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Website Analysis: Review Of What I’ve Learned About Website Design and Internet Marketing

2 Dec

My Site Traffic

This semester, I was required to use Google Analytics to track the traffic and activity on my site. Throughout the semester I have become more aware and understanding of the different metrics that Google Analytics provides. So far, there have been a total of 148 visitors to my site with a total of 232 visits. 65.22% of these visits were new visitors, and 35.78% were returning visitors. There has been a total of 1,600 page views with an average of 6.90 pages/visit, visitors on average spend six minutes and 4 second and there is a bounce rate of .86%. Google Analytics also shows information on how people arrived at my site. Up to this point, 42.57% of the visits came from the results of search traffic, 33.62% from direct traffic and 23.71% from referral Traffic.


Site Traffic

Visits by Traffic Type

 Webmaster Tool

Google Webmaster Tools provided me with detailed reports about my pages visibility on Google. I believe this tool is very useful for marketers because it provides a lot of information regarding a particular site and the way it can be improved. Google Webmaster Tools analyzes your website based on clicks, pages, search, keywords, page load times and presents the data in a very clear way, giving you the opportunity to check the areas you would like to change and improve base on the data collected.


Overall Learning Experience

I loved the class, very hands-on and in my opinion every single thing we learned is a big takeaway. Taking MKTG 470 with Professor Theresa B. Clarke has been a great experience.  This class has giving me a new set of skills such as Website design, WordPress ,Google AdWords, Google Analytics, Webmaster Tools, SEO and PPC use. Besides blogging, I enjoyed learning about the different widgets and plugins available that helped me improve my site. Running the Ad campaign was one of my favorite things. I learned so much about Google AdWords, now I understand the importance of having good quality keywords and the management of the budget.

Future Plans

I plan to keep using my website and updated it once the course is over. Having the general knowledge of website design and how to operate the different tools that sites such as Google offers is a great reference for any future job interview. I have gained a clear understanding of how important internet marketing is and I plan to utilize the skills that I learned in my professional career.

JMU Marketing Major: Phrase Search Engine Optimization Experiment

26 Nov

In our  MKTG 470 class we have learned a lot, one of the most interesting assignments this semester has been to optimize a page or post using SEO strategies so that the page or post ranks high on the SERP for the phrase JMU Marketing Major.  In order to analyze the page , at the beginning of the semester we used WebpageFX . At the beginning of the semester my page ranked a score of 17%. I also analyzed my page rank using Google, my page was not seen in the first 20 pages. Below are  some of the strategies that professor Dr. Theresa B. Clarke has taught me and that I have implemented.

On-page strategies:

  • Using “JMU Marketing Major” phrase in my URL
  • ALT tags the picture of my page with the phrase JMU Marketing Major
  • Bold the phrase “JMU Marketing Major”
  • Incorporated the keyword phrase into my title, description and keywords utilizing the plug-in All-in-one-SEO.
  • Increase the number of times the phrase JMU Marketing Major appears.

Off-page Strategies:

  • Sharing my page link on Facebook
  • Sharing my page link on Twitter
  • Sharing my website’s link to LinkedIn

For the entire site, I was able to increase my HubSpot Marketing Grader score from a 60 to a 68 overall score. After using these SEO strategies, there was a significant improvement. WebpageFX gave me a ranking of 38%, much better than before. My page was originally not listed within the first 20 SERPs and now it is on page 13 of the Google SERP.

There are still a lot of things I can modify and improved to better optimized my page. One of the major difficulties that I had was that I am not a JMU Marketing Major, therefore I had to create a new page with general information about the major. I can continue sharing the link to my page on  Facebook, LinkedIn and Twitter  in order to keep driving traffic to it.






Learning From Plow & Hearth Marketing Strategies

5 Nov

On November 1, 2012 the  MKTG 470 class at James Madison University had a presentation by Plow & Hearth. The speakers were Jessica Baines, Senior Manager of Online Marketing and Brianne Keating, Director of Ecommerce. Plow & Hearth is a major retailer specialized in hearth, furniture, fireplace, lawn and garden accessories and much more. Established in Madison, Virginia in 1980, it employs over 400 associates and it owns six brands: HeartSong, Magic Cabin, Plow & Hearth, ProblemSolvers, Wind & Weather, Reuseit. They are expected to have sales over 100 million this year. They are involved in being socially responsible by helping Blue Ride Area Food Bank, American Rivers, and Madison Social Services. The Presentation consisted in vast information about the importance of keeping up with the industry and what Plow & Hearth strategies are to keep up with these changes.

The presentation provided a lot of information about internet marketing and how marketer have to be flexible in order to respond to the industry changes. Here are some of the main points that Ms. Baines talked about and that I would like to share.

Keeping up with the industry

Internet marketing is always changing; therefore keeping up with the industry trends is a full time job. Some good ways to be updated with the industry is to follow industry leaders via blog post, tweets and RSS feeds. Things are changing all the time and it is important to keep up with them all the time.

