It’s Still a Popularity Race!
Subject Line: TWM Release – It’s Still a Popularity Race!
The Write Market Release
Vol 2. Issue 4
It’s still a popularity race!
CONTENTS IN THIS ISSUE:
1. Editor’s Remarks
3. Getting Ranks in the Search Engines – Part II
a) Link and Click Popularity
b) Find Out Who’s Linking to You
c) How to Increase Link Popularity
d) ODP (Open Directory Project)
4. What’s New at The Write Market
5. Get Your Ad in TWM’s Release!
6. Administrative Information
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I’ll admit it, I was a band geek with glasses in high school. Try to talk to me about popularity and I might just fade into the wall, or more likely, spout something like, “popularity isn’t everything,” sniffle, sniffle.
Today, I am still a geek with glasses, but now I’m an internet geek! And guess what – popularity is still an issue! The good news is that a website is not born with good looks and the ability to attract visitors. It’s something that you can create over time. This month we’ll talk about what makes a website popular and give you some ideas on how to increase your website popularity.
Next month, look for articles on “Doorway Pages”.
Last month, we published the price of getting into LookSmart as $299. However, they’ve been doing a little price testing and now they are back to the familiar $199. The more I hear (mind you, this is gossip – no proof to back it up) it is very important to be listed in LookSmart. With all of LookSmart’s associations (MSN and AltaVista, to name a few) I can understand why expert web promoters feel it is important to get listed there.
LINK POPULARITY and CLICK POPULARITY
by Renee Kennedy
Link popularity and click popularity are determined by each search engine. AltaVista may calculate a high popularity for your site, whereas Infoseek may calculate a low popularity for your site. Each search engine may also use the popularity information in different ways. It will all depend on their specific algorithms.
Popularity is becoming more widely used by search engines. Therefore, it is a very important consideration when trying to increase your ranks. Hypothetically, if you have two sites that have equal content and equal meta tags, then the site with more popularity will rank higher.
1. The link popularity of your site is determined by:
a. the number of web sites that are linking to your site (the web page that your link appears on, must be indexed by the search engine – just using those “free-for-all-links-pages” is not the kind of link that you’re looking for.)
b. the popularity of the sites are that are linking to your site
c. the similarity of the content on sites that link to your site
2. Link popularity is used by every search engine to some extent.
3. Ways to increase link popularity will be discussed below.
1. Click popularity is the number of clicks that your site gets when it comes up on a search. So if your site is number 3 for a search, and it is being clicked on by people more than number 2, you can potentially move ahead of number 2. (If the engine uses click popularity in their algorithms.)
2. Excite and Direct Hit use click popularity. Also, engines that are associated with Direct Hit, like Hotbot, indirectly use click popularity.
3. You can increase click popularity by having a good title and a good description of your website in your meta tags.
The Write Market recommends this program because we use it and it works. It does everything – tracks your keywords in all the important engines, tracks your ranks, and tracks your hits. There is no other program that does it so user friendly as WebPosition Gold.
FIND OUT WHO’S LINKING TO YOU
Here are some ways you can find out who is linking to you:
1. AltaVista and Infoseek: Typing into search box (without quotes) “link:yourdomain.com” will give you all of the pages which link to you, including your own.
Typing into search box (without quotes) “link:yourdomain.com-url:yourdomain.com” will give you all pages that link to you minus your own pages.
2. Excite: Typing into search box (without quotes) “www.yourdomain.com” will give you pages in the index that link to you, including those from your domain.
3. Hotbot: Type into search box (without quotes) “linkdomain:yourdomain.com”
Try these methods on other search engines, as well, generally typing into the search box: “www.yourdomain.com” (without quotes) will give you some indication of the number of sites that link to you.
Also use the tool:
HOW TO GET MORE POPULARITY
Here are some suggestions on how to get more sites to link to you, which will improve your link popularity.
1. Reciprocal Links
There are varying opinions on whether or not to get reciprocal links and if you do, where you should put them. Here is our opinion – The internet is a web and it is joined by links. If you are offering good resources, people will bookmark your site and come back. If you aren’t, they won’t. Part of offering resources is suggesting other places to find information. We’re not suggesting that you put links off your site on your home page, we’re not suggesting that all you do is to provide a directory of other links.
We started with a one page resource directory. From there, we built it up to over 10 pages of links that go to sites that have content similar to our own. We started by simply linking to anything related to us. Now we are more fussy. We will only link to a site that will place a reciprocal link to us and we only link to sites that have quality content. (Yeah, it’s a lot of work to maintain that small directory.)
For more on reciprocal linking strategy read this: http://www.thewritemarket.com/promotion/reciprocallinks.htm
The fact is, once again (I know you are tired of hearing me preach about it, but…), CONTENT IS KING. No one will want to link to a site that is simply a promotional avenue for an affiliate program. You must provide original content. If you provide original content, you’ll find sites linking to you all over the place.
3. Online Directories
The major online directories today are: http://www.Looksmart.com
http://www.dmoz.org (ODP – the next article is all about ODP)
Getting listings in these directories will not only boost your traffic, it will also increase your link popularity. It is especially relevant to link popularity because these directories are mega popular (remember the more popular a site is that links to you, the more popular your site will be rated).
A quick side note: directories are not the same thing as search engines. Directories are compiled by human beings, search engines are compiled by machines. For more explanation of the difference see: http://www.thewritemarket.com/search/spiders.htm
4. Meta Tags
You will be able to increase your click popularity by having a good title and description of your website. You can write these into each individual web page using meta tags. For a better look at meta tags, please read: http://www.thewritemarket.com/search/metatags.htm
OPEN DIRECTORY PROJECT (ODP)
One way to increase your popularity, as mentioned above, is to get yourself into the online directories. One of the easiest directories to get into is Open Directory Project (ODP). You don’t have to pay any money to get into ODP like you do at LookSmart or Yahoo.
Also, because this directory is free for any website to use – it is widely used. (Lycos, Hotbot, AOL Netfind, and AltaVista all use ODP to help them rank web pages.) A couple of listings in ODP will do wonders for your traffic.
Here’s how it works:
ODP is generated by thousands of volunteers who edit the directory. When you submit your site to ODP, you are asking a human being to place your site into the directory.
You will help yourself by being extremely polite (these editors have bad days, just like the rest of us) and by following this advice:
1. Find the appropriate categories:
The deeper the category, the more likelihood that you will get your site listed (if your site is appropriate.) Find 3-5 appropriate categories. Submit your site to these categories one at a time. In other words, try to get listed in one category, when you are listed, then go for the second category and so on. Trying to apply for more than 5 categories may get you bopped down to one. Submit carefully; think before you submit. Keep track of what you are submitting. ODP has a very good tracking system of your submissions and your listings. In other words, if you are denied placement, don’t keep submitting a site that you have done nothing to improve.
Don’t try to cram too much info into the title. What is the title of your website? Leave it alone, don’t try to do anything fancy. Our title is “The Write Market”, although it doesn’t say much, we’re stuck with it. If you try cramming in a lot of keywords, you risk not only being edited but never having your site looked at.
A one or two sentence description is all you’re going to get. Try for one or two keyword phrases. Again, if you spam with 20 keywords, it will be edited.
WHAT’S NEW AT THE WRITE MARKET
Some great new articles in our ever-growing “Articles” section
Have you checked out our new web products section?
Great tools for webmasters – some free, some you pay for.
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