What would life be like without EzineArticles?
Undoubtedly Ezinearticles.com offers a good source of traffic to article marketers. The traffic you get from them may not be as high as I used to receive say, about a couple of years ago. Cannot really blame them for this; when everyone and their dog focuses only on EzineArticles, the system is bound to become saturated and less effective over time, if not ineffective. But if you think there is no life without Ezinearticles.com, you should read this article!
Like I said, you should of course use them, but what would happen if say, they suddenly suspend your account for some reason or other? You would panic and beg them to restore your account, or maybe rant about them in Warriorforum, or do anything else that won’t bring you any extra money. Or you could follow my backup plan to keep yourself going!
While I still use Ezinearticles.com, I don’t submit as many articles there articles as I used to. I have found several cool new sources of traffic which could give you much more traffic than EZA could ever give.
1. Angela's Backlinks: Okay, I am partial to Angela' service because her service has worked well for me. I used to think that ranking high in IM niche, that too for "short tail" keywords, would be a tough battle, but it was possible with her service. So I would highly recommend it:
No affiliate link. That is her WSO where you could get a free trial for one month! ;)
You can use those links to increase the SERP of anything, be it your site, or a Squidoo lens, or an ezinearticles.com article, etc. But I am so terribly selfish that I use those backlinks only to promote my site! :D
Thanks to Angela, I finally learnt that the links you put in your Digg.com profile are all dofollow!
2. Freeware submission: The second traffic source is freeware distribution. Contrary to what you might be thinking, you don’t need to be a programmer to do this (but if you are one, great). There are basically two types of freeware you could create:
a) "The Question and Answer Type" freeware: Say that you are working in the relationship niche. You could have a page on your website where you could ask them to choose their top marital problem from the given options:
1. Option 1:
2. Option 2:
3. Option 3:
4. Option 4:
5. Option 5:
I would stop it at five, as giving too many options would distract and confuse your visitors. Then, based on the option they choose, you can redirect them to a hypothetical "answer page" which would partially satisfy their query. On your "answer page" you should prominently display your affiliate link (I have found that buttons work better than text links, and that animated buttons work even better than the static ones, but be sure to test it for yourself).
On the "answer page" you should of course hint that downloading your recommended product would solve all their problems, etc. etc.
As you can understand, you need to create an equal number of answer pages for the five questions above, and set it up in a way that a certain option redirects the visitor to your chosen answer. I use a free CGI script to accomplish this:
Once you have created the above webpage, you would want to "nofollow:" it so as to hide it from Google. I'd just add the following tags before the closing </head> tag of your webpage:
<meta name="GOOGLEBOT" content="noindex,nofollow,noarchive">
<meta name="ROBOTS" content="noindex">
<meta name="ROBOTS" content="nofollow">
<meta name="MSSmartTagsPreventParsing" content="TRUE">
<meta HTTP-EQUIV="imagetoolbar" CONTENT="no">
<meta http-equiv="pragma" CONTENT="no-cache">
Okay, now you simply need to use that webpage as the start page of your .exe ebook. Have you seen those old-fashioned '.exe' ebooks? That is how your software would like. Nothing fancy here. It just "solves" your prospect's problem and you make money in the process! Any .exe ebook creator software should be able to do this job, or if you want, you may search Google for “HTML to EXE” programs:
Some of them are free, and others paid. The software I use is also an ebook compiler; however its owner no longer supports it so even though I have resell rights to it, I won’t want to sell it to anyone. But if you really want the software, you may buy me a $10 beer and then email me asking for the software:
You maybe are wondering why I asked you to "nofollow" that page. Quite a pertinent question, and the answer is simple: your visitors may feel cheated if they find out that all your "software" does is to redirect them to just another webpage!
Once you create the "software", you simply need to distribute it to various freeware and shareware directories. I use Promosoft for this. http://www.develab.net/download.htm
The software comes with a trial version which would let you evaluate it for 30 days I think. For some reason, the new version of the software doesn't work for me. So if you find any problems in using the new version, I can send you the old one. Remember that your license key would work with the old and new versions alike!
