20 Important FREE Tools to Increase Your Website’s Exposure

website toolsIn the business of Internet marketing and SEO, your ultimate goal is always going to be to increase traffic to your website so that you can improve the odds of actually getting people to click your link and buy your products. The trouble of course is that in a hyper information saturated world, increasing your website’s exposure is becoming increasingly difficult.

The follow is a smattering of different tools which will help you tremendously in building exposure for your site. Some are specific to WordPress (i.e. plugins for WordPress) and others can be used regardless of the kind of site you are running:

Google Search Stories

I came across this little gem a while back, but this is the first time I’m sharing it here with our readers. Google Search Stories is one of those sites which at first looks like it could just be a great way to waste time but which ultimately could prove highly effective in getting your site noticed.

In essence, Search Stories creates a kind of video where you simply use various keywords to tell a story. It runs the keywords through Google Search and shows the results. So why is this valuable? Two reasons – first and foremost, it’s a super easy way to make a cool looking video which can point to your website. Second, if your search video is chosen as one of the best, it will get profiled on the Google website. You can see an example of a Google Search Stories video on my personal finance channel here.

Staples Facebook Push

Speaking of videos, I ran across this one just recently. It’s really a contest where you can describe your business in 30 seconds or less on a video and then compete for a chance to win a $50,000 campaign from Staples. However, beyond this, I see a value here just for getting exposure for your website. In essence, all the videos are made available and can be voted on. In theory, the most popular one wins.

However, even if you are not the most popular, just getting there with a funny video (entering is free) could gain you some great exposure.

CommentLuv

One of my most popular posts here at the QuantumSEOLabs blog is about whether or not CommentLuv is useful. For those who are not familiar, CommentLuv is a plugin for WordPress which will allow your visitors to leave do follow comments on your blog. It also allows you to have a rolling list of the comments on the front page.

Now while this can definitely increase the number of people who will leave comments (along with the number of spammers – I suggest combing it with a captcha), being part of the CommentLuv network also means being able to find other sites which are CommentLuv enabled and getting your comments onto those sites as well.

The Warrior Forum

I know – regular readers are scratching their heads and saying to themselves, huh? Warrior Forum is great for learning about internet marketing and SEO. But getting exposure for my website? Yep – you see the Warrior Forum has always allowed you to put a link in your signature to your website. It is also an extremely popular website with tens of thousands of active members. This means that a link in your signature will be noticed, especially if you do something related to SEO or Internet Marketing.

By the way, if you want even more exposure, consider buying a graphic signature on the Warrior Forum. Yes, it costs money (and I know this list is supposed to be free tools), but the fact is that it’s well worth your while since it makes you stand out more from the crowd.

WP Testimonials Plugin

Here’s another really useful plugin for WordPress. It simply allows you to get testimonials left on your blog or website. Now while it doesn’t directly improve your exposure since the testimonials remain on your blog rather than getting spread around, it does help because people who leave testimonials are more likely to tell their friends about you.

For those who don’t mind spending a few dollars, I ran across a similar plugin on the Warrior Forum which is supposed to actually allow you to get your testimonials indexed separately by Google using “rich snippets.” I bought a copy myself but haven’t had the time to test it yet all I know is what it says on the page. On the other hand, it’s relatively inexpensive so it certainly can’t hurt to look…

Feed Yes

Everyone should have an RSS feed available for their website. However, if you’re not running a WordPress based site (WordPress creates one automatically for you), then you may not have an RSS feed for your website. Feed Yes is one of those sites that solves the problem for you and does the whole job for free.

There are other tools out there that do this as well, but Feed Yes is free and it is really simple to use (just enter your URL and you’re basically done). The one downside? They will index every link on your page and you then have to manually weed out the pages that shouldn’t be included in a feed (for example, your legal disclaimer doesn’t need to go in).

FeedBurner

Speaking of RSS feeds, FeedBurner is a free service from Google which will allow you to create a better looking feed off of your own feed. Even better, it provides you with additional backlinks. Oh and did I mention that you can link your Adsense account to Feedburner, meaning that you can actually make money from your RSS feed by having relevant ads included in it automatically? It probably won’t make you rich, but it will help out quite a little bit.

Ping.FM

This was another wildly popular post here at Quantum SEO Labs. Ping.FM is a wonderful little tool which will allow you to syndicate your posts and tweets to dozens of different social media sites. You do need to sign up individually for each site (or you can go to Fiverr and find someone to do the job for you), but once you do, there is no charge for using Ping.FM. It’s a really nice system which does wonderful things for you.

HootSuite

Okay, so I’m splitting these two here. Really I use HootSuite in combination with Ping.FM, but the two can be used separately as well. Like Ping.FM, HootSuite allows you to syndicate your stuff to dozens of different websites, including a number of Web 2.0 properties. The thing I love about HootSuite though is that it also allows you to schedule, something which Ping.FM doesn’t do. Now here’s the kicker – you can also sent stuff from HootSuite to Ping.FM, allowing you to schedule everything and get the best of both worlds.

