Blog Update

First I would like to thank those that has visit this site, even if it’s just to take a peek and leave. I haven’t been updating my blog as I did when I started it because I am currently working on my official blog in relation to this.  In a short time, I was able to get enough traffic to determine that my own blog domain would be worth the time and investment.  Once my blog is ready I will come back and post the link to it here. Thanks….and stay tuned.

RSS Syndicate

If you don’t know what RSS is, then you probably haven’t been surfing the net enough or you’ve probably been living under a rock. For those that has been living under a rock here’s a quick break-down of what RSS is.

What is RSS?
RSS (Really Simple Syndication and/or Rich Site Summary) is an XML-based format for content distribution.The specific purpose of an RSS is delivering updates to web-based content, webmasters use this to provide headlines and fresh content to the readers that subscribed. The content viewed in the RSS reader is called an RSS feed. RSS is a free and easy to promote a site or blog of its content without the need to advertise or content sharing partnerships. So in a nutshell, RSS streamlines communication between publishers and their readers.

Benefits to RSS
A big benefit to RSS is that the readers are able to tune in to the content of interest with the ability to control the flow of information that they receive. Once the quality of the content starts to decline, the readers can simply remove the feed from their RSS reader and they will no longer receive any updates from that particular source. RSS is a great communication method that doesn’t place any type of burden on the webmaster/publisher with maintaining a list or any strict privacy guidelines. The feeds are compiled accordingly to the reader’s choice. To sum it up, the benefits of RSS to publishers that are using RSS as a communication method are able to establish trust, build reputation, and keep ongoing communication with their readers.

Few Types of RSS

  • Forum Feed – A lot of forums now use RSS so that the users who are participating in a discussion topic can be notified if a new entry or a particular subject they’re involved in has been updated.
  • Blogs Feed – Most blogs are setup with RSS with each blog entry summarized as a feed. This makes it easier for readers to skim through their blog posts that they’re interested in.
  • Article Feed – This is typically a summarized introduction of new content on a site that the readers can subscribe to and read further if it interests them.
  • Store Feed – Online stores are also using RSS to send out their latest sales, specials and discounts.
  • Use RSS
    RSS has now become the choice for delivering syndicated web content for bloggers and webmasters. The RSS syndication has helped small blogs and websites gain more exposure and increase their readership. I am also working towards syndicating my content in hopes of increasing readership and exposure to help build traffic to this blog. So far my blog has been doing well since it first started with a good number of unique visitors each day; hopefully it keeps climbing.

    Blogs SEO Tips

    Ever since I started this blog I noticed one thing that’s to my liking – it naturally attracts search engine traffic. Most bloggers probably already know this, but a lot of blogs already have optimized site architecture (helps out a lot). Majority of the blogs out there has a pretty clear navigation where each page is set up to link back to other pages.

    I’m still doing a lot of research on Search Engine Optimization and how it works, but I was able to find a few tips that I thought was pretty useful in my journey into the blogosphere. I’m going to list 5 quick tips that  I thought could be pretty useful (in my opinion) with blogs and SEO.

    1) Keywords
    When it comes to keywords, you basically have a couple of choices. You can target general high traffic keywords that you have little chance of ranking well for and barely get any traffic, or you can go for a keyword that gets you a moderate level of targeted traffic resulting in more subscribers and/or sales. Most bloggers that’s been blogging for a while may want to call this “lucrative keywords”. Whatever decision is made, you may want to keep this in mind: they may not get you the most traffic, but they often will bring the most profit.

    A lot of people out there would think that more traffic means more sales, but that’s not the case. There isn’t always a correlation between high traffic and high sales, many of the most profitable sites get moderate traffic because their keywords result in a much higher ratio of visitors to buyers.

    2) Placement of Keywords
    A blog can be set up to repeat the keywords that you want to target just enough times to establish a theme. Take full advantage of this in your post titles, your category names, the pages URL names, or even a combination of Technorati tags and text of your links that appear after each post.

    3) Post Timely
    You can get better results if you update or ping just once during the busiest times of the day (typically early in the morning before noon) instead of pinging at 15 minute intervals when your site hasn’t been updated. Always check your site’s statistics. If you’re getting “spidered” every two weeks or even monthly, you can increase the number of spider visits by blogging on the same time period that the spider comes to your site. It’ll take a bit of monitoring, but eventually you’ll be able to predict when the date or time of your last spider visit was. (A little tip, ping at the time when the spider is reading a page that carries your update).

    4) Links
    Make sure you turn on your site’s feed and use it to promote your blogs as well.  I know Robin Good can get you some good one way links. If you use the “lucrative keywords” in your title and description, all those link backs will contain the keyword terms you would want attention for, which is also noted by the spiders as they follow the links to your site.

    5) Update Often
    The more you post, the more food it is for the spider, which causes the spider to react by splitting its job into several visits until the spider just adds  you to a more frequent schedule of returns.

    In Example – If a main site gets spidered several times daily by Google, they can go a week without an update with no change spider visits.  That means the page gets indexed more often and the new pages will show up faster.

    I’m not a SEO expert, but I believe the tips that I’ve just listed could help blogs get more search engine traffic. If there’s any other tips that you may know of, please feel free and add them in my comments. Anything that can help with optimization is always useful.

    Tweeting on Twitter

    I was looking through some social media/networking sites (Facebook, Myspace, etc.) and I came across Twitter. I’ve seen many blogs that has the option to “follow me on twitter” but I never paid no mind to it. I got curious because almost every blog I’ve visited has that feature. I’ve visited their site and it reminds me of a less condensed version of Facebook. I decided to sign up and join their network to see if I can generate any traffic off of them as well. Social Media these days is the way to go if you want to market your blog/site. 

