INTERNET MARKETING | LINK BUILDING | SOCIAL BOOKMARKING EXCHANGE | LINK TRADING
Archive for September, 2009
Tuesday, September 22nd, 2009
In order to create social bookmarking exchanges through LavaLinx, you will need to first set up your social pages.
Let’s begin by navigating to the Social Pages section. (If you missed that tutorial, you can review the social page navigation instructions). Here is a screenshot of the page you will be viewing.
Click on the add button and you arrive on to the area where you will input your page data.
You’ll notice there are two sections on this page: Add Social Page and Link Information. Let’s take a look at each of these individually. Here we have the Add Social Page information box.
First is the “Name” field. It is important to keep in mind that this is NOT the name of the page you want bookmarked. That section is the “Title” which we will get to later. The “Name” field is for your own personal records, so you can easily track and manage different pages without the need to put in a full title.
You may have the Name and Title fields be the same, or different. That is all personal preference. The example we are going to use will use a different name.
Next, we move down to the URL. LavaLinx will pre-populate the URL based on which account you are in, so all you need to add is the last segment of the URL.
For example, instead of adding:
We simply add
The “Expiration Date” is a feature that we’ve added exclusively for those posts that may be time sensitive. You will want to use this feature on a holiday post for example, to make sure that users don’t bookmark this page past the time it is relevant for. To set an expiration date, simply click on the calender image and select the end date. When the time runs out, LavaLinx will automatically disable the page from receiving bookmarks.
For the page we are adding, the content isn’t time sensitive so we’ll just leave the expiration section blank.
The Status is where you select if you would like the page enabled or disabled for social bookmark trading. You can always come back to this page and modify the status at any time.
Tags are one of the most important items to add. These are the tags that users will add to their social accounts when bookmarking your page, so it is important that these tags be relevant.
Last, we have the Social Bookmark Type. Shown with a dropdown box, this feature is more complex than it appears. By selecting one of the options listed, you are giving our system the information it needs to know which sites will or won’t accept that article. This could keep you from being banned in social sites that might not accept that type of article. Here are the options you have to chose from.
Let’s choose Article/Blog Post as our social bookmark type.
Now, we have all of the first section filled out properly. Take a look for grammatical errors and add any information you may have left out.
You are now ready to move onto the next section. If you look below the Add Social Page section, you’ll see the Link Information segment.
There is a sentence above the Title. This is to remind you that the information you put for these fields will be the details that other people use to bookmark your page. The Title will become the hyperlink. One thing to note about the title is you want it to be viral. Try to write something that people will want to click on. If the original post title was boring, this is where you can change it up a bit and make it more interesting. Questions seem to do well, but you can also use hints, put “quick tips” or anything denoting a list that people might be interested in.
Now, we’ll move onto the description. You will find more benefit from a short, intriguing description, than you would from a long informative one. Remember, you want the reader to click on and vote up your page, so it needs to look as appealing as possible. By not giving away all of your details, the reader will then have to go to your page if they want to know more.
You’ve now filled out the entire form. It should appear like this:
The last step is to hit the Add Page button at the bottom right of the screen.
You’re finished! Now you can go back into your list of social pages and your new page will show.
Friday, September 18th, 2009
In order to monetize the benefits that LavaLinx can bring to your websites, it is important to understand how the system works and how to use it effectively. These tutorials will assist you in navigating the site, adding social and link pages, creating trades, modifying trades and troubleshooting issues. One of the more popular features of LavaLinx is our Social Bookmarking Exchange tool. Let’s start with some simple navigation that will get you familiar with common phrases and help you become comfortable using the social pages section of the site.
To begin, login to your LavaLinx account. This will bring you to your “My Account” homepage. You will notice that there are three sites in this account. If you only have one site in your account, it will only show one box.
We want to navigate to the “Social Pages” section, so click on the “Manage” tab of one of your sites (highlighted in yellow).
This now brings you to the site admin, where you can manage link and social trades, get an instant look at stats on incoming links, and edit your site details. One main thing to notice from this page is the orange question marks directly to the right of area titles. These are quick help boxes that you can hover over to learn what that section is about. We will cover all of these unique features in another help tutorial.
To get to the “Social Pages” section from here, we want to go to the upper right corner of the page and click on “Manage” (highlighted in yellow).
You are now viewing your social pages,which are the pages you entered that you would like to point social bookmarks towards.
You can view your pages in whichever way suits you. If you would like to view all of your social pages on one page, click the “List All” link. You may also click on a specific number of page, or hit “Next”.
All pages are numbered and alphabetized by title for convenience. The magnifying glass to the left of the title can be used to open up the page in a new tab.
Next, you’ll notice there are “Self” and “Trade” bookmark statistics. Self bookmarks are those done by yourself to your own pages, and trade bookmarks are those done by others through social trades.
