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Friday, March 4, 2011

Use Blogger Search to filter your topics

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This tip will help you filter your topics of your blog by using tag-names. You can also use this tip to make categories for your blog however it looks not good like WordPress or TypePad :)

Copy this code and paste it where you want your tag names appear (most people put them in the Side-bar)

<a href="http://search.blogger.com/?as_q=Tag+name&ie=UTF-8&bl_url=<$BLogUrl$>&Search=Search">Tag name</a><br>

Remember to replace your Tag+name in this code for your own tags. That's done!

Tuesday, March 1, 2011

Difference between a Home page and a Normal page

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Yesterday a client, when I sent her my rate sheet, asked me what’s the difference between writing content for a home page and a normal page because I’ve mentioned different rates and I charge more for the home page. I think it was a legitimate question and the answer deserves a separate page.

Home page

For a website every page is important for you never know which page is going to turn a visitor into a buyer or a subscriber. Still, there are pages, and there are "pages". Your home page is your best foot forward and by the end of the day, it’s your home page that gets the most hits and consequently, the greatest exposure.

Your home page is the essence of your philosophy; it represents the crux of your online presence. No matter from where a visitor enters your website, once he or she has decided to stay and explore further, the natural destination is the home page because from there one can reach all the sections of your website.

Whether it’s just 30 words you have on your home page or 300, every word counts. And when every word counts, then your content doesn’t remain "normal". I spend greater amount of time on your home page copy. I do thorough research. I visit multiple websites (in the field similar to yours) to see how they have written the copy and what impact it makes upon the visitor. The entire message of your website — who you are, what benefits you provide, what’d's your experience, how much you cost — is summed up in your home page copy. Your home page copy is a sales copy without sounding like a sales copy. It establishes trust. It lays the foundation for further business opportunities. It is your first impression.

Normal page

A normal page can be any information page on your website. Your "services" page, for instance, is an example of a normal page. On this page you list your various services, what methodologies you use and what are the end-benefits to the consumers. Then "about us" is a normal page where you talk about your company, your team and its various abilities, your history, credentials, philosophy, business approach and vision. Case studies can be normal pages.

Normal pages are more focused. They generally handle single topics and their primary purpose is to help the customer or the client arrive at an educated decision. Although you can make a normal page sound like a sales copy, it is often not recommended.

Thursday, February 24, 2011

Submit Your Blogspot Sitemap to Yahoo

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1. Sign up for a free Yahoo Account if you don't already have one.

2. Sign in to Yahoo Site Explorer where you will be taken to the MySites page.

3. Submit your Blogger website by entering the URL of your blog and then clicking on the Add My Site button.

4. You will now see your website address included in the site list. The 3 columns to the right contain information about feeds, actions, and status. You will notice that the status of your site will be set to new (represented by a yellow circle). Click on the link to your site or click the Explore button.

5. You will be taken to the results page and should get a message like the one pictured below.

6. From the menu on the left click on the Authentication

7. You will be presented with 2 authentication options. Choose Add a META Tag from the dropdown menu then copy the code provided using Ctrl + C.

8. In a new window of your browser login to your Blogger blog. Keep the window of Site Explorer open as we will be returning.

9. Navigate to Layout > Edit HTML in your Blogger (Blogspot) blog

10. When you arrive at the Template page it is a good idea to make a backup of your site's template as a precaution. Go ahead and download it your computer by clicking on the Download Template link. Remember if you inadvertently overwrite some code you may not be able to restore your template so it is worth taking an extra few moments to do this step.

11. Once you have backed up your site locate the Head tag. It will be only a few lines of code down from the top. Now insert the copied code from Yahoo in the position suggested as shown in the picture below using the Ctrl + V command.

12. Once you have pasted the code into the template there is still one further action needed. You will need to add a trailing slash at the end of the new line of code to avoid getting a parse error. Once you have added the trailing slash and are certain you have placed the code in the correct position go ahead and click on the Save Template button.

13. Return to Yahoo Site Explorer and follow the mysite link. You will see that the status of your site has been verified and is represented by a green checkmark.

14. From the lefthand menu select Feeds. You will be taken to the feeds page where you can go ahead and add a feed for your blog by entering the URL of the feed. Notice in the example below I have set an extra parameter to handle redirection of the feed by services such as Feedburner.

15. Once the feed has been accepted it takes around 24 hours before it is active. After this time and provided there are no errors Yahoo displays "processed" followed by a green tick as can be seen in the picture below.