There is also a software submission service called SoftwareSubmit.net which I have not personally used. I personally believe that since you would be creating freewares frequently, a one-time purchase of a software submitter would be far more economical for you than this service: http://www.softwaresubmit.net/
Promosoft won’t submit your software to the top sites such as upload.com and Tucows.com, but since this is where you would get the bulk of traffic from, you would need to manually submit your freeware to these sites. Promosoft will however submit it to all other minnows and I cannot say that they don’t matter at all! They bring in both traffic plus some cool backlinks.
Plus Promosoft would also generate your software's PAD file for you, which would make it easier for you to submit your software manually to top directories I mentioned above.
b) So that is just one form of freeware you can create to promote your site. Another type of freeware can be created by hosting a script on a page of your site and directing your visitors to that page by means of your freeware. What I would do is find free scripts related to your niche from hotscripts.com and other similar free script directories.
c) A third type of freeware you could giveaway is 'trialware'. As the same suggests, a trialware is a trial version of a full-fledged software tool which is usually a shareware (meaning that people would need to pay to use it for an unlimited time or use all of its features/functionalities). You could use two types of trial limits for your trialware:
I) Fully functional trial version of the shareware expiring after a certain period of time (say, 30 days from the date of installation)
II) A "crippled" version of the shareware which could be used for an unlimited period of time, subject to certain "limits". Needless to say, if people want to "lift the limits" and use all the functions of the software, they could buy the full version and unlock it fully!
Again, some ebook compilers come with this feature as well!
Of course, you can also hire a programmer for a custom job, but that would obviously be expensive! I would suggest that until you make enough money to afford a programmer, you should use the above methods for creating freewares.
I would categorically suggest that you stay away from 'private label softwares' unless the seller is trustworthy and a person of integrity. Most of these plr softwares usually come with this or that bug, not to mention that you would seldom receive any technical support from the makers of these products! All in all, if you use such softwares, your online reputation is at stake!
3. Social bookmarking: An old and overused method that still works! Social bookmarking sites would take your article to the first page of Google faster than Ezinearticles.com ever could! I still manually submit my links to these social bookmarking sites, because whenever I have used a software or an automated service, I have always run into problems.
I would simple visit the Socialposter site: http://socialposter.com/ ,then fill in all the details, click on the "Dofollow (for SEO)" link on the right to select all the "dofollow" sites, and then click on the "Start posting" button!
You may not get as much traffic from these sites as in the past, but like I said, they are still worth the effort, way better than wasting time on RSS and link directories!
4. Article Submission to other directories: Whoever said that Ezinearticles.com is the only article directory worth submitting your articles to, must be either terribly ignorant or just mouthing the advice of his favorite guru. There are many other article directories which would give you some kind of benefit or other, be it in the form of traffic or backlinks; either way, you profit! Below are some of the article directories I submit my articles to besides EzineArticles:
http://goarticles.com/: They don’t bring me that much traffic but hey, a dofollow backlink is worth the submission!
http://www.selfgrowth.com/: They have a rather convoluted article submission process than what is generally followed by most directories. They also take a considerable amount of time to approve your articles and oddly enough, I never get the notification of the same. But I am still holding on to them!
http://squidoo.com : Not an article directory of course, but do you know it is dofollow? I don't publish much content on my Squidoo lens: maybe 3 or 4 articles at once with some Ebay RSS Feeds for monetization! I have opted to give all of my earnings to the Squidoo Charity Fund; I don’t make any considerable money from my lenses anyway, but this way, at least no third party ads are shown on my lenses (these ads merely add to the visitor's distraction and serve no other purposes).
Once I build the initial lens, I regularly update it by posting one or two links in the 'Favorites" module; again, those links are nothing but article pages from my domain! See how selfish I am! ;)
Then there are other similar sites which allow you to publish content and are also "dofollow" (once again I must credit Angela for letting me know of those sites):
As of this writing, all the sites mentioned above are "dofollow", but things might change in future. If you are a Firefox user, I would ask you to download this free plugin so that you can verify it yourself whether the sites are still "dofollow" or have switched to "nofollow". A "nofollow" link on a high-traffic site could still bring you traffic, but you just won't get any "link-juice" passed from that site to yours!
Install it, then right-click on the icon on left corner and check "Highlight NoFollow Links" option as shown below:
This article might seem to be lame to some people but my point was to show that there is no need to get disheartened simply because EZA keeps rejecting your articles or has suspended your account for some reason. There IS life above and beyond the 'ruthless' world of EZA! ;)
As always, I welcome your comments on my blog!