Marketing Strategy Geek - Andy Beard » mininet http://andybeard.eu Internet Marketing, Lead Acquisition, Online Business Strategy and Social Media with Original Opinion and Loads of Attitude Tue, 01 Apr 2014 21:47:18 +0000 en-US hourly 1 Portal Feeder vs StomperNet http://andybeard.eu/698/portal-feeder-vs-stompernet.html http://andybeard.eu/698/portal-feeder-vs-stompernet.html#comments Fri, 04 May 2007 03:07:46 +0000 http://andybeard.eu/2007/05/portal-feeder-vs-stompernet.html This page will finish loading eventually and is certainly killing my bandwidth…

I am sure people’s mailboxes are full of emails with various people promoting these two communities, which are going head-to-head with their launches. Feature wise they are probably only similar in the fact that both provide a backend community for advice and training, but I am not going to compare feature sets.

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This page will finish loading eventually and is certainly killing my bandwidth…

I am sure people’s mailboxes are full of emails with various people promoting these two communities, which are going head-to-head with their launches. Feature wise they are probably only similar in the fact that both provide a backend community for advice and training, but I am not going to compare feature sets.

Comparing The Buzz

For some time I have had reasonable well ranking pages for both Stompernet and Portal Feeder.

I had written about Portal Feeder when it was first launched, in fact probably more than anyone else, back in 2005. Whilst that content was on my old blogspot account, that blog is being redirected here, and all the content is housed on this domain.

I have also written a couple of times about Stompernet, though I have never seen the service from the inside.

Up until a couple of days ago, I hadn’t written anything new about either service, so it is interesting comparing the traffic I have coming in for both.

Portal Feeder vs StomperNet – Which Is Getting Most Traffic?

This isn’t going to be a strict comparrison, because I am not looking directly at the direct traffic to each site, either from the blogs of promotion partners, or from email marketing. That will obviously be the largest amount of traffic, and a lot of people will make purchases based on direct recommendation and the materials provided.

Some people however search for more information, and will use a variety of search terms.

As an example, I currently rank well for “Stomper Net” and not so well for “Stompernet”, and that shows in the search results.
I also wasn’t ranking well for many direct Portal Feeder references, it was mainly long tail searches, and I also gained a fair amount of traffic from people following links from old forum posts in various places.

Portal Feeder will effectively be closed by the time Stomper Net opens, though there is a lot of overlap in the promotions.

Anyway here is some interesting data FWIW

Portal Feeder Visitors April 1st 2007 – Present

Portal Feeder Visitors

StomperNet Visitors April 1st 2007 – Present

(note I mainly rank highly for Stomper Net)

StomperNet

Portal Feeder vs StomperNet Traffic Analysis

If I had tried to rank for these products / services / training I would be getting a lot more traffic, it was interesting monitoring traffic on older content that hadn’t really been linked to internally.
I did post a Portal Feeder update a few days ago which did give traffic a boost. One of the most interesting things were the long tail keywords some people were using.

Where is the SERPs Competition?

Both of these services promote having great SEO training.

Whilst most of the members are probably not making sites in the Internet Marketing niche, I am sure a few of them are, and would have done something for the free SEO traffic. These numbers above are absolutely nothing compared to a 1st position result for the primary keywords.
I know that the most sales will come from the big list owning bonus waving gurus (in the case of many that is used as a compliment)

What are the real traffic numbers being driven to these sites by affiliates using email?

At time of writing Stompernet is hovering around 1K on Alexa, though I think that will keep raising for a few days, or at least maintain that level.

Portal Feeder is later in the promotion cycle, and has had a few peaks under 2K, in fact the week average is around 1800 on Alexa.

There is a lot of interest for both services.

I would say that people taking a look at Portal Feeder should take a look at StomperNet, and people looking at StomperNet should look at Portal Feeder.

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Portal Feeder 2.0 Example Site (Not a Review) http://andybeard.eu/694/portal-feeder-20-example-site-not-a-review.html http://andybeard.eu/694/portal-feeder-20-example-site-not-a-review.html#comments Fri, 27 Apr 2007 08:21:38 +0000 http://andybeard.eu/2007/04/portal-feeder-20-example-site-not-a-review.html A month or so back I was attempting to arrange some kind of head-to-head comparison between Portal Feeder 2.0, one of their competitors, and what you can do with WordPress and some free or relatively cheap plugins.

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A month or so back I was attempting to arrange some kind of head-to-head comparison between Portal Feeder 2.0, one of their competitors, and what you can do with WordPress and some free or relatively cheap plugins.

It type of fell through, partially my fault because I didn’t keep following up or chasing for alternative ways of handling it.

In the end I think a lot of the differences came down to philosophy or the possibility that somehow it would be comparing apples to oranges to pears, though I am not going to suggest any of the systems would be “pear shaped”.

I was mainly interested in the SEO aspects of the sites created, and not interested in the backend solutions for providing content.

Over the last few weeks I have been seeing a fair amount of traffic from people searchng for information on Portal Feeder, and they have been landing on old content, most of it 15 months old, and some of it a good 6 or 7 months old.

Thus I thought it was important, even if I didn’t write a full review, to write something.

First of all, here is a link to the Portal Feeder sales page (not an affiliate link)

Portal Feeder Example Site

One of the things people are searching for is a current, Portal Feeder 2.0 site.

http://www.gpstrackingdevice.net/

This site is described in their sales letter as a test site used for training, thus it might not currently use every possible feature.

