Quantcast Top 10|Social media|How to|Blogging & Resources|Guides: October 2010

Sunday, October 31, 2010

5 Ways to Skyrocket Your Blog Traffic

One of the major problems many people face is getting traffic to a blog, and the truth in the online world is that traffic is very essential to any online business you do; it is traffic that brings about people that buy.

This post will be talking about 5 ways you can significantly increase your website traffic.

1. Blog Commenting

I just began to realize the power of blog commenting. Blog commenting is a powerful way to get traffic to your website especially if done wisely and on a large scale.
One major thing about blog commenting is that it also helps you build a great brand when people begin to see your comments every here and there.
It is very important to make use of avatars when trying to get traffic to your blog through blog commenting because this will help people take note of you when they begin to see you everywhere every now and then. Being the first person to comment also helps a lot because most people are likely to visit the websites of a few of the first commenters and they rarely visit the rest.
When commenting to get traffic, quality is better than quantity because a lot of bloggers will delete your comment if you write generic comments and readers tend to click on valuable comments more than any other comments because they believe someone with this type of great comment will also have something similar on his blog.

2. Guest Posting

7 of the top ten referrers in my analytics data are from my guest posts and all of them sent me over 150 unique visitors. Guest posting is really effective and the power of a guest post should never be underestimated.
One thing I have come to notice with guest posts is that people prefer quality over quantity; if your guest post is a great one then you will get more visitors from it than just writing anything.
Many people tend to write just any guest post because they believe since the blog is not theirs then their best post should be on their blog, this is not supposed to be because of several reasons. One major advantage of submitting quality guest posts is that it helps you build a relationship with the blogger and his readers but if you just write anything there is a probability of the blogger declining your post, and if he doesn’t his readers will not visit your blog. The better your guest post, the better your result.

3. Blogging Communities

This is one underutilized traffic generation strategy many bloggers don’t use, many bloggers tend to give excuses that they are busy, If you are busy then you might want to be submitting your guest posts to blogging communities every weekend.
Some of the best blogging communities are MMO Social Network and Blog Engage; these two networks have sent me hundreds of visitors over time.
One major thing to consider when trying to get the best from blogging communities is that you have to have high quality posts and you also have to build relationship because people tend to vote up people they know and if you have an high quality post people will be more inclined to visit your blog.

4.  Forum Marketing

There was a time I signed up to the warrior forums and with only 50 posts I had already gotten over 70 visitors to my blog, I didn’t post a link to my blog in my posts, it was in the signature.
You can get great results from forum marketing if it is done properly, one great thing to consider when trying to market your blog through forums is that it is very important to try as much as possible to help others and not just spam people for your benefit.
If your aim is to go to forums to go and spam then within a short period of time you will be banned but if you focus on helping as many people as possible the end result will be you lasting longer in the forum, having more friends and building more stronger relationship and you will also have more traffic and authority.
Some great forums to get started are the Warrior Forum and Digitalpoint Forum.

5. Mailing List

I wouldn’t have put this on this list but it is also a very effective way to get traffic to your blog. I was checking my overall stats today and I discovered that my mailing list has sent me hundreds of visitors, this is a good number because I only sent my posts to them a few times.
One of the major benefits of a mailing list is the instant result it provides, people tend to respond faster because they are closer to their email than any other thing.
I have also observed mails I sent and I discovered that your titles matter, I have had sent emails have as low as 15% open rate and I have also had emails have over 35% open rate but what matters most is the title. If you have a cool and attractive title then you will get more results than having generic titles.
Getting traffic to blogs used to be a difficult task and I started noticing a difference over time. It is the tips in this post that is helping me get thousands of visitors to my 3 months old blog every week, use them to your advantage and you will be amazed at how they work.

It is also important to know that getting traffic takes time and requires constant effort, if you are dedicated to making the effective use of the above tips then in no time you will be getting a lot of traffic on autopilot.





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Thursday, October 28, 2010

Blog Pages, Posts, Categories, and Tags… HELP!

When should you use a blog page instead of a post? How do you know what should be a category versus a tag? After this post, you will know exactly what to do. I’ve received questions about this from readers and clients this week about pages vs. posts and categories vs. tags, so I wanted to answer them in a post for everyone else who also be struggling a little with these.