How to Add a Feed Flare to Your Blogger Feed

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If you have yet to burn your Blogger feed at Feedburner please refer to my articles Blogger RSS Feeds and Feedburner and Burn Blogger RSS Feeds at Feedburner for instructions on how to burn your feed and benefits of burning your blog's feed at Feedburner.

1. Login to Feedburner with your Google Account. From the My Feeds page click on the link to your blog

2. By default you will be taken to the Analyze page so you need to select the Optimize tab from the menu

3. Select FeedFlare from the Side Menu

4. To create a simple FeedFlare check the boxes of the options you would like. At a mininum I suggest you select email and comments count (for blogger) in addition to Stumble Upon, Digg This, del.icio.us and Facebook.

5. Once you have selected the desired options you can reorder them in the Preview/Reordering box below using drag and drop to shuffle the links around. I think it is a good idea to have comments either at the beginning or the end of the list as readers are more likely to notice it in this position

6. Click on Activate. Do not close this window as we will be returning here.

7. In a new window login to Blogger if you are not already logged in and navigate to Layout > Edit HTML

8. I strongly suggest you back up your template as a precaution by downloading it to your computer

9. Use CTRL + F to bring up the toolbar and enter the following code into the search box

10. Return to the FeedFlare page at Feedburner and select Blogger from the drop down menu at the bottom of the page to get the HTML Feedburner code. A dialog box will appear with some instructions. Copy the code found in item #1. Editing Blogger Layouts. To copy right click your mouse and choose select all to highlight the code and then right click again and choose copy

11. Paste the Feedburner code into your template directly below the line of code in your template you just located &ltdiv id='post-footer'>

12. Click on the Save Button

13. Return to Feedburner. Immediately below your blog's title and just above the Analyze tab you will see two icons. Click on the RSS icon (left button) which will bring up your blog feed.

14. Scroll to the bottom of the first post and you will see your new FeedFlare in action.

How do I put AdSense on my blog?

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Adding AdSense to your blog is easy. Go to the Template tab in Blogger and you'll see an "AdSense ads" tab below it:

If you don't have an AdSense account already, you can sign up for it right here within Blogger. Just enter a valid email address, choose a password, fill in some contact information (so you can get paid!) and then Blogger will register your account for you right away. If you do have an account already, just use the "sign in" link instead.

Once you've completed the sign-up form, or logged in to an existing account, you'll see a special preview version of your template, showing your blog as it will look with your new ads:

Using the menus above the preview, you can easily change the size, shape, and color of your ads, without ever needing to edit the code directly. The color menu has some preset color schemes, but also some flexible options that try to match, contrast, or blend with whatever template you happen to be using. Try them all out and see which setting works best.

Once you've decided how you'd like it to look, just save the changes and republish your blog. Then go check your email.

While you were deciding on layouts and colors, you probably received a confirmation email from AdSense. Find that email and click on the link it gives you to confirm your email address. Be sure to read the rest of the confirmation email as well, since it will contain other information on finishing the registration and approval process. Until your email address is confirmed and your AdSense application is approved, your ads will only show public service announcements (PSAs) rather than targeted ads. Since you don't get revenue from PSAs, you'll want to be sure to do this soon, so the AdSense bot can crawl your site and determine appropriate ads to show.

And now you're done! Congratulations -- you've got AdSense!

Notes:

  • There may be a bit of a delay before the AdSense bot gets to your site and you start getting targeted ads, though that should happen within 48 hours. Just be patient and it will get there in time.
  • This feature does not currently provide a way of moving the ads, though the default location used is one that tends to provide the best results. If you would like to move it elsewhere, such as to your sidebar, you will need to edit your template code directly. See How to put AdSense in your blog's sidebar for more details.
  • You can see how well your ads are doing by checking the 'Reports' tab on the AdSense website to look at your Ad performance. Keep in mind that reports appear an hour or so after a change has been made (and may sometimes be delayed up to 24 hours).
  • To change your payment information, or other account details after you've signed up you'll need to go to the main AdSense site and log in to your account there.

Remove the NavBar

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To hide the Blogger NavBar paste the CSS definition between the style tags:

<style type="text/css">
#b-navbar {
height: 0px;
visibility: hidden;
display: none;
}
</style>

Hiding the banner in Blogger Beta (iframe):

<style type="text/css">
#navbar-iframe {
height: 0px;
visibility: hidden;
display: none;
}
</style>