How’s it going, everyone? Today I want to talk about something that’s … It’s not really a review in the sense of how I do most of my reviews on this website, but it’s just a sort of general chat and an overview of something I have been using as part of my business that I want to give some feedback on. I guess you could call it a review, but just not a particularly in-depth one. Basically, for anyone who’s known PCs and computers for, well, pretty much for as long as most of us can remember, you’ve really had two choices. You can either pick Mac, or you can pick Windows. Most people have Windows by a overwhelming majority. There are some people who take Linux, but I mean, this will probably attract the ire of Linux adepts worldwide, but I don’t really rate it that much as …
If you’re into programming and sort of computer-type stuff like that, then yeah, it might be a good option for you, but for the average person, especially the average internet marketer who just wants to get shit done, I don’t recommend Linux. I don’t think you’d find many internet marketers using it either. Really, you’ve always had the choice between Mac or Windows. Most people go for Windows, but Mac does offer a number of advantages in terms of ease of use and I think still Mac is better for doing graphics, and audio, and video production, and all those kind of things, though I do believe the gap has narrowed. It’s important for me to make very clear that I’m not an expert on this kind of thing. All I’m doing is giving my opinion. The reason I want to talk about this, well, is, a while ago, when I first started this blog, actually, I did an article on Mac versus Windows for internet marketers and which is better.
Now there’s a new kid on the block for doing not in-depth internet marketing work, things like producing video content or photo content or anything like that, but for just maintaining a WordPress website or typing up some content, or running AdWords, or anything like that, or Facebook Ads, there is another option out there, and I want to share my experiences with it. This option is a Chrome OS. If you’ve heard of Chromebook, Chromebook computers, Chrome OS is the operating system that they run on that’s basically, to the best of my understanding, a sort of fleshed-out version of Chrome browser with some other apps included. I’ve been using a Chromebook now for my internet marketing business for about three months, three or four months, and I just want to give my feedback on what I think about it and why I think this is actually worth bringing up.
The Chromebook in question I’ve got is an ASUS. It’s an ASUS C302CA, I think. It’s called a Chromebook Flip, so it’s got a high-resolution screen, actually, for a Chromebook. I bought my girlfriend one a couple of years ago for a birthday present, and that was an ASUS one as well, but it’s just a basic sort of 11-inch, very plasticky, education-style Chromebook. It’s still going strong, but the display was pretty terrible on it, but this Chromebook Flip I saw on Amazon. I had a whole bunch of Amazon credit in my account, and I sort of sat on it for quite a while and thought, “Should I buy it? Should I not?” I looked at some other ones, like there’s a Samsung Chromebook Pro, which also looks really good and has a more almost sort of old-school laptop layout in the sense that it’s got a higher-height screen, and it comes with a stylus and everything.
There’s a number of better options out there with Chromebooks. Obviously, the meat of the market for Chromebooks is still those cheap as, low-end, $100. Sometimes you can see them for $50 refurbished on daily deal sites, and I think if you saw a cheap one, you should pick it up, but anyway, back to the ASUS Chromebook Flip. I ordered it from Amazon. It arrived about a week later, which was amazing, all the way over in New Zealand, and I got it set up and basically started using it. I’ve been using it every single day since I bought it, and I feel like as far as a productivity and work tool for an internet marketer goes, I feel pretty qualified to give a good opinion on it.
Anyway, this is what I think about the ASUS Chromebook Flip, and also in general Chrome OS is a work solution for internet marketers. Basically, I think if your business revolves around doing, I guess, simple stuff online in terms of almost everything you do, you can do it through a web browser, so you use Google Apps, Email, or another online email platform. You’ve got a website that runs on WordPress, or Weebly, or Squarespace, or something like that, and you edit it through an online login area. You run Facebook pages. You log into Google AdWords. You log into Facebook Ads. You run a forum where you just log in through vBulletin or whatever.
I mean, if you do anything like that, which I reckon would probably be about 75, 80% of what most internet marketers do, honestly, I think you could just about get away with only using a Chromebook, especially if you have one of these better ones, like the ASUS Chromebook Flip or the Samsung Chromebook Pro. I mean, I’ve really been blown away by how easy it’s been to work with. Just the other day, I flew up the South Island of New Zealand for a consulting trip. I was flown up by a company to consult with them about their digital marketing strategy and how they could improve that for 2019 and areas of improvement to their business.
Yeah, this was the first time I’d done a trip only with my Chromebook. Well, I obviously took my phone as well, but yeah, I thought I was going to be sort of limited, or I might get to the office of this client and find that they need help with something that requires a special piece of software or whatever, but actually, it just performed flawlessly, this computer, seriously. The battery life as well on these Chromebooks seems to be pretty stellar. The ASUS Chromebook that I’ve got, I mean, I flew up at absolute crack of dawn, and I came home reasonably late, and by the time I got home, I still had about four and a half hours battery life left in the … I’d been doing quite a bit of work on the computer. To be honest, I didn’t miss Windows or Mac OS once that whole day.
Yeah, I think that Chrome OS and Chromebooks have a really good sort of place for someone who’s doing internet marketing, who just needs a simple, effective laptop, really, to access the internet and to do web-based tasks. Now, if your business revolves around video production, or Photoshopping, or very heavy use of things like spreadsheets, then it’s probably not going to be the right option for you. Really, if you want to do spreadsheets, you need to have Excel, and as far as I’m aware, the Android Excel apps aren’t very good, and Google Sheets is just terrible compared to Excel. There are basic Photoshop apps and video editing apps. New Chromebooks, especially the more powerful ones, can actually run Android apps, just like you’d install on your phone. You can buy them from the Google Play Store. That’s pretty cool, but really, that’s where you’ll notice that there’s something missing.
If your business revolves around using desktop-based software rather than accessing things through the cloud, then yeah, Chromebook’s probably not going to be suitable for you, but certainly yeah, if you use, say, Gmail for your email, or any Google Apps email, so a custom email address that you access through gmail.com, and if you just log into Facebook and other social media platforms, and you manage your blogs and websites all through basically cloud-based platforms, then I think that you could probably do 80 to 90% of your work with a Chromebook. When you consider how nice and easy that will work with … The thing I love about working on my Chromebook Flip, on my ASUS, is that it feels very clean and sort of uncluttered to work on, does not update, there’s messages popping up everywhere like you get on Windows. It’s more almost like a sort of Mac experience, but for a whole lot less money. I went the other day, and I looked at the new MacBook Pro, the Touch Bar ones. I looked at a 13-inch one and compared it to the Chromebook I’m using now.
The ASUS Chromebook Flip is a beautiful-looking machine. It’s very, very slickly produced. I mean, really, I’ve had people in workplaces, I’ve brought it along to when I’ve been consulting or whatever, come up to me and say, “Is that a new Mac?” Because I’ve got a case on it. It looks really, really slick. Obviously, some of the other ones are a lot cheaper-looking and a lot more plasticky, but there are some high-end-looking models for significantly less money. In comparison, I looked at this Mac, and I thought, “Well, it’s about five to six times the price I paid for the ASUS Chromebook Flip.” That includes the fact that I had to ship the ASUS all the way from the United States and paying them for duty, deposit, and everything.