Here are a few other sites that seem like they are Portal Feeder sites, found being linked from the first. They might not be PF 2.0, and they might not be created by Jason Katzenback

http://www.voipinternetphonecenter.com/

http://www.raftingwhitewaters.com/

http://www.telephonesystemnow.com/

http://www.datarecoverytips.org/

http://www.thebatteryoutlet.com/

Site Review gpstrackingdevice.net

What we have here is a static HTML site, that is grown using the Portal Feeder backend, with a WordPress blog bolted on the side.

Portal Feeder in the past generated sitemaps for the static site, but as the blog isn’t integrated with Portal Feeder, they are now using an open source desktop application, GSiteCrawler. Edit: Jason Katzenback has responded in the comments that this was overlooked – the sitemap was created when he was testing out GSiteCrawler.

The static site does still have a RSS feed, well at least a sub-standard one.
No categories, no tagging, very small snippets – certainly not something people would really subscribe to.

Categories were actually possible with the 15 month old system, you would just have to use some very creative templates and treat each category as a separate site – that would have been a major pain.

There isn’t much in the way of interlinking between content. The old system allowed you to tag content with keywords that thus described a relationship between different articles, but the actual links is still using snippets.

One thing that is really important with RSS is autodiscovery, and it seems Portal Feeder doesn’t create the correct code in the headers for auto-discovery. That is the orange icon that appears in your navigation bar, to signify that there is an RSS feed.

With generators or semi-automated site development tools, people are always worried about footprints. I am not, because at the end of the day WordPress normally has one hell of a big footprint, and that doesn’t matter.

When I am creating niche sites, I am looking for ways I can link between content creatively, or categorise content in unique ways, and thus give the content more value to an end user and thus a search engine.

The blog is just a standard WordPress blog with a datafeed. They should definitely take a look at the RSS feeds because it is a bit risky including your Adsense code in your RSS. Most plugins don’t include Adsense in RSS feeds.

Is This Really a Portal Feeder 2.0 Site?

I honestly hope it isn’t.

I hope they have gone over to a purely WordPress based backend, but somehow I doubt it. One of the biggest selling points of Portal Feeder was that you didn’t need a database, it was all static. They are already using a WordPress blog, they should use it for everything, and have everything highly interconnected.

This Isn’t a Review

For a full review I would go into a lot more detail, and have hands-on – one thing is certain is that the guarantee on Portal Feeder is good. 14 months ago I didn’t have the patience to wait for the software to be brought up to where I wanted to be at, and the refund request I made was handled very promptly.
The forums then were highly active, so I am sure they are now as well. Lots of the bonuses were quite good as well, I remember quite liking the keyword / niche research tool.

If you are starting from scratch, and have relatively little knowledge, this might be a good introduction, and if you used their formula building sites, and followed the training, you would certainly make some money.

If you have some experience, and can bend WordPress to your will, Portal Feeder based upon these example sites isn’t going to offer anything new as far as the base platform is concerned.

If any of the Portal Feeder Team want to show me a better example I would be happy to add to this review.

Yep free information, no attempt to sell you this product, the least you could do is subscribe – all you receive is the contents of this blog

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The Ultimate WordPress Htaccess File? http://andybeard.eu/612/the-ultimate-wordpress-htaccess-file.html http://andybeard.eu/612/the-ultimate-wordpress-htaccess-file.html#comments Mon, 02 Apr 2007 16:11:32 +0000 http://andybeard.eu/2007/04/the-ultimate-wordpress-htaccess-file.html Canonicalization is a serious problem for webmasters, just read this latest entry by Matt Cutts or this great post from John Andrews. However telling webmasters that they should fix these issues isn’t enough, webmasters & bloggers need solutions.

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Canonicalization is a serious problem for webmasters, just read this latest entry by Matt Cutts or this great post from John Andrews. However telling webmasters that they should fix these issues isn’t enough, webmasters & bloggers need solutions.

In Search of the Ultimate Htaccess file

A couple of months ago Alister Cameron posted a simple solution to .htaccess such that you didn’t need to use a plugin to convert URLs using www to URLs without.

At the time I suggested a couple of improvements, and also mentioned I would post about it here on my blog, hopefully to help develop what could be looked on as the “Ultimate” .htaccess file for WordPress, something you could just drop in your root folder and be done with it.
For me the inclination was for multiple niche websites using WordPress as a CMS, so I really wanted to avoid anything that would make the content look dated.

I am not an htaccess guru, and this is all cobbled together from code suggested by other people in various places
Before using any of this code, make a backup of your existing .htaccess, and be prepared to copy it back if testing proves something is broken.

Lets start off with the default .htaccess for WordPress once you turn on mod_rewrite for SEO friendly URLs

# BEGIN WordPress
<IfModule mod_rewrite.c>
RewriteEngine On
RewriteBase /
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d
RewriteRule . /index.php [L]
</IfModule>
# END WordPress

The first thing we want to do is get rid of the WWW if someone uses it. I know there are 2 schools of thought on whether URLs should have www by default or not, I prefer without and never type www unless I can’t access another site without it (broken htaccess).

Secondly we also want to get rid of trailing slash problems

The base rules that Alister first suggested were

<IfModule mod_rewrite.c>
RewriteEngine On
RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} !^www.alistercameron.com$ [NC]
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ http://www.alistercameron.com/$1 [R=301,L]

RewriteCond %{REQUEST_URI} ^/[^\.]+[^/]$
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ http://%{HTTP_HOST}/$1/ [R=301,L]
</IfModule>

However we want this to be the Ultimate htaccess code, thus we don’t want to have to enter the domain name. I am not sure whether this will work if you have multiple blogs in sub-folders.

In this code we are using HTTP_HOST rather than adding a URL manually to every .htaccess file you create. If you are setting up 50 blogs (niche marketers do things like this, and fill them with unique original content – not everyone creates splogs) then being able to use one default file is a major advantage.