Pages vs. Posts

Blog pages are timeless permanent content. Blog pages live outside the normal date/time chronology of blog posts. Most of what you write for your blog should be posts. Frequently updated new content belongs in posts. Here are some examples of what should be in pages:
  • Information about you and your blog (the “About” page)
  • A contact form
  • Advertising rates
  • Disclaimers, terms of service, and comment policies
  • Products and/or services you sell
  • Email list sign-ups (yes, I know I’m not doing this, yet, but it’s coming)
Here are some things that could be in pages instead of being posts or being in your blog’s sidebar:
  • Archive links
  • Blogroll or resource links
  • Author information on a team blog
  • Articles (longer than posts)
  • Glossaries
  • Image galleries
  • Affiliate product reviews
TIP: If you plan on having a lot of pages, choose a blog design that handles many pages well, and which can work easily with parent pages. Parent pages allow you to designate any existing page as the parent of another page. This sets up a link structure that is seen in your blog’s page links (in various ways). Look for themes that have cascading menus or other navigational goodies, like expanding & collapsing sections.
Any other content you create should go into posts.

Categories vs. Tags

Categories have been around for a long time. Tags are a more recent way to classify content on your blog. There is a difference between them. Categories only live in one place, but tags can repeat themselves and live in many places at once. Categories are like big buckets to divide the information itself, but tags are ways of labeling and identifying characteristics about the information.
Food blogs are a great example of how to use categories and tags correctly. Take Feelgood Eats, for example, who is a blog consulting client of mine. Sue has categories for major types of recipes. In fact, they’re not even called categories, they’re just called recipes:
But the tags on Feelgood Eats are a more detailed breakdown of the ingredients that might end up in any recipe, plus other ways of classifying food info:
The analogy works for any kind of blog: what are your “recipe types” compared to your individual “ingredients”? Think of it that way, and you’ll be more easily able to assign categories and tags to blog posts.
Does this clear things up for you? Let me know if you have further questions in the comments!




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Wednesday, October 27, 2010

How Embedding Content (to Third-party Services) Benefits Your Marketing Efforts

The problem of online content theft has always been hot. You may have spent weeks and months producing some great piece of content (be it a photo, a video or anything else), and once it is live online, before you know it, hundreds of website owners are already republishing it (with or without credit) and getting traffic, links and social media shares that were supposed to be earned by you.
There’s no escape… Unless you give away your content for free and even encourage people to republish and reuse it. Jeremiah Owyang had a great saying regarding this:
If you love it, let it go
If you can’t prevent people from stealing your content, benefit from them reusing it. Make your content easy to embed and re-blog and promote your brand through embedded content.
And if we take this idea even further, not only should you encourage embedding your content, but also you should distribute it to third-party service and encourage embedding from there. The most obvious (and popular) choices to upload and embed your content from are:

Benefit #1: Increase your content exposure to the service users

One of the biggest benefits is added audience reach into communities loyal to the hosting site itself. All of the mentioned services are highly popular and have hundreds of thousands of users.
Exposing your content to them is GOLD. It means higher traffic, more attention and wider viral spread.
Of course, getting popular there is not easy: but the more you try, the better your chances are.
Increased exposure

Benefit #2: Make your content “social-media-friendlier”

The users are just more willing to share the content from the sites they feel comfortable to use. Besides, most of those content hosting sites are social-media-friendly and encourage users to share your content.
ProProfs online testing site for example, prompt quiz takers to share their result right from the embed quiz:

Benefit #3: Repurpose your content

Those free content hosting sites give you great tools to make the most of your work by creating new content types:
  • Create an embedded slideshow out of your photo collection;
  • Create a .ppt slideshow out of your step-by-step guides;
  • Create a pdf cheatsheet out of your data collection, etc
This will both increase your content exposure and (viral) reach and, well, re-purpose it. For example, I have mentioned this tip in one of my previous posts on adding “Save as PDF” button to your (most useful) posts:
  • This makes it easy (as well as actually encourages users) to save your content locally for further reference (Then in case they have no Internet connection but want to kill an idle hour reading something useful, your article will get the second chance to get noticed);
  • It makes your content print-friendly (which is essential for those who prefer to read “normal” books while traveling);
  • This makes it easy to save an access from popular devices like iPad (which has plenty of widely used applications for reading .pdf files):
repurpose content
What are your thoughts on re-purposing your content to third-party services? Is it a win or a fail?




