Why Make Your Blog More Valuable

One way to make a blog more valuable is to use the “sticky” technique. This is using techniques to ensure you are building new and regular readers who will be returning day after day! Bottom line is that sticky websites are making more money.

Creating a profitable blog isn’t just about making more money while you sleep or one day getting away from your day job but to also create an asset you can sell in the future – just like a real estate. Maybe you are dreaming of retiring one day and travel the whole world, buy a beautiful place in the Philippines or you just want to feel financially strong.

When you flipflop or sell a website the accepted computation is that you can sell it usually for 12 months revenue so if you are making $300 a month, you can then sell it for $3600. Of course, on some occasions the site can sell for a lot more. I know of some blogs sold for more than $5 million with just $6,000 monthly revenues.

You should “Have the end in mind and make sure every day you are working towards it.” You need to be thinking from day one who you want to sell your website to years down the road. For example if you are starting a tech review blog then you may consider selling it to maybe Google one day, who knows?

The best type of competition is your own and so once you have mastered one successful blog you may want to consider launching another blog related to your first. I have a good friend who did an amazing job when he first launched a freelance blog, less than a year later he found his readers also wanted to learn more about Photoshop so launched a new blog for that and with in a couple years he now has over a dozen blogs earning up woods of a million dollars a year. He was only able to do this so successful because they were all related and so every time he launched a new blog everyone jumped on board and started reading it.

One thing which I am a huge believer in is funneling back your money into your projects. There are so many bloggers who are already earning into thousands of dollars from their blogs but sadly forget to put anything back into it. There will come a time when your blog can’t improve much further without you investing some of your money.

So in the future when you sell your blog, you may want to consider reinvesting your money into an even better blog. I often think that a lot of companies are investing millions into their websites because they want a piece of the pie. With the internet, business is totally different. It’s hard not to be successful and so when you invest money, if you don’t get a return then it’s not a bad investment, you just probably got scammed.

Semiologic Pro: Is It Worth The Money?

When you are choosing the layout and look of your WordPress blog, you will most undoubtedly come across hundreds of themes to choose from.  Nearly all of them can be downloaded free of charge, but you will probably find a few that come with a price tag.  When you see something that normally is free, you may wonder if the “premium” themes are actually worth the money.

There are many different themes you can pay for, but one theme I see mentioned quite often is Semiologic Pro.  I have a good amount of experience with this theme and will tell you what I think about this theme and premium themes in general.

I have used Semiologic for a long time.  It is what I originally used to start this site and many of the sites I’ve started for others.  It is simplistic, SEO optimized, and built for marketing and Adsense sites.  The strength behind Semiologic Pro is split between the theme and the selection of plugins that come with the package.  My experience with using this theme for a blog has been positive.  After installing, it is very easy to customize your site to add features you want, and delete the ones you don’t.

Using Semiologic Pro as your theme will give you the ability to simplify your blogging.  With less to fiddle with, you can post your articles knowing that your site will be presented to the search engines in the most flattering way possible.  My past experience has shown that any articles I published using this software has ranked higher than it would have if I had used a different theme setup.

Semiologic Pro has a price tag of about $300 and this allows for a year of updates.  As WordPress updates their software and Semiologic updates their theme, you can keep an up to date version as long as your subscription is current.  Is paying $300 a year for your blog theme worth it to have an optimized blog that attacks the search engines with fierceness?

It was for me, and a lot of other people as well.  But I have also come to the conclusion that you can get the same benefits by using the free Semiologic theme and a good selection of plugins.  There are a few plugins that come with the Pro version that you can’t get unless you’re a subscriber, but the lack of those plugins will not hinder your progress in a major way.

If you want to experience what Semiologic can do for you and your blog, I would first try out the free version of the theme before committing to purchasing the Pro package.  If you like what you see with it, then you can take it a small step further by becomming a paid subscriber at their site.

Consistent Blog Posting Will Generate More Traffic

One of the most important factors you need to apply to your blog is consistency.  Consistency is a key to generating more traffic, more “buzz” for your business, and more interest from the search engines.

When I say you need to be consistent with your blog what I’m saying is that your posting schedule needs to be on a consistent basis.  For the best results, blogging needs to be about generating unique content on an even and dependable schedule .  The product of consistent updates and unique content will aid in increasing traffic and rankings for your website.

Benefits of Consistency

  • Interest – Visitors to your blog will be more interested in what you’re doing if you consistently update your blog.  Blogs that publish new content on a monthly or even bi-weekly rate attract far less interest than blogs that post new content several times a week.  Keep your visitors interested with frequent posting.
  • Customers – If you are using blogging to help boost your business (something I recommend), then it is imperative to keep a consistent schedule on your blog.  Potential customers visiting your blog want to see current information about your business or industry, not news that is old and stale.
  • Search Engines – One of the biggest benefits of consistent blogging is how the search engines will treat you.  Blogs that publish new content an a consistent and frequent basis will get visited from search bots much more often than blogs that post erratically.  This benefit cannot be overstated! Getting indexed more often in the search engines will lead to more traffic and higher rankings for your blog.

