measure the quality of your site

December 3, 2009

Pulled from


The Rundown: Userfly gives you the ability to watch videos of real users on your website. By adding a single line of JavaScript to your code, you can see every mouse movement and click your visitors make. The interface is easy to use and well designed. You can try it for free, but you’re limited to 10 captures per month. Basic plans start at $10 per month.

The Benefit: While watching videos of your users may seem a little creepy at first, it can provide you with insights that you would never have come up with using a quantitative analytics package. The first time I used it, I noticed a user get stuck on a page with a bad link. His mouse wandered back and forth until he finally abandoned ship. Needless to say, I quickly corrected the issue.

5 second test

The Rundown: Just like it sounds, Five Second Test is a “simple online usability test that helps you identify the most prominent elements of your user interface”, according to Angry Monkeys, the founding company out of Melbourne, Australia. Once you’ve posted a visual, random visitors can take part in a test where they are asked to write down the top 5 things they remember from your piece after only 5 seconds.

The Benefit: The concept is great, and the tool is easy to use and very simple. If you get enough people to take your test, you start to see some interesting patterns, including what people noticed most, and perhaps more importantly, what they didn’t. The only problem is, after 45 days, I only had 12 results. This could stem from a lack of users, or an overabundance of concepts. So, if you do try this tool (and I recommend it – it’s free!), make sure to take advantage of the invite tools to give your concept more visibility and better results.


The Rundown: Usabilla is a nice tool that allows you to collect feedback on wireframes, mockups or webpages. Participants point and click to share their opinion using markers and notes. Usabilla provides visual feedback as well as the reports and statistics to analyze the results. In their own words, “Usabilla provides you insight in the attitude and opinion of your users.” Although it is currently in beta, it’s also free, so get it while it’s hot!

The Benefit: The great thing about Usabilla is that it provides visual feedback. The tool is easy to use and administer, plus you can customize the questions asked based on your needs. One drawback is that, like Five Second Test, you are required to invite your own participants to provide feedback. If your network is relatively small, you may not be able to come up with the results you’re looking for.


The Rundown: Loop11 is an online tool for gathering unmoderated usability testing. In a nutshell, the system is an overlay on your website which allows you to present specific tasks on your website to participants. For example, you might say, “Find the contact information on this website”. The user can then navigate the site and either select “Task Completed” or “Abandoned”. Reporting tools give you the ability to see statistics like task completion rate, time per task and most common navigation path. Sound valuable? It sure is, but it also comes with a $350 price tag. Fortunately you can try it once for free.

The Benefit: Loop11 provides the context that both Userfly and ClickTale lack, however, by its nature, participants must be invited and are not live visitors. Despite that, Loop11 helps you understand typical behavior on your website and is great for improving navigation and conversion paths. If nothing else, give the free trial a spin and see what you can discover about your site and how people use it. What you find may surprise you.


The Rundown: Like Loop11, provides unmoderated usability testing, except this time they provide the users. The premise is simple, you provide the demographic you’re looking for, the number of users you would like and what tasks you want them to perform on your site. When the testing is over, you can access videos (usually 15-20 minutes each -watch a sample) that allow you to watch and listen to the participants, as well as read a written summary describing the problems they found. Prices start at $29 for a single user.

The Benefit: is great because it makes live user testing affordable. I recently used it on one of my websites and came across some interesting insights that I would have otherwise overlooked. It’s not fully disclosed as to how they find their participants, but fortunately they provide a one-year money-back guarantee.


The Rundown: CrazyEgg is an advanced heatmap tool. For those of you unfamiliar with heatmaps, they provide a visual representation of where your visitors are clicking. Over time, you start to see how your users are interacting with your site. With CrazyEgg, you add some JavaScript to your website and setup a test for a specific page on your website for a defined amount of time. Once the test is complete, you can view the page in a variety of formats, including overlay, confetti, list and heatmap (see a demo). Basic plan starts at $9/month which includes 10,000 visits across 10 different pages.

The Benefit: Unlike the heatmap offered in Google Analytics, CrazyEgg shows each and every unique click on your page. It also allows you to segment clicks by traffic source, giving you some powerful information. The best thing about a visual is that you can come to an educated conclusion quickly, without wading through data and numbers. I was able to make some minor, but important, changes to my homepage after just a few minutes in CrazyEgg. So whether you use CrazyEgg or not, you should give heatmaps a chance.


