West Coast tech conferences - the good and the bad

Last week was an important one for technology entrepreneurs in the United States.

Two of the most anticipated technology conferences - DEMOfall08 and TechCrunch50 - were held. They were highly anticipated not only because of the drama surrounding them but because they promised high-profile product launches.


Popular "platforms" and APIs

There's no doubt that the plethora of third-party developer platforms and APIs that exist today have given developers a considerable number of opportunities to build applications that can quickly made available to millions upon millions of people.

Here is a list of some of the more popular platforms and APIs that developers have successfully leveraged to build popular applications - some of which even reportedly generate significant revenues.


Seven ways to get return visitors to your blog

Obviously, converting every short term blog visitor into a regular user of your site is virtually impossible.

But there are a few things you can do to make a few more people become repeat visitors or at least check out the rest of your site. 


SEO losing out to paid search budgets

British firms will spend a quarter more on search advertising this year than last, a new report released by E-consultancy predicts.

The online marketing maestros have published their Search Engine Marketing Buyer's Guide, which forecasts search marketing spending will increase by 24% this year.


Site review: Popego

Popego is a startup which was announced at the TechCrunch 50 conference this week, aiming to help you to 'enjoy a more meaningful web'.


Popego plans to do this by joining up all the accounts and profiles you have created around web and using this information to bring you relevant content.


Should you have a corporate blog?

When done correctly, blogging can be valuable to a company, providing benefits for SEO and customer service. As long as it is done well, that is.

Many companies have now started their own blogs, so should your company follow suit? Very probably. Read on to understand why...

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Q&A:'s Edward Smith is an Arts Council-sponsored website that provides a platform for aspiring writers to display their work and have it reviewed by their peers.  

It is similar in focus to Authonomy, which we looked at a week ago; with the top rated writers qualifying to have their work critiqued by publishers, including Random House and Orion.

We talked to YouWriteOn Manager Edward Smith about the site...


Customer retention - you cannot be serious

Retention is high on the agenda for companies struggling to make money from cash-strapped consumers, but their words and deeds are not always in tune.

Research from analytics company SPSS suggests that customer retention tops the concerns of executives, with 34% claiming it is their number one priority.

This compares with 8% rating acquisition as their top concern; a remarkable turnaround from last year, when acquisition was rated most important by 40% of participants.

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Six essential networking tips

Last week, Econsultancy and Lemon Studios hosted the Lemon Summer Party 2008.

Events like these provide some of the best opportunities to network with people in the industry and if you're not attending events like this, you're missing out.


Why are affiliate marketing budgets shrinking?

New research published by E-consultancy today shows a trend towards reduced investment in affiliate marketing over the past 12 months. Why has this digital sector seemingly gone into reverse?


PayPal's disappointing shopping search engine

It was announced recently that US shopping search engine will provide its search technology to PayPal Offers, which returns results exclusively from merchants that accept payments through the eBay-owned system.

The US version is a useful (and fairly popular) service, so I've been trying out the UK site to see how it shapes up...


Google Suggest - implications for SEO

Google recently brought its Suggest feature out of Labs and onto the main .com search page.

Google Suggest has not yet been introduced on, but it's likely that it will be if the feature works in the US, and it could have a few implications for search marketers.