I don’t know if I would be able to get five to six times the value out of that … Out of the Mac, sorry. I mean, certainly, if I was doing Photoshop, or heavy video editing, or audio production, or anything, well, then, yeah, I would go with a Mac or a powerful Windows equivalent like a Surface Pro, or a Dell XPS, or something like that, but for what I do, 90% of what I do can be summed up by accessing a WordPress website and editing it, accessing Facebook, accessing email, accessing other social networks. Word processing I do, I’m happy enough with just Google Docs. The only time I … All my business, invoice templates, and everything, and proposal templates, they’re all built in Google Docs anyway.
Yeah, overall, Chromebooks and Chrome OS, I think, really do have a place now for anyone who wants to sort of have a affordable and efficient machine for doing work on. I actually think, of any computer I’ve ever owned, and I’ve owned way too many of them, from Macs to I’ve got a big Windows desktop workstation at home, to Windows laptops, you name it, if I just want to sit down and write, for example, I would pick the Chromebook every time. It’s got a great screen, brilliant battery life, keyboard’s nice to use. I really can’t fault it.
The only time it’s sort of left lacking is, yeah, if you’ve got to do something that requires a specific piece of software. I don’t think, unless you had a business where you know you never need to touch Photoshop, or Sony Vegas, or Camtasia, or Excel, or any of those powerhouse programs that you need a desktop computer for, or a laptop with Mac or Windows, if you know you never need that stuff, well, you probably could get away with that, with a higher-end Chromebook, and I think you’d have a pretty good time with it as well.
I mean, certainly, this ASUS Chromebook I’ve got has absolutely blown me away. It’s just a joy to use, and Chrome OS is just so … It feels so fluid, and fast, and simple, and it’s, feels so unbloated. I think, really, the ultimate combo for someone like me, and I think a lot of internet marketers would fall into the same boat as me, is having a sort of powerhouse workstation, either at home, or at your office, or wherever you work. In my case, that’s a big, fast, beefy i7 Windows machine. Tons of RAM. I’ve got a massive 36-inch or 34-inch ultra-wide monitor, all the bells and whistles. That’s my workstation. That’s where I really get serious business done.
But out in the field, or take it to a café, or take it to a client’s office, or take it on the plane while you want to do some work while you’re flying across the country, or overseas, yeah, Chromebook can be a really good option. I recommend giving it a try, certainly if you come across a cheap Chromebook, even if it’s one of the more plasticky basic models. If it’s cheap enough, pick it up. I think my dad, for example, he picked one up here in New Zealand on a Boxing Day sale for about $75. It was a cheapie Lenovo one, but he uses it all the time. He’s got a MacBook Pro, and if he looks at what he paid for his MacBook Pro versus what he paid for the cheap Lenovo Chromebook, his MacBook Pro was about 30 times as much, all said and done. He says to me, and I agree, “You’re not getting 30 times the use out of that MacBook Pro.”
Yeah, Chromebook can be a great option, certainly as a sort of secondary machine that you use for doing uncluttered, basic work. I think they’re really, really good. I would recommend springing for one of the better ones, like the Chromebook Flip, or the Samsung Chromebook Pro, unless you can get one of the cheap, basic, education series ones, like there’s a really classic HP Chromebook you see everywhere, or basic Acer ones. They’re available everywhere. If you can get them cheap enough, get one of those.
The other thing I want to mention as well is that people will say, “I can’t get a Chromebook because I need to be online all the time.” I mean, look, unless you’re out in the wop-wops and you don’t have much internet access, it’s really not an issue. If you’re an internet marketer, 95% of what you do is going to require internet access anyway. Whether you’re working on Windows, on Mac, or whatever, you are going to be connected to the internet regardless. I certainly didn’t notice it was a problem. When I flew up to Auckland the other day and I did some work on the plane, just opened up the Google Docs, and it went into offline mode, and typed out an article for a project I’m working on while the plane was gliding along. When I got off the other side and got to where I needed to be, I connected to some Wi-Fi, and it all synced up nicely. It’s not as big an issue as it was, especially if you’ve got a mobile phone or similar device that you can also create a hotspot on.
Yeah, Chromebook for internet marketers, it’s an interesting proposition. Certainly, I think if you have a nice machine at home or in the office, whether that’s a desktop or a beefier Windows or Mac laptop, Chromebook, especially one of the more premium ones, can be a great sidekick that you take around with you. You can get a lot of basic work done on them, and they’re just nice to use. Have a look at the different models. I’ll link to the ASUS Chromebook I got off Amazon. I’m really, really impressed by it, and yeah, give it a try and let me know your thoughts.
This is a review of the newest, cloud-based version of Long Tail Pro. Further down the page you will see my opinion of the older desktop version.
Keyword research is one of the most important aspects of building a successful website. It is important for blogs, ecommerce sites, personal sites, business sites and much more. If you want to rank in Google well, you need to research good keywords and apply them to your website.
In this Long Tail Pro review, we are going to be sharing the pros and cons of the software tool, and how to use it for keyword research. By the end of this review you should have all the information you need to decide whether Long Tail Pro is the right software tool for you.
Summary of Long Tail Pro
Long Tail Pro is a powerful keyword research tool that allows users to generate hundreds or thousands of unique “Long Tail” keywords in a matter of minutes based on one or multiple root keywords.
After generating long tail keyword ideas, you can conduct a website competitive analysis of the top sites that appear.
Long Tail Pro can calculate the viability of keyword ideas for your brand on a scale of 0 to 100.
Up to 200 manual keyword entries can be done at a time.
Monthly fees range from $37 a month, to $147 a month and annual fees range from $297 a year to $1177 a year.
Long Tail Pro’s Background
Long Tail Pro was created by Spencer Haws from NichePursuits.com. He created the software tool in 2011 as he was frustrated with the keyword tools on offer at the time. Haws continually developed the software for 5 years before selling it in 2016. The new owners have continued to develop Long Tail Pro, keeping it at the forefront of keyword research.
Spencer Haws is focused on what I call the “passive income scene”. The passive income scene tends to be focused on developing niche websites that are based around a special interest or product. Content for these niche websites is then created around long tail keywords, and then monetized through a variety of different methods such as Google Adsense, Amazon Affiliates or even drop shipping methods.
The goal with passive income websites is to build up enough of them so that you have a steady income stream for minimal work input.
Long Tail Pro has changed over the years and has moved from a tool that you would install on your PC or MAC, to a cloud based tool. We reviewed the early version a number of years ago (which you can read here). However, as the tool has changed to an online based service we thought we would take another look at it.
What Are Long Tail Keywords?
You may be wondering what long tail keywords actually are and why they are so important. Long tail keywords are those three and four keyword phrases which are very specific to what you are selling or advertising.
When a customer uses a highly specific search phrase, they tend to be looking for exactly what they want to buy or research. Such specific searches are far more likely to convert to sales or clicks than generic searches.
