Showing posts with label Google. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Google. Show all posts

3/10/10

Google Hot Trends, Domain Transfers & Moneymaking sites

It's been a while since my last post, and if you're a longtime fan or reader I apologize for that. If you're involved in self-employment or internet marketing, you know just how time-consuming it all can be. Sometimes you find something that is a good thing for moneymaking and you end up putting more effort into that then other projects. Throw in other aspects of "real life" and you've got a busy time of it. It's nice to have a life outside the net right? Luckily, my previous work as a project manager and caseworker helps me figure out my priorities. I'm big on goal setting, writing lists and getting things done. But I do have my "procrastinator days" as well.

So what have I been up to? Well recently, a lot of article writing. Mostly with Google trends which offers pros and cons. The great part is this can give you nice surges of traffic to wherever you want if done right. If you pick the right hot topics and get in on them in time, you can link to offers or seller sites, and generate nice sales for making money online. The downfalls are copycats who steal your material so they can make a quick buck too. And trust me, I've seen it happen quite a bit. I've even had someone accuse me of plagiarism on a site, when in fact it was another site copying my work. Strange but true!

The other thing with Google trends is we know the Big G wants to keep their searches honest. They don't want people searching for a hot news topic and finding someone's 5 sentence article about a story with a link to a news site. I see it often, or I see sites with poorly written content that has tons of grammatical errors and sentences which keep going and run together and they don't make sense but they are trying to make money as fast as they can - you know what I mean? Google will want content as always. In the past year, I've seen the Google Hot Trends listing go from 100 sites to about 40 to the current 20, and I often wonder if it will go down again to 10. I'm guessing that Google has done this to prevent all the "crap" content that gets spewed out. They limit people's ability to prey off 100 or even 40 topics.

So to solve the problems of competition and finding more hot topics, you have to be creative. For that, figure out what the recent hot topics are and then use Google suggest. You know, the tool that will provide you with additional searches. From that you can gauge your own topics to write about, and make post titles based on them. To get traffic flowing you'll probably need authority for your site, or to write for Associate Content as a news writer. Or you can play the social bookmarking game and use Socialmarker to get your site ranked up on page 1, for a bit. I'm not going to go into what topics to look for to make money, because you'll have to develop your own strategies. I'd also recommend Yahoo! Buzz, Bing X-rank and this site News on Rails which lists 100 trends for a day.

Now about domain transfers, I do have a gripe with GoDaddy.com. Over the past year I set up about 5 new sites/blogs and used sales deals with GoDaddy to get the domains. I host with Hostgator. After hearing about the Netfirms site I decided I would switch over to them for the upcoming renewal. Netfirms offers a privacy protection in their deal that GoDaddy doesn't. The problem came when trying to make the transfer.

Netfirms requires that you set up the transfer by authorizing it with the old domain site (GoDaddy), acquiring a AUTH code from them, and then another code from Netfirms. Once you enter all that info into your Netfirms area for the domain, they are supposed to handle the switch. The problem was that GoDaddy didn't allow the transfer, and has their nice little GoDaddy page parking ads on my sites now, offering people to buy the names up when they're available. So lesson learned, the hard way.

I've seen many a domain seller site talk about how easy a transfer is, but it's really a headache. As of this article, I have yet to transfer any domains, and basically GoDaddy has blocked my attempts. Maybe it's good business, but you can imagine the frustration after all the work to write posts, build backlinks and get ranked for those moneymaking sites. But you live and learn and I'll have to go forth from there.

A few other notes of recent interest, WidgetBucks has chosen to close down. If you missed that email they basically are choosing to focus their funds and efforts in a new way. Anyone whose account was over $50 threshold at the time will be paid by the 15th of March. If you were under $50, your money is not going to be paid to you. Also, Squidoo has been adhering to their newer standards and if they decide your lenses seem too spammy or not under their guidelines, they will lock you. I must have missed an email from them at one point, but five of my lenses have been officially locked. But then again maybe that's because I had the biggest payout from Squidoo yet just today. Even in a tough economy these moneymaking sites want to tighten up their purse strings a bit.

I hope everyone else is doing well in 2010. It's been a great start for me despite the problems I've mentioned. Mainly because I have been reaching some big goals and am looking forward to the impending moneymaking season coming up.

Here's to your success,
The Monetizer

6/30/09

Google's Wonder Wheel for SEO


(Google continues to give us more help in search engine ranking)

A newer innovation in the world of Google is the Google Wonder Wheel. You may have heard about this new search related feature you can tap into, or it may be news to you. I honestly learned of this just a few days ago, but already see it as a useful tool when it comes to crafting blog content and even creating hubpages to make money online.

Apparently, Google unveiled the Wonder Wheel experimentally to select internet users. If you do a simple Google search, you may notice under your search box and to the left a bit it says "Web" and then "Show options". Click "Show options" to unveil a panel of various Google search info you can tap into such as:

Videos
Forums
Reviews

Recent results
Past 24 hours
Past week
Past year


You'll also notice "› Standard view" which has the Wonder wheel below it. Click on that and you'll launch the Wonder Wheel for your particular keyword(s) search. In my example below I did a search on the late Michael Jackson. What it gives is a branch out from the original term to other terms and keyword phrases that internet users tend to search for.

google wonder wheel

This is helpful as it allows you to create a smart linking structure around your keyword you want to rank for. It gives you related material to write about on blog posts or Hubs or Squidoo lenses, which you can link back to the keyword phrase you're trying to rank for. Make sure to use SEO optimization when crafting your related posts and good internal linking. This cwill help solidify your ranking for key terms and bring you the extra traffic and potential money you're looking to earn.

