The Technorati Blog Finder is a new feature (still in beta) at Technorati which is aimed to help people find authoratitive blogs. The problem with blogs is tied to the blessing of blogs. Namely, there's so dang many of them! How can you find the best of the crowd?
How do they determine "authority"? Simple, by the number of links to a specific blog. They figure that a blog that gets referred to often must have something important to say.
Blogging requires the use some specialised software to do the blogging. One writes an article, and the blog software takes care of organizing that article into the set of web pages that contain the whole blog. The software maintains several index's, plus creates RSS feeds and participates in the ping and trackback protocols. Additionally the software often lets readers add comments to a blog entry.
If you have an existing site, of which the Blog is to be a part, one route is to get blog software and install it yourself in your site. This path also gives you some additional control, because all the writings are stored on your server. If you were instead to use an existing site, what happens if (or when) that company goes out of business? Will your writings be lost?
Google has launched a new service aimed to help webmasters understand their website traffic. The service is derived from the service offered by Urchin, a company they bought earlier this year. Analytics is easy to integrate with your website, and produces an excellent array of reports.
Accessing the service: Go to the Google Analytics home page. Signing up with the service is free, except for some advanced reporting capabilities.
Say you want to publish a list of appearances. That's easy for most people, just make a web page and list the dates, times, places, etc you will be speaking. Then later you must remember to remove the old entries and add new ones.
There's a commonly held observation that one way to draw visitors back to your web site, is to keep a good quality set of links to related sites and resources. You want more visitors, and repeat visitors, or you wouldn't be making a web site, would you?
A links directory is one or more pages listing links to web sites. A good quality links directory can be a treasure trove to someone, which they will promote for you to all their friends.
The trouble is, what's the best way to maintain the links directory? What if links go stale? How do you detect it?
There's something that may or may not be obvious when you run an online community. A webmaster may arrive at running an online community through thinking "Oh, if I just add a message board to my site, it'll increase the traffic, I can put Adsense on the forum, and advertising income will skyrocket", which it may. But what of the consequences? Operating a community involves dealing with people, and not everybody who visits your forum has the best of intentions. That's why bars hire bouncers, after all.
Having a strong leadership is essential for an online community. The role the leadership has is in focusing the agenda and purpose of the community. Another role the leadership has is the maintanence and operation of the web site. They make sure the bills get paid, the software runs, it gets fixed when it crashes, the security is adequate for the community needs, and so forth.
Do you know what online community is? Can you recognize when you're really forming an online community? Let's go over a few examples so you can recognize it when the community is forming, in the hope that you will then be more easily able to manage the process.
In the 1990's when the Web was new, the marketeers noticed the stickiness effect. They wanted sticky visitors, because the longer a visitor stayed on the web site the more likely it was for them to click on an advertisement or take some other action to ring a cash register somewhere.