For example: if your company sells mountain bikes, the chances are that your pages are never going to appear near the top of an organic search for “bike” because there is too much competition. But if you specialise in a certain brand or style of bike you can use that as a way to form more specific keywords. Something like “Giant Reign Mountain Bike for Sale” is going to be more specific and more likely to convert to a sale.
These more specific, long tail keywords will probably result in less traffic to your website, but the traffic you do draw will be better.
What Is Long Tail Pro?
Long Tail Pro is a keyword research tool that helps you quickly and easily find low competition keywords for your website. The tool is built in particular for those who are using SEO (search engine optimization) as opposed to social media or paid ads (Google Adwords). You can use Long Tail Pro to find keywords for paid ads, but it was really designed around finding them for SEO users.
In short, Long Tail Pro helps you find good quality keywords quickly and in bulk based on one or multiple root keywords. Additionally, the tool also displays search volume, advertiser bid, rank value, number of words and keyword competitiveness.
Keyword competitiveness is useful because it helps you judge the competition and keyword difficulty.
LTP has been updated to a cloud based version that lets you use the software anywhere and at any time. Those that have purchased the desktop version of LTP may be eligible for a free version of LTP Cloud. Take a look here to find out more information.
What is New in the Cloud Version of Long Tail Pro?
For those with the desktop version of LTP, you will be pleased to know that they still support the software. However, the team behind LTP is now focused on the cloud based version of the tool. Let’s take a look at what is new in Long Tail Pro Cloud.
Use it anywhere – Now that Long Tail Pro is a web based up, you can use it anywhere and on pretty much any computer or device. The old desktop version limited you to 3 installations of LTP, which meant you could only install it on three computers at a time.
Its faster – Long Tail Pro cloud is significantly faster than the desktop version of the software (over fifty times apparently). Instead of waiting hours for bulk KC calculations, you will get results in 30-60 seconds.
You can see exact search volume results – One of the worst things about the previous version of Long Tail Pro was opening up the tool or Google Keyword Planner and seeing those dreaded “1K-10K” search volume results. This really limited the effectiveness of keyword research with LTP, which is why they decided to use external data providers for the cloud version rather than using Google Adwords.
No need to provide a Google Adwords account – LTP Cloud is not dependent on your Adwords account, so you no longer need to worry about having account restrictions of spending money on Adwords. Having to use a Google Adwords account was something we didn’t like about the desktop version of LTP
LTP cloud includes a Rank Tracker – Long Tail Pro Cloud users will get a beta version of the software’s new Rank Tracker for free. This Rank Tracker gives you the ability to track page rankings for various keywords.
Personal domain analysis – LTP now includes a tool that can analyse your domain and provide you with useful insights about what keyword competitiveness scores you should target for your specific website. This analysis is based on the authority that search engines give to your domain. In addition to suggested keywords, Long Tail Pro also provides you with your domain’s Trust Flow and Citation Flow scores, along with the number of backlinks.
You can assess the income potential of your keywords – A new metric called Rank Value was introduced with LTP Cloud, which lets you assess the money making potential of your keywords. Rank Value is the estimated monetary value of ranking number 1 for any given keyword.
What Has Been Left Out of Long Tail Pro Cloud?
While a number of things have been added to the cloud version of Long Tail Pro, some things didn’t make the cut.
Unlimited keyword results are gone – Unlike the desktop version, the cloud version of LTP comes with limited keyword usage. This is because Long Tail Pro no longer relies on user Adwords and Moz accounts, and the company behind LTP has to pay for every row of data they retrieve. Long Tail Pro offers a range of different plans to cover all budgets and users, so you can get the number of keyword searches you need.
You can no longer retrieve Global search volumes – Once again, this feature has been left out because Long Tail Pro has switched to relying on external data providers. Long Tail Pro claims that the global search volumes in these external sources were not reliable and consistent enough. This is a bummer for people who might have used this feature in the desktop version of Long Tail Pro.
Google/Bing Title Competition and Domain Availability has been cut – LTP has replaced this with new features such as Personal Domain Analysis and Rank Value.
Who Is Long Tail Pro for?
SEO marketers who use Google, Youtube and other similar platforms.
People who want to increase or improve their organic traffic.
Google and Youtube Adwords advertisers who want to get better conversions while reducing the CPC.
Affiliate marketers who are looking to find long tail keywords around which to base their websites, and create content.
Live streamers and video creators who want to expand their reach and get more views.
Key Features of Long Tail Pro
Long Tail Pro is more than just a keyword research tool and it is packed full of useful tools to get more quality traffic to your website. We have listed some of the great features of the tool below:
Generate keywords based on a root/seed keyword.
Create multiple different projects to help keep organised (you can have different campaigns set for different websites).
Find high-CPC long tail keywords that are great for increasing Adsense revenue.
Import keywords into Long Tail Pro
Use Long Tail Pro to find keyword-rich domain names. This is especially useful if you are creating a niche blog.
Keyword competition checker
See search volume and rank value of keywords.
A favourite system lets you save your best keywords.
Google Adwords suggestion.
Check the rank value of keywords and assess their monetary value.
How Much Does Long Tail Pro Cost?
Long Tail Pro is offered at a range of different costs for all budgets. You can pay in monthly or yearly instalments and there is a 7-day free trial on offer as well. There are three different options you can choose from, which we have outlined below.
Keyword lookups per 24 hours
KC calculations per 24 hours
SERP lookups per 24 hours
The costs for each different option are as follows:
Agency – $147 a month or $1177 per year ($98/month)
Pro – $67 per month or $537 per year ($45/month)
Starter – $37 per month or $297 per year ($25/month)
Annual options can be paid monthly as well and annual members will also get access to Long Tail University.
What is Long Tail Pro University?
Long Tail Pro University is an in-depth guide that teaches you how to find powerful keywords and get more traffic to your website. The information contained in the guide is not only useful for niche websites, but also other businesses as well.
Who gets access to Long Tail University?
All annual subscribers will be given access within the app.
Any monthly subscribers or Lifetime owners who have purchased LTU previously will be given access within the app.
All LTU owners without an LTP Cloud account will be given access to the LTU site.
The Pros of Long Tail Pro – What is Good About the Tool?
Long Tail Pro offers a number great features that can help you get better quality traffic to your website. Here’s a list of what we feel is good about Long Tail Pro and the benefits of using the tool.
You can get keyword suggestions in bulk – Long Tail Pro lets you input up to 5 root keywords at a time, and it will spit out as many as 400 related keywords per seed keyword. Additionally, if you have a large list of keywords already, you input them manually and get all the important stats for each keyword.
Multiple projects let you be more organised – The ability to create multiple projects for multiple websites or blogs is really useful. It is great that you can have different projects in Long Tail Pro to organise keywords per website or focus.
The keyword competitiveness (KC) score is good – This feature will tell you a score between 1 and 100 that represents how difficult it will be to rank on Google. The ability to quickly see how competitive a keyword is makes choosing the right one much easier. We feel that this feature is one of the main highlights of Long Tail Pro.
We like the Google Adwords Suggestion feature – While Long Tail Pro was developed with SEO in mind, the Google Adwords Suggestion feature is great for those looking for keywords that will work well with paid ads.
