topic.
  • When all else fails, look at where competitors get their links. Yahoo site explorer is great to review competitor websites.
  • SiteSnatcher is $20/month
  • Google Blog Comment Finder.
  • "Link Excavator"

Ranking Tools

  • Rank Checker - free from SEOBook
  • AuthorityLabs - $25/month for 10 domains.
  • SEO Information on SERPS
  • NoDoFollow Firefox Plugin
  • Coda Development Software for MAC.

Twitter: @JoshuaZiering



Update - 1:00pm Sun Jan 17, 2010. I just walked through the first Meet Market exhibitor room and WOW was it ever crammed.  They should have had a bouncer at the door enforcing a capacity limit because there was literally no room to breath, let alone move.  Tons of great info, just not enough space to actually maintain a meaningful conversation with any of the reps.

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