Google TrustRank

Search Engine Watch notes a few new trademarks from Google – including one interesting one ‘ TrustRank’ which they speculate that it could be an indication that Google are cooking up some new ranking system (like PageRank?) that is for combatting web spam.

Also trademarked by Good are the terms:

  • ‘Advertise On the Neighborhood World Wide Web’
  • ‘Its All About Results’
  • ‘Picture Simplicity’

More on Google Ads in RSS Feeds

The Blogging community is buzzing with the news yesterday of Google Adsense Ads in RSS feeds. There are a few relevant updates surfacing to this story:

Robert from Longhorn Blogs (the blog that the first Adsense Ads were spotted in the RSS feed of) answers a few questions on their Adsense ads in their RSS feed. He writes:

Q: How are you putting ads in the feeds?
A: I can’t talk at all about implementation yet, because the system is not finalized. It’s just a test to determine how well the current thought process works, the performance bottlenecks, and to discover any barriers to others using it. I CAN tell you that it isn’t using Javascript….

Q: When can I start putting ads in MY feeds?
A: IF Google decides to launch this product, you can expect to see a wider public beta in the next few weeks. I wouldn’t waste my time trying to figure out the current implementation yet. It will most likely change, and your AdSense account won’t have the proper permissions from their servers to display contextual ads anyways.

Also at Feedburner’s Blog you can see that they are mobilising themselves for Google’s Adsense ads – they write:

‘FeedBurner has implemented support for this capability. Google is currently testing this program with just a few publishers, but as the program becomes more widely available, and your Google AdSense id is approved for use with RSS ads, FeedBurner will take care of the rest as part of our suite of services. Google’s AdSense implementation is based on editing your source feed template. FeedBurner makes it simple to implement the AdSense service if you can’t or don’t want to edit your source feed templates, or you just want additional flexibility in determining frequency of ads, ability to prevent ads on short posts and other ad control mechanisms for your feed.’

So it looks like it could be a while before Google comes out of testing for their RSS ads. One would think that their initial testing will go for some time before they’re ready to go into a full beta with the wider publisher public.

ProBlogger turns 33

I just turned 33 – that must put me in the upper age range of ProBloggers many of whom seem to be in their 20s.

Any suggestions on how I should celebrate when I wake up in the morning?

Tips for Generating Effective Web Content

Search Engine Guide has 7 Tips for Generating Effective Web Content which might help those wanting to improve their quality of content:

  1. Write customer focused content that appeals to your audience.
  2. If performing SEO – Focus on writing for the human reader first and search engines second.
  3. Find out what your target audience’s are really searching for.
  4. Tips for triggering idea generation
  5. Creating content that speaks to a specific audience
  6. Remember to include strong calls to action
  7. Search engine optimization the stress free approach

It is pretty basic stuff – but I’d echo the advice given in most points. I’m a particular believer in getting in the shoes of your blog’s readership. Start with your readership in mind instead of the search engine robots and you’ll not only end up ranking well but will help some people along the way.

Talk to your readers and find out what makes them tick – and as you do you’ll begin to see your subject matter from their perspective. What are their challenges, problems, questions – make these the basis of your posting and you’ll build a successful and popular blog.

How to make money from your blog: 5 tips

Jeff Wuorio has a good basic introductory article on How to make money from your blog with five starting points:

  1. Sell advertising.
  2. Help sell others’ products (affiliate programs).
  3. Solicit contributions.
  4. Market your services in your blog.
  5. Use a blog to deepen your existing customer relationships.

It is a similar piece to my Blogging for Dollars post.

ProBlogger WordPress Upgrade Underway

Just a warning to readers that we’re currently upgrading WordPress for this blog to version 1.5 so there may be a few bugs for the next few hours. I’ll let you know when its complete so you can start letting me know if there are any issues.

I appreciate your patience as we improve ProBlogger.

Also I just sent out a ProBlogger Newsletter (week 2). If you didn’t get it you might need to re-subscribe. Let me know if you want me to email the last one to you if you missed it.

