Monday, August 01, 2011

How To Set Up Wordpress Locally On Your Windows -MAC PC

Here's my tip of the week. It will save you hours!

There are loads of Wordpress themes and plugins available. But some are good, others less so.

Up to now, you've probably uploaded these toys onto your server. But this takes time, and can mess up a perfectly good site in a couple of clicks.

Solution? Set up Wordpress on your local PC or MAC and test themes, plugins and make test posts on there before deploying on your main site.

And it's really easy.

1. Visit:
2. Download the appropriate Wordpress stack package.
3. Install on your machine by running the file and following the simple prompts
4. Job done!

5. If you'd like to have an unlimited number of different sites locally, set up the multi-site option
6. Visit: and follow the simple instructions
7. Voila! As many Wordpress sites on your local machine as you want

Windows Themes and Plugins go here:
C:\Program Files\BitNami WordPress Stack\apps\wordpress\htdocs\wp-content

Now go forth and add / test and plugins, themes etc locally on your PC!

Sunday, July 25, 2010

A comprehensive list of keyword research tools

A list with all available keyword or market research tools would be useful. I hope you like my list. I will add any new links you post here to keep them organized.


Keyword services:

Free keyword tools:

Search suggestions:


Google tools:

Competitor research:



Monday, March 22, 2010

Get Indexed Super Fast!

Submit your site url to Digg. Don't worry about how many other Diggs you get. The title and description should be interesting (for as high a CTR as possible, later on) and keyword rich too (for ranking purposes).

Then take your Digg url:


Get over to

Submit your url.

Go to

Add your keywords to the title, and add what you want to rank for, too.

Thats it!

Take it further:

Get a couple of Digg accounts, behind a few proxies. Don't bother digging your own urls. Try and give your Digg accounts names which are relevant to your vertical (car-lover, super-car-lover etc).

Make sure you only Digg 2 urls per account. So if you have 10 urls you want to get indexed, only digg urls 1 + 2 with digg account 1, then with digg account 2 digg url 3 + 4 etc.

Add each account to your other accounts, as friends, and still behind a proxy.

Go to Digg and see your friends activity. You'll see the list of diggs that your 'friend' has submitted. You can get the RSS feed for this friends account (orange button near the top):

Get this for each friends account.

Submit at

Each one with a different title you want to rank for.

Add each at:

My Yahoo
My Google

Use a RSS submitting program if you can get one, and paste the RSS feed urls and submit to directories.


Now I'm not saying this will definitely get you ranked at the TOP of each search engine, but sometimes you need to get indexed super fast (sales of a new site/blog whatever). So use this for that stuff and you should be golden.

From there, add more backlinks to push yourself up the SERPS.

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Online document storage

Dropbox. Has iPhone app. Keeps copy of all revisions. Web accessible. Uses Amazon S3. Win/Mac/linux. Can only use 1 folder as a "dropbox" which isn't that big of an issue.

For a more well-rounded solution, jungledisk is great. I use it to back up my personal and business files. I love how I can have a network drive that I can treat like a hard drive. Uses S3, can sync and backup any folder, include/exclude with filtering rules, web accessible, keeps copies of revisions, Win/Mac/linux and portable, iPhone accessible with an app called Air Sharing Pro

Some Alternatives

Groove 2007

As part of Office 2007, I have Groove 2007. Haven't really used it much myself...but it's main purpose is to be able to work with groups in different locations and sync files across different networks and computers securely.

according to this wikipedia post

it looks like Microsoft is renaming Groove 2007 (Hosted version) to Sharepoint Workspace 2010

Open Source Group Collaboration
If you're looking to do group collaboration Sharepoint is used by many large corporations. I've also looked at some open source alternatives like ....

these two grew out of forks of Active Collab while it was still open source; before Active Collab went closed source and started charging for installs.

Easy and Painless VPN
You can try out LogMeIn's Hamachi

I had tested and tried this out a couple of years ago right before and after they [Hamachi] had gotten acquired by LogMeIn. And found it to be straight forward and painless to setup.

Ubuntu One - Dropbox Like Clone
if you're using Ubuntu, in the latest release 9.10 they added access to cloud sharing via their ubuntu one system.

it's supposed to use Amazon S3 like dropbox, and is a little cheaper as well (2GB for FREE, 50GB for $10). But the drawback is that it currently only runs on Ubuntu. Dropbox is cross platform with windows, linux, mac and has versioning.

Monday, August 31, 2009

Modelling – Sweet mother of fudge it’s powerful

I’m not talking about the kind of modelling that lets you take advantage of na├»ve hotties on your casting couch, unfortunately. The kind of modelling I’m talking about is business modelling. And what it lacks in hotties on your casting couch, it makes up for in ridiculous amounts of money it pulls from your businesses (for those of you reading who actually HAVE businesses).

