Verisign Now Requires Authorization Code To Transfer .COM and .NET Domains To New Registrar

If you registered a .COM or .NET domain name and want to transfer it elsewhere, you’ll now need to know your Authorization Code, beginning October 29.

The Authorization Code, also referred to as an EPP key, is a unique number that is assigned to each domain name when it is registered and adds a layer of security to the domain name.

Domain registries currently assigning auth codes include:
Verisign, the .COM and .NET Registry
Publice Interest Registry, the .ORG Registry
Afilias, the .INFO Registry
NeuLevel, the .BIZ Registry
NeuStar, the .US Registry

You will need to go to your current registrar (the company that you registered the domain name with) to request your Authorization Code (EPP Key).

Please follow the instructions provided by your current registrar for obtaining your EPP key.

The initial process for transfering your domain name to a new registrar remains the same:

The domain must be at least 60 days old

Domain must be in “ACTIVE” or “OK” status.

IE7 May Damage Your Online Reputation Without Your Knowledge

According to a post at WebProWorld, a legitimate website owner tested his shopping cart in Internet Exploror 7 RC1. During the checkout process, the browser popped up a window telling him that his site was a “potential phising site” and to not give his information to the site.

What is a phishing site really?

A phishing site is a site that masquerades as a legitimate business. It tries to entice people to enter their personal information, which the owner of the site then uses for identity theft purposes.

So, what is happening is that IE 7 is arbitrarily accusing legitimate site owners of being thieves!

I’m sure you can imagine what will happen to your online business when your customers upgrade to IE 7 and receive a notification on a page of your site, stating that you are a phishing site. Not Good!

According to BJ Novack, what’s even worse, is that you have no way of knowing that your site is being flagged, unless you check every page in IE 7:

My biggest concern though is if you don’t check your sites you don’t know you have a nice big window stamped on it saying “Suspicious website ….. Microsoft recommends that you do not give any of your information to such websites”.

As it appears anyone can vote against your site and as you get no warning of it, there’s now another job of periodically checking to see if your site is/is not on the black list. Worst of all you seem to have to go page by page to find if the site is flagged.

In my case it was a payment page that was flagged not the rest of the site, therefore a cursory look would not have revealed the problem.

So what can you do?

I recommend you install IE 7 on another computer at your home or business (not your main computer, because it wipes out IE 6 in the installation process) and check your websites. If you don’t have an extra computer, find a friend or colleague who does and ask them to review every page on your website and go through your entire order process. If you find that your site is flagged, make sure you or your friend follows the instructions to report the error to Microsoft.

And that’s not all

Apparently McAfee and Firefox have Phishing filters in their new versions as well. And in all three cases, people can report your site as a phishing site. Which means that even if you check your site and aren’t flagged today, or you reported the flag and had it removed — it can come back.

Who has time to check every page of their website everyday for this kind of stuff???

I’m going to keep an eye on the WebProWorld thread. I’m also going to check my sites to make sure they aren’t flagged. If they are, I’m going to report the error. Also, if the flag appears when someone leaves my site to pay via Paypal, for example, I will let the third party processor know.

My request

If you are using IE 7 and you are attempting to make a purchase through a site that you have dealt with before and have had a good relationship with, please let the site owner know that they are being flagged. I am sure that they will greatly appreciate your help.

I know I will.

Thank you!

P.S. One possible solution to tracking this issue is to install a site meter, such as Sitemeter and make sure you have it on your checkout pages. Then keep an eye out for people leaving the checkout process without paying. This could be your alert that something is awry in the system. Sitemeter will also tell you what browser the people use. If you start seeing people leaving your site in the middle of the checkout process, or at a specific page, I recommend you or a friend check your site with IE 7.

Note: It is possible to install IE 7 without overwriting IE 6. Just follow the instructions in this weblog.

Take Advantage Of The Holiday Gift Buying Frenzy!

My friend Kelly McCausey just reminded me that people are going to be looking high and low for the perfect gift for their loved ones in the next two to three months. If you are selling giftable products, then now’s the time to start advertising your site.

One such place to advertise is in Kelly’s print magazine, The WC, which goes to more than 1,800 subscribers each month.

She will be sending out The WC 2006 Full Color Holiday Catalog during the first 10 days of November — and publishing an online version as well.

You can take a look at the online version. When you’re ready, you can purchase your full page ad in the magazine at The WC.
Or, go for the one-third page ad.
This is a great way to get your products in front of your target market!

[tags]holiday gift buying, Kelly McCausey, The WC, advertising[/tags]

While We’re On The Subject Of Aweber, Let’s Talk About How This Service Can Reduce Your Workload

You’ve probably heard that creating a mailing list is one of the best ways to reach out to your existing or potential customers and keep them coming back to your site. Everytime you send them an issue, they are reminded of you, and given a reason to visit.