It is easy to use and fast – Even the most inexperienced person will be capable of getting their head around Long Tail Pro. The cloud based version of LTP is considerably faster and more stable than the desktop variant.
The rank tracker is simple to use – The ability to track page rankings for various different keywords is definitely useful and helps you decide on which parts of your website you should focus on.
Long Tail Pro is polished and professional – The LTP user interface is clean and professional with minimal clutter. You can tell that a whole heap of work has gone into making Long Tail Pro Cloud and it is certainly a step above the desktop version. Many other SEO software programs or tools give off the vibe that they have been slapped together in a couple of days, but it is clear that the Long Tail Pro team have spent a lot of time developing a premium product.
The Cons of Long Tail Pro – What is Bad About it?
It is overpriced – The main issue I have with Long Tail Pro Cloud (as with the desktop version we reviewed a while back) is the cost. $37 per month for what is essentially a glorified Google Keyword Planner is too costly. Even the annual membership at $25 per month feels like bad value and don’t get us started on the other, more expensive plans.
Keyword lookups, KC calculations and tracked keywords are limited – It’s a real shame that unlimited keyword results were removed when Long Tail Pro went cloud based. We understand that there are costs associated when keywords are looked up, but we wish the limits were higher. The limit of 800 keyword lookups a day feels pretty low when you are paying nearly $40 a month to use the service. While we probably would be fine with this, if you are doing lots of keyword research on a particular day you will find LTP frustrating to use.
You can only use 5 seed keywords at once – It would be nice to be able to use 10 or more seed keywords, as this would make keyword research faster and better.
It isn’t that much better than free alternatives – Like we wrote above, Long Tail Pro just feels overpriced. Yes, the KC calculator, rank tracker and backlink analysis tools are useful, but for those just looking to find keywords, there are free alternatives that can do the same job. If you want to get similar results in terms of just finding long tail keywords, then I suggest you check out Keyword Shitter or even ScrapeBox at $97. The main advantage LTP has over free alternatives is the keyword competitiveness calculator. It is a useful feature and is a good way of quickly measuring how difficult keywords are to rank for. The biggest problem is that you should really be learning how to analyse SEO competition for keywords yourself. Manual analysis of SERP results for prospective keywords is almost always going to be better than using the KC tool Long Tail Pro provides. We are also not too sure how accurate Long Tail Pro really is with its keyword competitiveness calculations.
Global search volumes are gone – It’s a shame that LTP ditched the option to retrieve global search volume. While we understand that changing to external sources meant they could not include the feature, it will come as a disappointment to some new and existing users.
How to Use Long Tail Pro
Now that we have talked about the pros and cons of LTP, let’s look at how you can use it to find long tail keywords. Once you have signed up, you can start using the service straight away. If you have signed up for a trial account, you will be limited to 100 keywords per 24 hours.
The first thing you need to do is to input some seed keywords. Think of some keywords that relate to the product you are selling or article you want to write. You can even use something like Keyword Shitter to get an idea of some keywords and then input them into Long Tail Pro. For this article we have given an example of dog toys as we run a website focused on dogs.
Along with the keywords you input, you also have the option to change the number of suggestions per keyword you receive, and some more advanced options.
When you are ready to go, click “Retrieve”, Long Tail Pro will generate all the long tail keywords for you, along with the Average KC score, Volume, Bid, Words, and Rank Value.
You can sort the results by clicking on the Avg. KC, Volume, etc. and then select the best long tail keywords that suite your needs. We input a few seeds keywords related to dog toys and you can see our results below.
Manual Keyword Search
If you have keywords already, you can try the manual search function to find out more information about them. Simply type in the manual keywords (limit 200) and then hit “Retrieve”. LTP will find all the information you need to know about the keywords, such as the Avg. KC, Volume, Rank Value, etc.
The rank tracker in LTP is a great feature and can definitely save you some time. Instead of manually searching keywords and checking their rank, you can streamline the process by inputting them straight into Long Tail Pro. Pop your keywords and website URL in the rank tracker and Long Tail Pro will automatically check their positions for ranking in Google.
With LTP’s rank tracker you can change the location to see how your keywords are performing in other countries outside of the United States. This is useful for marketers who want to target a specific location.
With the rank tracker, you can see where your website is currently sitting and any past performance as well. You can quickly see how your website was ranking yesterday, last week and last month, and whether it has gone up or down. Clicking on a keyword will let you see the history and performance of it.
We recommend you check your ranking results every couple of days to see where you are sitting in Google. If you lose rank, work out why and optimise your campaign or get more backlinks. Consider improving your article or page as well, to improve your chances of ranking higher.
The last main feature of Long Tail Pro we are going to cover is the Backlink Analysis tool. Enter your competitor’s URL, and hit “Retrieve”. At the top of the analysis page, you will see four important metrics to help you work out the ranking power of your competitor.
Referring Domains – Is a direct measure of the number of websites that link to the target page. A high number means that the website is incredibly popular, or has conducted a link building campaign.
Total Backlinks – Measures the total number of backlinks the target page currently has. This also signals how popular a website is.
Trust Flow – Is the trustworthiness and rank worthiness in the eyes of search engines. You can increase this score by acquiring links from websites that search engines like Google deem trustworthy.
Citation Flow – Is dependent on the quantity of backlinks a site receives. A high CF is a strong indication of an active link-building campaign.
When you get the results for your target page, prioritise backlinks from niche-relevant websites. We also recommend that you start your backlink analysis by looking at your biggest competitors.
More Info About the Average KC Score
The KC (keyword competitiveness) score is a number between 1 and 100 that displays how difficult it will be to rank for a particular keyword on Google. Here’s a quick rundown on what the different scores mean and how difficult they will be to rank with.
0 to 10 – No competition
10 to 20 – Extremely low competition
20 to 30 – Low competition
30 to 40 – Moderate competition
40 to 50 – Somewhat high competition
50 to 60 – Very high competition
60 to 70 – Extremely high competition
70 to 100 – Don’t even think about it!
If you have a new website or it has a low authority, you really shouldn’t be targeting keywords with an average KC score above 30. For new websites you want to focus on keywords with a KC score as low as possible.
We recommend that you avoid anything with a KC over 40, even for more popular websites. There are plenty of easy long tail keywords, so it is better to go for them rather than the more difficult ones.
The KC score looks at the first page of Google and the sites that are ranking for the search term. The calculation for the average KC takes into account the overall authority of the website, how well the page is targeting the specific keyword and the number of backlinks.
Conclusion – Should You Buy Long Tail Pro?
Here comes the main part of the review. Should you spend your hard earned dollars on Long Tail Pro?
The short answer is no; I do not recommend that your sign up to Long Tail Pro.
Why do I not recommend it? Well, while LTP has some great features like the KC calculator and rank tracker, it is simply too expensive for what you are getting. I stated this in my last review of the desktop version and now it is even more expensive as you can’t buy a one off membership and keep it forever.