4/8/09

Google Adsense Privacy Policy & Using Hot Trends

Today was spent feverishly updating or in some cases creating privacy policies for my various blogs and websites running Google Adsense. Just like my 2008 state tax returns, I've been procrastinating on getting this done. The major problem I had to work with was that I created a few fansites for different topics and each of those use Adsense on multiple HTML pages I uploaded. Luckily I had the aid of CoffeeCup HTML Editor (a nice freebie) to let me quickly modify the codes of each site (to add a link to my privacy policies). Per Google's new Interest based advertising it's imperative that you have a privacy policy for your blog or website(s) that run Adsense ads (and it's been advised you have the new Google part added into your prvacy policies by April 8, 2009, today). For a great example of a privacy policy you can modify refer to Grizzly's Make Money Online site's Privacy Policy. Sorry if this news is hitting anyone late but as of my posting you still have a few hours until April 8th ends.

I also want to highly recommend to readers that you consider checking the Google Hot Trends site daily if you're not making this a habit already. In the past week I've been doing this more and crafting blog post for various niche blogs based upon applicable topics. I tend to choose topics I see with longtail keywords I can target that I can be competitive with. Some of the hot trends have had very low competiton and brought nice extra surges in traffic to my various blogs. The key of course is properly monetizing that traffic, which I'm still tweaking on some niches. Still, I believe Hot Trends should not be overlooked in blogging, it will definitely give you topics to blog about (unless your niche is really, really obscure like "Toe Fungus" or "Sardine recipes").

Now it's time for me to start thinking about doing my state income tax returns again, perhaps I'll start them tomorrow....

4/1/09

Google Gmail Autopilot by CADIE Released!

cadie panda google autopilot creator
(Google Autopilot by CADIE)

E-mail just got a whole lot easier with the new Google Gmail Autopilot! While it's not as big a story as the recent April 1st Conflicker worm virus, Google's cool new application known as Google Autopilot is set to simplify the way you handle your daily emails. The new application designed by the web wonders will automatically create custom responses to your emails for you, because we get busy enough trying to keep up with all the emails we get.

According to the Autopilot information page, Google Autopilot will mirror your communication style when it creates responses:

The more Gmail messages Autopilot can sample, the better. With fewer than 100 messages, there may not be enough data to calibrate Autopilot effectively. You can adjust tone, typo propensity, and preferred punctuation from the Autopilot tab under Settings.


The good news is Google Autopilot also works with Gmail chat and both the sender and receiver can be using Autopilot at the same time.

In case you're wondering the designer of Google Autopilot is CADIE, or Cognitive Autoheuristic Distributed-Intelligence Entity. You can view their official webpage here. CADIE is the cute panda graphic you see on this blogpost, and offers the capability to create web code for users in addition to this nifty new email technology.

I suggest you give Google Autopilot a try today if you're looking to make life easier and keep all your email under control! Enjoy!

12/22/08

Websites for Online Shopping Deals & Saving Money

With the current state of the United States economy, retailers are finding it increasingly difficult to sell their wares. These days many big name items are selling for rock bottom prices. In some instances companies are using deals just to get customers onto their website or into the actual stores. According to a recent MarketWatch.com article, Cyber Monday saw increases in traffic and clicks for many online retailers with Walmart.com, Target.com and Circuitcity.com seeing the biggest jumps. It's no secret that shopping from home can save you good money these days, but finding the best deals online is essential.

With Christmas in a few days, The Monetizer's gift to you is this collection of great websites for hunting down the best deals the web has to offer. You can use these sites to snatch up some great merchandise online all year long. Many times you'll find free samples you can get as well!

Google Products/shopping - A good start for your online shopping is to look up the exact item you want (Make/Model etc) in Google's product search. You'll get a listing of online price results so you can then do some comparison shopping to gauge what the price range is you can expect to pay. Also if you've supplied your zip code, you can get an idea for shipping and tax charges. This is one of the best ways to find the deal you want or at least get an idea of what you might be paying. Many items won't be discounted too much like the always popular Apple iPod. From Google's product search you can head over to the #1 auction site online...

eBay.com - No secret here. The biggest online buying and selling auctionplace around. Type your item into eBay and watch the search results spit out. The usual words of caution apply though. There's scammers and dishonest sellers lurking. Always investigate the feedback levels of the person you're buying from. The deal might look great, but the seller may have recent strings of negative feedback about shipping, or even worse no feedback at all. Another thing to keep in mind is shipping. Recently there's many ebay sellers offering free shipping, but in these instances the items were bid up much higher. Know your auction bid limits and stick to them. Don't let desire for an item cause you to go on a bidding rampage!

Dealnews.com - A very comprehensive site full of the very best deals in several important categories such as video games, computers, media entertainment, clothing and more. Narrow it down to the type of product you're looking for and you'll find plenty of online deal news. Dealnews.com is one of those sites you could spend hours surfing to see what sorts of deals are going on!

Dealspl.us - This is a deals site crafted in the form of social media sites like Digg or any other bookmarking site. The way it works is a site member spots a deal online and other members can click to give that deal a thumbs up. The most popular deals of the day will be found on the front page, with full details. Members can also comment on the deals as well.

Slickdeals.net - The Monetizer would probably give this the #1 rating ahead of the rest, but there seems to be a time lag between it displaying deals some days. Slickdeals features a list of deals of each day that are in collapsed form. Click on a deal of interest and it expands to show you the details complete with a link to the deal and any coupon info you might need.

Spoofee.com - This one is alot like Slickdeals as their deals seem to overlap many times. In several rare instances, Spoofee or Slickdeals had a deal the other site didn't display immediately. Keeping an eye on both sites can be helpful. Each of these sites offers RSS feeds to help track deals better.

Fatwallet.com - This site is crafted in the forum tradition, with users posting forum threads for "Hot Deals". There's even been a section where members gave each other spare Coke or Pepsi codes for their rewards programs. This site may take a bit more time to sift through as compared to the rest, but nonetheless it can offer some gems for online shopping. One other aspect of Fatwallet involves its "Cash back" program which is free to be a part of. Check out the various deals Fatwallet has from all sorts of retailers online. They change constantly but it's another way to help save money when making purchases online.