# If subdomain www exists, remove it first
RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} ^www\.([^\.]+\.[^\.]+)$ [NC]
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ http://%1/$1 [R=301,L]

Can we improve on the trailing slashes code?

Possibly…

A while ago I was also reading a post over on Aaron Walls SEO Book blog. Within the comments were suggestions with improvements to the code Aaron suggested.
Finding the exact reference is a problem as it wasn’t on this thread

Searching on a phrase in the code these days only brings up a reference on Alister’s blog where I mentioned it in the comments, so I have no idea who to attribute this htaccess code to.

# If requested resource does not exist as a file
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f
# and does not end with a period followed by a filetype
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_URI} !..+$
# and does not end with a slash
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_URI} !/$
# then add a trailing slash and redirect
RewriteRule (.*) $1/ [R=301,L]
</IfModule>

I am not a htaccess guru, but this seems to take into account more potential situations such as files to download.

If you put all this code together you end up with something like this

<IfModule mod_rewrite.c>
RewriteEngine On
# If subdomain www exists, remove it first
RewriteCond %{HTTP_HOST} ^www\.([^\.]+\.[^\.]+)$ [NC]
RewriteRule ^(.*)$ http://%1/$1 [R=301,L]

# If requested resource does not exist as a file
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f
# and does not end with a period followed by a filetype
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_URI} !..+$
# and does not end with a slash
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_URI} !/$
# then add a trailing slash and redirect
RewriteRule (.*) $1/ [R=301,L]
</IfModule>

# BEGIN WordPress
<IfModule mod_rewrite.c>
RewriteEngine On
RewriteBase /
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-f
RewriteCond %{REQUEST_FILENAME} !-d
RewriteRule . /index.php [L]
</IfModule>

# END WordPress

So can anyone offer any constructive improvements?

If you offer improvements, please provide code samples and explain exactly why it is an improvement so people can learn from it (as I said I am a newbie at this)
Code can be entered using code tags in square brackets.

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In Depth Review | Traffic Strategy | Stampede Secrets 2.0 – Social Media Marketing From A Unique Perspective? http://andybeard.eu/598/in-depth-review-traffic-strategy-stampede-secrets-20-social-media-marketing-from-a-unique-perspective.html http://andybeard.eu/598/in-depth-review-traffic-strategy-stampede-secrets-20-social-media-marketing-from-a-unique-perspective.html#comments Sat, 31 Mar 2007 11:55:27 +0000 http://andybeard.eu/2007/03/in-depth-review-traffic-strategy-stampede-secrets-20-social-media-marketing-from-a-unique-perspective.html Stampede Secrets 2.0 is unlike any internet marketing report or ebook I have read…

If spending $97 on an ebook is a major financial commitment, don’t read any further

Ok, for the rest of you lets get on with the review…

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Stampede Secrets 2.0 is unlike any internet marketing report or ebook I have read…

If spending $97 on an ebook is a major financial commitment, don’t read any further

Ok, for the rest of you lets get on with the review…

  • There is no hype in the sales letter
  • There is no hype in the ebook
  • There is no hype in this review

Another Web 2.0 Social Media Ebook?

After you read the sales letter that is probably the impression you will have, and in fact you will still have that impression shortly after you start reading the ebook.

Here are some interesting facts for you

Pages 56 (+bonus guide on video, crib sheets and tables)

Subject # of times
Mentions of Digg in the content 1
Mentions of linkbait 0
Mentions of “effect” (such as Digg effect) 0
Netscape 0
Reddit 0
Positive mentions of Del.icio.us 1

In fact those few references that were included were mainly in facts and figures like usage data.

So What is this Ebook Talking About?

Subject # of times
References to Business 31
Community 9
Research 44
Content 56
Feedback 8
Amazon 7
Ebay 7
YouTube 7
43 Things 20
Traffic 170

Traffic Secrets

Whilst many people don’t appreciate the value of ebooks, claiming that the information is out there if you look for it, or join and participate in various forums, that isn’t strictly true.
We live in an age of information overload. Quite often different ideas and new ideas take a long time to rise to the surface, or never make it, not because the ideas are not valuable, or supported by hard evidence.

I often see “specialists” in SMO (Social Media Optimization) and SMM (Social Media Marketing) claim that their methods and expensive services can work in virtually any market place.
I am not going to dispute those claims, but that very statement tends to drown out other methods that could be equally effective for traffic generation that might be equally, or potentially more suitable for certain markets.

Traffic Strategy

The fundamental value from this ebook is that it challenges you to examine your social media marketing strategy, and optimize it for best effect.
This is nothing to do with writing better headlines, or coercing top users at Digg, Reddit or Netscape to add you as a friend and to plug your content.

Whilst Laura’s intention was to target the ebook to beginners in social media marketing, in many ways consultants in social media marketing should read it because it will place a new perspective on information and strategies you think you already know.

Professional Writing

Laura has written a lot of ebooks as a ghost writer, and this isn’t her first outing in publishing an ebook in her own name. This ebook oozes quality production with footnotes on almost every page and links to resources that back up the data and strategies she proposes.

The professional tone may also be one of its shortcomings – The Stampede Secret isn’t a light refreshing read, or suitable for people who prefer information in short 400 word chunks.

To get the most benefit you really will have to read through the ebook a couple of times taking notes – in some ways it reminds me of some of the more serious marketing reports you might receive from Marketing Sherpa.

Recommended Audience

Ideal

You are already making money, and probably think you know everything there is about SMM. You might even skim read the ebook once and think there is nothing new, but if you take the time to sit down and read it slowly a couple of times, you will pick up a new perspective.

