After Nearly 10 Years, I’m Leaving GoDaddy..

Goodbye-GoDaddy

For almost 10 years, I’ve used GoDaddy for domain registration. The first domain I ever purchased was actually through Network Solutions, but I soon learned that I was paying WAY too much over there, and made the switch to GD. Now over the years, I had read horror stories about them, but I never had any issues with them. I registered around 100 domains with them, and paid the hefty renewal fees every year.

This past year, GoDaddy hiked up their rates a bit, and even with coupons, the best deal that I could find would cost around $8.50/domain. That wasn’t so bad. But when I went to renew a domain back in January, the best price I could find with them was a little over $10. And then yesterday I went to renew another domain that was expiring, and NONE of the promo codes were working, leaving me with the decision of renewing this domain for $12.50, or transferring it to somewhere else.

I chose the latter. After doing some research, I decided to transfer my domain to NameSilo. They charge $8.39 for a domain, and if you use the code SAVEMEABUCK, you can save a dollar off of your order. What I like about NameSilo is that I don’t have to hunt around for coupons each time one of my domains come up for renewal, as their regular price is just $8.39. And their reputation seems to be rock solid, unlike some other registrars out there.

Now, I won’t like, the process of transferring your domain from GoDaddy to NameSilo isn’t exactly clear, so I’ve laid out the steps if you want to do this:

  1. Created an account on namesilo.com.
  2. Logged into your GoDaddy account and launch the Domain Manager on the domain you want to transfer.
  3. Under DOMAIN SETTINGS, manage the LOCK setting and unlock the domain so it can be transferred. (I think GoDaddy has them locked by default)
  4. Scroll down to the AUTHORIZATION CODE section at the bottom and have it email you the authorization code. (You use this code to initiate the transfer on NameSilo)
  5. Once you receive the authorization code, log into NameSilo and select the TRANSFER tab.
  6. Put your domain name in the transfer a single domain and click search.
  7. Put in the authorization code that GoDaddy emailed you and click Transfer these domains.
  8. At this point, you have to pay for the domain transfer using the code SAVEMEABUCK, bringing the price down to $7.39.
  9. You will receive an email from GoDaddy about the transfer, and you need to click the approve link in the email.
  10. It will log you into your GoDaddy account, where you can either approve or deny the transfer. Approve it if you want to allow the transfer to go through.
  11. You then should get an email from NameSilo and you go to your account there and accept the transfer and it is done.

The whole process took around an hour from start to finish. Once you do one, you’ll find the process much easier the next time around.. But since GoDaddy doesn’t have the most user-friendly interface, it’s a little confusing the first time around. Hopefully these directions will help you out.

If you have any questions, feel free to leave a comment below, and I’ll help you out the best that I can.

Adios GoDaddy!

13 Signs That You’re An Affiliate Marketer (Infographic)

The guys over at The Mail whipped up a cool infographic showing 13 signs that you’re an affiliate marketer. How many of these signs apply to you?

13 Signs That You’re An Affiliate Marketer

Choose Your Business E-Mail Address Carefully

E-mail

This afternoon, I opened up Outlook and saw literally THOUSANDS of e-mails with the same subject line: Mail delivery failed: returning message to sender

There were over 2600 e-mails like this, and more were coming in every minute. I immediately called my server admin to find out what the heck was going on!

He did some digging, and found that some spammer in Brazil was spoofing e-mails using our e-mail address, and apparently his mailing list had LOTS of bad e-mail addresses. Now I’ve seen things like this happen in the past on a much smaller scale, but never anything like this. And the problem was that since these e-mails weren’t coming through our mail server, we were powerless to do anything about it.

The big problem was that it was crippling my inbox, and I couldn’t get anything done. Since this was an older e-mail address that’s rarely used anymore, I decided to simply delete the account and create a new e-mail address on the same domain.

The previous e-mail address was info@mydomain.com, whereas my new e-mail address is myfirstname@mydomain.com. Spammers may still send out e-mails using variances like info@mydomain, webmaster@@mydomain, sales@@mydomain, etc, but at least I won’t be getting all the bounce backs anymore!

I have hundreds of business cards with the old e-mail address on them, but that’s life..

So the takeaway from this is to be mindful when creating e-mail addresses for your business. Don’t choose typical e-mail address that start with info, webmaster, sales, or something like that, as once your domain gets on a spammer’s radar, it’s game over!

Happy New Year!

Happy-New-Year-2014

Well wishes for a prosperous and profitable 2014!
  – Zander

Facebook Brand Pages See Dramatic Loss In Reach

Facebook Fan Page

I’ve long preached the importance of having a Facebook Fan Page, but recent changes to Facebook’s News Feed algorithm have me rethinking that strategy now.

As Jim Tobin explains in a recent column, Facebook’s December algorithm change has been punishing brand pages, regardless of how interested fans are in that page’s content. Ignite analysts reviewed 689 posts across 21 brand pages (all of significant size, across a variety of industries) and found that, in the week since December 1st, organic reach and organic reach percentage have each declined by 44% on average, with some pages seeing declines as high as 88%. Only one page in the analysis had improved reach, which came in at 5.6%.

