Widget World WOW

Take a peak at some of the things that I have added to my blog today. I’ve added a sun clock, a cat that follows your mouse, and a blidget of my blog in the side bar. These are all from WidgetBox.com.

If you have not visited this site, I have to tell you that you really must. It is so very cool and so very easy to add things to your blog. If you are using Blogger Blogspot then you can add the items to your layout very easily. If you are FTP blogging like my other blog Web-World Watch, then you can add them to posts as you can not add them to the side bar or page template.

You can even make a blidget, see my side bar, with your own blog. Oh I also forgot another thing. Take a look at the feed slide show that I did. You can add three feeds and then have them show the posts in random rotation.

WidgetBox is a very cool site. I do not know how they do what they do, but I will certainly be looking closer. :0)

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Got a Site Too Big For Online Sitemap Generators

Here’s the solution! Most online Google Sitemap generators only spider up to 500 pages. If you have a site with an active blog you are out of luck. Well until now. Click our blog post title to visit a site that I have just found today that allows you to make a Google Sitemap for up to 5,000 pages fairly easily.

Okay you have a few steps, but if you can not install Python on your web server, are not programatically literate, or like me, simply want to not have to reinvent the wheel, then this may be a good solution for you too.

You need to set up a free account at Free Site Map Generator, then install a special blank text file in the root just to verify your site and click start. The spider creates a site map for you and then allows you to download it as a .zip file.

Here’s where you need to manipulate it a bit, open the zip file and then create a .gz file. I use a free utility called win-gz which I found on the Web. Then upload your new sitemap.xml.gz file to your server and feed it to Google Webmaster Central. Why take the extra step to .gz it? Well if you have a big site, do Google a favor and make it easy to snatch the files. Google Sitemaps do understand the .gz format. In fact at the very beginning of Google Sitemaps this was the only format in which you loaded your sitemap. Now Google will take just plain .xml files, but they do stipulate that for big sitemaps it is best to provide the compressed .gz format.

I have tried a number of other sitemap generators and here is one that I really like for small sites http://www.xml-sitemaps.com/. This generator creates a .xml, .xml.gx, ror.xml, and urllist.txt file and is very easy and fast.

So now you have choices for making a Google Sitemap online whether your site is big or small.

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Add Cool New Widgets You Make to Your Blog

Check out this link to pick up cool new widgets, register your own, create your own customized widgets with news feeds and much more. Just click our blog post title to visit Widgetbox.com.

I think that there are some very cool ones there. Here is one that I am going to try out in a day or so http://www.widgetbox.com/widget/RandomFeed. It’s a random feed slide show widget that allows you to enter your own news feeds and then randomly displays them in a slide show format. Very neat. I don’t have time to try it out today, but I will be adding it to this blog or our Web-World Watch blog this week. I’ll point you there when I do.

Adding cool interactive gadgets to your web pages and blogs can really be fun. With a little research on the Web you can find all kind of very cool things to make your blog more interesting and fun for readers.

I also liked the liquid clock and will try that one out too!

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Are Your Blog Posts in the Google Supplemental Index?

If you are note sure if your blog posts are in the Google supplemental index, here’s a quick way to check. Go to www.Google.com and enter in site:www.yoursite.com *** –sjpked. Of course replace the your site.com with the correct URL.

One of the big reasons that blog posts routinely go to the supplemental index is that there are simply no links to them raising their page rank. Part of this is due to the way that blogs work with posts going onto a home page and then moving into the archive based on your settings.

One way to help keep your blog out of the supplemental index is to link to specific blog post pages from your website. If you point to a page specific URL for a post, not just the home page of your blog, and start to keep updated links to pertinent information, this may be one way to keep your posts live in the main Google index. Obviously another way is to write great content that others will want to back link on your blog, but if someone links to you and when, you can not control.

You may want to consider doing a special post archive on your website pointing to really hot property blog posts or ones that you particularly want to point out. What I do is to point to specific posts using Feed technology on my own website. I use a tool called FeedrollPro to allow syndication of my content and then I use FeedHoster to easily update my site feed online. This makes it super easy for me to show important headlines on my own personal website as well as to feed what I consider important content to others who are syndicating my content.

Staying out of the Google supplemental index is important so try some of these suggestions to see what may work for you too.

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Keep An Eye Open On BBB Claim Scams

I just got this in my email and it is enough to shake up any business owner. My email stated that a William Jackson had filed a complaint against me with the Better Business Bureau.

First I have never had a customer by this name and so I figured it was a scam or virus hoax, but the note sure looked legitimate, but I did not open the PDF attachment. I sent the BBB a note for clarification and then did a search on the Web.

This is what I found. First PDFs can now be exploited for virus attacks. Second the BBB has posted a notice that this is a scam and a new way to embed VB Script using their name. The link in our blog post title will take you to the Better Business Bureau site so you can read all about it and make sure that you are not a victim.

For me, I was a bit shaken up. I really pride myself on offering total customer satisfaction and work really hard to assure it, so to think that there was a customer who had a problem I did not know about threw me for a loop. Until I realized I had no customer by this name.

In fact one of the triggers to identify this may be a hoax was the messages headers were masked and the PDF file had a funny name.

Make sure you are not a victim, just delete the message if it comes from the fictitious address operations@bbb.org .

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Google Supplemental Index

Just what is that? Find out if your site is included in Google’s supplemental index by using this to do a Google search

site:www.yoursite.com *** –sjpked of course insert your correct domain name.

I have a few sites that we have designed and not provided content for (the client sent us content) that just have not placed well. I have really struggled to understand why those sites were not well placed as typically we have great success in moving a client in or up. Well now I have the answer and can help future clients. When a client simply snatches content from other sites and passes it off to you, the webmaster, as original content, they are cutting their own throat. The site will typically go right into the Google’s supplemental index as Google is too smart to simply let the duplicate content go right into the main index.

There are some times when content across the Web for a specific topic may be similar. Let’s say for example you are a merchandise broker and you and others are promoting a set of the same products to the world. This may happen in the franchise business or if you are an affiliate marketeer. The information may be similar. Be careful to take time to make your site’s content interesting and create unique features. Consider introducing a questions and answer section on the product or top tips or special reasons for consideration. Do not simply copy content and pass it off as your own. One it is wrong to do this and can cause a copyright issue and two Google will catch you and your new site will end up in the supplemental index. Sometimes we, the webmaster, simply do not know where you have gotten your content. If you have copied it, please let us know so we can rework it (for an extra fee unfortunately) and keep you out of the supplemental index.

Once you are in the supplemental index, it is a hard thing to move out. Some webmasters recommend abandoning the page URL completely and re-creating content under a new URL. This requires one a full revamping of content and typically a rework of the navigation, plus 301 redirects. Kaching. Why not help your webmaster and web designer by being up front initially and investing in unique content. The remediation to repair a problem can be expensive!

Google is really cracking down on duplicate content. So for me, I will have a more frank talk about this specific topic with all new clients and if you are a site owner, please don’t take the easy way out and snatch content and just change a few words and pass it off to your web designer as your own. Invest time in making your site unique by creating interesting content that is not a match for what is already out there.

We offer inexpensive content creation charges when we design your website. Invest in your placement on the Web with content that will win with Google, bring you new customers, and keep you out of the supplemental index!

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