  • Marketing consultants
  • Blogging consultants
  • Business owners in niche markets
  • Owners of Virtual Real Estate in Niche markets including blogging networks
  • VCs and Angel Investors
  • Researchers
  • Journalists

Possible

Beginners who have tried SMM for their niche websites and blogs with little success, and who have money to invest to accelerate their learning process.

Don’t Buy It

This isn’t an ebook showing you the secret route to success and instant wealth. This isn’t something you should spend your last meal ticket on for that one chance of financial independence.

If the price of the ebook is more than you would spend on a night out, think again.

It will probably take you 3 hours to read this ebook unless you have been studying various fast reading techniques – if 3 hours of your time is worth less than $97, this ebook probably isn’t ideal.

You Can Find This Information Elsewhere

I honestly haven’t gone searching for all this information elsewhere, but I am sure somewhere among the millions of pages of content that are created on the internet every day, you would find at least 90% of this information. The value is in the way it is collated and presented.

Just as an example some of what is discussed in the ebook you could find on my blog, and potentially in more depth, especially in regards to things like tagging. Laura even quoted from one of my articles and linked through, highlighting that people should read the article, and the valuable discussion afterwards.

Unique Information

Analysis of one of Laura’s niche sites in a very competitive market (Acne Treatment) with real proof of traffic numbers from Quantcast – not just screenshots.
This isn’t a high traffic site, it is very much a simple niche website, running on WordPress that anyone could create and generate some income – I wouldn’t expect Laura to expose her most profitable sites.

Discussion of traffic strategy – some social media consultants charge $5000 per day to help you formulate a social media marketing action plan. Most of the consultants concentrate on the search engine optimization benefits, and not how to participate in social networks to find real customers.

How to Write an Ebook – whilst this isn’t one of the lessons taught, the production quality and style is something to learn from.

I am going to finish off with a few select quotes from the ebook that don’t give too much away, but at the same time highlight how much different the overall perspective of the information is.

If anything is going to hold you back in being a fore-runner in the new web, the need to measure and record every click or movement to and on your site would be the culprit. The internet is changing at such a rapid rate that controlling and metering every change you make has the potential to stall your success.

Uptight control and playing it safe is seldom the stance of a pioneer. It is the pioneer who wins in profits, fame and visitor traffic – not the followers and whiners. I am not guaranteeing success by any means, nor am I advising you to risk your life savings on some promising new start up, but I am saying that the occasional ‘play your cards or go home’ attitude is one of the keys to success.

Web 2.0 is a very creative, innovative and fluid environment. Most Web 2.0 sites cannot be put in a box and measured in any consistent and reliable fashion – they are simply too young. There is a level of intuition at launch, an element of change and growth throughout the life of the web property, and yet another level of intuition used for assessment when determining a reasonable sale value.

Conclusion

No hype, no bonus, though if I do see enough interest and sales I might write up a supplement to the ebook going into some of the topics in more depth, especially on the benefits of tagging.
I would probably make that available free to all Laura’s customers.
I may even go into some of the topics that Laura has missed – Web 2.0 grows at an alarming rate, and there is a limit to how fast you can research strategies enough to be able to offer conclusive proof.

Disclaimers are unheard of in most ebooks, but Laura takes this to a new professional level, this is just part of it.

Information within this report may be speculation and are therefore within the meaning of the securities litigation reform act of 1995 and contain verbiage such as ‘expected’, ‘anticipated’, ‘estimated’, projected’, ‘believed’ or variations of those.

I have actually been chucking a few emails backwards and forwards to Laura over the last couple of days, and I thought I would include one small excerpt.

You know you really rock! You don’t even ‘know’ me and you’ve given me so
much of your time. It’s a dying art in our world.

I am not going to include my exact reply, because it mentioned names of people that if internet marketers were actively using LinkedIn, would certainly appear between myself and Laura as shared contacts, and over the last 2 years I have certainly dropped by her blog a number of times.

This comment also shows the benefit of “paying it forward” and the value of providing information for free to eventually reach your goals.

There are quite a few expert marketers who normally charge their clients a great deal of money who I correspond with on a regular basis, simply because they have gained value from what I have offered for free.

One of the bonuses that Laura provides is some very specific email support – she states that she will answer 2 emails from her customers, and highlights the importance formulating those questions to receive maximum benefit. She is not going to exclude pleas for help, and win / win relationships can develop to extend the level of help provided.

I have always been happy to answer emails regarding the products I review both before someone makes a buying decision and afterwards, or you can just ask here in the comments.

I gained a great deal of value from Stampede Secrets. I might not realise that value immediately because I already employ many of the strategies and techniques discussed, and it is hard to quantify the effect any changes might have on my income.
Reading the ebook has certainly helped me highlight the action I should be taking to revitalise some of the niche websites I have had for a long time and hardly ever modify, because each is bringing in a small trickle of income.
Laura has helped me realise that it is possible to employ a few extra traffic strategies for these niche websites that could turn the flow of traffic into a gushing fountain.

Disclaimer:- I am one of the few people who received a free review copy of this ebook, possibly because I offered to take a look before publishing, that Laura reads my blog, and because she quoted me in the ebook. To be honest I might not have purchased the ebook just based upon the sales page. That is the value of affiliate marketing in pre-selling, or explaining the benefits of a product in an ethical manner

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AuctionAds Review – AuctionAds Partially Solves Two International Affiliate Problems http://andybeard.eu/504/auctionads-partially-solves-two-international-affiliate-problems.html http://andybeard.eu/504/auctionads-partially-solves-two-international-affiliate-problems.html#comments Tue, 06 Mar 2007 18:21:18 +0000 http://andybeard.eu/2007/03/auctionads-partially-solves-two-international-affiliate-problems.html AuctionAds

Shoemoney Media and Mediawhiz (The parent company of Text Link Ads and ReviewMe) have released an innovative new monetization model, based upon Ebay Auctions – AuctionAds.com

Mainstream media will no doubt not even think let alone write about the 2 core advantages of this system for a large segment of the affiliate marketplace.