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Friday, October 22, 2010

Should You Post (or Buy) Ads on Twitter?

twitter ads
Credit: BigStockPhoto.com
I’m going to be up front with you. I’m not a fan of advertising on Twitter. I’m even less of a fan of posting ads to my own Twitter account. So I clearly have some bias. Twitter advertising can be a hot button issue for some though, causing followers to flee or advertisers to come a-calling. Some love it because it’s a way to monetize something they do anyway, or reach a new targeted market. Some hate it because it causes unsolicited clutter and “invades” real relationships. I fall squarely into the latter group.
Now don’t get me wrong. I’m not anti-advertising in general. And I’m not saying that advertising has no place in social media. But Twitter is an exception for me. Here’s why:
It’s Not What I Signed on For
Twitter is primarily a networking tool. It’s a place for conversations, no matter how abbreviated. For most Twitter is not a tool for simply broadcasting commercial messages. Now I’m not one to say that everyone should or has to use a social media tool in the same way. That would be both ignorant and self-centered. But I will say that everyone has a responsibility to their followers.
twitter broadcast
Are you conversing or just broadcasting? - Credit: BigStockPhoto.com
Twitter can be used in an editorial or conversational way. And yes, it can be used for advertising. But unless you were already regularly advertising via your Twitter account when I agreed to follow you, those ads are 100% unsolicited. If you were already advertising, I could see that up front, and I knew it when I chose to follow you, that’s another story entirely. But in my network on Twitter, that’s rare.
No matter where you’re interacting with your audience, you have a responsibility to respect them and provide what’s reasonably expected to some degree. Behaving in one way to get followers, and then in another way once you have them is misleading at best. I consider Twitter advertising to often show a lack of respect. In my particular network, it’s not the norm. And to litter my stream with ads for (often irrelevant) products and services is a matter of wasting my time. As if there isn’t enough noise on Twitter already.
I’d “forgive” the occasional Twitter ad in general if the person usually shares great tweets or stays personally involved. But I have my limits, as do most. And those limits are fairly low. I won’t hesitate to point out and criticize behaviors that waste my time or show no forethought. I have very little respect for the companies buying these ads knowing they’re intruding on a largely conversational medium of people who have some level of trust for each other (we aren’t talking about blogs here where there are sidebars and headers to tuck ads into separate from the content, or where we have plenty of room for full disclosure). And quite honestly I have less respect for the colleagues who advertise for third parties using their tweets (although I have no objection to them promoting their own books, albums, or sites within reason given that my network is based on primarily professional connections — in a more personal network, that might be a bit different).

The Lame “Just Unfollow” Argument

I know what some of you are thinking — “If Twitter ads bother you so much, just unfollow the person.” I’ve heard that argument a lot. And do you know what? It’s a completely bullshit argument.
angry twitter follower
Are your Twitter followers HAPPY followers? - Credit: BigStockPhoto.com
Unfollowing someone should not be the primary recourse for having unsolicited ads thrown in my face. And I shouldn’t have to eliminate someone from my professional network just because they make occasional poor decisions about what they choose to advertise or how often. As I already mentioned, it’s about respect. And everyone using Twitter or any social media tool has the responsibility to know their audience well enough to know when what they’re doing could be deemed disrespectful.
Remember, just because people aren’t moving in droves to unfollow you, it doesn’t mean they’re okay with your new Twitter ad posting behavior. It just means they like the other things you say enough to stick around (or your ads are buried quickly within other Twitter noise, and they just haven’t seen it yet). But that says nothing about the potential damage you’ve done to your reputation in their eyes. Still subscribing to what you say doesn’t mean they care as much about your opinions. So think about where your “real” money comes from before deciding to make a few bucks on Twitter, and ask yourself whether those income streams could take a hit to your reputation. If they can, by all means, post away.
There’s nothing wrong with diversifying your income streams. I don’t begrudge anyone an income from what they do. Just don’t forget to have some tact. At least a little….