I heard about mailing lists four years ago, even tried to setup a few, but keep falling back on my goals of producing a full-blown ezine every week or every month. It’s hard work — almost a job by itself!

But then I found out about sequential autoresponders. Basically, you sit down one day and write out all of your newsletter issues, plug them into the program and tell the autoresponder when to send the email out. For example, my “Seven Secrets to Starting A Successful Online Business” ecourse is set to send out the first newsletter immediately after the subscriber has confirmed their desire to receive the series. The next issues are all sent seven days after the previous one.

Now isn’t that nifty? Sit down and work once, never have to touch it again (other than for updates over time).

Even better — you can also send a “broadcast” message. This means that if something happens that is time sensitive, for example, and you want all of your list members to know right now, or next Thursday, you can tell the system to send this message to everyone on the list at a specific time.

Still, even with the industry leading sequential autoresponder, Aweber, I held back, because I couldn’t decide on the right design for the newsletter. And coming up with three or four different articles for each issue was still a pain.

But that’s when my friend, Alice, taught me about the RIGHT way to send emails.  Her advice:

  • Ditch the fancy graphics and use plain text
  • Write to your list members as if you’re writing to one person
  • Keep it short

Those words of wisdom changed my mailing list life. (And if you want to read more of her advice, you can sign up for her free Email Marketing Tips newsletter. This is also a perfect way to see her wisdom in action.

After following her advice, I have setup an ecourse, my Watersweb BizTips newsletter, the Free WAHM Stuff newsletter, an ecourse for my Affiliate Partners and there are more in the works.

So, Why Are You Sending Me Email With Clicks.Aweber Links? Are You Spamming Me?

In a word: No.

One of my clients alerted me tonight about complaints going around embroidery Yahoo groups. Apparently, someone, received emails from a wedding organization out of California.

The email thanked the recipient for registering on their site, though she doesn’t remember doing so. She was concerned because the URL in the link inside the email looked like this:

clicks.aweber.com… followed by several letters and numbers

With all the spam we receive every day, I can understand why she was concerned — and I’m glad that she asked. It’s usually not a good idea to click links in an email when we have no idea where it came from or whether or not the source can be trusted.

In this case though, I can say that I am familiar with Aweber. I am a subscriber to their mailing list services, which I use to manage my “Seven Secrets to Starting A Successful Online Business” ecourse, my Watersweb Biz Tips newsletter and my new Free WAHM Stuff newsletter.

I can tell you that the clicks.aweber link is actually Aweber’s built-in tracking system. When the list owner adds a link into the email she is creating, she has the option to checkmark a box to track whether or not the recipients of the email click the link. She can then determine whether or not her message is reaching her target market. I know “tracking system” sounds like Big Brother, but all it does is help the list owner decide if her marketing campaign is effective or not.

Also, Aweber requires all their lists to be Verified Opt-In, which means that not only do you have to sign up for the list on someone’s website, but you also have to click a link inside a confirmation email before you will receive anything else.

I am thinking that the confirmation email is what the Yahoo group member received. She may have signed up for a list on a website, or maybe someone signed her up. In either case, by doing nothing, she will NOT receive any more emails from that list.

Of course, since I know that people aren’t trusting these re-written links, I don’t think I’ll be using their tracking system again. My client just left my list because she thought that I was sending her weird stuff. (Actually, it was just a link to my Presenting Your Products ask campaign.)

Here are some tips to help you decide if you should click the links in an email

1. Do not sign up for lists, unless you trust the source.

2. Do not click links in the confirmation email unless you trust the source AND you want to continue receiving mailings from the source.

3. If the list is from Aweber or Email Aces or Constant Contact, there will be an unsubscribe link at the bottom of the email. It is safe to click the unsubscribe link that the company automatically includes in the email. You can read more about the unsubscribe link that aweber appends to messages at http://www.aweber.com/faq_messages.htm#21

If you have any questions, feel free to comment below…

Need Leads? You Should Hold A Webinar

Seminars are a proven lead generation technique. With the Internet, seminars are less costly to organize and people can attend right from their home or office.

What Is A Webinar?

Webinars (also called web seminars) are conference calls delivered primarily through the Internet using a web conferencing service. Participants log in to the seminar through a web page or software provided by the host. When participants successfully join the call, they can hear the speakers, converse with them and others in the room through a microphone attached to their computers, view slides, web pages, video of the speakers and even a virtual white board.

Webinars Work

Studies have shown that webinars can create more leads than traditional methods* and prospects prefer these events because there is less pressure than a traditional in person meeting.

Webinars on the other hand, are often arranged for a large group of people and prospects can attend anonymously if they wish. They can enter and leave the seminar whenever they choose, gather information, learn, digest and decide on their own time.

What Kind of Webinars Can You Hold?