Here are the premises that I’m assuming – If these don’t fit your business, this article won’t be useful to you:

1. You have a business
2. Your business is built on repeat business
3. You maintain a database of customers (or clients, or patients, or whatever) and their financial history with your company
4. You want to make more money

Okay. If those don’t fit, move to the next article, because this one will bore you.

There are lots of really simple ways to model, and depending on the data you have available, you can also get into some really esoteric & wacky statistical analysis to show you links between customer behaviour & increased money.

Like most things in life, the simple methods are the ones that have the greatest leverage (IE doing them will make you a LOT of money), while the complex ones give very marginal gains. Or, to put it another way, you only need to worry about the highly complex modelling once you’ve maxed out the very simple models that we’ll be talking about (and very few people have done that). So let’s look at a few simple models.

The first model you want to create is the Lifetime Value of a Client model – It’s the one we’ve all heard about a billion times, but rarely implemented. Again, this is a useless exercise if you don’t have a running concern, but if you’ve got a nice backlog of data, then pull it out and figure out how many visits an average client comes in for, and how much they spend. (Later, you can do separate analysis to determine if people who come in less frequently spend more, or if there’s any indication that there’s a ‘per visit maximum’ people will spend, etc. But for now, just figure out how often they come in, and how much they spend).

Now comes the fun part. You want to dive in DEEP to these numbers. Don’t just accept them at face value. After all, it’s great knowing that when somebody comes in they’ll have an average of 38 visits. But you know that averages are dangerous… So start asking better questions. What is the average visit number if somebody comes in a 2nd time? A 5th time? A 10th time?

What do the visit & spending profiles of people look like based on their age when they start doing business with you? You might find out that somebody who’s over 40 will be 3X as valuable to you as somebody who’s under 25 – that’d be nice to know for when you’re crafting marketing & referral campaigns.

Now, exactly how you get these ever so useful numbers will depend on the format of your database, of course. What I’ve found is that for non-tech geeks like myself, it’s often easiest just to pull all the relevant data you want to look at into a single excel page, and then manipulate from there. Of course, however you want to actually get the data is up to you, but I’m going to give a super low-tech example to walk through.

So for the above numbers, just pull the client ID, birthday, date of first purchase, number of purchases, and total dollar value purchased into a spreadsheet page. You can add in a column at the end called “Age”, then just subtract their birthday from date of first purchase, and you’ll get their age when they first came in.

So, assuming that you put all of these into columns A-F, number of purchases is in column D.

You can get the lifetime purchase average by using the formula =average(D2: -D1000000)
(remove the space between D$2: and -D$1000000)

A quick note – Excel 2007 is about a billion times better for this type of thing, since it gives you 1,000,000+ rows and 16k columns (as opposed to 65k rows and 256 columns)

Okay. That gives you the average lifetime value. What if we want to find out what the average value is if they’re not just one hit wonders (IE if they come in for a 2nd visit)?

=AVERAGEIF(D$2: -D$1000000,">1")
(remove the space between D$2: and -D$1000000)

You can replace the “>1” with any number to see what the effect is at different visit trigger points. Somebody who comes in for 5 visits will likely have SIGNIFICANTLY more visits than the total average (it’s the success bias, of course). What this will show you is how important certain visit milestones are in your business, so that you can start putting things into place to entice people to come in to at least those milestones.

To find the age ranges, you can use this formula:

=AVERAGEIFS(D$2: -D$1000000,F$2:F$1000000,">20",F$2:F$1000000,"<30")
(remove the space between D$2: and -D$1000000)

That’ll tell you the average visits of people between 20-30 years old. Change the 20 & 30 to see whatever range you like – that’ll give you an idea of what age group is most profitable to your business.

The upside of using formulas like that is that they’re simple, they’re fast, and they’re extremely easy to modify to get more and more detailed information.

Consider another type of model – We’ll call it the “Retention Model.” Here, what you do is slightly more complex, but extremely rewarding. In this case, what you do is go through your full visit history database, and find out what the visit pattern is for every customer you have. This is a variation of the RFM (Recency, Frequency, Monetary Value) that’s so highly touted in the book Drilling Down (which is DEFINITELY among my top 5 products here as far as value added).

The goal of this is simple – you want to learn what the “acceptable” latency between visits is for your customers, so that when customers go beyond that, you can flag them & contact them to bring them back.

You can make this more detailed, and do it on a visit-by-visit basis, if there’s a big difference between the usage of your product/service/store at the beginning of the relationship and as the relationship matures.

The main point is simple – you want to figure out where to set up ‘alarm systems’ in your business to let you know when people have been gone too long, so that you can get in touch with them. This is among the most powerful things you can do in your business to reduce the attrition rate, which as we all know, is ever so important.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Ways To Get Indexed Very Quickly

This is all about how to get your website or webpage indexed as quickly as possible. If the method gives you a backlink, that's cool too but it's not required. If you have a trick in your sleeve, please share it. I'll start.