Woot.com - The Woot site provides a daily "Woot" which is their "deal of the day". It could be anything from airfare to a high-powered vacuum cleaner to computer accessories. Just recently they had a gyroscope air mouse that worked from up to 100 feet away from the computer. Most of their deals sell out fast so this is a site you may want to load up early in the AM and take advantage of a great deal they showcase. There's also wine Woot and shirt Woot which are linked to from their site, categories self-explanatory.

Now a few things to consider. Sometimes you'll see a deal on one of these sites, but always read the fine print whether it's on the website or the deal site. Other members may have commented on a deal to give people a heads up of any extra things needed for the deal. The deal may require an additional purchase, mail-in rebate or picking up an item in-store. Even so, I've seen plenty of deals on flat screen TV's, computer hardware and software for the internet surfer who stays attuned to these sites. You can also call most websites to get additional info. One thing I'd recommend is finding out if the product you're getting a deal on is available or back-ordered. I've run into an interesting situation with one deal I thought I was snatching up, which I'll explain in a future post.

Also, keep in mind these 4 sites will usually identify the very same deals. Despite this overlap, there's occasionally a deal missed by the other sites that you'll find on just one of them. For example, Spoofee identified a deal for 50 condoms shipped for $3.50, while the other sites didn't display this. This could be due to Spoofee having a different sort of audience than the other sites, but at least they stay protected while promiscuous... :)

I'd strongly recommend for anyone who doesn't have Paypal to sign up for an account. It makes for another great way to buy items online and recently I've seen several sites offering deals such as $10 of $50 or $20 cash back when you use Paypal. Also, Paypal offers their debit/credit card which can be attached to a 1% cash back on all credit purchases made. Yet another way to save a bit on those online purchases. 1% may not look like much, but it's $10 more or so if you're buying a $1,000 flat screen TV.

Keep an eye on these sites after Christmas day passes. There's a strong possibility there will be some great deals coming up due to retailers wanting to unload merchandise from the season!

Happy Holidays & Merry Christmas to all, from the Monetizer!

11/1/08

Google Feeds the Monetizer Ad Treats

Happy belated Halloween! Hopefully you all received nice 20's, 50's and crisp 100 dollar bills in your trick or treat bags last night! The Monetizer didn't receive candy, but Google recently provided The Monetizer with a nice additional treat, another way to make money online! It took about a month or two before Google transferred over my various blog feeds from Feedburner's site. Feedburner is now integrated with the Google Adsense Feeds, where I have set up several of my feeds with Adsense and am implementing tests.



As seen in the picture above, the Adsense feed ads can be adjusted just like regular Adsense code. You're allowed to choose text/image, just text or just image ads for your blog. You can arrange color schemes of your choosing, and set how many ads are seen on your feeds (every feed, every 2nd item, every 3rd, etc). It's a nifty little setup. If you haven't transferred your feeds over yet, give it a shot, as I've already seen some profit from it. To get started you'll need to log into your Google Adsense, go up to "Manage Ads" and select the Feeds tab or link. There should be a link on the next page which you can click to "migrate feeds" from Feedburner. Google is now in control of Feedburner (as they are of most online stuff), and you simply supply your Feedburner login info to migrate all of your feeds into the new Google Adsense setup. It may take several weeks or month for the migration so get to it early!

Once you're migrated, any Feedburner feeds will have a new feed URL which will now have "googleproxy" in it's URL, rather than Feedburner. This new URL won't automatically be updated if you've manually added it to spots on your blog or blog entries. For example, if you've put a link on your blog sidebar to allow Feedburner RSS subscription, it will most likely need to be changed now to the new URL address. And you may need to update other widgets on your blog that use the feed link such as the buttons that allow people to choose their reader. (If someone has had a different experience with this, please comment below). The good news is that when you log into your Feedburner account, they will have your new RSS feed links correctly listed. So the Google + Feedburner connection seems to be paying off and going smoothly.

I referred to the great John Chow's feeds and have mimicked his Feed ad style. Currently Chow uses the basic blue URL links, a light gray border around his items, and allows both text and image ads to run above each of his feed items. Give it a try yourself, or if you have been using Adsense feeds, drop a comment to let me know of your experiences or findings.

I also want to give a nod to John Cow who presents a great way to find "golden nugget" search terms for your blog or website using Google Insights tool. Check out Cow's blog entry to find Search Keyword Gold! It's a great technique for creating blog entries that will bring in more traffic!

9/29/08

Happy Belated 10th B-day to Google!

Happy Belated 10th to Google!

That nifty piece of web searching technology we'e all come to know and love, Google.com, turned 10 just the other day! Hard to believe the huge engine which has dominated its competition and revolutionized the way we make money online has been around a decade!

There's a lot more to Google than just Adsense and the search component. Here's several more key components:

Adsense - The advertising payment program we all know and love
Adwords - the advertising program you pay for to drive traffic to your sites
Analytics - a great free traffic and stat tracker for your blog or website.
Blogger - the very host of this blog, a great free blogging platform which makes it easy for millions of bloggers around the world to capture their thoughts, images, videos and much more in blog form!
Gmail - a nifty free email account for Google users
Google Product Search - a way to compare shopping prices on any item you want to buy
Google Maps - a cool satellite view of any spot you want, a way to get directions
Google Labs - an internet tech playground where you can design websites, applications, study your site stats and more!
Google Chrome - the recently released web browser that many are raving about! It's said to allow for private browsing and a feature which remembers your most visited sites to "get to know" your search habits better.

There's many more features to Google, and if you're reading this and haven't signed up for a free Google/Gmail account, The Monetizer strongly recommends it!

Google began way back in 1998 with less than 10 employees, a 7'x8' room and a $100,000 investment from Sun Microsystems co-founder Andy Bechtolsheim! It was the vision of Larry Page and Sergey Brin, two Stanford U grad students, and at one point it was named "Backrub". The creative duo behind the search engine decided to change the name to "Google" - a play on the word "googol", a mathematical term for the number represented by the numeral 1 followed by 100 zeros. That represents Google's mission to organize an infinite amount of information on the web. Today Google has grown into a corporate giant worth billions, or millions, depending on how the stock market's doing any given day. 10 years and still growing, Google is definitely the biggest, baddest internet company around, and it has changed the face of searching and surfing for us all in many ways.