There are many ways. If you want to spread the work load, hold one with multiple speakers. You also benefit from the power of group promotion.

For more targetted events, you could do different angles for different dates or different market. For example, if you sell candles, you could do “Don’t settle for musk during spring cleaning, Bring spring into your home” webinar or, if you sell time management software, you could do “Time management for Realtors”, “Time management for students”, “Time management for busy moms” webinar and so on.

List Building

This is the reason you’re holding a seminar right? Get the contact. Set up a page to collect names and contact, at the very least an email address so you can follow up with them again.

Maximize Your Efforts

Record your webinar. Many web conferencing software used for webinars have recording and takes little to no extra effort to do. For example, MeetingOnNow’s webinar software comes included with a record button and it saves your recording into the popular MP3 format. You can use the recording as bonuses, give aways or packaged with other material to create a new product.

*Source: Unearthing the True Value of Web Seminars and On-Line Events, Wainhouse Research – Andy Nilssen, Andrew Davis:

http://www.webconferencingworks.com/white-papers.html

About the author:

Lynette Chandler helps entreprenuers leverage web conferencing technology for their marketing. You can visit Lynette at her blog.

[tags]web seminar, webinar, Lynette Chandler, web conferencing, internet marketing[/tags]

Cottontail Baby Prepares For Cloth Diaper Hunt

One of Watersweb’s long-time clients, Amy of Cottontail Baby, is participating in a cloth diapering joint venture next month, called the Great Cloth Diaper Hunt.

The GCDH is a game in which diaper “hunters” look for a symbol on each participating cloth diaper site they visit. The cloth diaper seller has hidden this symbol somewhere on her site.

“This helps drive potential customers to your site and also helps to expose new or unique products because the participants can hide the symbol on product pages that are not frequently viewed,” Amy said.

In order to win, the hunters try to find the most symbols by the end of November. The winners receive prizes donated by the participants.

WANTED Web Design joins Watersweb Partnership

WANTED Web Design and Watersweb Solutions LLC joined forces to provide affordable and professional ecommerce services to work at home moms who sell physical products.

Andrea, owner of Wanted Web Design, started her company in May 2006 to help other WAHMs fulfill their desire for a functional and professional looking website at a cost that was easily affordable.

Andrea’s philosophy is: “Never let anything get in the way of the sale,” the ultimate goal of designing websites. Her designs are simple and elegant: Perfect for showcasing your products.

Stop by and take a look at Andrea’s work!

[tags]Wanted Web Design, Watersweb Shops, Shop Kit Plus, ecommerce services, work at home moms, sell physical products online[/tags]

Is There Any Advantage To Use A Weblog Over Posting Articles On My Site?

One of my clients, Meredith of Llamajama, asked if there is any advantage to using a weblog over posting articles on her site.

My short answer: Yes!

The purpose of posting articles on your site is to increase your “virtual real estate” (VRE) which means you add more pages and information to your site, for the search engines spiders to eat, which means you’ll have more links in the search engine results when potential customers search for information.

While this method is effective in building your ranking in the search engines and providing information to your clients, it doesn’t allow you to build relationships with your customers the way that a weblog will.

Building relationships with your customers is an important method of “pre-selling” them. For example, if your potential customers know that they can go to your site for up-to-date information on using cloth diapers and the cloth diaper industry in general, who do you think will first in their minds for purchasing cloth diapers? You!

Of course, blogging is a bit more complicated than just setting up a weblog and posting. You have to decide on a specific topic, figure out what software you will use, and generate traffic to your site. And, of course, encourage people to participate.

I just downloaded a product called Blogging Starter Pack, created by my friend Lynette Chandler. This product contains all the answers to those questions, and more:

  • How do I start?
  • How do I setup a blog under my domain name?
  • Is it worth it to pay for a hosted blog?
  • Is it possible to make my blog look like my website?
  • How do I use my blog to promote my products?

You can learn more about the Blogging Starter Pack at her site, or you can take her free email course, Unleash The Selling Power of Your Blog.

You can also read Lynette’s blog.

Are you blogging? Has blogging helped increase your product sales?

Temporary Paypal Errors On October 2

Some Watersweb clients have reported errors with Paypal today, including receiving notices that an order has been cancelled, while placing an order.

In other instances, Paypal members have not been able to login to their Paypal accounts when attempting to pay for an order, or have been given a temporary error message while attempting to place orders.

This is a problem on Paypal’s end, and nothing that we can take care of within the Mals Cart or Shop Kit Plus.

I recommend that you place a notice on your site telling your customers that if they receive an error or can’t login to their Paypal accounts while ordering, they should wait several minutes, login to Paypal to make sure they order didn’t go through, and then try again. Or try another payment method, if available.

If you’d like to discuss the Paypal issues as they affect your Shop Kit Plus site, please stop by the support forums.