Essential Programs For Your Virtual Toolbox
By Kim Roach (c) 2006
As an online marketer and webmaster, there are a number of tools that you will want in your virtual toolbox. To get you started, I have scoured the net to find some of the best programs to help webmasters improve their sites, their rankings, and their productivity. Best of all, each one of these tools is free. We’ll start with one of my favorites.
Good Keywords is a program that allows you to quickly and easily create an extensive list of targeted keywords for your website using Yahoo, Ask, and Overture. This frëe tool comes loaded with a link popularity meter, a keyword phrase builder, a misspelled word generator, and a web page explorer tool that will allow you to quickly see what keywords other sites are targeting. Once you have found your desired keywords, you can group them into keyword sets, which can then be copied into your clipboard. To find out more about this handy tool, go to http://www.goodkeywords.com.
It is a well-known fact that search engines use link popularity as one of their top ranking factors. However, quality is much more important than quantity when obtaining inbound links. In addition, many of the search engines place importance on the use of relevant anchor text. With a tool known as Backlinks Master, you can monitor your link popularity in Google, Yahoo, and MSN. This tool finds direct links, JavaScrípt links, and others. In addition, you will be shown the anchor text and link type that others have used to link to you. To start taking control of your link popularity, go to CleverStat.com.
SEOpen is a Firefox extension that provides numerous SEO tools at the clíck of a mouse. All of its features can be easily accessed by right-clicking on a web page.
Using this tool, you can examine your competitors:
Yahoo BacklinksPages in Yahoo IndexGoogle BacklinksGoogle CachePages in Google indexGoogle RelatedPageRank ReviewMSN BacklinksPages in MSN IndexAlexa OverviewAlexa TraffícAlexa RelatedAlexa Backlinks“Mass Chëck” multiple sources at onceConfirm DMOZ InclusionKeyword DensityPage Size CheckerHTML ValidatorServer Header ViewerWayback MachineReview robots.txt
To quickly and easily perform competitor analysis, visit http://seopen.com/firefox-extension/index.php.
Active Web Reader Customizer
RSS is becoming one of the best ways to increase your online exposure. With the upcoming release of Windows Vista and Internet Explorer 7, RSS usage is expected to rise significantly. However, RSS is also new enough that you can use this technology to create an effective viral marketing campaign.
You can do this by distributing your own RSS aggregator. If your RSS aggregator becomes popular, your brand could become very well known on the Internet. With the Active Web Reader Customizer, you can recommend and distribute an RSS reader that is preloaded with your feeds and web pages. By doing this, you are giving your visitor additional value and increasing your brand exposure at the same time. Start creating your very own customized RSS reader at http://www.deskshare.com/awrc.aspx.
We’ve talked about the wonderful benefits of promoting an RSS feed, but how do you actually create one. Fortunately, you don’t have to be a techie to create your very own RSS feed. All you need is a tool like RSS Wizard. This tool will automatically convert almost any web page into an RSS feed. With the RSS Wizard, you can create, edit and publish an unlimíted number of RSS channels. To start creating your own RSS feeds, go to http://www.extralabs.net/rss-wizard.htm.
Not only can you create RSS feeds for your own website, but you can also incorporate other peoples’ RSS feeds into your site to increase your publishing power, deliver value to your readers, and ensure that your website is constantly up-to-date and changing. In fact, with a tool called FeedDigest, you can mix multiple feeds into a single feed to post on your website. By doing this, you will be able to deliver your visitors a unique mix of automatically updating content. You could also create a news dashboard to syndicate the latest news on any topic. The possibilities are unlimíted. You could create a feed that combined forum posts, news headlines, Ebay items, Digg posts, Flickr photos and even podcasts all rolled into one, constantly updating stream of related content. To start creating your own customized RSS feeds, go to http://www.feeddigest.com.
If you’re like most online marketers, you are probably receiving a flood of sp@m in your inbox. Fortunately, there is a frëe tool that will help remedy your sp@m problems. This software is known as MailWasher and it helps you eliminate your unwanted email, thus allowing you to have greater productivity. Best of all, this increased productivity ultimately leads to increased revenues. Start increasing your own productivity at http://oss.firetrust.com/home/.
Audacity is an open source program that allows you to record live audio, edit audio files, cut, copy, slice and mix sounds together. Whether you are looking to record interviews, create your own podcasts, or edit your audio files, Audacity is a great solution. Look it over at http://audacity.sourceforge.net/.
CamStudio is a great piece of software for creating screen capture videos. This software records screen activity from the Windows desktop and then turns it into standard AVI movie files. In fact, CamStudio can then convert these AVI files into bandwidth-friendly Streaming Flash Videos (SWFs) with its built-in SWF Producer. These are great for creating info products, video tutorials, and software demonstrations. In terms of quality and price, there is simply no better solution for Screen Cam software. Try it out at http://www.camstudio.org.
About The Author
Kim Roach is a staff writer and editor for the SiteProNews and SEO-News newsletters. You can also find additional tips and news on webmaster and SEO topics by Kim at the SiteProNews blog. Kim’s email is: kim @ seo-news.com