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AuctionAds

Shoemoney Media and Mediawhiz (The parent company of Text Link Ads and ReviewMe) have released an innovative new monetization model, based upon Ebay Auctions – AuctionAds.com

Mainstream media will no doubt not even think let alone write about the 2 core advantages of this system for a large segment of the affiliate marketplace.

  1. International – Even affiliates in the UK were unable to join the Ebay affiliate program in the US
  2. Payment – Payment is made by Paypal rather than check, with a $10 threshold

International Affiliates

If you are an affiliate based in the US, almost all affiliate marketing doors are open. If you live anywhere else, or if your company is registered somewhere else, you ultimately always hit barriers for your participation.

Ebay International Affiliate Barriers

Here is an excerpt from the Ebay (US) Affiliates FAQ

Ebay US Policy on International Affiliates

The Ebay affiliate program is managed by Commission Junction, who provide an international affiliate management system.
Unfortunately Ebay has chosen to separate their affiliate program by territory, at least for some.
Affiliates based in the US can join the affiliate program of other counties, affiliates outside the US cannot join the US program… one day the European Union might decide that is not free trade.

Here is an excerpt from the Ebay UK Affiliate FAQ:-

Ebay UK Policy on International Affiliates

It is not Commission Junctions fault, they provide an international platform, although it is confusing for affiliates to identify which affiliate programs they are entitled to join.

Commission Junction

International Payment

With Paypal being offered there are several advantages

  • Low $10 payment threshold
  • No excessive charges for processing international checks
  • No delays in cashflow (though it is not specified how quickly AuctionAds will pay)

This might not be a universal advantage for all affiliates, because Commission Junction do offer direct bank transfers in a number of territories. A lot will depend on how AuctionAds calculate when a payment is due.
If their system allows for them to make payments faster than Commission Junction, that is a significant advantage.

There is no need to sign up for our affiliate program because our affiliate program is built right into the ads you display! If a user clicks on the “Ads by AuctionAds” that is displayed and signs up for our service you earn a bonus 2% of all revenue generated by that user for the 6 months.

You will get paid the first of every month via Paypal. We feature a 30 day cookie on all referrals.

Ebay With TradeDoubler

I noticed that the affiliate program for Ebay.pl is actually handled via TradeDoubler – I don’t currently publish any sites in Polish, but that might be something I will look into for some of my future publishing – maybe their Ebay interface is more “International Friendly”.
I do know that the payment threshold quoted was 150 zloty – $50 USD which is far higher than the $10 Threshold offered by AuctionAds.

If TradeDoubler doesn’t provide global Geo-targetting, it would only be suitable for non-English language sites, at least compared to AuctionAds.

Other Advantages of Auction Ads

What is the advantage over CJ/eBay direct affiliation?

Easy implementation and the leverage of AuctionAds’ creative delivery of eBay’s auctions and our ability to achieve the higher performance incentive tiers with the aggregate volume of traffic to make more money than they could with their own affiliate relationship.

I have niche websites which receive 90% US traffic, but I have never been able to offer Ebay as an alternative sales channel. Whilst I have been able to use Chitika adverts, and have included affiliate links through mainly Linkshare, Ebay quite often was offering much better deals for the products my visitors wanted to buy.

Being able to offer the best deals and make money from doing so is always the best option for affiliates.

Live AuctionAds Examples

So here are some example “live” adverts – no screenhots you will have to click through if reading this in an RSS Reader.

Keyword: Blogging

Keyword: Internet Marketing

Keyword: Gardening and “Mole trap”

Feature Suggestions

  • Keyword Targetting – very much like Chitika, a very specific product related keyword seems to be the best option currently. I am not actually sure it would be an advantage to offer contextual or based on several keywords. I did try comma delimited keywords and they didn’t seem to work. Maybe category + keyword would be a good alternative.
  • Remove Ads By AuctionAds – if you wanted to place 3 half-banners vertically because that suited your layout, the AuctionAds link in each of them would be inappropriate. Alternatively provide multiple image alignment options – also allow the colour to be changed
  • RSS Feeds – I would love to be able to use an RSS feed of the adverts, that I could then use to style in whatever way I choose.
  • Direct Affiliate Link – Please provide a direct affiliate link – I missed the link in the interface which is under Account Home.
  • Pay Per Click – It would be great if AuctionAds in some way to provide a bridge for international affiliates to advertise Ebay products in the US market via PPC
  • auctionads_ad_client – for the tin-foil hat brigade, there needs to be a way of generating multiple values for every niche website. Maybe you can do a deal with Google Yahoo and MSN so these don’t appear in search results, but that isn’t total anonymity.
  • Campaigns – Ability to create a campaign on the fly, or at least while you are creating code – this is possible using the wizard, but it seems you have 3 seperate processes currently, and it should be possible to have just one.
  • Presets – the ability to save a preset for colour selection, and maybe retain a complete history of ads already created for different campaigns.
  • Live Results – Currently the number of results are displayed using Ajax, it would be good to be able to preview them
  • Hide Campaign ID – The ability to have none human readable campaign identification (this seems to have been added while I was writing) – I would love to be able to assign my own (as above, campaigns on-the-fly)

Take A Look For Yourself

I strongly encourage you to take a look at AuctionAds for yourself. If you are an international affiliate, it is in my opinion the best option for the Ebay affiliate program, other than features such as PPC and various RSS and API integration. If that can be added to the mix at a later date, AuctionAds as a conduit for Ebay is going to be huge.

