Link Love vs Lack of Love

B. Durant said:

“I’d be interested in knowing why you are so strict when it comes to linking to other websites. I understand quality control but listening to the interview it was almost as if you’d rather not see any links at all but being that this is the world wide web you hold your nose and swallow it down.”

You’ve heard the old saying that you are judged by the friends you keep, right? Websites are judged by the friends they link.

If we link to bad friends (known as “bad link neighborhoods”), we’ll be judged as being just as bad as those sites having just endorsed them via an outbound link.

In addition, we value providing our users a POSITIVE USER EXPERIENCE. Links to sites that deliver a negative user experience reflect poorly on us and everyone connected with the EzineArticles system. Ideal EzineArticles expert authors also want to associate themselves with others of the same respect; therefore to continue to earn their respect, we must reject members who link to sites that break user trust.

Don’t get me wrong; we love links to other sites and this is a CRITICAL component to the value proposition that EzineArticles makes to its’ members! The only way we can reach our goal of being our members highest non-search engine referrer of traffic is by outbound links from the Resource Box of every article we host. Last month, over 3.62 MILLION outbound visitors left EzineArticles to surf the sites of our members.

You’d be floored if I showed you how many thousands of our members have submitted great articles that we had to reject because the links in their articles went to “UNDER CONSTRUCTION” websites or their articles talked about one subject and then they linked to something absolutely completely and utterly having nothing to do with their expertise or what they just shared in the article (we view this as user-deception (regardless as to if it was on purpose or not)).

Get this: Right now we have 951 articles soft-rejected because the link in their resource box goes to a dead/invalid website. Dead links provide a poor user experience obviously.

The stakes are huge and thus, the strictness will continue to rise as it has since day one. This ensures value for those who continue to get their articles accepted every day without any problems.

Pennys Blog Debut

Penny, Managing Editor of EzineArticles.comI would like to introduce myself as I will be playing a part in future blog discussions with you. Here’s a little more about me:

Q: So what do you do at EzineArticles.com?

A: I manage the Editorial team which consists of Editors, the Quality Control Team, Training, and Member Support. My role is in building efficiencies in what they do and ensuring that we are delivering good timely service & consistency in our review processes (a real challenge).

Q: What is your favorite past-time?

A: I love to read when I have the time. Although I enjoy the luxury and convenience of the Amazon Kindle, I still appreciate the warmth and neverland feeling a physical book brings to me. I did read the entire set of the Encyclopedia Britannica’s just for fun. Geek, I know.

Q: What is your favorite sport?

A: Running, hands down. I don’t do it as much I would like but I try to get a minimum of 10-15 hard miles a week.

Q: Who is your Idol?

A: Leonardo da Vinci – A man with that many minds has to be idolized.

Q: What do you do “off hours”?

A: Is there such a thing? :) I love to spend time with my husband and children and take spontaneous road trips.

Q: Who would you want to if you were not born you?

A: Winston Churchill. Self-Explanatory

Q: What is your favorite color:

A: Green – Everything good for you is green.

Q: What was one memorable event in the last year?

A: I walked on burning coals with Tony Robbins and I did not burn my feet!

Q: If offered a plane ticket with a destination of your choice, where would you go?

A: Okinawa, Japan. I love learning and experiencing new culture.

I hope you enjoyed the introduction and I look forward to learning and discussing article writing & marketing topics with you as they relate to helping you have a positive user/member experience with us.

Building Your Fan Base Update

Two months ago we launched a feature that allows your readers to subscribe via email to be alerted whenever you have a new article accepted.

While this feature hasn’t taken off like a rocket ship, we are now managing 2,957 permission-based email subscribers (86% growth over October 2008) on behalf of 2,273 unique expert authors.

The top member has 32 subscribers, the 2nd and 3rd have 20 subscribers each and so forth.

Obviously no one is going to fall over in their chair and be blown away with this feature today; But a year from now I believe the organic growth alone will make this feature become important enough that you’ll notice it… Especially older members – will be more rewarded than newer members due to having “face time” to attract more email subscribers.

Ideally, I’d like us to be able to attract 7,000-12,000 double opt-in email subscribers for EVERY single EzineArticles expert author, but know this dream won’t happen overnight.

November Article Challenge Results

EzineArticles 30 Articles in 30 Days Challenge257 members completed the challenge submitting 30 or more articles in November.

This is 30 members less than what was submitted in October (287 members met the 30+ mark) w/out the challenge of encouragement; BUT the total # of overall articles submitted were 11% higher than in October despite October having 1 more day than November (31 days vs. 30 days).

One thing is for sure: We heard from countless members who went beyond their comfort zone including those who didn’t meet the 30 article quantity challenge goal still ended up doing more than they thought they could do. The old saying is something like, “shoot for the stars, land on the moon – and that’s still more than most will ever accomplish in their lifetime”…

There is no challenge scheduled for December, but you can count on several in 2009.

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