Propeller method:
- Submit a story in Propeller and use popular tags like "news", "google", "barack obama" or better yet, find a hot hot news story and see what tag it uses
- For some reason search engines love love love Propeller. My current record is getting indexed in 11 minutes.
- Your story will be changing pages constantly so backlink value isn't that good.

Warning about using Digg to get indexed:
- I don't know if it's just me but it seems that submitting your story to Digg and getting 0 diggs does more bad than good for you.
- For some reason my pages don't get indexed unless they receive diggs. If somebody has opposite experiences (recent ones), please contribute.

Press releases:
- Use free press release service and publish a press release.
- I haven't used this for ages because Propeller works so test yourself.
- This works because Google has their own news aggregator that loves to scrape all press releases
- If your press release gets picked up and not just spidered, you'll get good backlinks too.

About Tag & Ping, Blog & Ping, Commenting, etc.
- Only for link building in my opinion.
- It just looks way too spammy if you start with pinging or commenting.

Tuesday, June 02, 2009

Monday, June 01, 2009

Are We In Control Of Our Decisions?

Watch this video:

If you are not familiar with Dan Ariely's work, you ought to get a kick out of it. Excellent implications for devious marketers everywhere.

LiveZilla freeware Live Chat ROCKS!

Wow, is all I can say:


Installed about one hour ago and highlights are as follows:

Customer Live Chat (free of course)
Multi-Server support (MS & Linux, only needs PHP...SQL not required)
Allows for complete tracking of each website visitor (i.e. you can coBrowse and watch each page that is browsed to LIVE!)
Push a chat request window to the user LIVE!
URL Redirect Push (push a URL to the user live to redirect them to a different page)
File Push - Send the user a file to their desktop
Allows for full branding...insert you colors and logo
multi user and multi domain
did I say it was FREE!

Damn after spending all day researching about 20-25 different pay per month hosted options...this one is free and ROCKS!

Firefox Speed Up Tip

The speed of loading up firefox was bugging me today. So I went and had a look at some methods to speed it up.

Came across the following tip on this page

'secret', I thought I would post it here

A tip how to make Firefox run faster. in the address bar type about:config.
Navigate to the following keys

set network.http.pipeling to true
set network.http.proxy.pipelining to true
set network.http.pipeling.maxrequests to at least 30
AND add an integer called nglayout.initialpaint.delay and set it to 0

This will significantly speed up firefox on a broadband connection

I have installed the tweaks and then spent the next four hours scientifically analyzing the performance increase. See the specifications of the test bed used and the performance numbers below:

Test Bed

I used an Intel Core i7-920 CPU for testing purposes, boosting its clock speed to 3.8 GHz in order to circumvent any potential CPU bottlenecks.

CPU Intel Core i7-920 Overclocked to 3.8GHz
Motherboard ASUS Rampage II Extreme X58
Video Card ATI Radeon HD 4770
Video Drivers 9.4, 9.4 Beta for 4770
Hard Drive Intel X25-M 80GB SSD
RAM 6 x 1GB DDR3-1066 7-7-7-20
Operating System Windows Vista Ultimate 64-bit SP1
PSU PC Power & Cooling Turbo Cool 1200W

After performing extensive testing with browser, FTP, multi-tabbed, multi-access, multi-threading, multi-everything. I have come to the conclusion that there is a significant performance increase that averages as follows:

Performance: - .0051 second DLT (Decrease in Load Time) - .0066 second DLT

Yes, these tweaks are DEFINITELY WORTH get to it.

Sunday, May 31, 2009

Why Use osCommerce?

I use osCommerce, and here's why:

osCommerce is free and it's open source being one of the most popular shoppingcart solution on the net. it's the most flexible i've seen and the list of features and contributions are the size of a thick text book, meaning you can do it all with it.

The amount of support you can get is unlimited. oscommerce forums are active. almost every experienced web designer has heard of it and can do anything with it. you aren't at the mercy of one provider, anyone can make changes for you, fix issues, and get you going.

The designs and templates are also endless. You aren't at the mercy of one template shop. you can get a custom design done for dirt cheap and there are millions of templates available for easy installation. The cart itself is also user friendly.

When it comes to payment integration, it can't get easier. You can add google checkout, paypal,, or any other payment processor. payments go through smoothly and it seems easier then anything else out there.

It can handle unlimited products, you can add tens of thousands of products seemlessly. it takes about three minutes or less to get a product in there with full details, specs, pictures, the whole enchilada. seriously, anybody can do it.

Everything is managed through one admin panel, literally everything. No need to go to ten different sites to get organized. Everything is in one easy spot which again is very user friendly. There are lots of SEO contributions, which make your site easy to find in the search engines. They are easy to install and fix up your site automatically.

Hopefully this helps all of you who are still in a search for a shopping cart solution. take my word for it, go with oscommerce.