Google's B-day bash is not without "aging" concerns about the search giant as it continues to move forward. CNN.com recently discussed Google's stronghold on the search market and how this may hurt the company in its future expansion attempts.

Google's expanding control over the flow of Internet traffic and advertising already is raising monopoly concerns.

The intensifying regulatory and political scrutiny on Google's expansion could present more roadblocks in the future. Even now, there's a chance U.S. antitrust regulators will challenge Google's plans to sell ads for Yahoo Inc., a fading Internet star whose recent struggles have been magnified by Google's success.

Privacy watchdogs also have sharpened their attacks on Google's retention of potentially sensitive information about the 650 million people who use its search engine and other Internet services like YouTube, Maps and Gmail. If the harping eventually inspires rules that restrict Google's data collection, it could make its search engine less relevant and its ad network less profitable.


Despite the concerns, Google has great reason for celebration. Not many internet companies make it past 2 these years, so a decade is definitely something to cheer about!

Google Turns 10 B-day articles of interest:

Google's Info About its 10 Years in the Making

Google turns 10, raises monopoly concerns

Google Turns 10 - A Look Back @ CNN Money

As Google Turns 10 Advice for its next decade - LATimes Blog

Meet Chrome, Google's Shiny New Browser - CNET.com

As Google Turns 10, Enterprise Success in Question - PC World

9/9/08

The Battle of the Browsers!

Let's face it folks, Internet Explorer is yesterday's news. What used to dominate our web surfing is now being taken out by the new kids..Since the Monetizer likes to test out new tech toys and web stuff, I've been testing several of the other browsers. Some I've used longer than others, but others I recently downloaded I'm enjoying quite a bit. Today we'll take a look at IE replacements: Firefox, Safari, Opera & Google's Chrome. Most of the browsers listed below are available for PC and Mac users, meaning things are becoming even more compatible online. I'll reveal my favorite browser below, but each of these browsers offers fun, fast and fancy ways to surf the web.



Firefox (by Mozilla) - The baddest of the bunch, it's been taking over IE for some time. In fact I urge you if you're reading this post on IE, consider a switch to Mozilla Firefox. The current version is Firefox 3, a free download. It runs much smoother, spell checks your typing on sites, and has some great add-ons. I personally like the color finder (finds a HTML code for a specific color on any site), and Screen Grab (grab a whole web page or part of it, save it or copy it to an art program). Trust me folks, if you're using IE and not Firefox, you're limiting your surfing :)

mozilla firefox browser screenshot

Features offered:
- One-click boomarking
- Improved performance
- Smart Location Bar
- Password Manager
- Instant Web Site ID
- Full Zoom
- Platform Native Look & Feel

Check out Firefox here!




Safari (by Apple) - The Monetizer fell in love with Safari as a Mac/Apple user. It was a great day when I discovered Apple had launched the browser for PC users as a free download. What I like most is the speed of this browser, as well as its futuristic Chrome look. Sometimes speed is all in the mind, but Safari does seem to move quick when browsing or using a site. You can also download Safari for the iPhone, perfect for Apple's tech toy. Safari's ultra-futuristic and makes you feel like your browsing in the year 2010..in a few years you will be!

Apple Safari screenshot

Features offered:
- Fast performance
- Easy bookmarking
- Tabbed Browsing
- Built-in RSS
- Forms AutoFill
- Private Browsing

Check out Safari here!

Opera - What used to be your grandmother's favorite event to attend is now a uniquely named Web browser. The Opera browser would rank 3rd behind Firefox and Safari, but it may be a tie with Safari in the minds of some. I haven't used it quite as much as the other two, but I am using it to create this very blog post you're reading. What I like most Opera's "Speed Dial" (see screenshot below). It has thumbnails of your 9 favorite (or most visited) websites for when you first launch Opera. You simply click the square which shows the site you want and BAM! you're there. You could set up Blogger, Myspace, Google, eBay, Amazon, or whatever sites you frequent for even easier access. And there's also the standard bookmarks, tabs and much more. The browser also seems faster just like Safari for browsing use. It also offers a Download Manager with BitTorrent, a link synchronizer between your PC and mobile device, widgets, customizations and much more!

opera screenshot 1

Features offered:
- Quick Find
- Opera Link
- Speed Dial
- Download manager with BitTorrent
- Tabs and sessions
- Content Blocking
- Zoom & Fit to width
- Built in e-mail & newsfeeds

Check out Opera here!




Chrome (by Google) - Google loves to be involved in everything we do nowadays, and they also want to out-do everyone else. It's the biggest search engine known to mankind, and also our beloved Adsense resides there. In fact it seems they will one day have micrchips installed into our own human flesh, so we can be Google mapped, run ads and do telepathic emails. All kidding aside, this is the newest of the browsers, but as of right now I'm not using it quite so much because it's a BETA. Since it's still being developed, the features on Safari, Opera and Firefox appeal to me more.

Chrome does look like it has potential though, in a freaky way. The browser will actually adapt to your surfing patterns and at some point when you launch the browser, it will show your "most visited" sites, for easier access. It's similar to Opera's "Speed Dial" mentioned above" as it offers thumbnails of the sites for you to click on and access. There's a quick app launch feature, to allow you to launche your favorite web apps straight from desktop.Also Chrome offers the "crash control" feature. I've already noticed on just a few uses of Chrome, it tends to crash on certain sites. Since it's new, I expect it to be upgraded with bug fixes, but for now I'll stick to Firefox, Opera and Safari. Gary Conn has even written an interesting "conspiracy theory" blog post about Chrome, discussing its information collecting powers and why it runs slow. Google Chrome Scares The CHROME out of me… by Garry Conn

google chrome screenshot

Features offered:
-New Tab page
-Application shortcuts
-Dynamic tabs
-Crash control
-Incognito mode
-Safe browsing
-Instant bookmarks
-Importing settings
-Simpler downloads

Check out Google Chrome here!