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Sunday, October 17, 2010

20 Things to Blog About (in Any Niche)

blog post ideas
Credit: BigStockPhoto.com
Blogging can be a lot of fun. But what happens when you run out of ideas? Then it can become frustrating and more difficult to want to sit down and write. Don’t worry! No matter how much you’ve already covered in your niche, there’s always something else to say. If you’re feeling stumped for blog post ideas, let this list inspire you. These blog post ideas can be adapted to any niche, so give them a try!
Here are 20 things to blog about (or types of blog posts) that you can use on any blog when you’re out of ideas:
  1. Share news — Search the news engines and see what’s going on in your niche or industry. If there’s news, share it with your readers. You could write a detailed post, or even just link to the news source and write up a brief summary.
  2. Comment on news – If you have an opinion on one of those news stories you found, link readers to the original news, and then write up a blog post sharing your own viewpoint on the issue. It can be a great way to ignite some cross-blog or comment discussions.
  3. Write a review – Every niche has something that’s available to review. Go to your library or bookstore and pick up a book that might be of interest to your readers. Review it. You can also review services, products, or even other websites and blogs!
  4. interview
    Credit: BigStockPhoto.com
    Conduct an interview
    – Just because you don’t have something to say at the moment doesn’t mean others in your niche don’t. Find a credible source, and interview them about a niche or industry issue. Bonus — you’ll get to network with go-to sources in your niche!
  5. Write a “top” list — Some people love them and some people hate them, but top 10 lists (or whatever number you want) can bring in links and traffic. More importantly, they can give you something to blog about when you’re feeling a bit stumped. For example, you could share your top 10 tips for “insert whatever your readers want to learn how to do here.”
  6. Write a resource list – These are usually longer than top ten types of lists. They compile a large number of resources that readers would be interested in all in one place. For example, if you run a blog on blogging, you might list 100 places to find free blog themes. On a PR blog of mine, I created a “big list of free press release distribution sites” because it’s something a particular segment of my audience frequently looked for. Your audience is looking for something too. Help them find it. 
  7. Assemble a round-up post — Another list-style post, round-ups are often done weekly or monthly. Basically you put together a list of links to other blog posts recently posted in your niche. Sure, it’s a bit of a cop out but it keeps your blog fresh, brings your blog to the attention of other bloggers in the niche, and gives readers access to other material they might find interesting. I like these because they’re a way to show readers trends in what bloggers in a certain niche are talking about during a given week.
  8. Answer a reader question — If you get reader questions via email, consider answering them publicly on your blog instead of responding to the email privately. You can remove the reader’s personal information (or share it if they don’t mind). This not only gives you something to write about, but it stops you from having to answer the same questions privately over and over again.
  9. questions
    Credit: BigStockPhoto.com
    Answer a non-reader’s question —
    Don’t get many reader questions of your own? That’s okay! Look at answer sites like Yahoo! Answers or LinkedIn’s Q&As. Also look at comments left on other blogs in your niche. What are people curious about? What do they want to know? Share the answer to common questions on your blog, even if they’re not from your own readers. Chances are that some of your readers have the same questions, and they simply haven’t asked yet.
  10. Update an old post — Do you have an old post that’s a real gem, but it’s so buried in the archives that no one sees it anymore? Consider updating it with fresh relevant information (especially if any details are outdated), and then change the post date so it goes to the front page as a new post again. Note: you might not want to do this if it’ll affect your permalink and incoming links and traffic, and you should probably note that it’s an update so long-time readers know why it seems familiar.
  11. Highlight old posts – If you don’t want to, or can’t, update an older post you can still create a new post that brings it to the attention of newer readers. For example, if you run a business blog and you have a bunch of posts on handling the start-up phase, you might create a new post that serves as a hub linking to all of them (maybe with a summary of each).
  12. Rant. Rant. Rant! — Does some issue in your niche or industry seriously get under your skin? Tell your readers why! Don’t be afraid to rant once in a while. Just know your audience’s tolerances for it before you do so you don’t get too offensive for your readers.
  13. Have a cross-blog discussion — Did another blogger in your niche say something that caught your attention? Why not blog about it? Conversations in the blogosphere aren’t limited to the comment function. If you have a lot to say, link to their post so your readers can see it, and then post your own thoughts. Cross-blog debates can be fun, but it’s okay to share a post you fully agree with too. It shows support for an idea and another blogger.
  14. Take a look at Twitter — Even if there’s no “official” news in your niche at the moment, that doesn’t mean there isn’t buzz about something going around. Do a search on Twitter and see what people in the niche are talking about. Then contribute with a blog post of your own (or highlight some interesting tweets).
  15. Ask a question — We already talked about answering questions that others have. Why not ask your own? Asking a question in a post is a good way to build reader involvement, and you might get some new perspective on an industry issue (which might inspire another post!).
  16. video
    Credit: BigStockPhoto.com
    Get visual —
    Is your blog mostly text-based? Do something different and share a video or a photo that might interest your readers. It doesn’t have to be your own. For example, you might embed a YouTube video. Just make sure you have rights to share something like a photo before you do (a credit link alone doesn’t make it okay — or legal).
  17. Get personal — Why not share a personal story with your readers? I’m not talking about something completely unrelated, but rather your own individual experiences with a situation in the niche. For example, if you blog about Web hosting and you recently went through the process of moving your site from one host to another, that might be an interesting story to share with your readers.
  18. Find out what readers want — Use a tool like the Adwords keyword tool to find out what people are searching for in your niche. You might just find some interesting post ideas in there that you wouldn’t have otherwise considered.
  19. Share a blog update — Write a post that looks back on the history of your blog. Talk about what you’ve done, how it’s evolved, and where you’d like it to go.
  20. Publish a guest post — If you still can’t think of anything to blog about, consider accepting a guest post from someone else in the niche. Generally this means giving them a link back (it’s a marketing tool from their perspective), but you’ll get fresh content for your readers.
There you have it — 20 blog post ideas that can work on virtually any blog! I hope you found something useful. Do you have ideas you’d like to share with other bloggers in addition to this list? Leave a comment and let us know what you do when you can’t think of anything to blog about.





