POST UPDATE

Sunday, October 9, 2016

Google Adsense Alternatives

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I Tell you alternatives of Google AdSense. If you are frustrated with your Adsense revenue, or if your Adsense account has been banned, this isn't the end of the world. Adsense might be the Mercedes of ad networks but from the thousands of ad networks out there there must be many other alternatives to monetize your site. Indeed, there are and in some cases they will work much better for you. Of course, the result depends on many factors, such as your niche, how much traffic you have and where it comes from, etc. but all equal any of these Adsense alternatives can bring you real money. Here are 10 Google Adsense alternatives to consider:

1 Media.net

Probably of all the ad networks on the list, this is the least known but it is also the best. They offer very innovative solutions, such as content ads, search targeting, web bar, and mobile ads. Media.net is especially good for huge sites with lots of US, UK, and Canada traffic. One of the downsides of Media.net is that the payment is at $100 but for a huge site this should be pocket money.

2 Chitika

Chitika doesn't offer that many types of ads but its main advantage is that the ads it offers are very targeted. The CTR is great because the ads are displayed only when a user comes from a search engine. Its low $10 payout is also good because even if your site is small, or you use only one ad block, most likely you will be getting payments monthly instead of having to wait for them for months.

3 Bidvertiser

Bidvertiser is another (mainly) PPC network, though they started offering a conversion bonus. Its payout is also at $10, which means for a small site it is also an option.

4 Infolinks

Infolinks offers in-text advertising. In-text ads are very unobtrusive compared to the rest and they don't eat space because they are displayed as popups when the user hovers over the hyperlink in the text they are anchored to. In-text ads from Infolinks work surprisingly well, though it varies depending on the niche. However, its payout of $50 isn't very nice, if your site(s) are small because you might have to wait for months to reach it.

5 adBrite

Many webmasters consider adBrite to be the best Google Adsense alternative but since my experience with them isn't as good as my experience with Chitika or Infolinks, it comes as Number 5. adBrite is essentially an ad marketplace, where buyers and sellers can communicate to negotiate the price. This is what makes it different from the rest. However, you need to have a very popular site with a very lucrative demographics in order to make it there because the competition is really huge.

6 Clickbank

If you do not insist on using CPC ads as a Google Adsense alternative but are open to suggestions, then you should try affiliate sales (known also as CPA ‐ Cost Per Action). Clickbank is the Mecca of CPA offers and it should be your first stop. Clickbank offers probably millions of products and choosing what to promote could be the hardest task. However, the rewards you get could be times what you are making with Adsense on a good day.

7 Amazon

Amazon is another CPA ad network that works well for many publishers. It is especially good if you have a tech site because there are lots of cool gadgets there but since they have offers in almost any niche, it is also an option. Their ads are context sensitive and because of this are almost always relevant. However, their terms are very complicated and it will take you a lot of time to get familiar with what commissions you will be getting for your sales.

8 Kontera

Kontera is another in-text network you can consider an alternative to Google Adsense. It is comparable in performance with Infolinks but again, this varies a lot depending on the niche. However, if you are to choose between Kontera and Infolinks, I will definitely pick Infolinks.

9 eBay

If Clickbank, Amazon, and a few other of the top CPA networks don't work for you, you could give eBay a try. Again, your success (or the lack of it) with it varies depending on the niche but you can make some money with it. I wouldn't put eBay ads as my primary source of income because this will waste space I can use for better ads. However, as a secondary or even tertiary advertiser, if you have some free space left, eBay could be given a try.

10 LinkShare

You might be surprised to find LinkShare ‐ a relatively unknown company - on the list of Top Adsense alternatives but it is an alternative for real. It has a huge choice of offers and they pay at $1. Maybe it is even better than the rest on this list because if your site isn't huge, you won't have to wait for months (or even years) till you get the paycheck. Linkshare has offers in almost any niche and there you will find many of the best advertisers from all over the world.


I could add many more companies that are also worth trying. The good news is that there are many more Google AdSense alternatives and the fact that they didn't make the Top 10 doesn't mean they are worse. These 10 are my personal favorites and I can tell from experience that they do work. Well, the fact that they work for me doesn't necessarily mean they will work for everybody else. In fact, under some circumstances the companies that didn't make it to the list could be even better alternatives but you won't know this unless you try them. The world doesn't start or end with Google Adsense, though certainly it is one really good ad program.