Where is the link? At the bottom of the example ads or just click here.

Further Discussion

Actually very few sites so far have picked this up, so I will add links as I see them

Techcrunch seems to be first with the news – they are thinking about giving it a test run on their more product related sites. The advantage AuctionAds for them is that it is Geo-targetted – AuctionAds handle the backend merging of multiple affiliate programs.

Linda at 5 Star Affiliates so far has what she admits to being a short writeup, but she has spotted that sometimes the auction items are expired. She has also managed to hack an affiliate referral ID, which I will have to take a look at doing as well.

Update on AuctionAds

Darren emphasised that AuctionAds is very much a network that will work best with product focused sites. He says he has also had a chance to have a look at the backend – I am not sure that is behind the scenes of what a normal publisher sees, but Mediawhiz normally put together fairly solid services, and I am sure Shoemoney’s team have the security under control.

John Chow also did an in-depth review of of AuctionAds explaining how the payment system works for normal Ebay affiliates in great depth, and also how he intends to use the adverts on his product reviews sites.

Ajay has knocked together some code for making AuctionAds to a certain extent “contextual”, either using UTW or SimpleTags Data.
I don’t think this approach is ideal currently, because I have had a chance to exchange emails with Ddn and currently the widget uses keywords supplied randomly rather than in priority order, unlike Chitika which uses a priority scale. This is something that will be fixed in the near future.

This is important, take for instance this example (though unlikely a good example for Ebay content)

wordpress theme, wordpress, blogging

If these were used randomly, you would probably end up with more adverts which used the keyword blogging, and you might end up with Britney Spears T-shirts or other celebrity stuff. The adverts are often being optimised based on which adverts will finish soon.

If they are taken in priority order then this is ideal, and you could use

barcode number, camera model, camera manufacturer, camera type, photography

For many blogs, using a mixture of custom fields and categories might prove better for targetting, because they can be listed in a specific order. UTW allows tags to be displayed in popularity order, so maybe that could be reversed to achieve almost the same thing.

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Toolbar Pagerank | Ball Linking http://andybeard.eu/310/toolbar-pagerank-ball-linking.html http://andybeard.eu/310/toolbar-pagerank-ball-linking.html#comments Thu, 25 Jan 2007 14:46:34 +0000 http://andybeard.eu/2007/01/toolbar-pagerank-ball-linking.html Google have finally updated their toolbar pagerank for this site, not just on the front page, but also a lot of the deeper pages. Not all of them – some of those devoid of pagerank should probably have some, others probably shouldn’t especially moved content that hasn’t been given enough love.

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Google have finally updated their toolbar pagerank for this site, not just on the front page, but also a lot of the deeper pages. Not all of them – some of those devoid of pagerank should probably have some, others probably shouldn’t especially moved content that hasn’t been given enough love.

As I have discussed in the past, when discussing blog internal linking, for this blog I am doing “massive ball linking”.

Ball Linking or Structured

Links come into the blog from various places and to specific content. By using tagging and related posts on each page (maybe a few too many now), whatever pagerank, trust and relevance that a page is given, get passed onto other relevant content.

It also gets passed onto people who leave comments or trackback. When you link to me from your blog posts, the juice flows back – sometimes more, sometimes less, but it is all relevant links – just what the web is all about.

I suppose you could look on this as a “organic garden” approach. Just let things grow wild, and only interfere if something needs drastic change.

I haven’t been overly worried about the multiple forms of duplicate content that are typical on a WordPress blog.

Exactly Why I Don’t Worry About Duplicate Content

First of all I discussed this a little not so long ago, in particular about duplicate content and supplemental results.

Matt Cutts isn’t worried about honest duplicate content

Proof – Matt Really isn’t worried

First of all lets take at look at Matt’s robots.txt file

User-agent: *
Allow:

Then you can look at the metadata on all Matts duplicate content pages

Category archives – I am going to link to his seo glossary, I am sure it doesn’t get many links.
Date Archives
Sequential pages – lets go back in time a few pages

<meta http-equiv="Content-Type" content="text/html; charset=UTF-8" />
<title>Matt Cutts: Gadgets, Google, and SEO &raquo; Movies/Videos</title>
<meta name="generator" content="WordPress 2.0.7" /> <!-- leave this for stats -->
<meta name="robots" content="noodp">

Basically he lets the search engines work out what is going on.

There are simple plugins out there to prevent these pages being indexed and followed in various ways, but Matt Cutts doesn’t worry about it.

The Wayback Machine

Yep, more duplicate content – Matt doesn’t block them

Matt Doesn’t even block the login page to his WordPress installation – that same page appears over 2 million times on the web.

Let it Flow

OMG I am wasting all that Google Juice that I worked so hard for!

Or maybe not…

Google Juice is liquid… it flows, it you give it a direction to flow in.

Whilst you may give a page with duplicate content some juice, that juice flows back out to other pages. Just because that page might end up in the supplemental results, doesn’t mean the Google juice is being wasted.

Some blog designs unfortunately place too much emphasis on the most current content. They don’t use tags, their date archives are accessed by a silly calendar widget on the front page, and they don’t have any other routes for pagerank to flow.

Structured Linking

It is possible to use only a very structured linking system for a blog, but it is important to think about relevance. In Revenge of the Mininet there are some great linking structures defined. They would be ideal for highly “niched” sites.

Many blogs, including this one, cover a wide multitude of subjects. A carefully constructed linking structure would be much harder to define and you might lose the benefit of giving relevance to specific pages.

Structured Relevance?