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Saturday, October 16, 2010

How to make money with paybox.me?

What is PayBox.me? 

PayBox is developing an online currency and payment processing service to make buying and selling online easier, more secure and available to everyone.
  They are designing the service with the help of a dedicated group of EarlyBird users who are contributing ideas and feedback.

Stages of development planned to launch in 2011:
  • Person-to-Person transactions.
  • Small Business integration, including payment processing modules for all popular shopping cart software.
  • Mid-sized Business integration.
  • Major Online Store integration.
  • Debit Card linked to your PayBox account.
  • Currency exchange with all major world currencies.  


As an EarlyBird user of PayBox, it's your job to...
  • Log in frequently to see where they need your help.
  • Participate. Share your opinion and complete tasks which can be done from the comfort of your home or office computer.
  • Subscribe to their blog. Their blog is the primary channel they use to communicate news, updates and information to our EarlyBird members.
  • Be an advocate. You may invite your trusted friends and family to join PayBox.
They'll add new tasks as they continue to grow. With each new task, you can always choose to participate (and get rewarded) or not.

 I ran into PayBox.me a few weeks ago and decided to take some time to quickly go over what it is all about. PayBox offers a pretty steep $50.00 sign up bonus. To me, this raises a red flag not just because $50.00 is a nice bonus for a sign up form that will take you less than 1 minute to fill out, but because I have to wonder how long it will take to actually physically get that sign up bonus.

PayBox.me initially makes itself out to be an online currency and payment processor site where you can send money to people, but I believe this is what they eventually want to become. At the current moment PayBox looks more like a task website where you get paid to complete various tasks online. I’ve also seen a couple surveys to participate in.

Of course, like all websites, you get paid to refer others. They claim to pay you $5.00 for every referral you bring in. The only problem is that they are claiming to give you all this money, but ask for nothing in return. Kind of sounds like they might not be in business very long unless they find ways not to pay there loyal members.

Why you should join today... 

  • You start with a $50 balance and it's free.
  • PayBox will add up to $20 per day to your account for participating as we prepare to launch our new service.
  • You get $5 per person you refer to PayBox.
  • You'll be an EarlyBird user—before PayBox opens to the public.
  • You'll help shape the development of the best payment system ever designed for the Internet.
  • You could have hundreds or thousands of dollars in your account by the time we launch, without ever making a deposit!

If PayBox can pull all this off, they might have something going for them.


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Saturday, October 9, 2010

Top 10 discussed ways to Reduce Bounce Rate Of A Blog Or Website

It's better late then never, maybe you might have ignored your analytics bounce rate for a long time but don't worry you can still work on it and get those high bars down. It's a normal problem faced by bloggers and website owners to get more than one page views from their visitors. This is something that no one has control over because you can't tell your visitors to visit all pages of your blogs but you can always guide them to visit another page on your blog.

Bounce Rate: the percentage of web site visitors who arrive at an entry page on your web site, then leave without visiting any other pages or leave without going any deeper into the site. Bounce rate is typically measured as a percentage. The lower the bounce rate that you have the better as this is an indicator of how users are engaging with your website.

In order to understand bounce rate, you must identify it within your site analytics. Google Analytics makes this easy by placing bounce rate as default item on your main analytics dashboard. This says something in itself, if Google has included bounce rate as a metric on the dashboard, they must think that bounce rate is a fairly important metric right? Well in fact it is a key metric when measuring user engagement on your site. A high bounce rate is a good indication that users are not finding the information that they are looking for and as a result are not proceeding any further.

What is a Good Bounce Rate Anyways?

Great question. We're glad you asked. As with many items in the world of SEO and organic search, the answer is it depends. Obviously a lower bounce rate is better, but bounce rate averages can vary by industry or type of site. Sites that are information portals will most likely have lower bounce rates than sites that feature limited content. The fact is that bounce rate is affected by the user's intent. That is, based on the user's query did they find the information that they were looking for? For example let's say you were looking for information about the TV program Las Vegas and you typed in "Las Vegas" in a search engine. You would no doubt receive a lot of Las Vegas (the city) related sites and potentially you might even be returned with a result that talks about the TV show albeit briefly. You might click through to some of these sites but unless the information that you were looking for about the show is present you would most likely revisit the search results page and/or re-enter a more specific search query. The bounce rate of the sites that you did click through would be affected as you were unable to find the information that you were looking for.

So to answer the question, what is a good bounce rate, generally speaking if you have a bounce rate that is in the 40-50% range that is not bad. If you manage to have an overall bounce rate that is in the 30-40% that is fantastic. As Avinash Kaushik states "a 35% bounce rate is very good..." We'll add that anything less is pretty spectacular. For the record, we've worked with clients and have helped them lower their bounce rates to less than 20% and in some cases to 7 or 8% which is quite exceptional.

