how to use the internet, using the world wide web, internet tips, website design, search engine placement   Living Being Media™

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Paul Smyres and  Robert Smyres

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How to use the internet
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Using the internet is an important skill and one that's not difficult.

If you know how to use the internet successfully, you can benefit your life in hundreds of ways.
The internet can help you find a spouse, a house, a pet, a job,
and practically an endless list of other vital goods and services.
 
                   
The internet, as a publicly usable media, is less than a decade old.   
Compared to television (about 65 years),
and radio (over 100 years), it’s still in its infancy.   
That means that as time goes by,

it will almost certainly grow and become even more deeply embedded in the world’s culture.
Even today, countless businesses are completely reliant on the internet for success.  


Amazing fact:  

Today, for about a 100 dollars per year,
you can own an international media company on the internet
that can attract the same people who visit all the top media websites AND their corresponding TV, 
Radio, or Print outlets.

In fact, many of those people very much prefer a smaller, more personal internet connection
than the ones offered by the "big boys".


There are a lot of incorrect assumptions about the internet.

We've put the  (myths) in a green text under the headings they are related to,
with the corresponding facts next to it.         

Searching and finding

*****Everything you read on the internet is true and comes from a trusted source (myth)

           
Baloney.  Garbage in, garbage out.   Many people simply copy what they see on another site.

*****The item at the top of the search engine list is most likely what you want (myth)

          
It may be totally inappropriate to your needs, and may only be there because someone paid to be there.  You may find something much better with a slightly different "search string" or set of keywords.

          
Finding what you want on the internet can be very aggravating.   There's a lot of junk out there.   First, you need to know exactly what you are trying to find, and then structure your search words ( called a "search string") properly.    Don't use the common fill words, like "of" "the" and so on.   Most search engines ignore them.   Try different combinations of words to see what comes up.

Designing websites

*****Designing a website is difficult. (myth)
 

          
It's often done by kids and high-school students.   You can buy site "templates" for as little as $ 30 that only require you to type in your info and add some images.

*****Websites don’t need a lot of maintenance.(myth) 

           Good ones need a LOT of maintenance.  Does your business grow?   Your website should, too.

*****I need to have a domain name that's the same as my business name.(myth)
 

          
Not necessarily;  in fact, not always desirable.    What if your business name is long?  Quite simply, all you need is a domain name that works for your business, and if you're creative, you may find a a very catchy, available domain name that "says it all" for your kind of business.   Put your business name prominently on all your pages.

                  Any reasonably intelligent person can design a basic website using a popular, off-the-shelf software program.   In most cases it’s just a matter of typing text, and cut-and-pasting images.    However, you need to have a plan.    What to say, how to say it, what images to use and how to use them.    You also need to know who your audience or customers are, and how they will likely look for you.   A truly great website requires a lot of thought and continuous "tweaking" of the site to get it noticed and working properly.

                
If you have a small business, you very likely need only a small website with maybe up to 10 pages.   You can create it yourself or buy a standard "canned" website template designed for your type of business.   Then you need to enter all your own information into the template, save it, and publish it ( load it up to an internet website host's computer ).   Living Being Media™  website design
            
Getting your site noticed

*****Getting a lot of visitors is what it's all about. (myth)

              
What's the use of getting noticed if you don't have good content and if you don't deliver what the customers are looking for?   "Surfers" don't come back to a bad site.

*****A number one position on a search engine is a guarantee of successful commerce.(myth)

           
First of all, not everyone goes to the "number one" site, in part because they know many are "bought and paid for" by "sponsors"  Besides, people like to explore new places. 
Secondly, it's all about CONTENT, not a position.
 
*****You need to pay for a good position on a search engine.(myth)

Another big myth.  Plenty of businesses would love you to believe you have to pay them to get noticed.  Clever site design and knowing your audience is far more effective.
  
***** I just need to be "on the web" and business will start rolling in.(myth)

         
"Build it and they will come....."  Not so.  You need to promote your site in every way possible.  Attracting attention on the internet can take several months after a new site is launched.

           
  Getting noticed on the internet requires some thought, persistance, and patience.   If you can provide substantial and interesting content and some relevant links, your site will slowly get noticed.   Put your site address on all your signs and business promotional material, letters, email "signatures", and so on.  Offer to exchange links with sites you like and that are related to your content.

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page added June 18, 2003