As mentioned above, with the exception of Chrome, the other 3 will work on a PC or Mac. Also, all of the above browsers are FREE!

You'll find overlapping features in many of the browsers above, such as tabs and recovery of your last session. The web browser you use for your internet activities is really a matter of personal preferences. Each of the above offer similar features and functions for web browsing capabilities, and may offer you great features for blogging and money making. I highly recommend Firefox to all those not using it, but would advise bloggers to consider downloading a few of the above. This way you can make sure your blog is being viewed accurately across all browsers. The last thing you want is your blog to look great on Firefox and IE, but look like trash on the other browsers! So collect em' all, and trade them with your friends! Whatever you do, kick IE to the curb!

(Note: Don't ignore IE competely, keep it around for viewing your blog to make sure it looks ok to those who haven't made the "switch" just yet).

7/30/08

Can Cuil Outdo Google Search Engine?

There's a new search engine in town and it vows to be bigger, badder and just plain better than its mentor Google. The site was in fact created by formal Google employees, looking to outdo the monster search engine we've all grown to know and love, and use on a daily basis..

Here's a bit more About Cuil.com:

Rather than rely on superficial popularity metrics, Cuil searches for and ranks pages based on their content and relevance. When we find a page with your keywords, we stay on that page and analyze the rest of its content, its concepts, their inter-relationships and the page’s coherency.

Then we offer you helpful choices and suggestions until you find the page you want and that you know is out there. We believe that analyzing the Web rather than our users is a more useful approach, so we don’t collect data about you and your habits, lest we are tempted to peek. With Cuil, your search history is always private.

Cuil is an old Irish word for knowledge. For knowledge, ask Cuil.


If you haven't tested it yet, stop by Cuil.com and enter some search queries. You may find some of your top search terms and blog site names already ranked. You'll also notice it's got a different look and feel than Google, and perhaps will continue to improve itself in the future. For now, most of us will continue relying on Google until the new kid on the block becomes the powerhouse of the net.

Learn more about Cuil's features here.

5/29/08

Buy & Sell Blogroll Links at Blogrolled.com!

The Monetizer usually tries to stay away from copycatting other make money online bloggers, but learned of Blogrolled.com from my daily email via John Chow's blog. The concept behind Blogrolled.com is pretty cool as it allows you to sell Blogroll links on your blog without the fear that Google often brings about. You could also use it to find good blog sites to buy link love for yourself.

The beauty of Blogrolled.com is they are doing their best to help bloggers avoid Google penalizing them for selling links. In the past there's been issues with bloggers who used ReviewMe.com or PayPerPost, because they've been required place links from various websites in the review posts. Therefore sales are made and the blogger who sold the blogroll link must manually put a link into their blogroll, no code required. Other bloggers or advertisers simply search through the listing of blog sites offering links, and choose which ones to purchase, for a monthly flat rate. Not a bad idea to get yourself some link love. I'd also recommend bloggers who use the Entrecard system consider messaging bloggers in their niche via the EC site. I've been able to get my page rank up on a few other blogs this way.

On the Monetizer blog here, I've used the "Tip Me" type link widget up on my sidebar. It's worked well, but doesn't necessarily give people the link love they need. On some of my other blogs I tried the free blogroll link exchanges, but also realize that some of my other blogs have better ranks and could possibly fetch some money. It's all about not leaving money on the table, if you're trying to profit online. So it just might be time to experiment!

Check out Blogrolled.com for more info!

4/30/08

Google PageRank - From Hero to Zero?

Say it ain't so, but Google has made a recent Page Rank update which helps some, hurts others. Much has been blogged about the latest updates, with John Chow recently discussing those who benefited. Several high profile bloggers have gone up to 5's and 6's. Several bloggers penalized for doing PayPerPost and other sponsored reviews went from 0's to 3's. It appears as of today, the Monetizer who once enjoyed a PR of 3 has been "Google-slapped" as they call it, right down to the 0 mark.

I take all rankings in stride, even this PR one which is quite important. Page Rank is Google's view of the importance of your website, blog or individual pages within them. While I respect Google for its search engine traffic, Adsense, Analytics, G-Mail, and other great features, this drop in rank won't defeat The Monetizer. Most likely this is due to taking on more paid reviews, but let's face it, we all want to get paid right? Recent logins to PPP have revealed more "gray opportunities" which mean they would be available but were taken. There haven't been any recent green or white opportunities, but this could simply be other bloggers quickly snatching up the work. The page rank drop could also be due to not having enough link love out in the web to satisfy Google. Either way, this just proves I will have to work harder to re-establish the rank here. Google, the Monetizer has no hard feelings. I will still make my money... Fans of the Monetizer, don't take down the posters off your walls just yet.

The Alexa traffic rank is still doing well here, as it has seemingly increased steadily for months after this blog was started (Entrecard helps a tad). As of today it's at 355,000 mark. As for the 0 rank, I realize that success doesn't come without some failures and hard work. I also refer to the old fashioned cliche, "things can only go up from here!"

(Note: If anyone shows a PageRank besides 0 for this blog, please let me know..)

3/29/08

The Day Google Went Dark

Today when I first went to Google, I immediately thought Firefox or my PC had some sort of virus going on. The entire Google frontpage is black today (as seen above), but it's no virus or reason for concern. Today Google has "shut off its lights", and is reminding people across the world to do the same, from 8 to 9 PM during their local time. The act is an effort to conserve energy for that hour. Here's more from Google about today's "Earth Hour":

Google users in the United States will notice today that we "turned the lights out" on the Google.com homepage as a gesture to raise awareness of a worldwide energy conservation effort called Earth Hour. As to why we don't do this permanently - it saves no energy; modern displays use the same amount of power regardless of what they display. However, you can do something to reduce the energy consumption of your home PC by joining the Climate Savers Computing Initiative.