Algorithm Changes

Google is constantly changing their algorithm, it changes about 500 times a year. Recently changes such as the “Panda” Update consists in the change to the Google’s search results ranking algorithm by lowering the rank of low- quality sites and return higher quality sites near the top of the search results. Another big change was the reduction of the number of results on SERP from top 10 , limiting it to 7 results. This impacts the SEO strategy completely, Google quest for quality provides the opportunity for companies to optimize their search campaigns and dominate the search results.

Customer behavior

People preferences for search engine are always changing for example switching from Google to Bing. Another great example is that there are a lot of people that use Amazon to look for products therefore Internet marketers have to adapt to this in order to connect with their customers. According to Ms. Baines, Amazon leads shopping results on Google SERP, out of all paid clicks on the top 500 retail sites, Amazon captured the majority of all paid clicks. This affects directly the company position on page and their bidding strategy.

JMU MKTG 470 class wants to thank Plow & Hearth for coming to share their knowledge of internet marketing strategies and the efforts that the company has made to be updated with the industry changes.


How Social Networking Is Changing The Way Marketers Promote Their Products.

28 Oct

The growth of the internet

It has led to changes in the marketing environment forcing companies to rethink the way they promote their products. According to the article Social Networks are the New Media, Robert Young states “In many ways, the art-form of self-expression has become the “new media”, and social networks are their distribution channels.” Society these days is very fast paced. One of the most effective ways to get people’s attention is throughout social networks. The rapid pace of technological changes has forced marketers to adapt their  marketing strategies.

Social networking

It has contributed to the increased of human knowledge, support, interaction and also as a vehicle for companies to promote their products by using Facebook, Twitter, blogs, LinkedIn and MySpace among others. Social networking has allowed business to reach individuals like never before, many television advertisements and radio shows suggested people to “please join us on Facebook”, “Follow us on Twitter”. Traditional advertisement it is no longer the norm. By using sites such as Twitter, businesses have a direct line to interact with their target markets. This interaction strengths the company’s brand because now business have the opportunity to give immediate feedback, get users to comment, like, and blog about their product giving the company constant exposure.


Marketing is all about making brand, product and services visible.  For example, Sharpie, unveiled a campaign to “Uncap what’s Inside,” designed to encourage consumers to uncap their creativity and individuality by using a variety of Sharpie products to decorate anything from surfboards to sneakers, this helped Sharpie create more awareness of their products. (Miley, 2009). These new marketing channels have allowed marketers to make people aware of upcoming product and services giving the company constant exposure. Social networking is not only about making friends but also a way for companies to develop a relationship with their customers.


The Evolution Of My Website: Muy Bueno, My New Theme

15 Oct

I recently updated my theme WhiteHouse, which in my opinion was easy to use and navigate to a theme call Bueno designed by Woothemes. I decided to use this theme because I was looking for a design that was flexible and had enough features to promote myself.  Bueno theme provides a clean layout with seven different color schemes (blue, grey, green, red, default color, purple, brown), feature images, custom widgets, custom page templates, drop down menu and it is also compatible with Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, Safari, Firefox as well as other browsers.I did not have many issues with the transition. However, I noticed that my dashboard change a little and now I have a Bueno Tab in where I can make any changes to the design and add features. On this Tab, I was able to change the header that initially said Bueno to Catalina Mendieta with my tagline Health & Wellness. I am not longer able to have a Twitter feed on my page and I had to realign some of the pictures.  I also tried to create a Logo on Logomarker to display it on my website but when I inserted it did not match the background and it looked a little bit off, I hope to learn more about web design so I can improve my website.

E-Learning Technology, A New Way To Learn Online

10 Oct

The Importance Of Online Education

E-learning as become very important in our society. I found an article by Jolie O’Dell  that talks about how online education is changing the way we learn. Websites such as provided vast information about different online programs such as AA, BS, MA, MS, and PhD degrees. Jolie talks about the role that internet plays in everyone’s life and how corporations and nonprofit organizations are making online education and virtual classroom very accessible.  Online education is about $34 billion dollars industry, everyday new people are joining this new way of learning to find new career education opportunities.

E-Learning Organizations

The University of Phoenix, a for-profit organization is now the largest university in the US enrolling more than 500,000 students. Khan Academy, with grants from Google and the Gates foundation has recorded over 2,100 lecture videos, which have been viewed over 41 million times. The article also mentions “Traditional education institutions and E-learning organizations alike are transforming the ways we are learning in today’s society”.  The internet is changing how we learn, many traditional institutions are shifting the classroom settings to online setting and non-profit organizations are offering courses for free. Studies have shown that by 2019, it is estimated that 50% of all classes taught will be delivered online. Thanks to the internet students have more access and power over their education. Applications such as iTunes U offers more than 350,000 college lectures and videos from more than 800 universities including Yale, Stanford ,Oxford  all for free. This shows how important the internet has become in the past decade and it continues to grow each day, nowadays anyone with internet connection can educate themselves.

My First MKTG 470 Blog Post-JMU Marketing Major

25 Sep

JMU Marketing Major

Welcome to my blog.  I am currently enrolled in Strategic Internet Marketing (MKTG 470) taught by Dr. Theresa B. Clarke at James Madison University.  As one of the course requirements, all students will be completing some of the assignments as blog posts.  This is my first official blog post for Dr. Clarke’s course in the JMU Department of Marketing.

More information about JMU Marketing Major