At $37 a month (or even $25 on the annual membership) it really doesn’t feel like good value, especially when you can use free alternatives that do almost as good a job. The fact that the number of keywords you can search in a day is relatively is also a bit of a slap in the face, especially when you used to be able to do unlimited searches.
However, I am not saying the product is bad or useless. In fact, it is incredibly well polished and it is great for getting a rough idea of what keywords you want to use. The ability to track your rankings in Google is helpful, as is the backlink analysis tool. Long Tail Pro really does everything it claims it can. The simply problem is that it costs too much and that makes me disinclined to recommend the product. Assessing keyword competitiveness isn’t that difficult with free (or less expensive) tools and that is what you are mainly paying for when you sign up for Long Tail Pro.
I’m sure there are loads of people out there who have had success with Long Tail Pro and have found some excellent keywords, but for me the software really isn’t worth it. I do recommend that you try out the 7-day free trial, but beyond that it really isn’t worth your time. The truth is that the software really doesn’t do much more than many of the free alternatives out there, it just has all the information you need to know in one place.
Would I Use It If It Were Cheaper?
Now, here’s the real question. Would I use Long Tail Pro if the price was reduced? The answer is yes, but it would have to be heavily reduced. I could possibly see myself paying $10 a month for the same features as the starter pack, or around $200 to $300 for a lifetime membership. This is a drastic reduction and I’m sure it won’t happen, but at least you can see what I think its worth.
Note: I had a problem with my credit card when I signed up for Long Tail Pro. Long Tail Pro charges a $0 transaction fee when you sign up for the software (You are properly billed after the 7-day free trial ends). This $0 set off a warning for my card company and they blocked me from using the card until they could confirm it was me who made the purchase. We wanted to warn you about this as it may also happen to you if you sign up for the trial.
Old Long Tail Pro Review
If you’d like to check out my review of the old, desktop software version of Long Tail Pro, you can do so here:
Barely any online discussion around keyword research tools is free from mention of Long Tail Pro. It seems not long ago that I remember Long Tail Pro (LTP for short) as being just another obscure piece of 2nd tier SEO software – the sort of thing that wannabe Internet marketing gurus would peddle to their lists that they built up from scummy solo ads.
And now this software is raved about by many online in the Internet/affiliate marketing community as being the second coming of Christ … or at least the next best thing after sliced bread.
But what is the “real deal” with Long Tail Pro?
Is it actually a good piece of software – or is the hype all a load of bollocks? Let’s review Long Tail Pro together and try to find out.
Grab a cup of tea (or a 42oz soda if you’re American) and let’s find out.
Since I started writing this review, there have been some important changes to Long Tail Pro. I will be going through and making full updates, but for now here is what you need to know:
Bulk check for keyword competitiveness has been added. Rather than having to click all lines individually, you can check KC scores en-masse. This is a handy time saving feature that is definitely good.
You can no longer buy just the base software (Long Tail Pro sans Platinum for a one-off price). There is just one edition now – Long Tail Pro WITH Platinum – and you either pay $37 per month or a lower rate of $352 per year. There is no one-off, lifetime access option any more. Until this update occurred in early Feb 2019, it used to be the case that you could purchase LTP for around $80, and you would get Platinum for free for a month and then roll onto a $27 p/m charge until you canceled. You could then keep the base software for life if you decided to cancel the Platinum portion.
You can now only have Long Tail Pro for as long as you are willing to pay a monthly or annual fee. This, in my opinion, significantly changes the value proposition of the product for the worse. Unless you are making sufficiently frequent use of the software to justify the high monthly rebill cost, or you are doing a good enough job at turning the long tail keywords you find into sales, then it is just too taxing on the wallet.
NB: People like me who purchased a lifetime access to Long Tail Pro when such an option was available will not see any change. For example, I can continue to use my Platinum-free edition with no need to start paying a monthly fee again.
As you might expect, I will talk to this point more later on in the review when I discuss the pros and cons of the product.
What Is Long Tail Pro?
If you’re Googling for Long Tail Pro reviews, then you probably have a fairly good idea what the software is all about. However, just to give you the benefit of the doubt, I will outline what it is:
LTP is a keyword research software program. So you kinda like install it on your computer and shizz, and 9 months later keywords come out. Oh wait, that would be some kind of hybrid keyword-baby monster. In all seriousness, it’s really just a flashy version of Google’s venerable Keyword Planner.
It is designed to help you find keywords. Think terms you would type into a search engine to find information, like “how can I illegally enter the United States of America” or “is the Queen actually a shapeshifting lizard” or even useful stuff like “weight loss tips” and “grain free dog food”. The focus here is on finding longer, less competitive keywords.
It isn’t free, it’s paid. That’s why you need Reviews Boss to make sure you aren’t parting with your hard earned for some over-hyped pile of turd. A dollar doesn’t come for free, ya know?
Who Is It For?
When looking to review a product, one of my favourite things to do is have a think about the target audience – the people who are probably going to be buying it.
In this case, here’s who I think LTP is aimed at:
Affiliate marketers looking to find long tail keywords around which to base their sites, and create content. The classic angle most LTP users seem to take is finding keywords like “best electric shavers under $100” and then creating affiliate sites based around those terms (I’m sure you’ve wound up on sites like this before) and monetize with Amazon Associates.
Adsense aficionados are another target for Long Tail Pro, as the software can help to find keywords with low search competition and respectable CPCs.
Long Tail Pro can also be useful for PPC marketers, as it can help you to find keywords that would work well as phrase and exact matched terms, as well as get an indication of CPC and Adwords competition.
What Do I Need To Run It?
Long Tail Pro is not demanding at all in its system requirements. Pretty much any Windows computer or Mac that was built since Bill Clinton got caught totally not having sexual relations with that woman Miss Monica Lewinsky should be able to handle it.
Joking aside, here are the minimum requirements:
Adobe Air. This is a free piece of software that is available for Mac OSX and Windows, and provides the backbone of LTP.
Google Adwords account. Once again, this is free to set up. You don’t need to spend any money on Adwords to have an account.
A computer made within the past ~5 years. I couldn’t find any specific system requirements, but a dual core processor and 4 or more GB of RAM should be plenty. I’m running on an Intel i7 with 16gb of RAM and Windows 10, and it runs well with very few slowdowns – only when I deal with BIG keyword lists do I get any problems.
Who Makes It?
Long Tail Pro is, rather famously, the brainchild of a guy called Spencer Haws. That is not to be confused with Spencer Hawes, the Power Forward for the Charlotte Hornets (with a salary of over $4 million per year I don’t think that Hawes really needs to worry about making SEO software!!)
Spencer HAWS is a well-known figure in what I call the “passive income scene”. Other big names/blogs are Pat Flynn from Smart Passive Income, Matthew Allen from the amusingly-named Dumb Passive Income, Darren Rowse from Problogger and a whole host of other smaller players.
Compared with affiliate marketing based on strategies like combining paid traffic with CPA offers, the passive income scene tends to be focused more on building niche websites based around a type of product or special interest, creating content based on long tail keywords, and then monetizing through Amazon, Adsense, or Clickbank. Although the initial payoff is generally much lower, the goal of any passive income convert is to build up enough sites that they have a tidy monthly sum that will roll in, even if they don’t work much.