Some duplicate content pages give great, maybe even enhanced relevance to content.
Date archives in many blog designs are not very helpful. If date archives and previous pages are used as the primary navigation to previous content, and path for search engines to take, you really aren’t giving your content any justice or longevity.

Content Longevity

Lets look at some of my internal pages for longevity

How a Blogroll can kill your Pagerank – 2 month old post, linked to a few times in posts, but it appears a lot on pages due to tagging and using related posts – currently PR4

NoFollow and Pink Boxesalso PR4

Some posts on UTW Tips – both PR3

Ultimate Tag Warrior SEO Tricks (pt 1)
UTW – Tagging SEO Tricks (pt 2)

From browsing around, I have discovered that the Google Toolbar Pagerank isn’t completely comprehensive, as I have posts that should have PR4 that don’t. One of them was my highest ranking page in November and December.

It was hard to find a post that hadn’t been later referred to in a more recent post but this is a good example:-

No NoFollow & No-Nofollow.com

That post is again PR3, and didn’t receive any specific direct love from outside links or internal links in posts. It did benefit from tagging, and related posts.

This time around I didn’t tag and categorize my old content from my blogspot domain. Almost all of that content didn’t receive much pagerank love unless it had been linked to directly.
I am going to see if for the next update it can be revitalized.

How much of your old content retains visible pagerank?

It is actually still difficult to compare, because so many pages still haven’t received pagerank they probably deserve. Even Matt has some pages that are linked to from PR6 categories that show a toolbar pagerank of zero such as http://www.mattcutts.com/blog/starving-to-death-review/

I would link to it directly with a live link, but I don’t want to ruin the example

For one of Matts posts that one probably received a lot less inbound links

Yes that is a Yahoo link – wouldn’t it be nice to have a “-all” flag on Google searches to list everything below Google’s threshold as well, even if it is just an aid for webmasters to find splogs.

Conclusion

Matt is a busy man, maybe he hasn’t had time to optimize and avoid all these duplicate content issues but I really believe it is nothing to worry about, and Matt might just be demonstrating this with his own blog.

You can aim for a more focused structure on a blog, using various forms of dynamic linking but it is not something easy to achieve yet with any platform.

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Ultimate Tag Warrior SEO Tricks (pt 1) http://andybeard.eu/129/ultimate-tag-warrior-seo-tricks-pt-1.html http://andybeard.eu/129/ultimate-tag-warrior-seo-tricks-pt-1.html#comments Sat, 11 Nov 2006 16:20:08 +0000 http://andybeard.eu/2006/11/ultimate-tag-warrior-seo-tricks-pt-1.html On my blogs, I prefer not to use nofollow for comments and trackback.

It is my belief that if someone adds to the conversation on my blogs, the least I can do is offer them a backlink for their trouble.
I prefer people to write a post about me than to add me to their blogroll. I know a blogroll link theoretically gives me more Google Juice, but if they give 200 people a blogroll link, suddenly the value of that link from every page is greatly deminished.

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On my blogs, I prefer not to use nofollow for comments and trackback.

It is my belief that if someone adds to the conversation on my blogs, the least I can do is offer them a backlink for their trouble.
I prefer people to write a post about me than to add me to their blogroll. I know a blogroll link theoretically gives me more Google Juice, but if they give 200 people a blogroll link, suddenly the value of that link from every page is greatly deminished.

It is much better to have noone in your blogroll, and just write about what your friends are doing. If you really want to have a list of blogs belonging to friends, either link to them using nofollow, or stick the links on a seperate “friends” page.

The problem with using something like a dofollow plugin is that the more comments you get on a popular post, the more pagerank is sucked away from your domain. Giving an active followable link is friendly, but you should be careful optimizing your site so that not all your pagerank disappears from kindness.

Here is one trick I hinted at that allows you to grow the number of internal links on a page, depending on the number of comments that have been posted.

I should point out I am not a programmer, so I am sure there are more optimized ways of doing this.
I am using a plugin for code display, I have no idea how it will look in a feed reader.



<?php
$ab_seo_tags = 10;
$ab_num_com = get_comments_number($id);
if ($ab_num_com > 0)
{
echo $ab_num_com . " comments!" . "<br />";
$ab_seo_tags = $ab_seo_tags + ( $ab_num_com * 4 );
echo $ab_seo_tags . " tags should be shown" . "<br />";
}
?>
<?php UTW_ShowWeightedTagSetAlphabetical("coloredsizedtagcloud","",$ab_seo_tags) ?>

It is very simple code, but I will break it down anyway.

First of all I set a default number of tag links to display, in this case 10
I then use a function call to discover the current number of comments
If there isn’t any comments, only the default number of links will be used
If the number of comments is above a threshhold, then additional links are added, in my case any above 0, but this could be set to a higher number depending on other optimization used.
The echos are just to demonstrate how this is working.
A simple math function adds an additional 4 tags for every new comment to the post

Finally a call is made to Ultimate Tag Warrior, requesting a specific number of tags to be shown.

More complicated code could be created to achieve all kinds of “dynamic dynamic linking”

Just because you allow someone a backlink, does not mean you have to give away all your pagerank to other websites. Most blogs are giving no backlinks at all, and quite often focus pagerank on stupid areas of their site. I am working towards focusing more pagerank on my content, but that doesn’t mean I have to then give it all away.

I encourage you to comment or trackback to show how this page is updated automatically.

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Disclosure Policy Generator http://andybeard.eu/114/disclosure-policy-generator.html http://andybeard.eu/114/disclosure-policy-generator.html#comments Tue, 31 Oct 2006 09:04:47 +0000 http://andybeard.eu/2006/10/disclosure-policy-generator.html Payperpost have launched a new site DisclosurePolicy.org, which features a very simple disclosure policy generator.

