This is an article by Jeff Wend which I just received in my inbox.
After using Squidoo for about a year and a half, I have found there are several things users can do to help generate quality traffic to lenses from other websites and search engines. One of the most important things you can do is create incoming links to your lens through various Web 2.0 sites.
The first step is to get organized. I created a folder in my browser tabs called Web 2.0 sites. From there, I place the various Web 2.0 sites that I use after signing up and creating accounts. As soon as I publish a lens, I make my way down the list and create links to my lens from each of these sites. Give it a try!
The sites I use most often are listed below:
1. Facebook – This is one of the best ways to get traffic to your lens. After creating an account, search for groups on your topic. Once you join the group, you can often add the link to the group page. If this option is not available, start a discussion and ask a question with your link as a reference or you can do the same thing on the wall. The key is to not spam the group! Be sure to make quality, relevant comments that add to the group and not take away. Remember that both your name, and Squidoo’s name is at stake. I have seen several lensmasters get chastised for posting spam comments with links to their lenses. This really looks bad and is a big no-no.
2. MySpace – MySpace is another popular and effective way to gain traffic and links. Post a link to your lens in your intro or any of the other “About Me” modules. Start a blog through MySpace and leave reviews of your lenses as you create them. Again, the key here is to add quality content. Quality content is the way to captivate viewers and get them to take action by visiting your lens.
3. YouTube – It is insanely easy to make a video and post it on YouTube. Sign up, add your video, and insert several keywords and keyword phrases to attract viewers from search engines and YouTube searches. Add a link to your lens and give a call to action in the video’s description. YouTube is well loved by the search engines and a great way to pick up traffic.
4. Yahoo! Answers – You need a Yahoo e-mail address to log in (free to get). Then, you can either ask a question about your lens’s theme or topic and add a link and wait for the answers to pour in, or you can search for questions on your lens’s topic and post an answer with a link to your lens. Again, the key is NOT to spam. Make your comments or questions sound “real” and remember to add to Yahoo Answers with quality input.
5. Clipmarks – Clipmarks is very easy to use, and even comes with a button you can add to your browser. To use it, click the button, highlight some text from your lens, and hit save. From there you add a quick review and keywords.
7. Digg – On Digg, people share what they feel is the best stuff on the Net. Squidoo has a Digg button on each lens. You might generate a little bit of traffic through Digg, but the trick to getting real long-term traffic by putting up plenty of quality links and news stories on your blog so they can get bookmarked by visitors. You want to digg more than just your own lenses. Digg what you consider to be the best of what the web has to offer and others will soon follow you by friending and reading your posts.
8. Faves – Faves is a really easy way to pick up links, and also offers a browser button. After publishing a lens, I hit the Faves button and add it to my list. When you Fave your lens, you can rate it, add tags and leave a review.
9. Feedbite – With Feedbite you create what is called a bundle, or news blog. Write a couple of paragraphs on the topic of your lens and put the link to your lens in the title of the short article. Others will vote up or down your article and the most popular articles get a pretty decent amount of traffic.
10. Gather – Gather is a very active community of writers. To use Gather effectively it is best to write a short article of original content. You can add links to your lens in the keywords placed within your article. Here, you will find nice and helpful people who love to read and review articles and stories.
11. Hubpages – Hubpages is a popular site where you create a Hub, which is basically an article. Within the article you can place a link to your lens in a keyword. The key to Hubpages, like Gather, is writing quality original content and not abusing the link system by overdoing it. Hubpages shares their AdSense revenue with members, which is a nice perk.
12. Mixx – Mixx’s tag is “your blend of the web”. Submit a link to the mix for others to vote up or down and leave comments. This site is extremely easy to use and it only takes a moment to add a link. Remember to use good keywords when submitting your link, as this helps the right people find your lens.
13. Reddit – Reddit is much like Mixx. It is very easy to add your link, a quick review, and keywords.
14. StumbleUpon – There is a StumbleUpon button on each Squidoo lens and you can also add StumbleUpon to your browser. Give a lens a thumbs up or down, add keywords, and leave a comment. Stumbling your lens can really bring in a decent amount of traffic if used effectively.
15. Twitter – Twitter is a site where people meet, share their thoughts, make friends, and talk about what they are doing. The key here is to take part in the community. Do not simply post link after link to your Squidoo lens. Instead, join in discussions, talk about what you are doing, and from time to time, talk about the lens you may be working on.
16. Zimbio – Zimbio is great! It is very easy to submit your lens and add it to a related group. You can also use your RSS feed from SquidUtils to put your lenses on autofeed – bonus!. Search engines like Zimbio, and I have been able to track sales directly coming from Zimbio traffic.
There are other sites to help build links and traffic for your lenses, but these are some of my favorites. You can use these to help your lens get indexed quicker, to gain traffic, and to become more search engine friendly.
One last thing: I cannot stress enough how important it is to be responsible with Web 2.0 sites. Megan made a great post about this on the Squidblog here. Do not spam, and do not pester others. Instead, contribute with quality content. Be nice to others and leave comments and reviews of others work, as this will help to gain the trust and have others follow your work in return.