I give up – Google Wins

784060_padlock_and_chain After dropping from PR4 to PR1, and then today getting whacked from PR1 to PR0, I’ve pretty much had it with Google. Over the past two years Google has never really been a friend to this site. It didn’t just start when I started selling text links and reviews, it’s been pretty much the whole time.

Google traffic isn’t the Holy Grail of all things internet, but without it, things can be tough. Green Llama doesn’t bring in enough money in it’s current state to justify putting anymore work into it. The only way to change that would be to increase traffic. Google’s penalties make this difficult – an uphill battle that I don’t care to pursue. My time is better spent on my other sites, rather than this one.

In any case, I’m done here. Google wins. The Green Llama is no more. Good game.

Logo Designer Needed

I’m in need of a logo for a future project. I am awful at all things graphic, so I turn to you. Anyone out there have some skill in the area of graphic design? I have an interesting idea for a logo, and I’d like to see it brought to life. Drop me a comment here if you have the skills, or use my contact form. Don’t forget to let me know how much you charge.

Why PR Still Matters

As we’re still seeing updates from Google’s recent Pagerank slap, the word on the street ( and by street I mean Interweb ) is that PR is meaningless, and no one should be concerned about a PR drop. I say this couldn’t be further from the truth.

Advertisers today look for hard metrics to help decide where they should spend their money. Currently, pagerank and Alexa rank are two of the biggest metrics. They are hard numbers, that in some way, shape, or form, measure the quality / traffic of a website. Without some sort of common metric, how is an advertiser to determine where his dollars are best spent?

Until a better system comes along, Pagerank matters, and it matters big time. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise, and don’t think otherwise yourself. It’s certainly not the only thing that matters, but it does matter.

Make Money Online with Shopping Ads

Media Whiz, better known as the owners of Text Link Ads, just released a new product to the public – Shopping Ads. The first thing that comes to mind when you visit the Shopping Ads site is – damn, this sure looks familiar. The interface is nearly identical to that of the Auction Ads website. That’s not to say it doesn’t look nice, just that it’s completely unoriginal.

What is Shopping Ads?

Shopping Ads is a CPC ( cost per click ) based ad network, unlike the CPA ( cost per action ) based Auction Ads. That means, of course, that you get paid anytime someone clicks on one of the ads. It doesn’t matter if the merchant is able to convert that click into a signup or a sale, you get paid regardless. Patrick Gavin from Text Link Ads says that the CPC’s are in the $.20 range, which could be good or bad for you, depending on how your site performs with other ad networks. There are plenty of ad formats available, including the popular 468×60, 336×280, 300×250, 125×125 and plenty more. Pretty much all the ad sizes you’re used to with Adsense and Auction Ads are available.

How do I get paid?

Paypal is currently the only available payment method. They are planning on adding some additional options – likely check and direct deposit. Since the company is owned by Media Whiz, there’s no reason to think that payments won’t be exactly on time as they always are. I wasn’t able to find a minimum payout listed on the site though – hopefully they’ll add that information soon.

Can you use Shopping Ads with Adsense?

Absolutely. Not only are Shopping Ads not contextual ( you set the keywords ), Google doesn’t even care about that anymore. As long as the ads can’t be confused for Google Ads, you’re in the clear.

Does Shopping Ads have any potential?

It’s way too soon to tell. I never jumped on the Auction Ads bandwagon, mainly because I didn’t like the CPA model they use. Since Shopping Ads uses a CPC model instead, I am tempted to give them a go at least, and see what happens. Perhaps a week of testing wouldn’t hurt. For all I know, they may perform better than Adsense Ads, and help me move away from my heavy reliance on Google at the same time.

Shopping Ads also has an affiliate program, but the user has to sign up by clicking the “Ads by Shopping Ads” link on the actual ad unit. How about some banners / button ads / regular old affiliate links? I’m sure these are in the works, and will be out soon. I can’t help but think that Media Whiz rushed Shopping Ads to market a little bit with the recent scare over Google and their hatred for paid links. So do you plan on trying Shopping Ads or are you going to sit this one out?

Prioritize your tasks better

No matter what stage you’re at in your quest to make money online – whether you’re just starting out, already getting established, or a big name in the game, you need to learn to manage your time. There is only a finite amount of time in each day, and most of us only have a small amount of that time available to us for making money online. To make the most of that time you need to figure out what is most important and pressing.

For this, I like to bust out the old fashioned legal pad notepad and a pen. I know, it sounds archaic – and many of you are probably scoffing right now. But sometimes it’s best to get things on pen and paper, rather than keyboard and monitor. Make a list of all your tasks and goals, and start to assign an importance level. When doing this, keep in mind profitability of each task, or potential profitability. Remember, the entire point of this is to maximize the amount of money you make.

After a tad bit of antagonizing, you should be able to write up a new list, with the most important items first. The most important, of course, being those which will make you the most money. The other stuff can wait – it’s simply not as important. Now that you have your list, feel free to pull out the keyboard again and get to work. As you finish each item on the list, cross it off. Not only are you more effective and efficient, you can watch your progress as the items on the list disappear.

Theme Refresh Uploaded

I finished making the updates that I wanted, and uploaded the new theme. Strangely, everything appears to be working. That never, ever happens when I make any coding changes – there’s always something that breaks unexpectedly. But everything appears to be ok in Firefox and IE 7 at least. If you’re using some funky browser, then really, you should upgrade.

What did I change?

Not much really. I changed the subscription options – you can now subscribe to Green Llama via email. I also removed the comments subscription link because, really, who uses that?

The 4 125×125 ads are now prominently featured in the top right sidebar, just below my all-important subscription choices. There is still 1 free spot left, at least for the time being. If you want it, follow the directions.

The chronological Archives are no longer featured in my sidebar – they are only on the Archives page. If you want to follow the blog by month, that’s the place to do it. Less links on the main page is a good thing.

I also consolidated my categories, and got rid of probably 10 or so. Though there are now more category links in the sidebar, I didn’t have to pick at chose – they’re all showing.

Top commentators is gone. If you were on the list, then my apologies. I’m doing my best to reduce my outgoing links – I had way, way too many.

I added a sitewide disclaimer. If you have any questions about my motivation or knowledge, read it.

I also updated my About and Advertise pages.

That’s it?

Right about now you’re probably quite underwhelmed. I can’t say I blame you – I didn’t do much. This was just a theme refresh – not an overhaul. My focus was on cleaning up the design, and moving a lot of links off the sidebar. Google hates pages with too many links, and Google already hates me. Anything I can do to get on their good side is a step in the right direction, I suppose.

If I had the cash laying around, I’d likely pony up for a custom theme. Unfortunately that’s not in the cards right now, especially right after buying a new computer. If someone were to give me the money though…. but that’s a topic for another post.

Anyway, if you do find something that doesn’t seem to work right ( dead link, formatting problem ), then leave me a comment here and I’ll fix it.

 

GreenLlama

    Green Llama is a place to learn about making money online. Any ideas or walk-through's I have, I'll post here for your enjoyment. I also do product and online service reviews.

    However, I tend to run off on tangets quite often. I call this part of the site 'random crap'. Basically I'll go off and post about whatever I want, just to keep things interesting. Have fun and stay tuned.