I could write another post about Google, but every poker affiliate already knows about that search engine. My goal with this post is to write about some search resources that you might not be familiar with, and I hope to provide some means of using these search resources to improve your poker website marketing campaign. Sometimes some of the less well-known search resources on the Internet might bring a new strategy or customer acquisition methodology into place.
Alexa - Most poker webmasters already know what Alexa is, and the standard statement about Alex is how easily manipulated the site is, and how inaccurate the data is. That may be true, but that doesn’t make Alex useless as a search resource. One worthwhile use for Alexa is to compare two or more sites’ traffic rankings. Their data might be inaccurate, but you can get a rough idea of how much more popular Two Plus Two is than Poker Tomorrow is pretty easily using Alexa. But the most useful aspect of Alexa is the ability to look at the top ranked sites by category. The only thing to keep in mind when looking for traffic rankings by category is that Alexa uses DMOZ for its category tree, so if the site isn’t listed in DMOZ, it won’t appear in Alexa’s categorized rankings.
OMGILI - This acronym stands for “Oh My God I Love It!” OMGILI is a search engine focused on discussion forums and message boards. The uses for such a search engine should be obvious, but in case it’s not, here’s how I would use it. I would use OMGILI to find discussions of topics that are related to my sites’ topics, then I’d register an account at some of these forums and participate in the discussions there. Use your site name as your “handle” in these discussions, or, if the forum allows it, include your site in your signature link. But don’t be a schmuck and drop one line responses that add 0 value to the forum just so you can get your link in there. That’s indescribably lame.
Cuil - I wrote a post about poker SEO for Cuil a while back, and a couple of people pointed out that Cuil isn’t going to send them any traffic compared to Google or even MSN. They were right, but that doesn’t mean Cuil is useless for someone looking for search resources that can help poker affiliates. One use for Cuil.com is the opportunity to watch a new search engine algorithm change and develop from the very beginning of its existence. Few people are launching search engines anymore, so the chance to see a new search environment develop over time, from the beginning, might teach you something about how to optimize for search in general. (Google probably won’t be the dominant search engine of all time. And having all your eggs in the Google basket is bad strategy even if they do maintain their leadership position forever.)
YouTube - It’s more than just entertaining. It’s also a search channel you can optimize for, and for a lot of search phrases, video results are a LOT less competitive than ordinary Google results. You can also use YouTube to get a feel for what content people care about. You can get ideas for content. The first result under “Featured Videos” for me is a video about what different people plan to do differently in 2009. I could easily translate that idea into a piece of content for my poker site by writing an article about my poker goals for 2009. Or I could turn it into fodder for my poker forum by asking people to post about what their poker goals for 2009 are.
Digg - Everyone knows about Digg, but not everyone uses it appropriately. Using it just to drive traffic or to build links to your site is missing the boat. The real value of Digg is the ability to see what kind of content people like to read and link to. For example, today I see an article titled “15 Reasons Mr. Rogers Was The Best Neighbor Ever”. I see “Just An Everyday Normal Imperial Storm Trooper”. I see the “Worst Facial Hair in Pro Sports”. The ideas for poker content are coming fast now.
That’s just 5 resources. You can find plenty more search resources with just a little bit of thought, and you can probably come up with better uses for them than I have. It’s not always the most obvious resources that provide the best value for your effort though, so think outside the box a bit.