The Rundown: Kampyle is a small tab that sits at the edge of each web page, allowing you to collect, analyze and manage your website visitor’s feedback. The feedback form is easy to use and its simple structure lets you organize feedback in to various categories, like bugs, suggestions, compliments and site content. Real time reports let you analyze the data and a built-in response system makes it easy to respond to customer inquiries. The free package includes 1 form and 50 items. Basic packages start at $99 per month.

The Benefit: Whether you are interested in actively administering usability tests or not, Kampyle is a passive tool that gives your users the opportunity to provide feedback on each page of your site. With Kampyle’s reporting tools, you are able to get feedback 24/7 from real visitors. Having it present on every page gives you a better understanding of your website, it’s bright spots, as well as needed improvements. Unfortunately, for those of you with a pretty website, the large orange tab might not be a welcome addition.


The Rundown: Like Userfly, ClickTale gives you the ability to watch videos of real users on your website. However, ClickTale also provides a number of extra features, including heat maps, link analytics and form analytics. The reporting tools are impressive, and go in to great detail, sometimes more than you need. While they do offer a free plan, paid subscriptions start at $99 per month.

The Benefit: One drawback, and common complaint about both Userfly and ClickTale, is the lack of context (meaning audio or user intent). While it would be ideal to understand why a user chose the path that they did, something is better than nothing. In the end, ClickTale provides a lot of bang for the buck if you can take advantage of the data it provides.

Google Website optimiser

The Rundown: Google Website Optimizer (GWO) is a free website testing and optimization tool that lets you test and optimize site content and design. Upload a few variations of a web page and GWO will serve them in an alternating pattern to your visitors. Behind the scenes, GWO’s reporting tools are monitoring which combinations lead to the highest conversion rates. At the end of the test, you’ll have a definitive result, allowing you to continually optimize your designs and improve site performance.

The Benefit: While GWO may not be a purely qualitative tool, it should be one of the most important in your toolbelt. Using some of the tools listed above, you can come to better conclusions about which designs and layouts should work best, but GWO provides a real-life litmus test. GWO takes the guesswork out of design and gives you a virtual laboratory to test your assumptions.

Copyscape: search for citations of your website/blog on the web

Search Engines

June 5, 2009

Alexa-is a California-based subsidiary company of that is known for its toolbar and website. Once installed, the toolbar collects data on browsing behavior which is transmitted to the website where it is stored and analyzed and is the basis for the company’s web traffic reporting.

Altavista-is a web search engine owned by Yahoo!. AltaVista was once one of the most popular search engines but its popularity has waned due to the rise of Google. tool owned by Yahoo and using its database, but presenting results differently. Also offers news, picture, video, and audio search. Ask Jeeves in the United Kingdom) is a search engine started in 1996 by Garrett Gruener and David Warthen in Berkeley, California. The original search engine software was implemented by Gary Chevsky from his own design. Chevsky, Justin Grant, and others built the early website around that core engine. Three venture capital firms, Highland Capital Partners, Institutional Venture Partners, and The RODA Group were early investors.[1] is currently owned by IAC/InterActiveCorp under the NASDAQ symbol IACI.

Google– the top current Search Engine. If you don’t know Google than you really need to catch up. Stats can be found here.

Bing– There is a description here. Stats can be found here. “A feature called Hover displays a brief summary of each Web page when your cursor is hovering over the right edge of a link, and this can save you from visiting a useless page. As another time-saving feature, to further save searchers from clicking to another page, Bing answers medical queries by featuring information from the Mayo Clinic at the top of the results page. Videos on Bing start playing when you move your cursor over a thumbnail still image from the video, without requiring you to press play or go to a new page; the videos stop when you mouse elsewhere. A query about a company usually returns its customer-service phone number at the top of the results page. Shopping, restaurant reviews and travel are also significantly enhanced by Bing.”

WolframAlpha– the first step in an ambitious, long-term project to make all systematic knowledge immediately computable by anyone. Enter your question or calculation, and Wolfram|Alpha uses its built-in algorithms
and a growing collection of data to compute the  answer. Based on a new kind of knowledge-based computing…

Yahoo– stats can be found here.