What is SEO

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I. Introduction – What Is SEO

Whenever you enter a query in a search engine and hit 'enter' you get a list of web results that contain that query term. Users normally tend to visit websites that are at the top of this list as they perceive those to be more relevant to the query. If you have ever wondered why some of these websites rank better than the others then you must know that it is because of a powerful web marketing technique called Search Engine Optimization (SEO).
SEO is a technique which helps search engines find and rank your site higher than the millions of other sites in response to a search query. SEO thus helps you get traffic from search engines.
This SEO tutorial covers all the necessary information you need to know about Search Engine Optimization - what is it, how does it work and differences in the ranking criteria of major search engines.

1. How Search Engines Work


First, search engines crawl the Web to see what is there. This task is performed by a piece of software, called a crawler or a spider (or Googlebot, as is the case with Google). Spiders follow links from one page to another and index everything they find on their way. Having in mind the number of pages on the Web (over 20 billion), it is impossible for a spider to visit a site daily just to see if a new page has appeared or if an existing page has been modified, sometimes crawlers may not end up visiting your site for a month or two.The first basic truth you need to know to learn SEO is that search engines are not humans. While this might be obvious for everybody, the differences between how humans and search engines view web pages aren't. Unlike humans, search engines are text-driven. Although technology advances rapidly, search engines are far from intelligent creatures that can feel the beauty of a cool design or enjoy the sounds and movement in movies. Instead, search engines crawl the Web, looking at particular site items (mainly text) to get an idea what a site is about. This brief explanation is not the most precise because as we will see next, search engines perform several activities in order to deliver search results – crawlingindexingprocessing,calculating relevancy, and retrieving.

What you can do is to check what a crawler sees from your site. As already mentioned, crawlers are not humans and they do not see images, Flash movies, JavaScript, frames, password-protected pages and directories, so if you have tons of these on your site, you'd better run the Spider Simulator below to see if these goodies are viewable by the spider. If they are not viewable, they will not be spidered, not indexed, not processed, etc. - in a word they will be non-existent for search engines.



Spider Simulator

Enter URL to Spider

After a page is crawled, the next step is to index its content. The indexed page is stored in a giant database, from where it can later be retrieved. Essentially, the process of indexing is identifying the words and expressions that best describe the page and assigning the page to particular keywords. For a human it will not be possible to process such amounts of information but generally search engines deal just fine with this task. Sometimes they might not get the meaning of a page right but if you help them by optimizing it, it will be easier for them to classify your pages correctly and for you – to get higher rankings.
When a search request comes, the search engine processes it – i.e. it compares the search string in the search request with the indexed pages in the database. Since it is likely that more than one page (practically it is millions of pages) contains the search string, the search engine startscalculating the relevancy of each of the pages in its index with the search string.
There are various algorithms to calculate relevancy. Each of these algorithms has different relative weights for common factors like keyword density, links, or metatags. That is why different search engines give different search results pages for the same search string. What is more, it is a known fact that all major search engines, like Yahoo!, Google, Bing, etc. periodically change their algorithms and if you want to keep at the top, you also need to adapt your pages to the latest changes. This is one reason (the other is your competitors) to devote permanent efforts to SEO, if you'd like to be at the top.
The last step in search engines' activity is retrieving the results. Basically, it is nothing more than simply displaying them in the browser – i.e. the endless pages of search results that are sorted from the most relevant to the least relevant sites.

2. Differences Between the Major Search Engines

Although the basic principle of operation of all search engines is the same, the minor differences between them lead to major changes in results relevancy. For different search engines different factors are important. There were times, when SEO experts joked that the algorithms of Bing are intentionally made just the opposite of those of Google. While this might have a grain of truth, it is a matter a fact that the major search engines like different stuff and if you plan to conquer more than one of them, you need to optimize carefully.
There are many examples of the differences between search engines. For instance, for Yahoo! and Bing, on-page keyword factors are of primary importance, while for Google links are very, very important. Also, for Google sites are like wine – the older, the better, while Yahoo! generally has no expressed preference towards sites and domains with tradition (i.e. older ones). Thus you might need more time till your site gets mature to be admitted to the top in Google, than in Yahoo!.

The Importance of Using Google Webmaster Tools for SEO

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Out of the many SEO tools, Google Webmaster Tools is one of the most useful. It doesn't have all the perks of commercial SEO suites and it is not a tool for any SEO need but it comes from Google itself and it offers lots of vital SEO insights. All these are good reasons to start using Google Webamaster Tools (if you are not already doing it, of course).

What Is Google Webmaster Tools?