So the question becomes, how do we lower bounce rate?

1.Use good quality, fresh content

Naturally, if you want visitors to stick around, your content should be worth reading and regularly updated. This also ensures that your content gets linked to from other sites, which will in turn increase your traffic.
It also helps to make your content easy to read. Learn the rules for writing good Web copy: Use short, single-topic paragraphs; condense content to bullet lists; highlight important phrases in bold; keep page lengths short.

2.Make sure the content is relevant

In order to engage visitors, your site's content needs to focus on the topic that those visitors are interested in.
  • Each page of your site, as well as the site overall, should be on-topic. For example, if your site is about dog breeding, don't have a page on the site that discusses horses.
  • Think about your site's overall objective, as well as your audience. Does all of your content help to achieve your site goals, and is it content that your audience want to see?
  • Use the Google Analytics Keywords report to see what people are searching for when they reach your site. Are you attracting a lot of traffic for keywords that have high bounce rates? Maybe it would be good to add some new content that gives visitors the information they are searching for.
  • Each page's title should match the content within the page. Don't use misleading page titles.

3.Use "related info" links

A great way to encourage visitors to read more than a single page of your site is to offer links to related information on the page.
For example, a product page might have a list of links to related products. Similarly, you could add a list of related articles or a "further reading" list at the end of an article page.

4.Use a professional, authoritative site design

First impressions count. When a visitor first lands on your site, the look of your site design can influence the visitor's decision to stay or leave. Generally speaking:
  • A professional, appropriate design lends an air of authority, inspiring confidence in the visitor and encouraging them to explore your site further.
  • An amateur or unattractive design can put people off and send them back to the search engines. It can also make your site harder to navigate, which means that visitors will spend less time exploring your site.
Of course, you may not be a professional designer, or you may not have the budget to hire one. However, there are some basic design rules — such as minimizing the number of colours and fonts in the page — that can have a big impact.


5.User-test your landing pages

Testing your site with real people can be a great way to find out the underlying causes of high bounce rates.
Show your key landing pages — particularly those with high bounce rates — to friends and colleagues. Ask them what attracts them on each page, and what turns them off. Are they inclined to buy your products or explore your site further? Or is there something about the page that discourages them from staying on your site?


6.A/B test your landing pages

As well as testing your landing pages with friends and colleagues, you can run A/B tests on your pages: Randomly serve 2 different versions of a landing page, and see which page results in more sales or other conversions. Google Website Optimizer can help automate this process.
As an alternative to A/B testing, you can make improvements to 1 landing page and measure how the bounce rate changes compared to other landing pages. For example, if bounce rates generally stay the same or increase over the course of a month, but your changed landing page shows a drop in bounce rate over the same period, then the chances are good that your changes reduced that page's bounce rate.

7.Use clear calls to action

If the purpose of a landing page is to encourage the visitor to take action — such as buying a product, signing up for a newsletter, or exploring your site further — make sure the call to action is obvious. The call to action is an element of the page — such as a button or a piece of text — that indicates what the visitor should do next.
For example, if your landing page needs to encourage people to buy an ebook then a large "Buy The Book Now" button would work well.
It's also a good idea to reduce page clutter. Remove unnecessary or distracting elements from the page so that the call to action stands out.


8.Use clear navigation

If you want visitors to engage with your site and explore it more deeply, make sure your site navigation menu is easy to find and easy to understand.
  • Place the menu in an obvious place, such as near the top of the page.
  • Use clear, simple words for your navigation options. Don't use jargon.
  • Try not to have too many main nav links. A maximum of 7 links is a good rule of thumb.

9. Build targeted traffic

Work on getting more targeted traffic to your website. The only way to do is to start optimizing your website for search engines. I know it's a very time consuming task but it pays you in long term. Make sure you have corrected all the above mentioned points to start working on SEO for your website. If you somehow get high bounce rate from search engine traffic then shame on you and start over again on these tips and this time don't hurry.

10.Surprise element: 

In your post content try surprising your visitors by offering them some new information but remember that must be related to the content of that post and the surprise should be pleasant of course, don't piss them off deceiving them. This will build an excitement in your readers and he would be interested to see what he is to get more in your other blog posts.

Now take a look at your own site's bounce rate and see if you can lower it. By reducing your site's bounce rate, you're increasing visitor interaction on your site. This usually means happier visitors and a more successful site. Have fun!





