As a newbie to the web world, I designed my first web site in December last year. Having read a number of publications, I was fully aware that I would have to produce links to my new site.
I was further aware that one route that I had to go was to write articles, a daunting task for a newbie. Even more of a problem was the means of getting the article to the numerous article directories, groups, and ezines that populate the web.
I appreciated that there were three possible distribution routes. I could submit my article to an article distributor who would send out my article to their selected directories. An alternative would be to do it myself, accessing each of the directories, cutting and pasting into the numerous input fields, having subscribed to each prior to submission. I discounted this method because of the time involved.
A third possibility would be to use available software to speed up the latter process. Unsure of the best route, I decided that I would write two articles, one for each process, and measure the results. The purpose of this article is to share the results with you and the conclusion I reached..
My first article was a review of the software that I had used to create that first site, and entitled Dreamweaver too complicated?, Go Live and Frontpage too steep a learning curve? I decided that I would use one of the professional article distribution services for my first effort and looked at available agents. I selected one, paid my quarterly fee of $39.95, which allowed me an unlimited number of submissions for three months. I searched, today, for the title, using the exact phrase box of Googles Advanced Search and found only 15 matches, which is way below my expectations.
My second article, The Newbie World of Affiliate programs followed shortly afterwards. Having spent the last twenty years with software houses, the last ten being with the worlds largest database company, I am aware that I can sometimes be over- critical about a product. To distribute this second attempt, I selected a software program selling around $150, and offering a three day free trial. I downloaded, and examined the submission sites, finding some of them obscure, and others where the software did not submit at all. There were103 web sites, 9 needing a logon, and 23 email sites. Again, at the time of writing an exact phrase Google search yields 4 matches.
At this stage I started to think that it was my ability as a first-time author that was in question.
Far from happy, and having wasted a good many hours, I paused to take stock of the situation. I didnt like the software I could find, I thought that the article submission services were too expensive and I did not want to do it manually. The answer must be to design my own.
The prototype submits to 220 sites. I have excluded specialist directories and, therefore, all will accept articles on a wide variety of subjects. The software logs on automatically, fills in every field on the submission form, including the category, and presents me with the filled-in web form.. All I have to do is scan, then press the submit button. It takes around 10 seconds for one article to be sent to one site, most of that time being the directory response time. At 6 submissions per minute, with concentrated effort, it takes around 35 minutes to submit to all 220 directories. Whilst I could make the procedure completely automatic, without the need for me to do anything, I still value the peace of mind that the quick scan provides.
Six days ago, I wrote my third ever article, and submitted it using my system. The title of the article is My Mistakes as a Web Design Newbie. Again, going to Googles Advanced Search, and entering the title in the exact phrase box, at the time of writing, the results show 34,300 entries.
My next stage will be to add around 150 email submission sites, and then a further 100 non-specialized directory sites.