alexa

I am pretty happy today as this is the first time my blog has cracked the 50,000 mark for an Alexa ranking.  It took me a little over 7 months to reach this milestone.  I beat my goal by 5 months and that makes me happy.

I know there is a lot of debate over the value of Alexa ranking.  I believe that it is very important if you are looking to monetize your blog.  It is not the only thing that advertisers look for but it is one of the biggest factors in determining the value for an ad or link on your blog.

The Alexa formula is based on the number of visitors that visit your site and the number of page views.  Of course, only those with the Alexa toolbar count as votes.  It is kind of like the Nielsen ratings are for television.  Sounds pretty simple right, increase the number of visits and the number of pages they view and your Alexa ranking will increase, right? Yes, this is true but there are some other things you can do to boost your Alexa ranking.  Here are some ideas.

  • Install the Alexa toolbar.  If you have not yet installed the toolbar, do it now, it only takes a minute and every time you visit your site you will be helping your Alexa rank.
  • Encourage your blog readers to download the Alexa toolbar.  Just like I did just now! The more regular readers that you have that have the toolbar installed the better your ratings.
  • Attract other webmasters to your blog.  You should try to write blog posts about blogging and other topics that would be interesting to webmasters as these are the people that will be most likely to have the toolbar installed.  Even if you have a mommy blog or personal blog, you can sprinkle in some blogging posts to get the tech savvy visitors to stop by.
  • Become active in webmaster forums.  I am sure you notice a theme now, the more webmasters you get to your blog the better your Alexa ranking.  Join forums like Digital Point and Bloggeries and be sure to include your blog link in your signature.  These sites also allow you to add an rss feed to your profile that will display your latest feed.
  • Entrecard and Adgitize- These are two great ways to get get visits from people with the Alexa toolbar.  I recommend that you advertise on Adgitize, it is only $14 a month and you can make that money back and then some. For more info on Adgitize, you can click this link.
blogcomments

Most bloggers strive to make their blog a community where people can learn, interact and exchange ideas.  This is often achieved through the comment section.  It has been said that comments are the lifeblood of a blog and I definitely agree with that statement.  Many blogger, both new and experienced, have a difficult time attracting comments to their blog.  A while back I wrote a post on how to get more blog comments.  In this post, I want to get a little more specific and talk about rewarding your commentators to encourage them to start and continue adding value through quality comments.

Conventional wisdom tells us that people are more inclined to take action if there is something in it for them.  As an example, I think back about when I first started college and there were dozens of credit card companies that were trying to get new students to sign up.  What did they do, they gave something away, usually a tee shirt or something along those lines.  The tee shirts probably cost them a buck but by offering the small reward more people were inclined to sign up.  The same is true with blog comments, if you are willing to give a little and reward those that take time to comment, you will be ensuring that people will take the time to actually do it.

I came up with a list of 7 ways you can reward your commentators:

1.Make your links “do follow”, this is self explanatory, as you are rewarding your commentators by providing them a quality backlink to their site.  To ruly reward them, I recommend installing the commentluv and keyword luv plugin.

2.Install Top Commentators plugin– This is similiar to the above reward where you will be providing a backlink and increased visibility to the people who comment most.

3.Create a post once a month that links back to your top commentators.  I started doing this several months ago and it is a great way to reward your commentators with a link and hopefully drive a bit of traffic too.

4.Become active on their blog.  When ever someone comments on my blog, I visit there blog and I usually return the favor and will comment on theirs.  If the content is good, I will subscribe and become a regular reader and commentator.  Basically, you can reward them by being a regular contributor on their blog.

5.Follow and Retweet.  As a reward you can follow and engage with your commentators on Twitter.  If a tweet catches your attention, go ahead and retweet it.

6.Give some social networking love. Another way to reward your commentators is to seek them out on social networks and link up with them and promote their posts.

7.Another reward is to reserve some ad space for your top commentators.  I am actually going to implement this next month.  I will be rewarding the top commentator for August with a free month of advertising on the sidebar of my blog.

As you can see, these are small rewards but every blogger would love to get as many links and promotion as possible.  I know I do!

The last way to reward your commentators is by simply saying Thank you.  So, Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! for all the excellent comments and helping build a community here with this blog in such a short time frame.

What are you doing to encourage and reward your blog commentators?

website-stats

Overview

Web stats are an important fact in determining how well your page is doing for example, how many visitors have been to your page in the last month. These stats are produced by a stat program that is usually offered with whomever your website is hosted with.

Your stats are usually categorized into months, sometimes even days depending on your host and your server, which can be found by logging into your server. I personally recommend Cpanel installed on your server.

If you’re a Webmaster you should seriously consider looking into your web stats and finding the importance of them. Understanding how the stats are laid out is important to know because it helps you find out what is or can be improved on your website, ask yourself a few questions if you don’t believe me how important these stats really are.

1. Are visitors finding my site?
2. How long are they staying for?
3. Is my site popular or do I just think it is?
4. I have lots of site hits but I’m the only person visiting my site. Why?

Well to answer your questions I provided many of the specific stats below with a short description about what they are and how they work. Many of the stats below can be found in CPanel which can be installed in your server.

Further Detail

The above gave you a brief overview of what web stats are, let’s look a little deeper. Web stats can be broken into even further into several smaller groups that I’ve listed below. These are common with many stat programs that are offered by your host.

Unique Visitors

Think of unique visitors as several different computers. Your friend and yourself both having separate IP addresses visit a page, you would both be considered a unique visitor, with that the site would gain two unique hits.

Number of Visits

The number of visits is exactly what it says; its how many visitors you had. These are not as accurate as the unique visitors because this could be the same person on the same computer visiting the page over and over again building the number of visits.

Page Duration

You want your visitors to stay on your site for as long as they can, this is the page duration the amount of time a visitors spends on your site. The higher duration your website has is great because it shows you have something that is keeping your visitors interested.

Hits

When you visit a page the information will be downloaded from the web server. This is called a page hit. So for the book; a page hit is the number of pages requested for download from the server.

Bandwidth

This means the amount of data that is being transferred to and from the web server. Your host will have a different amount of aloud bandwidth as another company. In some cases having a high amount of traffic to your site will increase the bandwidth making the site slower and longer to open, sometimes even shut the site down for a period of time.

Conclusion

So by reading the above and the various types of stats you should have a better understanding of what they do and how they help you and your site. Think of web stats almost as a story of your website, the stats tell a story of how many visitors to your site and how long they have stayed on your site.

I hope this article helps you have a better understanding of web stats, by researching and writing this article I have gained a better understanding of them myself.

You really do learn something new everyday!