One of the easiest ways to destroy a blog is with inconsistency.  Show interest in your blog and others will show interest in you!

Blogging with consistency is a very important principle to follow if you wish to obtain more business and higher rankings.  The consequences of inconsistency will include less interest in your blog and/or business, less readership, and lower rankings in the search engines.  It is crucial to pick a publishing schedule and stick to it.

The posting schedule you decide on has many options.  You can decide to post weekly, daily, every other day, or on some other type of frequent schedule.  For the best results do not post new content on a less than weekly basis.  Choose a schedule that is right for you and stick with it.  Your blog will improve with consistent posting and the traffic to your site will improve as well.

Inspiring Video: Rules For Being Human

Life is a journey and depending on how we use it, its outcome could be good, bad or just plainly mediocre. It could be a little unfortunate (or maybe life is really planned this way) that in reality no one is handed a failure-proof guidebook to show people the correct roads to take.

In life – that is everyday – we are always challenged with different opportunities to enhance ourselves and make us grow. As we are committing mistakes and failures, we have to make the most of the lessons we learn so that we are always evolving.

We must set ourselves on the road of endless learning — from failures as well as triumphs. We can apply the knowledge we learned to improve ourselves. As nobody’s perfect, we must take advantage of the wisdom we accumulated through the years and even share them to other people.

I am inviting you to a very inspiring video to learn some simple and practical rules for being human that can assist us in the all-encompassing course of personal progress.

Were you stirred by this video? What point made the biggest impact on you? Do you have your own “rules for being human?” After watching the video, please share some of your ideas below. You can also share this inspiring video to others.

Backup Your Entire Blog, Not Just The Database

Some people that are new to blogging may have a misunderstanding when it comes to backing up their blog.  They might backup their database and think they are covered.  This only leaves you partially protected in case you experience a loss of data.

The database stores all your blog posts, comments, settings, etc. but it does not contain everything your blog may hold.  Any images you use in your blog, all of your plugins and theme files, and any scripts or additional pages are not included in the database backup.

A complete backup of your WordPress blog will contain your database file and every other blog file on your server.  If you have a copy of all these files then you will always be able to restore your blog in case a disaster strikes.

There are plugins available that make backing up your database a breeze.  Wordpress Database Backup creates a quality backup of your blog database and is easy to use.  In WordPress 2.7, simply navigate to Tools > Backup and download a copy of your database to your computer.

After that, you should download a copy of all the files on your blog to your computer as well.  I use my favorite FTP program to connect to my server and do this.  Most, if not all, of the files you want to backup can be found in your “wp-content” folder and if you are knowledgeable in what you’re doing then this may be all that needs to be saved.  But for purposes of simplicity and to ensure that all necessary files are backed up you may just as well download all blog files from your server.

By making a complete backup of your blog you will never find yourself in the situation where your blog or parts of your blog are lost forever.  Just always remember that your blog backups consist of more than just the words that you publish!

The Downside To Shotgun Blogging

Have you ever fired a shotgun before?  Even if you haven’t you are probably aware of the differences between a shotgun and a rifle.  While a rifle fires a single shot that can be accurate at long distances a shotgun fires multiple shots in a spray pattern that gets bigger as it travels further.  It is easy to compare this pattern to blogs as well.

Many bloggers, myself included, have “sprayed” content out from their blogs that imitates a shotgun pattern.  Having no clear focus or plan, the material being presented becomes somewhat broad and erratic.  While a shotgun approach can be effective for short range goals (just like a real shotgun), it becomes less and less effective for long range goals (also like a shotgun).

A shotgun approach can easily blast away at your short term blogging goals, but long range goals require something with more of a rifle like precision.  The way to blog with accuracy is to have a clear blogging plan with goals.

What are your goals with blogging?  Are you after more traffic or higher rankings?  Are you looking to connect with people on a different level?

Whatever your goals are with blogging you have to have a clear and concise plan of attack.  If your goal is to bring about more exposure to your main site through your blog then you have to plot out the steps you want to take to acheive this.  Some of the steps you take may include keyword targeted posts that provide relevant information, outbound links to your site, and possibly information on how your business compares with the alternatives.

Whatever your reasons for blogging, you will be able to target your goals a lot better if you use a rifle instead of a shotgun.  Keep your focus on your blogging goals and soon you will become a blogging marksman!

Blogging Pays The Bills

Tarpon Springs, Florida – 2-year-old Jenna Williams is laying down the tracks for a toy train while her mommy Tina Williams taps, twits, and posts — turning Jenna’s playtime into e-commerce.

“We all need a plan B in this economy, and that plan B could be blogging,” said Williams.

The 44-year-old mother of four has been creating sites online for several years, but found her blogging niche in response to some negative feedback from a woman who called her daughter Jenna a “change of life baby” and also called Williams a “new old mom.”

“I was really upset, almost in tears that she called me a new old mom. I didn’t feel that old and I am not that old,” she said.

Now she embraces the title, by creating a blog “The New Old Moms Club” for moms over 40. She earns extra money from advertising on her site and also from product reviews.