Update: The upgrade (from WP 1.2) is complete. It wasn’t a redesign – simply an upgrade of versions. Please let me know if you see any bugs – thanks.

Google AdSense in RSS Feeds

Google have developed the technology for putting adsense ads in RSS Feeds. This is the news we’ve all been waiting for as publishers. is one of the first testers of this this new RSS ad system (check the ads out in their RSS feed).

I’m surprised that its taken this long to get a system like this up – but I’m very happy that they have. There is no official word yet from Google on this – somtimes it takes a while for testing like this to get out of beta – but it can’t be too far off. The big question is – where do I sign up!? I wonder how you get on the testing list for this.

Source: Google AdSense in RSS! (Chris Pirillo)

More of Google’s Adsense Changes

Google are now communicating to Adsense publishers about the new changes to their contextual ad system that I’ve been posting about for the past 24 hours. They are taking the line that it will bring more advertising dollars into the network which will of course benefit publishers.

CPM ads – One of the biggest changes for publishers will of course be the CPM (cost per impression) based bidding that advertisers will now be able to engage in which means we won’t just be paid on a per click basis but for some advertisers we’ll be paid whether clicks are registered or not.

Things could get a little complicated with this introduction as CPC (cost per click) ads and CPM ads will compete with each other – the highest value ad will be shown. So if a CPC ad worth 20 cents is available and a CPM ad worth 19 cents is available the CPC one will get served first.

Expanded text ads – another new feature is ads that can take over the full banner or skyscraper ad in an ad block. So instead of seeing 4 ads in an adblock you might start seeing 1 ad in it. Again these ads will only show if the value of that ad is worth more than the other 4 ads added together. The ads will fit with the color scheme that you’ve previously chosen for your text ads.

More Image ads – publishers will also see more image ads on Google (if you have enabled them in your Adsense code). You might also notice the introduction of a small number of flash and animated ads which are currently being tested.

Site targeted ads – as previously mentioned advertisers will soon be able to specifically target (and block) your blog for advertising.

All in all these changes are going to shake things up a little for advertisers and publishers alike. I’m sure we’ll see a short period with some fluctuating results for publishers as advertisers test the new features – hopefully things will settle and we’ll see the changes open up the market for advertisers even more. One would hope that Google’s spin on it is right and that we’ll see these new freedoms for advertisers increase the numbers of those willing to advertise (which in turn should build the competition for the ad space we have available). Time will tell.

Read more about Google’s Changes here. Scrivs posts about how this might impact Publishers.

How-To Get Slashdotted

Nicholas Roussos has a good post on How-To Get Slashdotted. His method is a slightly less direct method than you might think – ie it’s about getting your link on Slashdot in the byline of the person who submitted the article rather than having a post you’ve written directly linked to.

‘The secret lies in submitting stories. Slashdot relies on readers to send in stories. A lot of sites work like this. If you send in the story, they’ll throw you a link in the write up. Bam, you’re on Slashdot. Sure, it’s not as high profile as it would be if the write up was about your site, but it’s better than nothing. Plus, if your site has an article of interest, what better way to make sure you get referred to than to write the story itself.’

Nicholas is onto something here – whilst you might not end up with a deluge of traffic from this type of Slashdot link – there are other benefits – the main one being that it gives you a link from a highly ranked website (Slashdot currently has a PR of 9). I’ve used this method before and it does work (its all about picking the right story), it does bring a trickle of traffic and you can slip in links to your own blog (if they’re relevant to the story).

So if you want to get linked to on Slashdot – check out Nicholas’s post which includes the steps he uses and a useful submission guide as an update.

BlogKits Blogger Survey on Advertising

Head over to BlogKits and fill in the survey there if you’re interested in helping them research what blogger think about ads on their blogs. The survey is easy to use and quick (took me 5 minutes) and will help to create a blog ad system that is useful and profitable for bloggers.