The Benefits of Acquiring Recently Expired Domains vs. Creating a New Domain

Background of Expired Domain Names

An expired domain name is a domain which a business or individual does not renew. All domain names have an expiration date which require action to renew. A domain is essentially a property which has endless opportunities through technology. Acquiring domains and flipping them for profit once they have expired is an activity which has great potential upside. The profit from purchasing a high quality domain once it has expired and selling it in the future to a business or individual can be exponential in some cases.

Practice of Purchasing Existing Expired Domain Names

There are many ways which an individual or business can purchase an expired domain name. Some of the ways include websites which will hold auctions for valuable expired domain names. At these online auctions, bidders can get these expired domain names for a fairly reasonable price. Once you have won or purchased your expired domain, it is up to you what you choose to do with it. Some buyers will build a website through it or simply resell it in the near future to an interested buyer.

There are several benefits to purchasing expired domain names as opposed to creating new ones. Acquiring an existing domain name gives the new customer the advantage of receiving views from all previous searches and visits.

When a potential client, customer, or visitor is already familiar with the domain name, you already have an advantage. Instead of creating a new name no one has ever heard of or is familiar with, purchasing a previous domain which has expired allows for the possibility that people have already heard of you and your domain name.

Value of Information

Purchasing expired domain names gives you a leg up. You will be able to track previous traffic and set goals to improve it. A domain with a lot of traffic or views will potentially increase the value. The value of information cannot be understated. Being able to track data and increase views will make the domain more marketable and attractive for future buyers. This can also be combined with the power of previous domain traffic. If the previous expired domain had steadily increasing visitor traffic, as the new owner, you could market it to buyers who require a lot of traffic. It allows for more options in the future.

Do Appropriate Research Prior to Acquiring Expired Domains

When investing in recently expired domains, it is essential that you do appropriate research and tracking of the domains. There could be potential reflag issues so it is important to follow backlinks and do the appropriate follow up research. It is important to know the domain inside and out. The general history of the domain would be beneficial in a creating a research plan.

Overall, the opportunity exists to be successful in the industry by purchasing expired domain names. Having an updated list of recently expired domain names for future purchase is a valuable asset to have with the potential to receive profit.

Should You Use a Third-Party Blog Comment System?

By definition, a blogging platform includes an internal commenting system so visitors can publish comments on blog posts. Comments, conversation, and community are three of the most important parts of blogging, so it’s critical to your blog’s success that you use the best blog comment system to meet your goals. However, the internal blog comment system that comes with WordPress, Blogger, Tumblr, and other blogging platforms might not be the best one for your blog.

Keep reading to learn the pros and cons of the most commonly used blog commenting systems to determine if you need to move away from your blogging platform’s internal tool or not.

Pros and Cons of Blog Comment Systems

1. Popular Blog Comment Systems

By far, the most popular blog commenting systems are the ones built into blogging platforms like WordPress, Blogger, Tumblr, TypePad, and so on.

The most popular third-party blog comment systems are:

  • Disqus: Allows comments from anyone who creates a free Disqus account. Works with WordPress, Blogger, Tumblr, Squarespace, TypePad, Movable Type, Drupal, and Joomla.
  • Livefyre: Allows comments from anyone who creates a free Livefyre account. Works with WordPress, Tumblr, and Joomla.
  • Facebook: Allows comments only from Facebook users through  Facebook’s Comment Box social plugin. Facebook promotes the tool to its developer community as a way to enable people to post comments on any website.
  • Google: Allows comments only from Google+ users. Works with Blogger.

Keep in mind, every third-party system doesn’t work on every blogging platform.

2. Advantages of Third-Party Blog Comment Systems

There are a number of real advantages to switching to a third-party comment system for your blog. Consider your blogging goals and the preferences of your readers. Choose the tool that provides the best user experience to meet those goals without damaging the user experience.