Alongside Long Tail Pro, Spencer has also released some other software and plugin-type products, although many of these seem to have been discontinued. He also released a course, called Long Tail University, which is intended to help you make the most of LTP and find out how to generate big organic traffic to your site through effective keyword research and use. Naturally, I will be reviewing Long Tail University at some stage in the future (especially as it is an expensive course).
He also works with a guy called Perrin, who is most famous for building a website about razors that went public as a case study on building “passive” Amazon sites and then got negative-SEOd. You can read all about that here. Perrin currently seems to be working on a website about dogs, called HerePup.
How Do I Buy LTP? What Does It Cost?
Easy tiger! You haven’t even seen the full content of my review yet. However, if you are interested in buying Long Tail Pro, then here’s how you do it.
Now is as good a time as any to open up the hood and have a play with Long Tail Pro, in order to see what we can achieve with it.
The first thing you need to do after you have downloaded the software is fire it up. Before you can go anywhere, you will need to set up the Adwords linking for the software to work properly. You don’t need to spend anything to make an Adwords account – it is totally free to do so here.
Here’s a handy video from the Long Tail Pro team on how to configure Adwords linking:
Interestingly enough, this is one of the first signs of the key weakness of Long Tail Pro. You need an Adwords/Google account login because what the software is doing is scraping Google’s own keyword tool – the free Keyword Planner that is available here – and returning the results in a more attractive format. It’s kind of the equivalent of buying a software program that searches eBay for whatever you are looking to buy, and then returns it in a “nicer” way.
I will also revisit this point in the pros/cons section of my review, as it has an important role to play in the software “bugging out” from time to time, as well as being a crucial weakness from the perspective of value for money.
So once you’re all set up, you should see a screen similar to this:
Obviously you won’t have any data in there at first, but you get the general idea. It’s actually a reasonably intuitive and easy-to-use interface, especially compared to some other SEO software.
Options are fairly limited, as you can see below. You access the overall settings by hitting the cog symbol in the top right corner of the screen:
Let’s take a look at what options you have;
Contact support – self-explanatory.
User accounts – this is where you can specify your Google Account credentials as mentioned before. You can also add in a Moz API key (this is free to configure, and good instructions are provided) which is necessary for providing competition metrics like Page Authority, Domain Authority, Moz Rank and more.
Data fetching speed – you can make the software access Google’s API faster, which may lead to you getting banned. I’ve never bothered to change these. The Bing API speed is for checking Bing SEO title competition, I think.
Debug panel – If you’re getting issues you might be able to fix them here, provided you’re technically minded. You can actually use this to see exactly what Long Tail Pro is doing to scrape data from Google as well (I showed this above in the video).
Now it’s time to actually create a project and run a search. I believe that the best reviews are ones that “review by doing”, and that’s what we are going to do here!
Creating A Project
The building block of using this tool for effective keyword research is to create a project. Thing of an LTP Project as being a folder in which you keep all your research about one particular subject. This helps to keep your interface nice and ordered. With projects, you can also do things like pick different languages and countries to target (so if you were an affiliate marketer based in France, you could pick Google France and the French language, for example)
Once you’ve created your first project, you’ll be able to add seed keywords and then start finding some ideas!
Searching For Keywords
When you hit the add keywords button, you’ll get hit with a little popup that provides you with a number of options:
Here’s what those options mean:
Add Seed Keywords – this is where you add your broad terms you want to build keyword lists from.
Add My Own Keywords – a feature of LTP Platinum (will discuss this in more detail later). It allows you to bulk add your own keywords, giving you competition metrics and expanding your list much faster.
Suggested Bids – useful if you’re looking at LTP from the perspective of building Adsense sites, or looking for Adwords keywords. You can filter so that results only above or below a certain suggested bid display.
Local Search Volume – this is ticked by default, and is the search volume for each keyword for whichever Google locale you selected when creating your project. Once again you can pre-filter with min or max values here. Great if you want to avoid being shown hundreds of phrases with 0 or 10 or 20 volume.
Advertiser Competition – THIS IS NOT FOR SEO, MMKAY! It’s a metric used to look at Adwords competition, so if you’re finding keywords for SEO then basically ignore this. However, may be useful for us PPC fiends.
Num Words – A very useful feature in my opinion. You can set a min or max number of individual words in the keyword. This means you can focus on finding proper long tail phrases (e.g. “dog training toys for small puppies” as opposed to seeing lots of broader terms like “dog training”).
Global Search Volume – THIS IS UNTICKED BY DEFAULT. Y? Y? Y? But seriously, make sure you tick this before you get to work, provided you are in a niche or business that makes sense on a global scale. Unnecessary if you are targeting a specific country or geographic area, and global volume isn’t relevant to your interests.
Domain Availability – Checks to see if you can register your keyword as a domain name. Since EMDs aren’t cool any more, I’d advise it’s not worth the extra processing power. Branded domains are the future.
Google Title Competition – Runs an “allintitle:” check for the keywords in Google
Bing Title Competition – Same as above, but for Bing. Both of these are kind of useful if you are looking hard at SEO competition analysis.
As this is a review, and not a how-to guide, I won’t go into any more detail on how you can come up with seed keyword ideas etc. What we can conclude is that Long Tail Pro has some decent options for customising your search in order to get the sort of results you are after. By using geo-targeting and filtering for CPCs, keyword lengths etc, you should be able to find some good results in all but the most obscure of niches.
Once you have inputted your seed keywords, you can go ahead and hit to fetch keywords. As it is working away, you will see a message like this:
When the tool has run its course, you should see results like this:
Easy to use – as showed right through this entire review, LTP is a very simple bit of software to use. Simply download it, make a project, add some keywords (bearing in mind the filtering options that are available) and then get to work. There really isn’t too much more to say on its ease-of-use.
Regularly updated – when it comes to maintaining this software, Spencer and his team definitely aren’t fly-by-night merchants. It is regularly updated, with good communication about any significant updates provided through email and blog. You never get the impression with this software that it is something that will be abandoned out of the blue, and with no prior warning. You will become familiar with this:
Good support – from what I have experienced, there is good support available from the makers of LTP. When I wanted to cancel my Platinum membership, I received a rapid and cordial response. Spencer and his crew also seem to be responsive to queries or complaints made on the blog posts on longtailpro.com, which is always a good sign that support is unlikely to be abandoned any time soon.
Frequent specials available – Spencer & co tend to offer some decent specials on Long Tail Pro from time to time. This is annoying if you have just purchased the software for the full price; but if you are on the fence and thinking about buying, then it might be enough to sway your opinion. If you are set on purchasing, then I do suggest that you hang out for a deal. The easiest way to do this, it seems, is to register for a free trial and then keep an eye on your inbox for deals.
Polished and professional – The overall feel you get from LTP is one of professionalism and polish. From the www.longtailpro.com website, to the good support, through to the actual program itself, you can definitely tell that a whole heap of work has gone into making Long Tail Pro what it is today. Whereas some SEO software gives off the vibe of being whipped up in an afternoon in the corner of a shed by a sweaty nerd with delusions of development grandeur, it is clear that the team behind LTP have invested heavily in developing a premium product. Good on them for doing so.
