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  1. #1
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    Hi guys...

    I don't work with search engines much, and I'm not that familiar with all the ins and outs, as you can probably tell. I did a search and didn't find anything here on Trusted Feed stuff, but I could be missing it and not knowing it, so please forgive me if this is well-covered territory here.

    Do any of you use, or have any of you heard of, Trusted Feed? We are talking to someone who is a reseller of the feed. Who is the actual feed owner? Is it good? Is it worthwhile?

    Help!

    Thanks in advance, everyone...

    -patrice

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  2. #2
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    Contact http://www.positiontech.com and ask for Jim Stob

    If you wish to know more - you can't. "For security reasons the only ones allowed to see the profiles are affiliate managers."

  3. #3
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    Thanks, Adam...

    Can you tell me, is positiontech a reseller of the feed? I want to make sure I'm getting info from someone sort of...how do I say...objective about it. Know what I mean?

    -patrice

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  4. #4
    ABW Ambassador CrazyGuy's Avatar
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    Patrice - Maybe we're talking at cross purposes, but my understanding of this is that the "feed" comes from you, in effect you become "trusted" - it's a way to get lots of URLs guaranteed inclusion. Resellers are selling access to the service on behalf of the SEs.


    A few SEs have their own versions of the idea.

    I looked into it but the common theme was that the costing is PPC - and about 20c/click. Might make sense for a merchant, but I don't have any sites where I can guarantee a SE visitor is worth that much to me.

    Well, I do - but I'd have to cherry pick products etc, and I'd hoped that trusted feed would be a way to get whole datafeed sites listed/updated regularly.

    Are you Crazy?

  5. #5
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    Hey, Crazy!

    Well, the firms we're working with are telling me they'll be able to submit our dynamic pages through this Trusted Feed, for which they are resellers. So I tried to find out more about who owns Trusted Feed, whatever it implies, to see for whom they're reselling it.

    But you're right, it's PPC and it's expensive. I'm trying to figure out if it is worth it, or what "it" really actually is. It's like a big mystery.

    Anyways, I thank you for posting...are we at cross purposes? I hope not...cause to answer your question, yes. I am crazy.

    -patrice

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  6. #6
    ABW Ambassador CrazyGuy's Avatar
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    Ok, I think I see where you're coming from.

    As I understand it ...

    "Trusted Feed" doesn't belong to any one person as such - it's just terminology. Several SEs have set up various bulk inclusion arrangements - Inktomi's is called "Index Connect", Lycos/Fast's is called "InSite Enterprise", Altavista's is called (confusingly) "Trusted Feed" LOL.

    At least one of them (Inktomi?) would only deal with intermediaries - didn't want to do the CRM themselves - so a middleman industry grew around reprocessing data for these various programs. Many/all of them have adopted the "trusted feed" idea to suggest that they have a fast track/inroads to pushing URLs into the SEs. In practice, I think you can now do them all yourself if you have the inclination - the technology didn't scare me but the PPC did

    I think a merchant with good data (conversion and profit) should have a better chance of deciding which pages to submit than most affiliates.

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  7. #7
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    Trusted Feed is just an XML feed you provide to certain search engines (Inktomi, AskJeeves, AltaVista, Fast/Lycos). Essentially it is little more than a spreadsheet, consisting of a Title, meta description, keywords, the URL of each page and an extended meta description of about 100-150 words, which is optimized to rank well.

    The trusted bit is that the search engine is trusting that the information you provide in the feed is an accurate reflection of the target page.

    And that's all there is to it. How well your pages will rank depends on how well the information in the feed has been optimized, but generally, I would expect every page to appear in the first two pages of the results pretty much instantaneously.

    Search Engine Positioning - 1 Design 4 Life

  8. #8
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    Thanks, Crazy Guy and markymark...

    Demystified. And it seems as if we'd be able to do that ourselves and save the PPC, unless there is some restriction as to whom can feed the feed to the SE's? Or is it the SE's charging the clicks, and the broker service we're using is jacking it up further for their "efforts"?

    -patrice

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  9. #9
    ABW Ambassador CrazyGuy's Avatar
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    The worse one (you guessed it)

    My 20c/click figure is certainly from the SEs I managed to talk to directly. As I recall, there were no setup fees - I'm not sure where the brokers get their money.

    I'm still toying with the idea of extracting some higher value pages to submit - I posted to see if anyone here had any experience, but no takers.

    Are you Crazy?

  10. #10
    Affiliate Manager PetsWarehouse.com's Avatar
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    Question
    If you used perhaps Fourthworlds software to build a page for each product wouldn't that have the same effect without the PPC cost?

    Henry
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    [This message was edited by Pet Dealer on April 22, 2003 at 08:32 AM.]

  11. #11
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> Question
    If you used perhaps Fourthworlds software to build a page for each product wouldn't that have the same effect without the PPC cost? <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>
    Well, all you have achieved then is to create static versions of your pages. You still need to get them into the search engines. You may find there is more value in using trusted feed than paying $25 per page to Inktomi or sitting and waiting for the pages to be picked up for free.

    Trusted Feed is just a mechanism to get pages included in search engines. It's your call whether this method is advantageous to your business or not.

    CrazyGuy....I've used it..I missed your previous post asking about experiences. All I can say is I wouldn't use it for an affiliate site (hard to get a good ROI) but if I was a merchant, there are certain advantages to this method that aren't as easily achievable via regular optimisation/paid inclusion.