Following are some of the key advantages to using a third-party blog comment system:

  • Multiple Logins: Many third-party comment systems allow users to log in to publish comments using a variety of social networks or OpenID. For example, if you use Disqus, your readers can create a Disqus account to publish a comment on your blog or they can log in using their Facebook, Twitter, or Google profiles to publish a comment.
  • Reduce Spam: If the third-party comment system you choose to use requires that people use their real names to create user accounts. That means their real names appear with their comments on your blog posts, and you can bet that comment spam will go down. For example, most people who use Facebook, use their real names and identities in their Facebook profiles. If you use Facebook as your blog commenting system, then you should definitely see fewer spam comments.
  • Rich Media: Many third-party comment systems, like Disqus and LiveFyre, allow people to include images and/or videos in their blog posts, which can add to the user experience and the conversation.
  • Functionality: You can use plugins and add-ons to add functionality to the built-in commenting tools on many blogging platforms, but third-party commenting systems include a variety of advanced features such as comment subscriptions, comment threading, and more. No need for all of those other plugins and add-ons! Furthermore, some third-party blog commenting systems like Lifefyre and Disqus include comprehensive analytics about your audience that could be very useful as your blog grows.
  • Social Media Integration: Some third-party comment systems allow users to bring social media conversations into your blog comments (e.g., Disqus and LifeFyre) while others allow users to share their comments on your blog on their social media profiles, too (e.g., Facebook). This seamless integration can be very effective if your community or your marketing is highly focused on specific social media sites.

3. Disadvantages of Third-Party Blog Comment Systems

There are a number of disadvantages to using a third-party comment system that you need to understand before you dive in. Don’t ignore the negatives because they could run counter to your audience preferences and your blogging goals.

Following are some of the key disadvantages to using a third-party comment system:

  • Fewer Comments: Some visitors won’t want to take the time to sign in to publish a comment. Some visitors won’t want to have to identify themselves because they’d prefer to remain anonymous. Since third-party comment systems require people to sign in and possibly provide personally identifiable information (e.g., Facebook), there will be visitors to your site who will not submit comments to your blog posts if you use a third-party comment system.
  • Slower Page Load Speed: Third-party commenting systems are hosted by a platform that is completely separate from your blogging platform. Therefore, they don’t load with your blog content into a visitor’s web browser. They load from a separate host that might not run as quickly as your own host does. That means there could be lag time for the user while they wait for your blog comments to load. Slow page load speeds can hurt the user experience and possibly cause your blog to lose some search traffic.
  • Another Tool to Maintain: While most third-party commenting systems require little effort to set up and almost no ongoing maintenance, you do have to consider your technical skills to get everything set up. Some bloggers prefer to use the built-in commenting system or add plugins or add-ons to their blogs to enhance commenting functionality.
  • Potential Unavailability of Comments: When you use a third-party commenting system, there is always the small possibility that the third-party’s system could go down, which would mean your blog visitors won’t be able to see published comments on your posts or submit their own until the commenting system is working again.

4. The Final Decision

Only you can determine if a third-party comment system is right for you, your blog, your audience, and your blogging goals. Remember, you can always test a third-party comment system and switch back to your blogging platform’s internal commenting system if you aren’t happy.

7 Ways To Reduce Blog Comment Spam

Having a WordPress blog is great, but what is the deal with all that comment spam?

You get a notice about a comment on your blog post, and you can’t help but get excited because it shows that you’re not as invisible as you think you are. But when you check it, it’s a garbled, nonsensical, misspelled mess with links all over the place.

It’s comment spam.

It starts as a trickle that becomes a flood, and you can’t help but feel like you’ve been singled out. Well, rest assured, it’s not you. It’s them. Since the beginning of email, you’ve had these people think nothing of posting junk messages on your virtual property because they want traffic and money. With the prominence of blogs, comment spam has become the new path for spammers. But just as they’ve become slicker, so have the ways of stopping them. Here are just a few ways to minimize their impact:

  1. Don’t allow comments – This is the most extreme way to prevent comment spam, but if your blog doesn’t need to have comments from readers, it is a viable option.
  2. Require users to register to comment – As far as reducing the amount of comment spam, this is a double-edged sword. You’re forcing them into a relationship of sorts for legitimate users when all they may want to do is comment and leave. Another issue is that spammers can also register on your site, and depending on your setting, they are in.
  3. Automatically close comments after a certain period of time – If you have older posts that spammers are hitting, you can opt to close comments automatically after a set time. This reduces the number of avenues comment spam can pop up.
  4. Add CAPTCHA text verification – You know that little box that asks you to type the words you see to verify you’re human? That’s what CAPTCHA verification does.  This extra layer of verification takes a little more time than spammers are willing to spare. While this won’t necessarily stop them from going forward, it will make them rethink their strategy. There is a caveat for this: there are times when CAPTCHA doesn’t work that well and creates problems with all users. If you’re interested in getting this plugin, choose one from this list on WordPress.org.
  5. Get a comment spam plugin – This is by far my favorite option because it heads comment spam off at the pass. As I mentioned, many of them have taken to registering on blogs that get them into the hen house, so to speak. You can upload and use free spam plugins on your blog. There are also premium comment spam plugins that offer additional features like trackback validation, email/phone support for a cost; I found that the Stop Spammers free plugin works well for me.
  6. Customize your other comment settings – Depending on which version and type of blog you have (free or paid), you can go to the Comments menu item on the left to configure your comment settings which includes choosing to approve all comments before they’re posted and holding comments with two or more links.
  7. Activate Akismet – This is automatically included with all WordPress blogs, so all you have to do is activate it. IMMEDIATELY. You may need to sign up on the site to get a key in some cases, but it’s worth the extra two minutes.

Together some of the tips and techniques can really be useful at reducing or even stopping comment spam. They can be so powerful that they can miscategorize some good comments as spam. So to stem this, always check your spam folder to make sure you’re not throwing out the baby with the bathwater, so to speak.

Have you tried any of these tips or have other ways to reduce comment spam on your blog? Please feel free to share in the comments below.

Do DoFollow vs NoFollow Links Really Matter?

Howdy bloggers. Happy Friday to ya! I hope your blogging week went well.

Today’s topic will be a pretty quick one – not too much for the brain to wrap around for the last day of the workweek. Today’s subject is backlinks. More specifically, the two types of ‘REL’ descriptions behind the scenes of backlinks. You may not even know it, but there’s potentially lots of info coded into the links you follow. You can forward links, shorten links, describe links within themselves, and more – often without the user even knowing what’s going on.

Specifically, let’s talk today about the rel=”DOFOLLOW” vs. rel=”NOFOLLOW” link descriptor. What does it mean? Let’s take a look at an example link:

The basic parts of a link are detailed in the above graphic. You first have the ‘code’ or hypertext reference that tells your browser that it’s a link. Next, you have the actual URL itself – notice it’s wrapped in “double quotes.” Then you have the relationship indicators. Relationship indicators wouldn’t both be included in a link like this – you’d use one or the other. Relationship indicators tell search engines if they’re supposed to follow that link to the destination site. You probably already know that links are considered ‘votes’ from one site to another. If you link to a site, you’re telling others (including search engines) that you find value in that content. Well, if you link with a “DOFOLLOW” relationship indicator, you’re explicitly telling search engines that you find value in the content. DOFOLLOW links are widely considered to be more valuable when it comes to link building and SEO – and that would make sense. If you receive such a link from a site, it’s an overt vote of confidence in your content! Most sites often default if it is not specifically indicated in the URL itself, and most sites are “NOFOLLOW.” Some platforms or plugins allow you to change this setting site-wide without including the relationship indicator in each link you create. Finally is the anchor text for the link. This is the actual text that will contain the hyperlink and is also a perfect indicator (to search engines and people) of what type of content is on the other end of that link.

BloggableStuff’s Comments Are DOFOLLOW Links!

Did you know this site provides DOFOLLOW links from your comments? It’s true! The CommentLuv Premium plugin I use on this site allows me to control links in comments for all my visitors. All you have to do to change ALL of your linked posts in your comments to DOFOLLOW links is to leave at least 10 comments on this site. Every comment you leave after that will place a link (you even get to choose which of your posts to link to) will build your site’s SEO. This is a win-win for you and me. You engage with my content and, in return, receive an SEO bonus for your site or blog! Oh, and did you notice that the top commenters receive their profile (with a link) in the sidebar as well? That means if you’re one of the top 5 commenters, you’ll have a DOFOLLOW link on every page of this site (that’s pretty HUGE)!