    About Twitter
    Twitter is a free social networking or micro blogging service that lets its users to send and read other members’ updates (they call that a tweet), which is text-based and is only 140 characters in length. Updates is displayed on the member’s profile page and is sent out to other members of twitters who signed up to receive them. The sender himself can restrict delivery to those in his friend’s list, but the delivery to every is by default.  Twitter users can receive updates on the actual Twitter website, instant messaging, RSS, SMS, or email through an application such as Facebook or Twitterrific ( I think it’s also called some other names as well)

    Known Uses of Twitter
    – Large Businesses like Cisco Systems and Whole Foods Market uses twitter to provide product/service information.
    – The LA Fire Department used Twitter during the California wildfires in October 2007.
    – NASA also used Twitter when they discovered what appeared to be ice on Mars
    – Democratic Party nominee Barack Obama also used Twitter for his presidential campaigns as a publicity mechanism
    – Activists used Twitter to co-ordinate their street protests at the 2008 Republican Convention in Minneapolis/St. Paul

    Twitter was originally  a project for research and development that started inside a San Francisco company called Obvious in March 2006. Initially it was used internally by the company’s employees and officially launched in October 2006. Twitter rapidly gained in popularity and soon won the 2007 South by Southwest Web Award in the blog category. In April 2007, Obvious took the service  and placed it under the name Twitter, Inc. with Jack Dorsey (the man behind behind the concept of Twitter) as CEO.

    References:
    Los Angeles Fire Department. Twitter/LAFD
    “About Us” Twitter

    Add me on Twitter

    PPC or SEO

    There has always been a huge debate about which is better; PPC (Pay Per Click) or SEO (Search Engine Optimization). As a newbie blogger, I figured I should look into this and determine what seperates these two programs and decide which direction I should take; PPC or SEO?

    PPC
    Pay per click is an advertising model used on search engines, content websites (i.e. blogs) and other advertising networks where advertisers only pay when someone clicks on an advertisement to visit the advertiser’s website. With search engines, the advertisers usually bid on keyword phrases relevant to the market they’re targeting. When a user types in a keyword query matching an advertiser’s keyword list the advertisements will then be displayed. These advertisements is called sponsored links or sponsored ads and appears next to or above the results on the search engine results page. Content websites usually charge a fixed price fora click instead of using the bidding system. The CPC (costs per click) vary depending on the search engine and level ofcompetition for a phrase or keyword (some CPCs is as low as 1 cent).
    Pay per click can be categories into two categories; sponsored match (keywords) and content match. Sponsored match is the display of advertisements on the search engine results page and Content Match is the display of advertisements on the websites, newsletters, and emails. Basically, PPC programs do not generate any revenue from web traffic for the websites that display the advertisements. Revenue is only generated when someone clicks on the advertisement itself.
    SEO
    Search Engine Optimization is a term used to describe the process in which traffic to a website is increasingly generated by search engines by way of search results. SEO is basically internet marketing through an understanding of how the search algorithms work combined with the knowledge of what people might search for. The goal is to create a site that contain keywords that people will most likely search for when looking for information. In other words, SEO is one of the most effective things you can do on the internet. Geting your website optimized so that the search engines will reward you by sending traffic your way.
    Why SEO?
    Everyday, millions and millions of people surf the web to find out what they;re looking for. If your website doesn’t come up as one of the top results, your website won’t get traffic and without that traffic, you’ll lose to your competitors. SEO will bring visitors to your website, but it could also help to increase the return on the investment (if you harness that power properly). SEO isn’t that easy though, it takes careful planning, patience and a long-term approach.

    4 Ways to start with SEO

    Creating traffic targeted content
    Identify the keywords and categorize them under various themes and write contents on those themes. You can use a Keyword Suggestion tool to see how many people search for a certain keyword. Once you’ve figured out the right keywords, use it properly on your site so that the page appeals to both the visitors and the search engines. Title tags and meta tags can also help in ranking your site on the search engines.

    Make your pages Search Engine ready
    Check your pages and make sure that they’re search engine ready, in other words are they crawlable by the search engine spiders? Make sure your content is readable, add only relevant keywords and importantly, do not add invisible text (most search engines find them out and will ban your site).

    Submit your site to Search Engines
    Once you’re ready, start submitting your site to the popular search engines. Some search engines may require a few periodical submissions, but if you need help, get a Site Submission tool (you can find it available on the web).

    Track your performance
    If you find that your site’s rank or position in the search engines has gone down, then you’re going to have to modify the content on your site so that the search engines know that your page is still active. One of the main reasons that your rank can go down is because the Search Engines changing their algorithm, new websites with the same keywords as yours, or your competitor sites optimizing themselves for the Search Engines. It’s important that you keep track of your ranking and continue to modify your site to fit the changes. This will help enhance your rank on the search results.

    Even though SEO seems to be a bit complicated, it’s actually the most cost effective, easy to implement Internet marketing strategy that can get your more traffic and in effect more revenue.

    Since this blog is rather new, the best thing for me right now would be SEO. I don’t have that much traffic so therefore, generating traffic would be my first priority with this blog.

    $15 Million Dollar Blog

    As I was surfing the net, going from blog to blog, I landed on www.johnchow.com (a dot com mogul for those that don’t know) and saw his post about a blog that was sold for $15 million dollars. Bankaholic is a blog that is run alone by Johns Wu (yes he does have an “s” on his first name). A financial info site called Bankrate bought Bankaholic “paying $12.4 million up front and another $2.5 million possible earnout over the next 12 months” (Johns will continue to blog at Bankaholic though).

    I’ve never heard of a blog being sold for $15 million before so when I read of this it motivated me even more to try and start a blog of my own. I’m going to do a little expirement and see how much traffic I can generate in a month’s time. Hopefully, I can be at a level close to bloggers like John Chow.