Overpriced. I touched on this point earlier in the review, and will revisit it now. The fundamental issue I have with Long Tail Pro is that it is overpriced. $37 per month for a glorified version of the Google Keyword Planner is simply too much. Even the annual package doesn’t offer much of a discount when broken down on a monthly basis.
Guru-hyped. This is a common problem with many products in the Internet marketing sphere (particularly courses, which are notoriously over hyped by the so-called “gurus”). It isn’t really the fault of Spencer and his crew … in fact you could really just say that they have done a good job at branding. However, the fact of the matter remains that because so many gurus and MMO experts have made Long Tail Pro out to be the panacea to all keyword research and organic traffic issues, that means many people buy the software with grossly inflated expectations of what they are going to be able to achieve with it.
Not much better than free alternatives. This ties in to the whole being overpriced thing. Because all Long Tail Pro really does is piggy backs off of Google’s free keyword planner, and gives you a couple of extra bits of functionality pasted on, it simply isn’t that much better than what you can already get for zero to little cost. Considering you can bulk import your own keyword lists into Google Keyword Planner for analysis and expansion, that nullifies one selling point of the Platinum component of LTP. All that leaves to justify the price – as far as I can see – is the keyword competitiveness module. This is a useful feature, and when I had Platinum I did use it on a fairly frequent basis in order to get a quick gauge of how tough a keyword would be to rank. It is definitely helpful for a high-level glance at determining competitiveness, but the problem is that you should really be learning how to analyze SEO competition for keywords yourself. Thorough manual analysis of SERP results for prospective keywords is almost always going to beat out a KC score generated with some basic calculations, in terms of helping you rank effectively.
Sometimes unreliable. Because of the way in which Long Tail Pro works, it seems prone to occasional niggling bugs. The most common problem I have encountered is that the software seems to get stuck when searching for keywords – you’ll input your seed keywords, press to generate data, and then nothing happens. Even after restarting the software, you won’t get any progress. Checking the debug window shows that this is an issue with the software logging in to Adwords/Keyword Planner and searching on your behalf. However, with recent updates this problem has become a lot less frequent.
Other bugs I have encountered include global search volumes not being returned for keywords (even if I have selected the option), along with slow downs when swapping between projects. These slow down issues may be worse when running a less powerful computer.
No cloud access. Here’s one of the things that gripes me the most about LTP, especially if you are paying the big premium for monthly access to Platinum – there is no cloud access. What I mean by this is that you have to use the software as installed on your computer, taking up disk space and using resources. There is no option to access Long Tail Pro via a web interface. This means it won’t work on anything other than a Windows or Mac OSX powered machine (i.e. you can’t jump on your smart phone or tablet and do some quick searching while you’re out and about). It just gives the software a very “dated” feel in that regard, and doesn’t pair well with the fact that you have to pay a monthly fee for full access to the Platinum features.
Conclusion – Is It Worth A Buy?
Oh boy, oh goody … now comes the fun part.
I feel like a Roman emperor in the Coliseum, ready to give the thumbs up or down that will either spare some poor gladiatorial soul, or find him hacked limb from limb. THE POWER IS ALL-CONSUMING!!!!
But seriously, should you buy Long Tail Pro? Should you further enrich Spencer Haws and his merry men with your hard-earned dinero?
Short answer: No.
Medium length answer: Don’t bother buying it.
French answer: Non, n’en achetez pas
Actual meaningful answer: Although LTP does have some useful features, it simply is not worth the money being charged when there are alternative options available (especially now that you have no choice but to pay a monthly or annual recurring subscription).
See here’s the thing: I actually bought Long Tail Pro with my own money. In fact, I bought it with New Zealand Dollars, a currency which is as weak as an octogenarian’s bench press; in effect it cost me even more! During my time with LTP + Platinum, I parted with the best part of $300. That hurts, especially when you’re as much of a cheapskate as I am.
AND HERE’S THE REAL $HIT: I’m willing to bet that a huge portion of the reviewers out there who are heaping praise upon LTP (especially those annoying passive income bloggers who litter the Internet with thin, crappy affiliate sites with domain names like bestelectricbuttscratcherreviews2019.info) have never spent much time with the software. Instead, they let the potential for some very generous affiliate commissions get the better of them, and jump straight on their blogs or YouTube channels to give the product a 10/10 must-buy rating, and then hope for those fat stacks to roll in.
It actually used to be a stipulation of being a Long Tail Pro affiliate that you had to have purchased the software first. This meant you could not get an affiliate link without at least being able to honestly say you paid for the software, which probably meant you had used it a few times at least. However, now that Long Tail Pro is on Clickbank’s free-for-all marketplace, you don’t need seem to need any specific prior approval to grab your affiliate link and make some cash.
Caveat: As I mentioned above in the “pros” section of this review, I am not trying to say that this product is useless. In fact, it is far from useless. You can use it to find keywords, and you can even get a rough outline of how hard it might be to rank for those keywords … it really does do what it says on the box. My gripe – and the issue that makes me disinclined to recommend the product – is that it costs too much for what it does, when you can quite adequately search for long tail phrases using free tools. And, as previously discussed, it isn’t that hard to assess keyword competitiveness
And remember as well that the real power of long tail keywords is not in the keywords you find, but how you actually go about trying to target them with your SEO or PPC efforts. You could sit in front of LTP all day (or any bit of keyword research software, for that matter) and find lots of keywords with great potential. However, if you don’t get down to the dirty business of trying to rank or bid and optimize those keywords, then you’re never really going anywhere. So owning any keyword tool, whether it is LTP or anything else, isn’t going to make you money in and of itself. Instead, you need to make use of the keywords you find and deploy them effectively to increase your earnings.
So go on, click that link if you want to try LTP for free. If you do decide to purchase, then I won’t make a red cent. And maybe when you find that goldmine long-tail keyword with 100,000 searches per month, a CPC that would make Donald Trump do a double take, and competition so weak it’s like putting prime Mike Tyson up against a peewee boxer, then you’ll strike it rich and come and laugh at me for passing up an easy few dollars per month commission I could have got by referring you.
But chances are that won’t happen. The truth is that Long Tail Pro doesn’t really do anything special that can’t be done for free with only a miniscule trade-off in terms of inconvenience.
A Word Of Advice For Spencer & His Team
As I conclude this review, let me close with a word of advice for Spencer and his team behind Long Tail Pro:
Your software has some good features. It is definitely helpful for finding keywords. However, it simply costs too much for the “average” user like myself who doesn’t use it frequently enough to make back the monthly subscription price.
If you could implement some sort of credit-based system, then I think that would improve the value of Long Tail Pro greatly for anyone who is a more casual user. For example, if one seed keyword search cost 1 credit (and you could run keyword competitiveness metrics for all the long tails that came out of that seed keyword) and you could buy a pack of 10 credits for $5 – or something along those lines – then it would make LTP a great choice. It would be so much better for people who only need to find a batch of keywords for a new site, then push out content for those keywords and come back for more for their next site, for example.