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Thursday, October 7, 2010

5 Ways Your Blog Can Make Money

There's been a lot of stink lately about bloggers bowing out. In the most publicized example, reporter Dan Lyons decided to call it quits. The refrain: "We just can't make any money."

I won't want to be too confrontational, but: Bull pucky.

There's more than one way to skim dollars off your blog. Here are some serious, and some not-so-serious, techniques, and my experience with each.


Sell Ads

The only way to make money by selling ads on your blog is to be rich or famous first, and then write about how you became rich or famous.

Before you say "But what about...?", yeah, I know there are a few exceptions. A few. And most have 4-5 writers working in sweatshop conditions to crank out posts so fast their fingerprints have melted off. The others have names like Darren Rowse, and I'm so jealous of them I can't even mention them here.

But, that won't stop you from trying. So go ahead. Take your blog that gets 5,000 visitors per month and stick some Adsense ads up there, or even better, try to sell ads direct.

My attempt. I have Adsense ads, plus I sell direct.

My earnings. My best month ever? $200. That's with an average of 35,000 visitors per month. Told ya.


Go Affiliate

You can also hawk other people's wares. Sell enough Acai Berry for Frank's Supplements Emporium and you can make a bundle. Sell a few really high-priced items and you can make some nice change, too. Use Market Leverage or someone similar and you get great, helpful people to help you pick the best possible offers, too.

Affiliate marketing isn't a bad racket, actually. I've done OK, earning enough to keep my wife from snickering at me when I take an hour to blog instead of snuggling in front of the TV (she snickers affectionately).

But you need to pick products you can stand behind, and pick your affiliate network carefully. When I started out, I got ripped off, and I still occasionally run into situations where I don't get paid for, oh, 4-5 months.

My attempt. I sell MarketingSherpa's excellent guides, books via Amazon and the occasional event on this blog. I also sell everything from chocolate to books on a number of others.

My earnings. Great compared to advertising: $300-700/month. Pathetic when you consider the hours I put into writing.


Steal & Cheat

OK, I'm being a little harsh. If you want to Stick It To The Man, figure out 30 ways to fool folks into clicking on hidden Adwords ads, steal other people's content and risk their fiery wrath, or sell your e-mail list to the highest bidder (for $.03/e-mail).

OK, maybe I'm not being harsh.

The internet is still young, and there are plenty of ways to wring cash out of advertisers or the unsuspecting via your blog. Just don't ask me how.

My attempt. None. I have enough bad karma from times I've snapped at my kids for no reason or went 50 in a 40 zone.

My earnings. Zero. And proud of it.


Create Your Own Product

Create your own training course, e-book, book or other product and sell the crap out of it.
On the plus side, you control your own destiny. Create something great and it just might stand out from the 999,999 other training courses, e-books and other self-created products that every other blogger is hawking non-stop.

On the down side, there are 999,999 other training courses, e-books and other self-created products. Plus writing, producing and launching an entire training course may lead to permanent nervous ticks.

My attempt(s). I wrote Conversation Marketing, the book, as well as the UnScary, Real-World Guide to SEO Copywriting. I've sold a total of maybe 500 copies. Ever. In my life. Plus I have another horrifyingly late e-book on analytics due out, and a Dummies book due out in about 4 weeks.

My earnings. Not a hell of a lot. Still, it's fun, and I love to write. I'll probably keep beating my head against the wall on this one.


Use Your Blog To Build Your Business

A 100% guaranteed route to success, if you're willing to put in the effort, is to use your blog to build your business. You do that by:
  • Demonstrating your expertise.
  • Building your SEO leverage with great, link-worthy content.
  • Creating a history and a tone to which you can introduce prospective clients.
  • Building a body of knowledge that establishes you as an expert.
  • Generally building your presence among potential customers.
  • Inviting others to come read your latest creation.
It's not easy. It takes a long time. But it works, beautifully. I have yet to see someone who writes insightful, thoughtful stuff 1-2 times a week fail at it.

My attempt. You're reading it.

My earnings. If I only count clients who have found me and my company directly via this blog, $200,000 per year, average, over the last 3 years. If I count all the potential clients who I sent to the blog to further sell myself and my company, closer to $400,000 per year.

Your Choice

What strategy do you want to try? It's your choice. Just go in with open eyes and a long-term plan, and the worst that happens is you work your way through until you find a strategy that works.






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Monday, October 4, 2010

Top 10 Free Online Proxy Websites

You can imagine how important Internet Freedom will be when you are in a country or area where Twitter, Facebook, YouTube and some other websites are blocked, and you have to use proxy tools to visit those websites.

1. Proxy Desktop Software

 You have to download and/or install a proxy software (such as Tor) on your computer.

2. VPN
Some VPN (Virtual Private Network) services also need installation, and some only need to build a Virtual Private Network connection, but most of VPN services are not free.