Baidu Stats are here. (Chinese: ; pinyin: Bǎidù) (NASDAQBIDU) is the leading Chinese search engine for websites, audio files, and images. Baidu offers 57 search and community services including an online collaboratively-built encyclopedia (Baidu Baike), and a searchable keyword-based discussion forum.[2] In October 2008, Baidu ranked 9 th overall in Alexa’s internet rankings.[3] In December 2007 Baidu became the first Chinese company to be included in the NASDAQ-100 index.[4] From wikipedia

Lycos is your source for all the Web has to offer — search, free online games, e-mail, free blogs & websites, videos & movies, news, weather and more

Hotbot-is one of the early Internet search engines and was launched in May 1996 as a service of Wired Magazine. It was launched using a “new links” strategy of marketing, claiming to update its search database more often than its competitors. It also offered free webpage hosting, but only for a short time, and it was taken down without any notice to its users. It was one of the first search engines to offer the ability to search within search results. Though competitive when it was acquired by Lycos in 1998, HotBot has in recent years reduced its scope. Today the website is merely a front end for third-party search engines, and MSN, as well as Lycos’ own The site still exists, however it is run by Yahoo! mainly.

People seach engine– find people according to their name, username, etc.

Additional Search engines found here (Wikipedia). Also includes mobile Search Engines.

PR Agencies online

June 5, 2009

Paid PR Distribution service $80-$360
  $80 – Standard
  $140 – Social Media Visibility
  $200 -SEO Visibility
  $360 – Media Visibility  
  $49 – Basic
  $99 – Plus
  $149 – Premium  
   $Free -30
  1 -Premier
  5 – Promoted
  30 -Customized $Free – 50
  $10 -Gold 
  $25 -Platinum
  $50- Diamond  
   $Free – $475
  Premimum $120-399
  Premiuim Auto Input $475 $Free-69.95
  24.95 – Swift
  44.95 – State
  69.95 – Regional  
  $99 – Podcast
  $100 -SEO Service
  $299 – Video News Release
  $299 – Mobile Video Release VERY VARIABLE
  $49 -69 Dolars a Month  Miami Area
  $199 -299 a Month  Florida  
   $Free – $349
  Search Engine Plus – $49
  Search Eng. Professional – $89
  Mass Media Distribution – $349 $24.95-99.95
  $24.95 -Basic
  $49.95 Professional
  $99.95 Platinum $12-15
   $Free – $25
  Featured – $25 $29
  $29 $Free and 25
  $25 $99
*Basic Distribution Major Search Engines: Google News, Yahoo, etc

Blog directories

May 19, 2009

from here

1. Best of the Web Blog Search La Crem de la Crem, Best of the Web’s Blog Directory is very selective and only lists aged and valuable blogs. A link from here is majestic and well deserved.

2. Bloggeries has the best categories and subcategories home page on the internet. The layout is clear and concise, and readers are able to find what they are looking for in a snap!

I am really liking what Rob is doing with Bloggeries and this is bound to be one of the premier Blog Directories on the web.

3. EatonWeb Blog Directory is a real jewel with many aged inbound links and a blog rating system. You may have to pay a fee for your blog to be reviewed, but like Yahoo, the review fee is well worth the few dollars.

4. Blog Hub offers a drop down category and member blog list. With its “new blogger” list and hot topics, Blog Hub is a great directory to list your site.

5. is an interesting mix of a blog directory and a Google News type site which fuels its news feed from the blogs listed on the site. is very impressive and is free to list your blog.

6. One of the most selective Blog Directories on the web (and WordPress powered), Blog Search Engine is owned by Performancing’s parent company and serves search results powered by IceRocket.

7. Blog Catalog features a vast directory of categories, from academic to writing, while offering the ability to search by country, language, or user. It has a no frills design, but offers convenient member access through simple blog registration.

8. Globe of Blogs has too many features to list. In order to be listed on the site, the blog must not be commercial. The site may appear to be busy, but I like the features of being able to search by title, author, or subject. Narrowing the search becomes easier on this blog.

9. The ultimate directory of British blogs connotes all things British. It is not directed by location, but by the culture! It is asked that bloggers be genuinely “britished.” Being listed in this blog reaches readers all the way across the pond!

10. Blog Universe is the perfect place to promote your video or podcast themed blog. Its layout is easy to navigate. Although the content is limited, it is an all around good directory site worthy of submission.

11. Bigger Blogs is a relatively new blog directory with only a few blogs registered. The blog is intertwined with a business directory. The blog section is difficult to find, and it is located through a link on the right side of the business directory page. However, the benefit is that the earlier you are accepted on a blog directory, the more exposure your blog will obtain. In addition, a back link is indeed a back link, so this can help with your search engine placement.