On Saturday, March 29, 2008, Earth Hour invites people around the world to turn off their lights for one hour from 8:00pm to 9:00pm in their local time zone. On this day, cities around the world, including Copenhagen, Chicago, Melbourne, Dubai, and Tel Aviv, will hold events to acknowledge their commitment to energy conservation.

Do your best to observe today's energy conservation from 8 to 9pm, and encourage friends, family and neighbors to go dark also..It will be interesting to see what sorts of effects this has in future reports.

Read more about Earth Hour at Google and Earthhour.org.

2/5/08

Get a RealRank for Your Blog!

IZEA Ranks logo The following is a Sponsored Review for IZEARanks, a site recently launched by PayPerPost. The IZEARanks service provides a free and useful tool for bloggers who want to measure how well their blog "really ranks".

According to the IZEARanks site FAQ:

"IZEARanks ranks the top blogs in the blogosphere via actual site statistics, not an extrapolation of estimates".

"The data is used to define an individual blog's overall standing relative to other blogs participating in the program as well as in specific categories such as entertainment and technology."

The way IZEARanks does this is by each blogger installing a piece of Javascript code (called the IzeaToolbarKit) into their blog template. The code records traffic stats by measuring a formula of 70% on daily unique visitors, 20% by daily active inbound links and 10% by daily page views as reported by the ITK (IzeaToolbarKit). This determines your "RealRank". You can then compare how well your blog is doing by measuring it against other bloggers who are using the IZEARanks service.

The main purpose of IZEARanks is to provide you, the blogger, with a more conclusive way to measure your blog instead of Alexa Rank or Google Page Rank. RealRank is considered the first site ranking service that focuses exclusively on measuring traffic and influence of individual blogs throughout the blogosphere. The service is also very important in helping advertisers make "informed decisions for the long run" in terms of which blogs to advertise on.


IZEARank Charts your Blog's Success:
IzeaRank graph
(The above chart gives comparison of the RealRank of 4 blogs over the past week. On the site you can compare your blog with other blogs based on their RealRank, page views or unique visitors).


Other important notes about the IZEARanks service:

    The IZEARanks code differs from the code you install for PayPerPost. Therefore, bloggers shouldn't worry about their Google Page Rank being affected if they use IZEARanks to measure their blog.

    Your IzeaRank stats can be made public or private based on your preference and settings. You can choose to display your daily traffic/unique visits, or just your RealRank.

    IZEARanks launched a new service, ROIRank, or "Return on Investment Rank". This service which was released in January helps advertisers see the return on investment they can get from advertising on a particular blog.

    During the next four weeks, IZEARanks is holding a contest to award $1,000 to the Top Blog on their service, in terms of ranking. The Monetizer is wondering why the mighty Problogger or John Chow have not entered this contest yet. As of a check today, ohgizmo.com was listed as the top blog in terms of IzeaRank.

This may become the next useful service to see just how your blog stands in the blogosphere, as more bloggers decide to turn to Real Rank instead of Google's Page Rank. If you'd like to use the free IZEARanks service, head over to see how your Blog Ranks!



2/2/08

Microsoft+Yahoo vs Google

The big news that rocked both the business and technology worlds was Microsoft's offer to buy Yahoo for 44.6 billion. You'd have to believe this could make MSFT a serious competitor now for Google. It makes good sense, as Yahoo and Microsoft are the two other major search engines. Microsoft had lost ground to Google which seems to be like the Berkshire Hathaway of internet stocks. Google basically encompasses so many functions and features it's mindblowing. Now it will be interesting to see how Microsoft merges its programs with those of Yahoo. For example sites like MyBlogLog are already owned by Yahoo. Then you have the search engines themselves, Yahoo's website hosting plans, advertising program (similar to Google's).

Speaking of Google, I received an interesting email earlier (not from Google) which discusses how Adsense publishers are reporting mixed results lately. Some publishers are seeing a serious downturn in earnings while others have seen an upswing. What I've noticed is interesting. Organic search engine traffic has been moving up for several of my blogs and click pricing has been lower. But I've still done well due to all the new traffic. The email mentioned that this drop in earnings could be directly related to advertisers pulling back on spending which is due to economic worries.

So it's a tough call with Adsense, but it still continues to be a top earner for many. I still agree with John Chow's guiding advice, to find as many monetization sources as you can for your blog or site. It might be nice to enjoy earnings from something like Amazon or an Affiliate sale while you're waiting for Adsense to increase.

1/20/08

Become a True Stats Guru!

As the owner of your blog or website you are officially the main webmaster, unless you're having someone else perform the duties for you. With that task on your shoulders you can become a true stats guru. The Monetizer has been checking various blog stats even more than before, as search engine traffic has been on the upswing for them. It's good to know what people are looking at or for, as well as where they are coming from and other unique viewing/visiting habits.

Many people recommend Google Analytics, The Monetizer included. However you will most likely want to add Stat Counter as a supplement to it. I recently found out about this from RetireAt21.com, which publishes a list of young entrepeneurs. StatCounter offers a free stat analysis code you can plug right into your blog, and they make it painless and easy. For free you get a total of 500 logs (visitor paths) a day, to show you the various visitors and habits. There's also paid subscriptions, should your site receive more daily traffic.

Visitor Map StatCounter
(Where are your visitors coming from?)

I find the stats that StatCounter provides quite comprehensive info and it updates quicker than Analytics seems to. The interface is smooth and it's pretty interesting to see exactly where each visitor is coming from or what search terms brought traffic. You may be surprised to see Russian or European search engine traffic, or that a certain term brought someone to your blog. It may even tell you that you need to blog about certain keywords or phrases, ASAP, as traffic is coming to you for that. Also, StatCounter will help you gauge your various advertising and marketing ventures that you're using to promote your blog. For example you might notice that using a signature in a certain forum is bringing you extra traffic. From there you can tweak and continue with your promotional efforts.