It is hardly difficult to guess from the name itself that Google Webmaster Tools is a set of tools for webmasters. However, what you don't know right away is that this is a very useful toolset that allows you to communicate with Google and adjust many aspects of how Google sees your site, such as list the external and internal links to your site, adjust the crawl rate at which Google bot indexes your site, check the keywords users typed to land on your site, as well as the click through rate for each keyword, see your site's statistics, and many more.
One issue that needs mentioning is privacy concerns. Since you are giving Google a full access to your site's stats, you might be worried about how they handle this data. While Google is a reputable company and it is not very likely they will abuse the data you are giving them access to, if confidentiality is a top concern for you, think twice before letting Google (or any other statistics solution, for that matter) to your site's secrets.
If you use Google Webmaster Tools together with Google Analytics, the results will be even better. You can access your Google Webmaster Tools data directly from Google Analytics, so if you are already using Google Analytics, with just some more effort you could easily integrate it with Google Webmaster Tools, too.

How Do I Get Started?

In order to use Google Webmaster Tools, you need to join it first. You can do it from here. After you join, you need to go through the verification process, so that Google knows you are the legit owner of the site you want to use Google Webmaster Tools on.
There are several ways to verify ownership. The first one is to download an HTML file and to upload it to the root directory of your site. Another one is to add an HTML tag into the head of your home page. If you are using the same Google account for Google Analytics, a third option to verify ownership is through Google Analytics. There are more ways to verify ownership but if you are interested in them, check the Google Webmaster Tools settings and you will see them.

Google Webmaster Tools to Use Daily

Once you have verified your ownership and have Google code in place on your site, you can now start enjoying the advantages of Google Webmaster Tools. When you log into your Google Webmaster Tools account, the first thing you see is the Dashboard:
From here you can access all the major sections - Search Queries, Links to Your Site, Crawl Errors, Keywords, and Sitemaps. Clicking on any of these will open the respective section.

Search Queries

The Search Queries section shows the keywords that led users to your site.
This long list shows which keywords users searched for when they came to your site. It is best if this list matches the keywords you are optimizing for but very frequently this list contains good keywords you were unaware of. In this case, pick these good keywords and start optimizing for them, too.
In the Search Queries section, you can also see the number of impressions and the number of clicks, which gives you an idea about the CTR for this keyword. All equal, a higher CTR means the keyword is relevant, so you might want to invest some more efforts into this keyword. However, if you notice that as a result of your efforts, the CTR goes down, it is best if you don't touch this keyword anymore.

Links

The second very useful section of Google Webmaster Tools is the Links to Your Site section.
Here you can see where your backlinks (internal and external) come from, as well as the pages they are linking to. As with other link checking tools, don't expect that every single link to your site is displayed but nevertheless this list of backlinks is useful to check from time to time.
One of the advanced uses of the Links section is to disavow links to your site you deem harmful. Links from bad sites can hurt your rankings, so if you want to get rid of them, follow the instructions in this article.

Crawl Errors

The Crawl Errors section shows the errors Google bot encountered on your site. The data you get is similar to what you get when you use the Spider Simulator and it shows inaccessible pages, missing pages, server errors, and all sorts of problems that prevented Google from correctly crawling your site. You also get some other crawl stats (such as the number of pages crawled a day) that are useful to know.

Keywords

Similarly to the Search Queries section that also deals with keywords (but it is the ones users type to get to your site), the Keywords section also shows keywords. However, the difference is that here you see what keywords (and their significance) Google has found on your site. The two lists (of keywords users type and the keywords Google finds on your site) could be very different, which means you are not optimizing for what users are searching for.
The Keywords section also allows to see the theme of your site, which post Panda has become even more important.

Sitemaps

The last section you can access from the Dashboard is the Sitemaps section. Here you see the sitemaps of your site Google has found and the number of URLs in them. If the sitemap found by Google is different from what you expected it to be, you can submit a new sitemap for Google to use.

Robots.txt and Other Advanced Stuff

The sections described so far are the basic Google Webmaster Tools sections. There is also a lot of advanced stuff in each of them but we won't describe it into details. For instance, you can use your Google Webmaster Tools to submit a robots.txt file, or to set the preferred domain syntax (i.e. with or without www) to be displayed in search results. Google Webmaster Tools also allows to know if your site is infected with malware. If it is, you need to clean it first and then resubmit it for review.

Google Webmaster Tools is a really valuable instrument for SEO. It gives you at a glance data about all important SEO aspects of a site, such as keywords, links, crawl errors, etc. If you don't use it already, take the time and get familiar with it ‐ it will help you get better rankings for sure.

