|Copyright © 2005 Tinu AbayomiPaul
You have to laugh when you hear about the elaborate schemes people cook up in order to get three or four clicks through to their site, when there are plenty of legitimate ways to get attention for your web site – from dozens to hundreds of interested prospects. It’s one thing to think creatively – it’s another to try and buck the system for a few hits from people who won’t subscribe, return or buy.
Speaking of creative thinking, one of the ways you can get above-board, quick and free traffic is from using link services. Without even a hint of abuse, you can use these services to bring visitors to you – in minutes sometimes.
The first two services that you and I can use without stepping on any toes are the two link services at http://Furl.net and http://del.icio.us .
Also called “social bookmarks managers”, these sites allow you to start up a free account where you can start a link collection which can be sorted by theme. Using a system that makes use of categories – at del.icio.us they’re called a “tag” – there are times when it is quite acceptable to include your own site. Both make use of RSS to allow you to keep track of either your list or someone else’s – you can even subscribe to any public collection.
So where does the traffic come in? Sign up with either of these services, and start collecting links on the same topic as your site, sprinkling in your own links.
Notice I said “sprinkling in”.
Treat this as you would a blog – you don’t want post your sales page. You’ll just get put on public link lists that collect spam entries – bad publicity may be great in Hollywood, but online it’s an income killer. So again, do Not gratuitously begin to link to your entire site and think you’re helping yourself.
What typically happens is one of three things.
1- Your link will be displayed on sites that share these tag lists with the world,
2- Your site will be visited by someone who is interested in the tag you’ve chosen, or,
3- Your link library will be so diverse, varied and helpful that other users will subscribe to your tag to find new links to add.
I find it a good practice to use your real name or your site name as your login because it shows up as part of your link collection’s name. You can also use your own name or very targeted keywords to create custom tags.
As you’re adding the links to your collection, be sure to add a topic or tag to target your desired type of visitor. As an added bonus, if you use FeedBurner.com to study your feed statistics or to reduce your bandwidth load, you can integrate these link collections into your own feed as well.
So should you use Furl or del.icio.us for this? If you are going to be making personal use of this link collection, want the 5GB archive space and a place to save an archive snap shot of a web page, Furl is for you. Want to keep it simple? Stick with del.icio.us.
You can also use the Bloglines clip service, with or without Feedburner, to achieve similar ends – if you’re more focused towards blogs than RSS, you’ll probably have more success here. The Bloglines clip service is more geared towards the verbose user, as it is set up much like a blog.
The third tool you can use to draw traffic is at a site that blatantly asks you to use it, and they’ve created it solely for that purpose – to connect certain kinds of web readers and publishers.
The catch? Unlike the other three services, this really can only be used by bloggers – you’ll have to verify that you own the blog in question just to participate.
Good news if you blog though, or plan to - the web resource in question is run by one of the most important sites a successful blogger needs to be visible in.
In mid-January 2005, Technorati.com took the idea of tags to a global level.
Now if you’re writing about travel, you can appear on their travel tag page automatically. You can bet that your post will cross the paths of blog enthusiasts who are specifically interested in travel. This works on any claimed blog in the blogosphere, on every platform. And it’s so easy to do.
If you have the category capability built-into your blog software, you need only claim your web log and ping Technorati with updates using your blog software, if it’s set up to auto-ping, or their form : http://www.technorati.com/ping.html . How easy is that?
If you use Blogger or some other system that doesn’t include categories, never fear. You can come to the party.
From now on, when you post links to your blog, you’ll want to include the special tag code. It works with any link, or you can link to Technorati – see an example of it on their site:http://www.technorati.com/help/tags.html .
With a little time and patience, Bloggers especially can use any of these methods to bring free targeted traffic to their doorsteps. Bottom line : don’t be tempted to cheat at traffic generation - there are so many ways to get better results honorably.
About the author:
Learn how Tinu saw a 75% increase in both traffic and sales from feeds at http://freetraffictip.com/rssbook. For free reprint rights to her articles (and a potential $500 bribe) send a blank email to firstname.lastname@example.org .
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