Social Monkee

Yet another way to syndicate to lots of different social networks and bookmarking sites all at one time, Social Monkee is notable for two reasons. First, I find that the sites they offer differ from those of Ping.FM meaning that you can get a broader reach. More importantly than that though, they also support spintax. This is useful if you want each link to count for as much as possible.

What that means is that you can put in something like {this site | that site} is a {really great| super} {resource| source of knowledge} about {internet marketing | SEO}.  This creates a number of different and unique permutations of your comment, all of which should make sense when mashed together. This then gets read by Google as unique content as opposed to syndicated content.

Note that syndicated links –i.e. links where your stuff is syndicated but identical to what you have on your site do help, but unique content links can help even more (which is why people use spinners, though most do a really bad job unless you manually set up spintax).

All In One SEO Pack

Sure it’s an oldy but it’s still a goody. This is another WordPress plugin which will help you to ensure that you have meta tags and other things which are required for your on page SEO. Why does this matter? Well, SEO consists of two parts – creating off page SEO (i.e. backlinks) and creating on page SEO (meaning that your content is easy for sites like Google to index).

Another alternative which does something similar is Platinum SEO Pack. Yasir and I both use Platinum SEO Pack on our sites, but All In One SEO Pack is more popular. Just pick one or the other. They pretty much do the same things though Platinum SEO Pack has one or two extra bells and whistles which advanced users may find exciting.

 

Google SiteMap Generator

Love them or hate them, the Big G is definitely one of the most important parts of getting exposure for your website and you ignore them at your own risk. Now if you want to make sure that your site gets smoothly indexed and noticed by Google, then you do want to make use of their free SiteMap Generator. This thing will create an XML sitemap which resides on your server and which helps Google and other search engines to better index your website.

Sociable

Another WordPress plugin which is vitally important if you are determined to get people to notice your blog or website, Sociable adds in buttons for dozens of social networks, allowing your visitors to click them and automatically add your site to their social networks. This is the ultimate thing when it comes to getting your sites exposure because word of mouth from people who are truly enthusiastic is by far the best kind of exposure.

Twiends

I have mixed feelings about Twiends. In theory, it is a very useful tool for getting exposure for your website or blog because it allows you to add new followers to your Twitter feed (you are posting to Twitter when you put up new stuff on your site, right?) or likes to your Facebook page.

I say in theory, because in my experience it ends up being used by people who want to send out lots of spam tweets and finding real followers can be a challenge. However, there are those who swear by it, so it’s worth checking out.

PR.Com

PR.Com offers both free and paid services so you need to check with them to find out more specifics about what’s available for free and what’s not available for free. However, in brief, they offer you two ways to gain exposure for your website. First, they have a business directory which you can join for free (not terribly valuable, but it certainly can’t hurt).

However, what I find much more interesting that they also offer free press release distribution, meaning that you can get your news release into more hands and maybe even get the mainstream press to do a story about you.

Google News

Speaking of press releases, getting into Google News can be pure gold for your website because it can gain you lots of exposure. Plus, it’s completely free. The catch? You need to be publishing plenty of newsworthy content and you need to have more than one person writing the content on your site (it is after all a news aggregator).

Google Places

Another Google property which is a useful tool for gaining exposure, specifically for local businesses is Google Places. You can put up a profile there and when people do location specific searches (i.e. barber, New York, New York), your site will show up in the Google Places listing.

Submit Free

Another nice little service which has both paid and free versions is Submit Free. It will simply automate the process of submitting your site to popular search engines. To be honest though, if you get yourself indexed by Google and Bing, you’ll have done 95% of what this thing could do for you. The paid option, to submit to 300 search engines is probably a waste of money because most of the smaller guys either get highly specialized searches which are not relevant for you or they will index you anyway if you’re in Google.

Bulk Ping

Ultimately, getting exposure for your website is all about getting your website noticed by the big search engines. Bulk Ping will let you automatically tell the sites about your newest blog post or page (different from submission above) by using an old feature of the web called pinging.

Bing Webmaster Tools

Finally, I’ll assume most readers of this blog have already heard of the Google Webmaster Tools, which can help you to increase your site’s exposure. Bing Webmaster Tools offers similar services, but tailored to Bing instead of Google (remember that Yahoo also gets their search results from Bing these days, so it’s useful to do this).

2 thoughts on “20 Important FREE Tools to Increase Your Website’s Exposure

  1. Hi Yasir,

    very cool stuff. I receive regulary your newsletter and most of the comments you do on your blog working that is amazing. Of course you have do to it on your onw blogs and sites, but if you practice it, its runs.
    Congratulations.
    Sven

Comments are closed.