Website Speed and Search Rankings

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Google is constantly modifying its algorithm to sort sites based on keyword relevancy and while keywords and backlinks always have the lion's share in terms of weight, more and more seemingly minor factors are taken into account. For instance, take website speed. You might wonder what at all it has to do with search rankings but actually it is also a factor (though with minor importance, to be precise) that influences your position with Google.

How Website Speed Affects Rankings

First, if you expected that website speed influences your rankings big time, we need to clarify that this isn't so. While the two are related, you won't find a direct correlation – i.e. low ranking sites might load fast and vice versa.
The results depend on which metric you use to measure website speed. For instance, if you take into account the time needed to load the first byte of the page, then it turns out this is a huge factor because sites that are fast to load the first byte of a page typically rank higher in Google.
If you take other metrics into account – i.e. the time necessary to load the main content or the time it takes to load the complete page (with images and ads), then things change because it seems these two factors are not of that importance to Google.
Overall, it's believed that website speed has less than 1% effect on rankings. Google themselves have stated that they take website speed into account but they didn't disclose details about exactly what matters.
Nevertheless, many sites report increase in traffic (from search engines or otherwise) after they optimize their site for speed. This is a pretty good reason to do the same, if your site is slow – you are not doing it for Google, you are doing it for your users, your traffic, and your conversions. Website speed is key to user experience, so if your site is slow, there is no reason to keep it that way. What's the use of getting traffic from search engines, when your visitors have to hang for 10+ seconds before they can see your content – they will have left much before the page has loaded.

What to Do to Improve Website Speed

If you want to improve website speed, there are a couple of steps to be taken. First, you need to measure your website speed – otherwise how do you know it's slow?

1. Measure Load Times

In order to measure load times, you need a good tool. The choice here is quite rich. Pingdom Page Load Timetool and Google Analytics Site Speed reports give a good idea of your site's general performance.WebPageTest is a more advanced tool because it allows to test your site in different browsers and spot slow areas on your site.
These tests could take some time for a large site but since they give you detailed data about which parts are slow, just be patient. Good tools report not only the average site speed but elements, such as first byte, user time, time to fully load, percentage of images, htmls, JavaScript files, etc., which is useful later when you start fixing the problematic areas.

2. Move to a Faster Server

One of the obvious reasons a site is slow is that the server you are hosting it on is slow. The reasons here could be numerous – from a web hosting provider that lacks the capacity to offer fast servers, to the type of your hosting account.
The easier solution here is to upgrade your account. For instance, if you have a large site with many pages and frequent database reads/writes and you are still using a shared account, then no provider to Earth can offer the speed you need. In this case, if you are happy with the provider per se, your solution is to upgrade from a shared account to VPS (Virtual Private Server) or even to a dedicated server. The costs for VPS or a dedicated server a month are much higher than what you are paying for your shared account but if your site ismaking you money (or at least has the potential to), the problem with website speed is literally killing your business.
On the other hand, if your web hosting provider is not good even if you upgrade your account, this won't solve your problem. The only thing you can do is migrate your sites to a good web hosting provider. Here is a list of some of the best web hosting providers for you to choose from.

3. Optimize Your Site's Code and Images

Your server might be fast but if your site itself is slow, you will still experience speed issues. If your code and images are not optimized for fast loading, you won't see speed improvements till you fix them. This task could take a very, very long time, especially if your code and images are bloated but you've got to do it.
For images, you can use compression and/or smaller sizes. This will speed loading big time. For HTML, CSS, JavaScript, PHP and other Web languages there are tons of tricks (and tools) how to optimize your code.

Website speed is not a factor with huge importance for search engine rankings, though it does count. The bigger problem with slow sites is that they are not user–friendly, which in turn kills conversions. If you don't want to lose money because of the speed issues of your site, take the time to fix them – it will pay in the long run.

How to Build Backlinks


Image result for backlinkIt is out of question that quality backlinks are crucial to SEO success. More, the question is how to get them. While with on-page content optimization it seems easier because everything is up to you to do and decide, with backlinks it looks like you have to rely on others to work for your success. Well, this is partially true because while backlinks are links that start on another site and point to yours, you can discuss with the Web master of the other site details like the anchor text, for example. Yes, it is not the same as administering your own sites – i.e. you do not have total control over backlinks – but still there are many aspects that can be negotiated.