“The very most important thing in my mind is the K-L-T factor: Know-Like-Trust. Because the people who come to your blog, reading your blog are going to need to know you, like you and trust you. You have to give them good content because you are going to be building a community.”

That community is nurtured on sites like Twitter, Facebook and MySpace, and then driven to the blog.

“Getting involved with like-minded people who blog and are blogging to is a great way to learn, grow and bring traffic to your blogs.” That traffic, or number of visitors to your sites, increases your influence and will attract advertisers.

“The more they come back to your blog, the more they like and trust and they will click those links and they will buy from you.”

Blogs are free, but buying a domain may cost you a few dollars.

Williams says branding and owning a digital identity is essential to making money on the web. Godaddy.com is a place to buy a domain name.

Social Media Power

Two years ago, when I started my affiliate marketing business I have set up my website and in the first month I had three visitors to my site, and I must say that those too came unintentionally.

After I started to understand how the system works, I have submitted my site to website directories. I have set up my blogs and I start posting. I wrote articles and I have submitted them to article directories. I have created accounts to the main social networking sites and I have bookmarked all my pages to the social bookmarking directories.

The result was 1500 visitors daily to my site in less than three months, my list start growing with about 20 visitors daily and I started to make sales.

It is the result of one month of research and tests, but it proved to be very beneficial for me, and I am sure that will have the same result for you and for any affiliate marketer. It is a time proven and tested method not only by me.

Right now, I am into Facebook. I love the traffic I get from Facebook. Why? One word….quality. Generally, Facebook traffic is converting twice as good compared to other form of PPC such as the Big G. Facebook sells ads all over their site but it is not yet a crowded place. Facebook is an affiliate’s friend.

Fact is, I’m ticked at Google right now and if I can help Facebook to kick their butt and help you in the process…I will be happy. Most Facebook ads are targeted so that the stuff  they see is stuff they are interested in, that’s what makes their customers so great. It is targeting.

Plus, yours is the only ad they will see at a time so it can be considered as a “virgin” traffic or marketing in a vacuum.

Sharks Have The Best Blogs

Earlier today I found myself in a doctor’s waiting room.  Having nothing else to do I did what most people do; read their magazines.  I was reading an interesting article on sharks and how they are able to locate their prey with these “super” sensors that are capable of sensing minute electrical charges.  These electrical sensors that are located on their head are so powerful that their perception was likened to dropping a AA battery in the ocean in New Jersey and sensing the electrical charge in Florida.  That is one intense sixth sense!

The article reminded me of how some of the most successful blogs are created.  Unless you have a monopoly in your market, you will have other people competing for the same business (or visitors, readers, etc.) that you are.  The most successful bloggers are the ones who can “sniff” out what others can’t.

Think about that for a minute.  If you are trying to promote your business online you can be certain that most of your competitors are doing the same.  And chances are that most of these people are doing similar things with their blogs to gain visitors.  So what does a “blogging shark” do?

The answer is as simple as it is vague: they can sniff out what non-sharks can’t smell.  Their blogs offer people something a little different or maybe they’re offering just a little more value.  The sharks can see when certain waters are unproductive so they head out in a different direction.

Any blogger would be wise to study the blogging methods of the sharks in their field.  What are they doing with their blog that you aren’t?  What are they doing different?  And most importantly, can you apply their successful techniques to your blog?

Not every tool that a blogging shark uses may be applicable to your blog, but you’ll probably find that most of them are.  By applying their tricks to what you’re doing, your blog will improve and become an even better addition to your business.

3 Things I Want To Know About Blog Visitors

With any blog that I own or operate there are just a few things I want to know about the people who come to visit.  There are many, many different items of statistical data that I could analyze about blog visitors, but for the most part it really boils down to just 3 questions:

  • Who are you?
  • What are you looking at?
  • How did you get here?

That’s it.  That’s all I really want to know.  I think you’ll find that these 3 questions cover the most important areas of visitor tracking and they also provide a good ruler to measure how well your blog is doing.

Let me break down these questions and explain what they mean to me:

  • Who are you? – When I ask this I’m not after a visitor’s name or what they do for a living.  I want to know if you are a new visitor, a returning visitor, a search engine spider, etc.  User agents, IP addresses and browser cookies do a pretty good job of separating this info out, and this info can then be broken down into their individual parts.
  • What are you looking at? – When someone is browsing through a blog of mine, I am interested in knowing which post they are reading.  Tracking this data for enough time will tell me what posts are more valuable or relevant to what people want.
  • How did you get here? – I am always interested in knowing how people found their way to my blog.  Did they run a search on Google?  Direct visit?  Click on a link at another site?  Did someone email a post? This kind of information is invaluable in determining where my blog is being mentioned and how well known it is.

These 3 questions tell me almost everything I want to know that can help me provide a better blog for my visitors.  If I know how many visitors, what they’re looking for and where they’re finding me, I can better prepare my blog to provide blog visitors with what they’re looking for.

If you look at the answers to these questions for a while you will probably start looking into another important area, and that is why your visitors are leaving your site.  Looking at exit pages and the duration of visits can also be vital information in determining the health of your blog.

What things do you want to know about your blog visitors?  What do you use to help keep track of this information?