3. Online Proxy Websites
This kind of proxy tools is easy to be used, nothing to be downloaded or installed, but most of them have traffic limit and themselves are easy to be blocked too.
I mainly use Tor to visit those blocked websites, but sometimes I also use online proxy websites, especially when I am using public computers. Below is a list of 10 best free online proxy websites, which will let you unblock the websites by just entering their URLs, but there are pop-up ADs, so look out them.:-)

Top 10 Free Online Proxy Websites:
  1. aniscartujo.com
  2. browse007.com
  3. enoughschool.com
  4. hidemy.biz
  5. nobodycanstop.us
  6. polysolve.com
  7. schoolisgood.com
  8. sslunblock.com
  9. www.dtunnel.com
  10. www.surfagain.com
Except Polysolve, Dtunnel and Sslunblock, all the other seven online Proxy websites are also available for you to watch YouTube videos.

Some even all of them may be blocked someday, and I do not want to check out these online proxy websites everyday, so if they are not workable, you can find some other online proxy websites on below website:

The above website will update workable proxy website list every day.

Again, just look out those pop-up ADs from those free online proxy websites, or you’d better install proxy desktop software or VPN on your own computer.



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Friday, October 1, 2010

Top 10 Websites to Unfollow Those Who Don’t Follow You Back

Get tired of those Twitter users who you follow do not follow you back? If yes, you can find and unfollow them.
Below are 10 websites which will help you find out that among your following, who do not follow you back, then you can unfollow them easily, and of course, FREELY.

 1. Refollow

Unfollow Twitter users Who Don't Follow You Back

You can login Refollow with Twitter OAuth or Twitter account, sort the results by I’m Following and Not Following Me, then you will find out who are those tweeps that do not follow you back, and you can unfollow or block them at a time.

Go to Refollow


2. Tweepi

Unfollow Twitter users Who Don't Follow You Back

Besides to unfollow those inactive Twitter users, you can also use Tweepi to unfollow those who don’t follow you back. Just sign in with Twitter OAuth, you will see those Twitter users who do not follow you back on the Flush web page, and you can unfollow them all in one click.

Go to Tweepi


3. Buzzom

Unfollow Twitter users Who Don't Follow You Back

Sign in Buzzom with Twitter OAuth, Click the Flush button on the TwitIn web page, then you will see a list of those tweeps who you follow are not following you back. You can just select them all and Flush (Unfollow) or Block them in one click.

Go to Buzzom


4. Mytweeple

Unfollow Twitter users Who Don't Follow You Back
Sign in Mytweeple with Twitter OAuth, Sync with Twitter, click You Follow, then you will see those tweeps who do not follow you back, and you can unfollow or block them one by one.

Go to Mytweeple


5. ManageTwitter

Unfollow Twitter users Who Don't Follow You Back

After login with Twitter OAuth, you will see a list of those tweeps who you follow are not following you back, you can select and unfollow all of them just in one click. ManageTwitter also lets you find out and unfollow those inactive Twitter users.

Go to ManageTwitter


6. Justunfollow

Unfollow Twitter users Who Don't Follow You Back

Sign in Justunfollow with Twitter OAuth, click Show Non-Followers, then you will see who are those tweeps that do not follow you back, and you can unfollow them one by one.

Go to Justunfollow


7. Twitual

Unfollow Twitter users Who Don't Follow You Back

Just enter your Twitter username on Twitual, then you will see your followers as well as your following, and you can unfollow those who do not follow your back (Idols) one by one on Twitter website.
Go to Twitual


8. Tweepsect

Unfollow Twitter users Who Don't Follow You Back

Sign in Tweepsect with Twitter OAuth, enter your Twitter username and click Enlighten Me, then you will see a list, on which the Stalking means those who you follow are not following you back, you can just unfollow them one by one.

Go to Tweepsect


9. FriendOrFollow

Unfollow Twitter users Who Don't Follow You Back

Just input your Twitter username on FriendOrFollow, then you will see how many tweeps that do not follow you back, and you can unfollow them one by one on Twitter website.
Go to FriendOrFollow


10. Your Twitter Karma

Unfollow Twitter users Who Don't Follow You Back

Sign in Your Twitter Karma with your Twitter account or Twitter OAuth, sort the result by Only Following, then you will see those tweeps who do not follow you back, and you can unfollow them one by one, or block them in one click.

Go to Your Twitter Karma

Among the above 10 websites, Refollow is my favorite, since it has many functions, including tracking who has unfollowed you. How about you? Which one is your favorite? Or do you have any other websites to find and unfollow those tweeps who don’t follow you back? Share with me by adding a comment.




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