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  12. #12
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    <BLOCKQUOTE class="ip-ubbcode-quote"><font size="-1">quote:</font><HR> If you used perhaps Fourthworlds software to build a page for each product wouldn't that have the same effect without the PPC cost? <HR></BLOCKQUOTE>

    No

    And at 20c/click it wouldn't be worth it to pay for Trusted Feed IMO. You could go broke real quick with PPC-charged Trusted Feed and Web Merge. One merchant who can't convert, but had 1,000 or 2,000 products in their feed and you'd be so far in the hole you could change your address to China in about 2 days!

    If you get a real winning product (and can track down exactly which product it is), then advertising directed at that specific page would be in order. But I can see mega shirt loss with trying to advertise (Trusted Feed or massive amounts of other types of paid inclusion) an entire feed's worth of items as an affiliate!

    -I've been a king, and I've been a pauper, and everything there is in between ~T.G. Sheppard. NOT Frank Sinatra!

  13. #13
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    Thanks for your input, everyone...

    We have since talked with yet another firm who has told us that we can achieve the same results without "Trusted Feed" and their PPC model if we optimize the pages we have, which are dynamic. (Hence the dilemma in the first place.)

    I am really not well versed enough in this area, I can tell you that right now. But this conversation stimulated enough dialog (how jargonistic is that phrase??) to show the original firm that we know more than they think!

    -patrice

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  14. #14
    Affiliate Manager PetsWarehouse.com's Avatar
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    How are they proposing to do that?

    What is the name of the company?

    Henry
    Pet Dealer AM
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  15. #15
    ABW Ambassador CrazyGuy's Avatar
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    The key attraction of the trusted feed route is if you have a site that changes frequently.

    Take a Tiger Direct or OverStock datafeed based site for example - products have been and gone by the time they get indexed by most any SE.

    Trusted Feed lets you inject your page inventory into their index on a daily basis. No guarantees on ranking, but having some control over what goes in the index and when is very attractive.

    Optimizing dynamic pages may get things indexed that weren't getting indexed before, but I doubt if this new company has a way of getting your choice of pages indexed on your schedule without TF.

    Are you Crazy?

  16. #16
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    Am I allowed to say the name of the company?

    I'm not exactly sure how they're going to do it, they just said that there are "other ways" to submit dynamic pages to search engines besides using an xml feed.

    It's so confusing to me!

    -patrice

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  17. #17
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    You can say the name of the company if you like, Patrice. 'Other Ways' sounds a little unspecific to me - they will either be mod_rewriting the pages, cloaking or using standard Paid Inclusion. The last would be prohibitively expensive as a one-off cost though.

    I think you really need to sit down with one or both of these companies and come up with a clear SEO strategy - what you want to do, how quick you want to do it, what return on investment are you looking for, is there any extra value in having 1,000 pages included when you could have 100 targeted pages and let your affiliates handle SEO on the rest.

    It seems to me that you are getting too tied up with methods of getting pages included before you have even determined what the goal and focus of the campaign should be.

    If you work with a good SEO company, you should have already determined what the goals are in a clear and transparent manner - not just getting high rankings on lots of pages. After all, if you are optimizing/cloaking/using trusted feed for 1,000s of pages, you will be competing with your affiliates and might find that there is no cost benefit to doing so. This is stuff that should all be worked out before you decide how best to get the pages into the search engines.

    Just my opinion, of course.

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  18. #18
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    markymark has hit it on the head.
    Set your goals first!

    We are bringing a client online in May that will not compete with affiliates who can set their own goals.

    If you wish to know more - you can't. "For security reasons the only ones allowed to see the profiles are affiliate managers."

  19. #19
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    Thanks, guys.

    We do have very specific goals in place. What I'm unclear on is how the various companies that we've had bidding on SEO contracts will achieve the goals we've set out.

    We have a keyword marketer that works the PPCs on staff. We are bringing in a firm to do our "natural" SEO, to bring our site into the free results. The Trusted Feed came up in a proposal for our dynamic pages, which comprises most of our site. We also have and will create static pages that can be indexed by spiders, but the Trusted Feed was one option to get the dynamic pages into rotation as well.

    The "other ways" are all spelled out completely, but I just don't understand them! I know you're all wondering what they are, and I wish I could explain them, but we are checking out proposals and contracts and I don't think it would be a good idea to get too specific.

    Now, the one area that we don't seem to have covered here is the issue with "competing with affiliates" - what we're looking to do with SEO is to optimize product pages, not necessarily our name or categories. Since all of those pages are dynamically created, we need to make sure that when someone types in "rust encapsulator" into a search engine, that we come up both in the paid and free listings. At least that is how I am understanding it. I'm not sure if affiliates will be going that far or not..but we have thousands of products, and I don't know how many affiliates will be optimizing for thousands of products. Do I have the issues clear?

    So, we really do have goals, but I am just trying to find out more about this Trusted Feed, because really none of us had heard of it before. And once we did, we wanted to know what the other avenues are to get around paying all that $ per click.

    Does that make sense to you guys?

    -patrice

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  20. #20
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    Makes perfect sense to me. Good luck with it all.

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  21. #21
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    markymark, thanks so much for your insight. (That goes for all of you!)

    It's in the hands of the president of our company now...not much more I can do!

    We'll see how it works out.

    -patrice

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