12. Upon visiting Bloggernity, you find a crisp, clean, and easy to navigate site. Scrolling down, you find the new blogs. As there is little advertising on the home page, it is pleasant to the eye of the reader as well.

13. Bloggapedia has an interesting and eye catching homepage. Readers are easily connected to the top blogs and newest posts. Innovative categories and a colorful design make this blog directory a hit.

14. Spillbean is a well-designed blog directory site with categories such as health, society, internet, and personal. The site is aesthetically pleasing, but there are not many listings yet.

15. Blogging Fusion is a blog with over sixty categories. These categories include photo blogs and family focused blogs. Blogging Fusion has an good amount of blog listings within the directory, and it also has visitor stats available.

16. Blogflux is not only a tool for bloggers, but a directory that has the listings in alphabetic order. The blog listings are organized and clear. It is definitely an effective blog directory in which to be listed.

17. The blogs on the top listings of Bloglisting are fun, colourful, and catch the attention of the reader. Bloglisting displays the page ranking blogs, which is a helpful tool when determining with whom you want to exchange links.

18. Blogio may be a small blog directory with few listings, but it worthy of a submission. Despite its small size, there are quality blogs and a solid ability to search on this site.

19. Blog Explosion claims to be the largest blog promoter on the internet. They have a vast directory but do not seem to have direct links. However, the listing in the directory can still show up in SERP’s, so keep this in mind.

20. Super Blog Directory is a great site that offers tools to posters that others do not. You can see the latest submitted links and blogs on the site, which is a perk that draws traffic into the directory.

21. Dirrblog Seo friendly web directory with pre-defined categories for adding your blog.

22. Bloglines keeps a personal account where you can aggregate the blogs that you like and learn about new blogs created that are relevant to your interests.


Words that begin with “Y”

April 24, 2009

Yahoo Pipes A free service from Yahoo that allows users to build very complex aggregation tools, called Pipes. The Pipes can be either kept private or shared publically. Yahoo Pipes is a very comprehensive tool, however I would not recommend it for someone without significant technical skills.

yfrog: Since yfrog comes from the guys behind ImageShack(), you can bet it is going to be extremely simple, with a singular purpose in mind. Upload, log in, share — that’s it, but that’s all you need, right?


Convert videos for android and iPhone here.

Words that begin with “X”

April 24, 2009

Xinu Xinu measures the status of your site in several search engines and social media sites. It also provides some simple diagnostic tools to allow you to improve your site.

Social Media studies

April 3, 2009

Search engines for recent audience studies:

Pew Internet publishes reports regarding internet use among various demographics. Scarborough issues press releases with useful data and sometimes publishes free studies. Also look for free studies by Arbitron. You may be surprised what you can find just by doing a search in Google.

EU youth prefer video games to social networking

08-Dec-09, 10:08

LONDON – Teenagers are still spending more time watching television than they do online, and only 40% of them regularly use social networks, research suggests.

A report published by Forrester looking at the media habits of 12- to 17-year-olds in the European Union found that teenagers said they spent an average of 10.3 hours a week watching television, compared with 9.1 hours surfing the internet for personal reasons.

Both activities, however, trailed behind videogaming, with kids in the EU playing around 11.7 hours a week playing games on consoles and via computer. Forrester notes in the report that gaming is seen as a social activity, with teens far more likely to play computer games at friends’ houses than adults.

Social Media and ROI in marketing


Social Media and Health 2.0

ePatient White Paper

CMOs and underusing digital marketing

Words that begin with “K”

March 27, 2009

Keywords and how to come up with them: Google Keyword tips and make your own Google add here with instructions here. A keyword is a single word from within a search phrase. In the phrase “cordless phone” the individual keywords are “cordless” …

Read more: “How to Change the World: Looking for Mr. Goodtweet: How to Pick Up Followers on Twitter” –

Words that begin with “Z”

March 27, 2009
  • ZDNet. If you want to push out info-tech links for nerds and geeks, it’s hard to beat ZDNet. Just about every day there’s some story that will interest the 95% of the world that uses Windows. ZDNet pushes out email notification here, and its RSS feed is here. Sample: “In Depth Look at Windows 7.”
  • Read more: “How to Change the World: Looking for Mr. Goodtweet: How to Pick Up Followers on Twitter” –


    March 18, 2009

    103bees is another good service which will give you some nice info like which keywords on Google or Yahoo brought you the visitors (also which Google or yahoo, US, Uk, etc)