SEO and Traffic Tools

I make over a $1,000 per month blogging on various websites. Technically, I make over $1,000 per month from AdSense and not blogging, but it’s the blogs that bring in the AdSense money, so I suppose it is all relative.

The point is that there is an amazing array of SEO tools and traffic analysis tools and so on our there. I’d like to try some of them out, and since I do make some decent cash from my writing, one might think that I would be willing to shell out $50 or so to try some of them out. And, frankly, I would except they all seem to cost $50 PER MONTH or worse.

Now, I’m all for spending money to make money, and all that, but I can’t help but wonder how much those tools are really worth. After all, I can check my rankings anytime I want for free by running the actually Google searches manually. Of course, that’s the rub, “manually.”

Still, $50 per month is $600 per year. That isn’t cheap, and that is for just ONE tool. What if I liked the rank tracker from one tool, the link checker from another tool and some sort of SEO checkup thing from another tool? That might be $150 per month, or over 10 percent of my income.

My only conclusion can be that either there are a lot of people out there making a lot more money with their websites than me, or that there are a lot of people out there who aren’t spending their money very wisely. I guess the question is how much actual value does the average website publisher make from those tools? After all, I’m already making $1K without them. Would I double my earnings? Triple?

Think about it this way. If I was able to generate a more realistic 10 percent improvement on my income that would be $100 per month, of which $50 per month would go to the cost of the tool. I’m not sure that works out for our heroes.

Speaking of which, I recently dropped $50 to upgrade to the Pro IMAuotmator. I’ll write about it soon.


What are your thoughts about SEO tools, search ranking monitoring tools, and link tools? Any you can’t live without? Any that are very worth it from a pure additional income standpoint?

Best WordPress Themes For Writers Feature List Continued

We’ve been looking at what kinds of features and functionality professional freelance writers should look for in a WordPress theme. At first, it can be hard to quantify exactly what a writer needs in a WordPress theme because they sort of all start to blend together and you forget what it was that compelled you to download one theme over another in the first place. Then, as you start to try and actually implement the themes it starts to get clearer. Whenever there is something that a writer can’t do easily with that WordPress writers theme, then you know what features are important.

One feature that is vitally important for any writer looking to make money writing online, is the ability to automatically provide links to other writings. For example, a freelancer writing a WordPress blog about local events as a way to drum up interest from local business, for example, would want that site to link to their freelance writing business website automatically. In this case, adding the homepage of that website to the blogroll or other link list would suffice, but what about really powerful link building?

While many SEO experts offer the misguided advice to be stingy with your links, one should never pass up the opportunity to link for their own benefit. For example, if there was a particular post on your blog that seemed to be attracting a lot of attention and traffic, using that page to link to other pages in your blog will boost that posts as well. This way you don’t end up with a huge website that has only two pages that have a high enough search engine ranking to ever draw any website traffic.

To really take advantage, however, you would also want to link your high PageRank pages and posts from many other places as well. That site about parenting skills could link to articles on your writing site about how to write high school essays that get good grades. Likewise, the writing site could link to an article about parenting tips for dads showing how important good writing skills are.

Doing this within individual posts is useful and essential for long-term search engine optimization power. However, linking to several of the best posts a writer has from all over requires putting those links in the template or widget part of a WordPress theme.

That is why the best WordPress themes for writers must include either a footer that can be used partially for links, or well-configured sidebars that can be filled with widgets full of links. Unfortunately, it seems that too many themes are either designed for AdSense, or designed for those who never want to earn money by writing. Smart writers want themes that are somewhere in between.