Getting Backlinks the Natural Way

The idea behind including backlinks as part of the page rank algorithm is that if a page is good, people will start linking to it. And the more backlinks a page has, the better. But in practice it is not exactly like this. Or at least you cannot always rely on the fact that your contents is good and people will link to you. Yes, if your content is good and relevant you can get a lot of quality backlinks, including from sites with similar topic as yours (and these are the most valuable kind of backlinks, especially if the anchor text contains your keywords) but what you get without efforts could be less than what you need to successfully promote your site. So, you less than what you need to successfully promote your site. So, you will have to resort to other ways of acquiring quality backlinks as described next.

Ways to Build Backlinks


The first step in building backlinks is to find the places from which you can get quality backlinks. A valuable assistant in this process is the
 Backlink Builder tool. When you enter the keywords of your choice, the Backlink Builder tool gives you a list of sites where you can post an article, message, posting, or simply a backlink to your site. After you have the list of potential backlink partners, it is up to you to visit each of the sites and post your content with the backlink to your site in it.Even if plenty of backlinks come to your site the natural way, additional quality backlinks are always welcome and the time you spend building them is not wasted. Among the acceptable ways of link building are getting listed in directories, posting in forums, blogs and article directories. The unacceptable ways include inter-linking (linking from one site to another site, which is owned by the same owner or exists mainly for the purpose to be a link farm), linking to spam sites or sites that host any kind of illegal content, purchasing links in bulk, linking to link farms, etc.
You might wonder why sites as those, listed by the Backlink Builder tool provide such a precious asset as backlinks for free. The answer is simple – they need content for their site. When you post an article, or submit a link to your site, you do not get paid for this. You provide them for free with something they need – content – and in return they also provide you for free with something you need – quality backlinks. It is a free trade, as long as the sites you post your content or links are respected and you don't post fake links or content.

Getting Listed in Directories

If you are serious about your Web presence, getting listed in directories like DMOZYahooJasmine Directory and others quality directories is a must – not only because this is a way to get some quality backlinks for free, but also because this way you are easily noticed by both search engines and potential visitors. Generally inclusion in search directories is free but the drawback is that sometimes you have to wait a couple of months before you get listed in the categories of your choice.

Forums and Article Directories


While forum postings can be short and do not require much effort, submitting articles to directories can be more time-consuming because generally articles are longer than posts and need careful thinking while writing them. But it is also worth and it is not so difficult to do.
Generally search engines index forums so posting in forums and blogs is also a way to get quality backlinks with the anchor text you want. If the forum or blog is a respected one, a backlink is valuable. However, in some cases the forum or blog administrator can edit your post, or even delete it if it does not fit into the forum or blog policy. Also, sometimes administrators do not allow links in posts, unless they are relevant ones. In some rare cases (which are more an exception than a rule) the owner of a forum or a blog would have banned search engines from indexing it and in this case posting backlinks there is pointless.

Content Exchange and Affiliate Programs

Content exchange and affiliate programs are similar to the previous method of getting quality backlinks. For instance, you can offer to interested sites RSS feeds for free. When the other site publishes your RSS feed, you will get a backlink to your site and potentially a lot of visitors, who will come to your site for more details about the headline and the abstract they read on the other site.
Affiliate programs are also good for getting more visitors (and buyers) and for building quality backlinks but they tend to be an expensive way because generally the affiliate commission is in the range of 10 to 30 %. But if you have an affiliate program anyway, why not use it to get some more quality backlinks?

News Announcements and Press Releases

Although this is hardly an everyday way to build backlinks, it is an approach that gives good results, if handled properly. There are many sites (for instance, here is a list of some of them) that publish for free or for a fee news announcements and press releases. A professionally written press release about an important event can bring you many, many visitors and the backlink from a respected site to yours is a good boost to your SEO efforts. The tricky part is that you cannot release press releases if there is nothing newsworthy. That is why we say that news announcements and press releases are not a commodity way to build backlinks.

Backlink Building Practices to Avoid


Linking to suspicious places is something else that you must avoid. While it is true that search engines do not punish you if you have backlinks from such places because it is supposed that you have no control over what bad guys link to, if you enter a link exchange program with the so called bad neighbors and you link to them, this can be disastrous to your SEO efforts. For more details about bad neighbors, check the
 Bad Neighborhoodarticle. Also, beware of getting tons of links in a short period of time because this still looks artificial and suspicious.One of the practices that is to be avoided is link exchange. There are many programs, which offer to barter links. The principle is simple – you put a link to a site, they put a backlink to your site. There are a couple of important things to consider with link exchange programs. First, take care about the ratio between outbound and inbound links. If your outbound links are times your inbound, this is bad. Second (and more important) is the risk that your link exchange partners are link farms. If this is the case, you could even be banned from search engines, so it is too risky to indulge in link exchange programs.
 
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