The status of a page states whether the page is “Enabled” which is open for trading, or “Disabled” which is closed to trading. It is important here that if you wish to stop trading on a page, you need to disable the page, not delete it. Otherwise, the stats of bookmarks received for that page will be deleted as well.
The “Social Type” categorizes which type of format your page is. When adding a page, you may choose from the below options:
Site (i.e. Index Page)
This helps our system determine which social sites will or will not accept your site for bookmarking. Some sites may only accept articles and blog posts, but not videos. Some may only accept sub-pages instead of the home page. This feature is built to keep our users from being banned for adding the wrong type of content to a social site.
Say you are interested in bookmarking some of your own pages instead of trading bookmarks, but you want to keep track of how many trades you do. This is the Self feature you are looking for. You add your social page, navigate to this section in LavaLinx and hit “Bookmark”. Every bookmark you do from this link will be counted in the self bookmarking section. We will go over self bookmarking more extensively in another post.
The “Actions” section is probably the most useful section in the entire post. It is from here that you view page details such as title, desciption, key words, edit any of those details, or delete the page entirely. Again, this will be fully covered in a tutorial.
Last, we have the “Add” button in the top right corner of the screen. You have now navigated through the Social Pages section in LavaLinx, learned the terms and meanings of each section, and you’re ready to start adding your pages.
This concludes the navigation section of our tutorial. Please let us know if this was helpful to you, or if you have any suggestions for future posts. Thank you and good luck!
Wednesday, September 16th, 2009
In case you missed it, post one of this series discussed SEO Optimization, including the use of H-Tags and Meta Tags, and how to choose a URL.
Keyword research. We’ve all heard it said, and I’m sure we’ve all given it some thought. But do we really understand what it means? There is more to it than meets the eye. It is not just looking at numbers and statistics, or worse – picking keywords out of thin air. It is the meticulous planning and mapping of your SEO strategy. Remember, the goal of Search Engine Optimization is to move your site up in the rankings to drive targeted, relevant and converting traffic to your website. In order to do this, your entire site planning all begins with keyword research. This is what will make or break your site in the long run, and it’s not something you should take lightly. Are you intimidated now? Don’t be. This post will guide you through all the steps necessary for studying keywords and choosing which of those will work best for you.
Keyword research can be preformed through tools such as Google Adwords, Word Tracker and many other systems, or you can also research it by hand. To be most beneficial, you will probably want to use both.
- Start off by asking yourself this question: What is my site about? Try and narrow it down to the main topic, with a few subtopics as well. You don’t need to list every category your site will have, only those that are directly relevant to your main subject. For example, you might have a site about cars. Instead of listing everything relating to cars, narrow it down to three or four things, like cars, parts, repairs, and auto listings.
- Now that you have the direction you want to go with your site, think like the average web user. If you were going to try and look for information in your sites’ subject, what keywords would you use? Write these down as well. They may be similar to the above, or somewhat different. That’s okay for now. We’re still in the beginning stages of keyword research, so any and all thoughts are welcome.
- Using the list that you’ve created, go to Google Adwords or a similar keyword research tool and look up the statistics of the words you’ve chosen. Here is a good rule of thumb to remember: the smaller the phrase, the bigger the amount of traffic but the tougher the competition.
Pay attention to the perimeters you can set on your research. To give you an example, the word “cars” has over 151,000,000 searches a month. Or does it? 151,000,000 is actually the broad match number, meaning it includes any and all searched phrases that include that word. We want to look at traffic results that are a little more specific, so set the search to only view exact results. Now if we search for “cars” we get 11,100,000.
- Next, don’t start with the keyword you want to be ranked for. You might say, “This sounds like bypassing SEO. Why would we want to ignore the very thing we want to be ranked for?” Well, like the example above, the keyword you want to be ranked for may have too tough of competition for you to compete with. So where do you start? With long tail key word phrases. Instead of optimizing your site for “cars”, you might try “custom cars for sale”, or another keyword with less traffic and less competition. This way, you have your major keyword in the phrase (cars), while still seeing some return and some movement on your rankings.
- Checklist: you have your site demographic. You know what keyword you’d like to go after and you’ve picked a few smaller key words to target first. You’re done right? Wrong. One last and very important thing to do is to research your keywords by hand. The research tools may tell you the amount of traffic the word gets, but it doesn’t tell you anything about the sites that are ranked for that. Do a few simple searches for that keyword in Google, Yahoo and Bing. Look at the competition, their page rank, the age of the domain, the number of cashed pages and the number of backlinks the domain has. This can be a huge determining factor for if you should go after that keyword or not.
One major mistake people make when choosing keywords is they optimize for their own brand name. Now, if you have a huge brand, this isn’t a big deal, but chances are you have a little known brand. You want to optimize for what people will search for, so if your brand isn’t known, it’s not going to get searched for. This doesn’t mean that your brand won’t get out there if you didn’t optimize for it. There won’t be any competition for your brand name, so you will get ranked for it with little to no effort. Spend time chipping away at the smaller keywords and work your way up from there.