They provide you with a series of example phrases which you select, and eventually generate a final Disclosure Policy.

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Payperpost have launched a new site DisclosurePolicy.org, which features a very simple disclosure policy generator.

They provide you with a series of example phrases which you select, and eventually generate a final Disclosure Policy.

It is a useful service, even if like me you don’t expect PayPerPost content to appear on your blog.

Here is what I generated with it

This policy is valid from 31 October 2006

This blog is a sponsored blog created or supported by a company, organization or group of organizations. For questions about this blog, please contact  Andy Beard.

This blog accepts forms of cash advertising, sponsorship, paid insertions or other forms of compensation.

The compensation received may influence the advertising content, topics or posts made in this blog. That content, advertising space or post may not always be identified as paid or sponsored content.

The owner(s) of this blog is compensated to provide opinion on products, services, websites and various other topics. Even though the owner(s) of this blog receives compensation for our posts or advertisements, we always give our honest opinions, findings, beliefs, or experiences on those topics or products. The views and opinions expressed on this blog are purely the bloggers’ own. Any product claim, statistic, quote or other representation about a product or service should be verified with the manufacturer, provider or party in question.

The owner(s) of this blog would like to disclose the following existing relationships. These are companies, organizations or individuals that may have a significant impact on the content of this blog. We have a financial interest in the following that are relevant to our blogging: various example niche websites or services.

To get your own policy, go to http://www.disclosurepolicy.org

You are also given permission to change it as much as you like.

It is not a final proof, but it does give you a reasonable backbone to work with to produce a final document. (which I will probably do, I have been a little lax in this department on this new home for my blog)
If you can’t generate income from your time invested & content in other ways, I suppose PayPerPost is a viable option, but I much prefer using affiliate links and/or adsense.

Important to think about is the lifetime value of the content you create, and of course the dynamic linking structure of your site. You wouldn’t want to emphasise the PR sent to an advertising link, thus adjust your inking structure such that you have ball linking to loads of pages without leaks from any page containing an advertising link.

  • PPP could go into a category “other news” or “asides” that has a different template
  • Would the content have to appear in your RSS feed?
  • Would you exclude it from appearing on your front page?
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Revenge of the Mininet | 3rd Party content | Blog Comments | No Follow http://andybeard.eu/113/revenge-of-the-mininet-3rd-party-content-blog-comments-no-follow.html http://andybeard.eu/113/revenge-of-the-mininet-3rd-party-content-blog-comments-no-follow.html#comments Tue, 31 Oct 2006 03:21:01 +0000 http://andybeard.eu/2006/10/revenge-of-the-mininet-3rd-party-content-blog-comments-no-follow.html For those that haven’t picked up a copy of Revenge of the Mininet

Bookmark or Subscribe to this post

Download Revenge of the Mininet for free (It is honestly worth signing up to Michaels list)

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For those that haven’t picked up a copy of Revenge of the Mininet

Bookmark or Subscribe to this post

Download Revenge of the Mininet for free (It is honestly worth signing up to Michaels list)

Read Revenge of the Mininet

Log into the Leslie Rohde Dynamic Linking Bonus (for some reason the site asks for the password twice, you didn’t make a mistake, just use the username and password twice)
Read Dynamic Linking through at least twice

Come back to reading this post…

Stop Reading if you haven’t done all of the above!

So a blog is generally a ball linking structure. (if you read the books you would know about this term)
But lets think about other sites, and how you can cheat a little when using 3rd party articles (duplicate content).

Using 3rd party articles, you are forced to have an external link.

There are 2 ways of doing this, and it is not really discussed in either ebook.

1. Limit the amount of PR that is given to the pages, thus you might have the link to the articles sitemap on your main sitemap.

This strategy is ok if you mainly want the articles to sacrifice PR, but they still have quite a PR leak.

2. Use ball linking from any 3rd party article page, minimising the value of any external link from the page

Thus have lots of links to related content that doesn’t have PR leaks, minimising the amount of PR that is “wasted”.

Apply it back to blogs

If you use “no follow” for all your comments (or not allow comments), and “no follow” on all external links, then you can do some great optimization, but would probably be unpopular. It would still be quite complicated to achieve various “spider” or “pyramid” solutions.
If you use “no follow” in comments, and not for external links, and optimize your site carefully, you might end up giving too much PR away to the other site.

If you don’t use “no follow” at all, that is a lot of leaks. PR however flows equally, thus if a page has a lot of comments on it, and has a lot of links, you need to have as many leaks to your own pages as possible. It is better to give PR to pages without too many leaks.

Even using a Blog as a CMS with no comments – you are going to need at the very least lots of special custom templates.

Short term solution

Popular blogs are better off having at least a partial ball structure, with so many internal links on a page that it doesn’t matter about the external links.

Think about your average number of comments and external links per post. Then decide how much PR you want to give away. If you have 10 external links on your page and want to give away only 10% of the page PR to them, you need to have 100 internal links of your own on the page.
Tagging and categories can help a lot if used correctly. Blogrolls on every page can be extremely bad. It is much better to “share the juice” by posting about your friends from an SEO point of view, than having them on your sitewide blogroll all the time.

The implementations for widgets for any theme I have seen so far really don’t help you very much.
PLR (private label rights) is the best content for sacrificial mininet sites, as it is easy to sacrifice with no 3rd party outbound links.

Post your most important content as pages rather than posts using modified templates.

Long term solution

;)

Update August 2010

For the last year Google have been suggesting PageRank evaporates from Nofollow links – so you will just have to use javascript, or test what Google claim.

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