I also recommend that when you're adding any of your blogs/sites to be tracked, that you put your personal IP address into the spot StatCounter has for IPs. This will block out your own visiting stats and help give you a better idea of visits. Otherwise if you're the type to constantly check on the look of your blog or posts you've done you'll taint the results. To get your IP, one of the easiest ways is to visit IPChicken.com. It will immediately tell you you're unique IP, and then you can copy/paste that into the appropriate box on StatCounter.

If you want to be truly in charge of stats analysis for your blog, head over and register for the free StatCounter. It makes for a great supplement to Google Analytics for measuring your site visitors and which keywords or posts are receiving attention.

1/4/08

Get Your Blog More Search Engine Traffic

On another blog I have, the majority of traffic came from a massive social media network I built up. I recently decided it was time to put some experimental link building into place to benefit from more search engine traffic. I decided to use 4 methods and so far the results have quickly landed a keyword-targeted blog entry into the top 2-3 pages of Google search results. This only took less than a week to do with a simple Blogspot blog post.

I'll use the example of a celebrity blog. Here's the four methods I used:


    1) A Squidoo page - I used the Google Suggest Tool and Free Keyword tool by Workdtracker. With these tools you can enter a general keyword such as "britney spears" and see what related terms are being searched for a lot. So I used those two tools to figure out a good keyword phrase based on what has a high search volume and low competition (for PPC ad campaigns). Next, I did my own Google searches on these terms. I narrowed it down to keyword terms that had 300,000 pages of results or less and finally selected my phrase.

    I created a Squidoo lens using the keyword phrase in both title and description. I also included my blog's URL and RSS feed on the Squidoo lens. Squidoo can help get you valuable backlinks, so I'm not sure why people downplay it's usefulness so much. If Squidoo's not making you money directly, it still provides you backlinks or a way for people to discover your blog entries. There's value in those as well so don't overlook Squidoo lenses as an option.

    2) A series of blog entries - This involves creating a 10 part series of blog entries. For example, if you have a blog about Entertainment, you could do biography style entries on your top 10 favorite celebrities. You then create a post called "My 10 Favorite Celebs" and link back to each of the 10 individual biography posts. This is great for internal linking from what I've read and now from what I've seen. You can even set the date for those 10 posts back to an earlier day, making it link deeper into your blog archives. I also added the links for each of these posts onto my Squidoo page.

    3) Article submission - I wrote a general article using my Keyword phrase in my article title, and within the article body itself. The article was 350-400 words long and far from anything I'd call outstanding writing. On some article directories I was able to use links in the article body, with my keyword phrase as the anchor text. Tread carefully with using too many links in your article, as it may be considered spammy. At the end of my article or in the resource box, I linked to my blog URL and the specific blog post I mentioned before ("Top 10 Celebrities"). I submitted to probably about 25 or so article directories using the free Article Submitter software. It seems that my article on searchwarp.com and ezinearticles.com got into the first few pages of Google search results for a few days.

    4) Socialmarker.com - I used this to bookmark the example "My 10 Favorite Celebs" blog post which contains the other internal blog links. Socialmarker bookmarks your item to about 20-30 social bookmark sites (Digg, Stumbleupon, Reddit, etc), all of which you must register with. There's a few sites that may not relate to your content, for example they only want internet marketing, SEO, HTML, and technology story bookmarks. Use this method appropriately with your content. I've found that the site indianpad.com actually showed up on some early search results for Google which may warrant you to try submitting more content there. You may also consider bookmarking the Squidoo page and the article your write with Socialmarker.


This took work, but I believe these 4 methods helped my blog entry get into the first few pages of Google search results. I'm going to continue with the article submission, social bookmarking and some other ways to get backlinks to see if I can get to page 1 of the results. If you use the Google Suggest and Wordtracker, I think you can find some heavily searched terms with low competition related to your blog topic. Create a series of blog posts about the keyword phrase you select. Also create a Squidoo page, and the article all using your selected keyword phrase. Then start bookmarking your Squidoo page, blog post and article. You just might surprise yourself at how quick you can get into the first few pages of Google search results!

I know sometimes tech talk can go over my head or other's heads so let me know if anything seems confusing or you have questions.. The Monetizer is here to help.

12/7/07

Ranking Changes & Get Reviewed!

I'm happy to report the Monetizer's Alexa Rank has jumped another 100k into the 400,000 range. I'm aiming for under 100,000. It's funny because another blog I've maintained for over a year with over 250 subscribers and plenty of steady traffic took months to hit the 500k range. It may go to show which niche readers have the Alexa toolbar installed and which do not. If you don't have it feel free to download the toolbar here, or scroll down to the bottom of my blog where you see The Monetizer's rank displayed and go through that widget.

On the flipside, the 45n5 Top Money Maker blog rank went down 2 spots. It may be due to when they update or just shows how competitive the make money niche is. Most likely a few people experienced slightly bigger Alexa rank jumps this time around. No worries there, it's 2 spots and the Monetizer can easily rebound from that one.

I also wanted to toss out this offer, while it's still free. If anyone reading this would like a blog site, e-book, or product they have reviewed, feel free to contact The Monetizer so we can discuss it. I'm not entirely about getting paid for reviews right now. I do belong to ReviewMe and have considered setting a price for them, but will wait to get the blog rank up and self-hosted.

You may be asking, "So why would I want to be reviewed here?"

1 - You will get feedback from someone who's been in an IT position. While it doesn't mean it's expert advice, it may provide you with tips here and there to help you improve design or get more subscribers.

2- I've read a ton about the Make Money Online, marketing, SEO and blogging fields, and feel I can impart some of the tips and tricks to others.

3- It's another website user's opinion you can use to possibly shape what you're doing for more readers, exposure and money making!

4 - It's free advertising on a blog with the aforementioned 421,127 Alexa Rank and Google Page Rank of 3. I'm also advertised in several other spots so you will gain exposure.