Tuesday, September 15th, 2009
Congratulations, you have started your own Twitter account, and you’re ready to start putting yourself or your product out there. But how? You need to find a way to gain quick, reliable followers that will re-tweet and reply to your updates and help you get your name out there. You may have already followed everyone on the “Suggested Users” list, but don’t expect big users like Ashton Kutcher, Oprah Winfrey and CNN News to follow you back. You have to build your own empire, starting from the ground up. It would be wise and more beneficial to start with a smaller, more targeted group of Tweet users and go from there.
What you may not know is that you could already have an edge by simply having an online presence. Do you want to know the secret of quickly gaining at least ten followers? It’s nothing special, all you need is yourself, your computer, and online networking. You probably have a Digg, StumbleUpon, Mixx or other social community account. These now come in handy, along with other social networking and micro blogging sites like Facebook, Plurk, Live Journal or your own personal blog. Try a simple post, a note, or an email to your contacts stating that you’ve joined Twitter and you’d like to follow them, and offer for them to follow you back. Usually follows work both ways and the prospective follower would like to get something back from their efforts. Also, if you know someone who doesn’t currently use Twitter, invite them to join!
The benefit beyond having your coworkers and friends following your Twitter account is that their friends are able to see your updates as well. Whenever someone re-tweets or replies to your update, it shows up on their feed, which in turn shows on the screens of whoever follows them. To give you some statistics for example, if you tweet something and have 20 followers, and just one of your followers retweet it, that is now showing up to your 20 followers, as well as however many followers the person had that retweeted. If they had 30, that is now 50 users that are able to view that one update you posted. Viral marketing in it’s finest.
Now that you’ve invited your contacts, the next step to gaining followers is to use the “Find People” option in Twitter and search for your targeted key words. You might search “SEO” for example, and get a list back of users with that name. Follow as many relevant users as you can. This is the crowd you want to be in, the people in your niche that will be genuinely interested in your updates. There is no purpose in following thousands of people if none of them are interested in what you are saying.
Be aware that getting followers is only half of the challenge. You have to have interesting updates to gain followers, and continue posting interesting content to keep them. There is also community management that shouldn’t be overlooked. Make your followers feel like you are interested in what they post by using re-tweets and commenting on their updates.
Some helpful twitter tips are to post about trending topics (commonly called “Hash Tags”, which are keywords with the number symbol (#) in front), post about an interesting article you may have seen, or a funny conversation. Stay away from updates such as “I’m going to bed”, “Hi everyone!”, and “I’m bored”. People like to see interesting stuff, and hearing about the beef burrito you just ate for lunch doesn’t really appeal to anyone. Happy Tweeting!
If you’d like to keep up to date with the latest Twitter trends and tips, feel free to Follow LavaLinx on Twitter.
Friday, September 11th, 2009
With other online efforts booming, it’s no secret that link trading is starting to quickly become a thing of the past. It simply doesn’t seem time-efficient compared to the quick-paced world that is viral online marketing, and we can all agree that link building takes some massive time and effort. However, don’t cross it off your list just yet.
The key factor to link trading is not the amount of time you spend doing it (although, time can be a huge factor to those who have none), it’s the way you go about link trading. You have to do your research and prepare a plan before you begin trading with just any site. Your effective site plan always begins with on-site optimization.
You may be starting this whole process without currently having a domain. This is not a bad thing, in fact, this allows you to research different domain URLs and decide which one will best match your niche. There are different types of domains out there from .com, .net, .info and even .gov domains that can usually be purchased for around ten dollars. However, if you are looking for a specific URL, or if you are trying to purchase an older domain that already has link worth pointed to it, be prepared to pay some serious cash. Either way, keep in mind the target audience of your site, and try and pick a URL with the keywords that you would like to go after, which we will go over in another post.
Now that you have a domain, it’s time to discuss the SEO optimization that needs to be done in order to maximize the effectiveness of your link building campaign. One of the most overlooked (and possibly most important) things you can do is add H tags throughout your entire site. These tags are one of the first things that search engine spiders will see upon entering your site, and they also help your user to understand the content that will be on that page.
A good practice is to place your top two key words first on the H tags, and your site name last. This is because you will already be getting “weight” for your site name from the URL so it’s not as important to have that be first. Another good idea is to always add meta descriptions and meta key words to your pages, for the same reasons as the H tags: it’s going to be some of the first info search engines retrieve from your page.
But your hard work isn’t done just yet. It is crucial that you write interesting, key word rich content on your website. All the prior prepping is only to back up your website, not to forefront the SEO itself.
On the next post, we will discuss the value of key word research and how a little more time spent there can greatly affect your income later.
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