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September 6th, 2006
Most websites heavily rely on their content. Yes, e-commerce websites or image hosting or proxy websites can do without any content. But even these types of websites actively develop their content sections to get a greater visibility in the search engines to get more visitors.
It is admitted that the most valuable content is unique content:
Unique means being the only one of its kind
I will not call it unique content – when you write a post on any topic you rely on some other sources of information (sometimes you make a link to those sources, sometimes you think these are your ideas as you do not remember where those ideas originate from).
So, I think you agree that the content matters for any type of website.
Next question is where to get much of these valuable assets.
1. To develop your own? Yes, but you are not likely to produce as much as you would like or as your competitors who use other methods.
What are your other options?
2. You can steal content from others – not quite ethical, but widely practiced.
3. You can target your visitors and try to get user generated content – this is a great way to run a website. More on forums here.
4. You can use content from other websites that allow you to do it. It is not so valuable as your own mind product – readers are more interested to read it from the original source; search engine will neglect it as duplicate. But it is a nice addition to other website content you have – your own or forums.
Hidden Content Sources for Your Website lists good content sources that you should explore and decide if there is any sense to place any on your website:
Government Web Sites
Facts & Statistics
Private Label Articles
Summary: Yes, content that no other websites have is the most valuable. But I suggest you to explore other types of content including duplicate – probably they will improve your website in some ways.
Or become your source of inspiration and give you some great ideas for conceptually developing your website.
[tags]content, networking, online communities, forums, web forums, traffic, links bait, social bookmarking, web 2.0, domain names, text-link-ads, links buying, myspace, seo, internet marketing, affiliate marketing, blogs, content generation, google, make money online, work from home, home based job, duplicate content, earn your living online[/tags]
September 6th, 2006
I have been blogging a few times about my belief that online communities are very valuable – they make your website traffic less dependent on search engines, they help you meet great people worldwide – more on developing and owning a forum. I also mention that it is not that easy to attract and keep people on your website. I think that you need two things to start with – a good website (preferably, with a unique concept – something that I lack at the moment) and experience to run online communities, this valuable knowledge.
I have researched quite a lot of online resources and experts on this very topic – how to start, run and promote successful forums. At this time I am in the process of implementing my plan that I post below. I use phpBB forum software and I test the below plan with my photo contest website. I should say that I have designed this plan based on the fact that the photo forum is online for a few months. It is not a plan to start a community from scratch; it is a plan to give a push to a slowly developing one.
Running and promoting a slowly developing online community
1. Latest posts displayed at the pages throughout the website
2. Hire 1-2 moderators from the members – some members are very active with the photo contests, but not with the forum. Design a moderator manual.
3. Benchmark top communities for features mine is missing. It should be either your industry leaders or the ones focused on providing help to forum owners.
4. Install some important missing mods (there are literally hundreds of phpBB mods, but I have made a list of some urgently required): similar threads; refer a friend; community newsletter; user started threads. That’s it for the moment. I have some mods installed by this time – attachment mod and a few others.
5. Get it listed in the forum directories
6. Re-think forum concept and add new sub-forums
7. Use more types of content for the forum: downloads, reviews, tutorials, news, images, surveys, polls, articles, interviews
8. Bring website content to the forum
9. ‘New here’ sticky to help new members
10. Contests (Amazon gift certificates as prizes)
11. Recognize top posters: top posters list, member of the month
12. Active e-mail communication with the active forum members – ideas, feedback, etc
13. Forum ranking system
This is my 13 step program. I wonder if it helps to boost my forums. And how much time it takes. We will see.
Summary: My goal is to implement all above steps and then observe the progress within a certain period of time. If the forum gains enough members and activity then I will accept my program as successful and in part universal and fulfill it on other websites.
If the results are much worse than expected than I will analyze the situation – what is going wrong, make an extra research and develop an extra plan.
I will go in this way until I find the secret of running successful forums. If there is one…
[tags]networking, online communities, forums, web forums, traffic, links bait, social bookmarking, web 2.0, domain names, text-link-ads, links buying, myspace, seo, internet marketing, affiliate marketing[/tags]
September 5th, 2006
There are many great posts on how to build links. One of the recent excellent posts was Todd’s ‘Types of links and how to get them’
Yes, I agree that links are important, but I do not agree that you should spend hours and hours hunting for links: reciprocal, directories, forums, article submission. Firstly, it is time consuming; secondly, it is too inefficient way to spend your valuable time.
Google (and I think everyone agrees that when searching for links we are primarily interested to achieve high rankings in Google) neglects reciprocals, forum signatures, most directories. Article directories? I am not sure, but they are next on Google’s list if they are still counted.
If you go after .edu or .gov links – you need a specific website to find good links with that extension, especially, .gov. You certainly can experiment and go Rand’s way to get 20 .gov links in 20 minutes, but I do not think that this is the way you would like to handle this sort of links.
The types of links according to Todd’s classification:
1. Authority links
2. Directory links
3. Reciprocal links
4. Run of site links
5. One way links from friends or related sites.
6. Edu and .Gov links
7. Radio station, television, magazine, or newspaper links
8. Press release links
9. Article bio links
10. RSS/ Blog aggregated links
11. Comment and Profile Links
12. Presell Page Links
Summary: It was an efficient way to build your link popularity by means of contacting webmasters and submitting to all types of directoies in the past – when all those link types mattered and the webmasters were open for link exchange. Now I prefer to focus on content and website development concepts (in the long run it will result in a bunch of good quality natural links) and not waste the time on fruitless e-mails to webmasters who never open those messages and send them all directly to trash bin.
If you think that you urgently need a few links (new project, etc) – buy a few on eBay or from text-link-ads. Anyway it will be cheaper than your wasted time.
Run a few websites? Just check our free one way link popularity service – probably you will get the desired links there – relevant and permanent.
[tags]link exchange, link types, marketing niche, telecommuting, networking, online communities, forums, web forums, traffic, links bait, social bookmarking, web 2.0, domain names, text-link-ads, links buying, myspace, seo, internet marketing, affiliate marketing, blogs, content generation, google, make money online, work from home, home based job, duplicate content, earn your living online[/tags]