So feel free to drop me a line, because it will not only give you an honest opinion and a free review but its also some free advertising for your site or product! And take advantage of it before it starts being monetized!

11/21/07

Puzzled over PayPerPost

Since joining PayPerPost I've done about 3 sponsored posts here on the Monetizer blog. On Tuesday, they sent a nice note to Monetizer that a particular post just needed two linked text items inserted and then to resubmit. I did this promptly. But today I received the following message from the site:

"Hello, Thanks for submitting your post to us for review. Unfortunately, we’re going to have to reject this one as it appears you have back to back PayPerPost posts, [How I Bought $76 of Gas with PayPaltitle] & [Use Clever Tactics but Keep Your Rep Up]. As mentioned in the Terms of Service, “PayPerPost posts may not appear consecutively on your blog. Because you do have back to back PPP posts, we apologize you will not be able to resubmit this one for review. Terms of Service, “each PayPerPost post must be immediately preceded and immediately followed by at least one non-sponsored, original content post”. Because you have back to back sponsored posts, we do apologize that you will not be able to resubmit this post. Victor"

I'm quite a bit puzzled over this as the two blog entries referenced above were original content and weren't sponsored by any means. I'm baffled over who would sponsor my discussion of having $76 put on hold on my PayPal card when buying gasoline. Either way, I have a ticket to customer support to inquire as to how the posts mentioned are sponsored by PayPerPost. If they are I'd love the money in my PayPal :) Has anyone else run into this problem?

I've also been hearing that Google is starting to penalize blogs that do PayPerPost entries or ReviewMe entries. Maybe this rejection notice is just a clever sign in disguise. Even though Monetizer previously mentioned knowing the rules when you make money online sometimes those rules can be quite confusing!

10/31/07

Google Loves Monetizer, PR3 in Effect!


Sometimes we need to toot our own horns...

A few posts ago the Monetizer discussed how Google's latest Page Rank drama didn't hurt this blog. Monetizer's Page Rank was a big fat "Not Applicable". Well now it seems the page is ranked, as Google has given the Monetizer a 3 of 10 PR which they can drop at their discretion! Thank You Google Gods!

It's a tough dilemma here, because it's cool to see a decent page rank after this blog's only been up about 3 months. It took very little work to achieve it seems, other than posting, and some traffic strategies here or there. Heck, Monetizer hasn't even started to submit to search engine directories and all that jazz!

On the flipside, this blog continues to remain on free Blogspot hosting, which everyone knows isn't the ideal way to go. Many say free blogger blogs will get indexed well in Google's search engine, but that won't be the emphasis here. Having your own site is especially true if you're going to branch out, start branding and building a HUGE audience of fans. So the Monetizer is being very very careful with strategy from here out as to not rush what could be a good thing. Again this is fully experimental, some money has been made, but more can be done, albeit carefully.

Upon checking several other blogs that the Monetizer maintains, they also now have Page Ranks. Several of the blogs have just a PR1. A blog which has had a TON more traffic over the course of about a year is also a 3 of 10. It has a better Alexa rank than this blog for sure. Now the Monetizer must strategize about which programs to carefully target. It's been discussed all around the Blogosphere that Text-Link-Ads may not be looked upon favorably by Google. The Monetizer has belonged to this for months, and may tread carefully when re-investigating options there!

So as we know, Google has a lot of power (that we may give them) to really affect how we see our blog products. However, as many have mentioned, using the proper strategies with Page Rank can really benefit your money making online and say Page Rank doesn't matter so much!

Page Rank is basically GOogle's view of how important your site is (to them). While I won't launch into the full discussion of how Page Rank works, it's best to try to get your site or blog link on other sites with good PR's. Here's some other Monetizer entries you may be able to use for submitting your site and increasing your Page Rank.

5 Must Have Free Blog Tools

A Review of Directory Submitter

Blog Promotion Items You Need

10/26/07

PageRank Drop Doesn't Hurt The Monetizer

The popular topic of a day or so ago, or for the next few days it seems, is how Google has dropped the PageRank of many top notch bloggers and other sites around the world wide web. It was an unexpected and sudden drop that maybe several weren't expecting, but Google is well known as "masters of the unexpected". The Monetizer is pleased to say this blog is new (under 3 months) on Blogspot and has a Page Rank of "n/a". Google can't drop me below that, but maybe they will develop a reason to.

There's a smattering of articles around the blogosphere discussing the PageRank issue, how it may effect the way you monetize your blog site, and how to work it to your advantage.

DoshDosh's Maki writes Google PageRank Doesn't Matter. Can We Stop Talking about it Now?, discussing how PageRank is a "webmaster fetish", and that complaining about it on a blog isn't the best thing to be doing.

John Chow discusses Turning a Negative into a Positve, by realizing that you, the site owner, control your blog monetization, not Google PageRank. Chow has indicated he has removed the PageRank stat from his advertising page as well.

Courtney Tuttle presents an Alternate Theory for Google PageRank Drops which discusses blog sites selling Text Link Ads as the possible reason for the PageRank drops. Courtney also discusses her thoughts on how PageRank drop may affect popular blog monetizers, ReviewMe and PayPerPost.

Ben Cook at BloggingExperiment.com discusses how to Use the Confusion to Gain an Edge. He discusses the idea of using other blog sites' PageRank drops to sell your own site even more.

Another thing taken into consideration (by Paid review type sites, and ad sales sites) is your site or blog's Alexa Rank, which helps display how traveled a blog or website is. Monetizer highly advises you to download the Alexa toolbar, codename: "Sparky" for your web browser. This toolbar will show you a site's Alexa traffic rank in the bottom lower right corner of your web browser. The lower the number, the more heavily traveled a site or blog is. It's always fun to watch the stat when you visit your own blogs or sites to see how they might be improving in Alexa rank. The little stat can also help you determine great places to set up shop and promote, because you want to be seen in high traffic areas :)

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