I manage a number of Facebook Fan Pages for various clients, and we’ve seen similar results. One page has 861 fans, yet most stories are only seen by 15-25 people on average. Prior to this algo change, posts on this page had a reach of 200-300 people.

It’s clear that this change was done to push publishers to Facebook’s paid options (boosting posts, etc), but in fact this had the opposite effect with some of my clients. Their feeling was that if their content wasn’t being seen by the majority of their followers, then why bother promoting through Facebook at all.

One client was actually getting ready to run a large campaign to bring new followers to their page, but after this fallout, they pulled the plug on it completely. And honestly, I can’t really blame them. What’s the point of having a large number of followers on your Fan Page, if only 1-2% of them will ever see your content?

While I don’t advocate completely abandoning Facebook, I do think that brands should spend less time promoting on there, and use it more as a branding platform with occasional posts. They can spend that extra time on other social media networks that have a further reach. Are you using Instagram, Pinterest, and StumbleUpon? If not, maybe now’s the time to start messing around with them.

Have you been affected by Facebook’s News Feed algorithm change?

A Look Back At Affiliate Summit East 2013

Affiliate Summit East 2013

Earlier this summer, I attended Affiliate Summit East in Philadelphia. As expected, Shawn and Missy put on another top-notch show, and I thought it’d be good to do a quick recap for those of you who might be considering attending an Affiliate Summit event, like the upcoming Affiliate Summit West show next month in Las Vegas.

The first question you need to ask yourself is what type of pass you plan on purchasing. I did the VIP pass this time around, which gave me access to the exhibit hall, meet market, keynotes, session videos, access to ALL of the sessions, and the newcomer program. It’s a bit pricey at $1249, but if you do it right, you’ll walk away with enough knowledge to make that money back in no time.

Now if you’re an Affiliate Summit veteran, you might consider saving some money and going with the Networking Plus pass, as it’s only $549, and it gives you access to most of the VIP perks, but you can only attend 1 session per day, and no access to the newcomer program. Since you still get access to all of the session videos, you’re not missing out on much, but you can’t ask questions of the panelists since you’re watching a recorded session.

If this is your first time attending Affiliate Summit, it can be a little overwhelming, and that’s why I suggest going with the VIP pass, so that you can take part in the newcomer program, where a conference veteran shares ideas and information to help newcomers optimize their time at the conference. Otherwise, you’ll just wander around in a daze, and probably miss out on some important stuff along the way.

Networking is the name of the game at Affiliate Summit, so you’ll want to do your homework ahead of time and hit the ground running when you enter the show. Whether it’s meeting affiliate managers you’ve worked with or socializing with other affiliates and peers that you’ve talked to online, there are opportunities everywhere if you keep your eyes and ears open.

Same token, there’s a ton of valuable information being given out at these sessions, so make sure you study the session schedule and see which ones you should be hitting up. The schedule is pretty intense, I made the mistake of hitting up a TON of sessions, which while super informative, made for a LONG and tiring few days. Not to mention, it limited the amount of time I had to spend in the exhibit hall.

Knowing now that I could have simply waited for the session videos to come out, I might have skipped a few of the less important sessions and simply watched them when they became available. Now I know for next time..

In any event, overall ASE 13 was a great event, and I came away with a lot of new ideas, information, and strategies to help me expand my business even further.

If you’re considering attending a future Affiliate Summit event, I highly encourage it!

Check Your Site’s Analytics On The Go With Quicklytics

Quicklytics-iPhone

Analytics are a MUST for any website owner. These days, most people use Google Analytics – Because it does a great job of presenting your traffic information, and because it’s free.

If you’re trying to optimize your site’s traffic, you can dig through your analytics and see where traffic is coming from, what keywords are bringing that traffic, and what pages they’re coming to. With that knowledge in hand, the world is your oyster.

The one complaint that many people have is that Google doesn’t have a good iPhone/iPad app. And that’s where Quicklytics comes in.

Quicklytics is an iOS app that pulls down your Google Analytics data and gives you a detailed look at your website(s) traffic in just a few taps. They claim to be the easiest and fastest way to check your Google Analytics account, and after using it for awhile now, I definitely agree.

Quicklytics-iPad

While other apps focus on displaying as much data as possible, Quicklytics focuses on displaying the numbers you actually want to see all the time quickly: Number of visitors, pageviews, average pageviews and bounce rate. Created by somebody who actually uses Google Analytics daily, this is a great tool to take a quick look at your sites all the time!

And when you need even more data, just tap the large chart! Lots of extra reports are available, allowing you to see what’s happening on your site, where people are coming from, and what they’re doing! (This is a feature that I actually missed at first, but once I discovered it, I was in seventh heaven)

I track over 50 websites in my Google Analytics account, so I was curious how Quicklytics would handle that. It’s actually genius, they allow you to arrange your sites however you like, so I was able to put my most important sites in the front, and then I can swipe from site to site to see the traffic stats for each site very quickly.

This video shows you how it all works:

Quicklytics can be purchased from Apple’s App Store for $7.99. Once you use this app, you’ll wonder how you ever lived without it, it’s that good.

So what are you waiting for, go download Quicklytics today!