If you decide to implement this and become filthy, stinking rich on the back of this brilliant idea, then remember me and maybe send a pack of gum my way … or even a check for a couple of million. Thanks in advance guys!
Welcome back, another review coming at you today. We’re looking at a really cool little service actually that was recommended to me by a member of a business networking education group that I’m a member here of in Christchurch, New Zealand.
But anyway, there’s a member of that group who’s got a really good grasp on emerging digital technologies and software solutions and software service and all those kind of things that can make running a business easier. And a couple of months ago now, he got up and spoke and he recommended a whole bunch of different software solutions for, I guess, various different business tasks that you might want to carry out.
And one of the ones that stuck with me was the service he recommended for audio transcription called Rev. It’s R-E-V, rev.com. And I made a mental note of going to use it because I immediately it jumped out to me how it would be beneficial for the work I do. For example, on this particular blog here, in the past, I’ve done all my reviews simply by writing them out. You know, sitting in front of the keyboard and typing away. But I find is actually I can get my thoughts about a product or a service down much better if I can just speak freely into a microphone. And yeah, you do get the filler words and the slightly unusually structured sentences that I guess are more organic and come with natural speech. But overall, I prefer that communicative style anyway. I think it really does help get the point across. And it’s a lot faster as well.
So I made a note to go try Rev but things got in the way and I got busy. But recently I did do my first sort of full content piece using Rev and that was my review of You Need a Budget. You can click the link here to go check that out. And now I’ve decided to do a review of rev.com and funnily enough, I’m doing this review by talking into a microphone, giving my thoughts, and then actually having it transcribed by Rev. So that’ll be fun. A bit of ‘Revception’ really for the people who are going to be transcribing it or who have transcribed it.
What Is Rev?
Anyway, what it Rev? Rev is a service that as I just mentioned, it’s an audio transcription service. So you upload an audio file. Whether that’s an interview session you’ve done with someone or a speech or anything like that. And then, you pay to have that audio file transcribed into written words. So, into a Microsoft Word file or a text file or something like that. And the reason that you might want to do transcription is well, it’s easy. It’s a lot better to pay someone else to do it as well than type it all out yourself. Unless you have a pretty small business and cash flow is super, super tight. Something like Rev can be very beneficial for turning spoken words into written words and saving a lot of time on content crash. And so that was why I was interested in trying it out.
And so, there are some other services that Rev offer. I think they offer translation as well but I haven’t tried that and haven’t had a need for it. And so I’m specifically talking about Rev as it stands and as it relates to audio transcription here. So what I would do first is talk you through the basic process of how you actually get a transcription set up.
How To Use Rev
Firstly, you go and create a Rev account. Really straightforward, easy process. Not too much personal information required or anything like that. Once you’ve created your account, you upload your audio file. And it’s cool, you can upload multiple files at once as well so if you’ve got say 20 different MP3 clips or web file clips that you want transcribed, just make sure that they’ve got unique names and then you can upload them all in one go as a bulk drop. So that’s good as well. I was a bit put off at first if I thought, all right, you’ve got to upload every single file separately because I like to record the different sections of the reviews I do. Often I’ll record them as separate audio tracks just so that I’m not speaking for ages and ages. And it helps me focus my thoughts. So that was a really refreshing thing to see.
Once you’ve done that, you’ll get the audio processing through the Rev platform. And that’s just to work out how long the audio is. The price you pay for transcription is tied directly to the link that the audio. So it’s a dollar, one US dollar per minute, of audio. So, I mean, I think that’s a really fair price to be honest. You could probably go on somewhere like Upwork or Fiverr and get it done for cheaper but I’ll mention shortly why you might not want to even bother with that. A 10 minute audio file might contain … It could, depending on your speech, right, contain potentially about oh maybe 1,500 words if you speak reasonably quickly. So 10 minutes to speak it and $10 to have it transcribed. And maybe another 10 minutes to just do a bit of editing and half an hour of your time you’ve pretty much got a decent length article sorted and for $10.
So look, the pricing is, I’m just going to come out with it now. The pricing is very sharp. And the other thing is that your transcription is done by a real human as well. I wouldn’t be half surprised to see Rev down the track add like a budget option that would be using some kind of automated speech-to-text software. And that could be potentially like a sort of entry level option that might be 50 cents a minute or something like that. But for now, you’re getting a real human transcribe your words which is pretty cool.
So anyway, you upload your files and then you’ll be shown what the price is for that job. And it’s just a straight $1 equals one minute of audio. So if you’ve got 30 minutes of audio, it’s going to cost you $30 US dollars. There are a couple of other options as well. You can pay a little bit extra per minute to have time stamping put in. I’m not quite sure why you’d do that. I’m not going to speak much about that because I don’t really understand it. The other one is you can also pay extra to have filler words put in. So that’s your um’s and ah’s. The thing with that is if you just want a verbatim transcription of something then you’ll need to pay for it. Otherwise, I don’t bother with either of those additional options. I just do the standard transcription.
There’s also an option to include things like funny abbreviations or specific words you’re using in your audio that your transcriber might not be aware of so just so when they hear the sound, they know what they’re typing down. So if you’ve got a … Say, you’re doing something about aviation and you’re talking about an instrument landing system, an ILS, well, you would add that as an ILS, you would add that as a note so they know when they hear that what to type down. That’s a cool little feature as well. It helps make things easier for the transcriber.
And then from there, you confirm the pricing and everything and you hit submit. And you pay, you can pay with credit card or PayPal. And then you’ll get an order confirmation. And you now wait for your audio to come back. And that’s really the process. Once the audio is returned to you, you’ll get … each file is transcribed as its own document. You can choose to either have a Word document or a text file. And then you can download them and review them and write them and everything like that. So it really is quite simple. It supports things like multiple speakers. You can give speakers their names or if it’s like male and female. They’ll note where it’s the male speaker or where it’s the female speaker.
So yeah, really easy platform to work with. Very straight forward and very fast. And that’s the basic process. So what I’m going to do now is talk about the benefits and downsides of the platform.
Things I Like About Rev
The benefits of Rev are really simple. Firstly, it’s very quick and easy. I mean, I was actually blown away, to be honest, by how quickly I got my first transcription back. I submitted about 25 minutes of audio, I think it was. It came to about four and a half thousand words by the time it was transcribed. And I had that returned in under an hour. I mean, that’s just incredible.
You know, that’s why I mentioned before. You could probably save some money by going on Upwork or Fiverr or Reddit Slave Labor forum, or whatever it’s called, and getting the transcription done there. But you’re going to hae a longer turn around time. Especially on Fiverr, you know, turnaround times seem pretty horrendous these days there. So I mean, look, unless you’re absolutely penny pinchering, $1 a minute to get turnaround that quickly. I mean, it’s not always going to be in less than an hour. But the turnaround time is fast, very, very, fast. And time is money so look, huge points to Rev for how quickly you get your audio back.
Next thing is the transcription quality is by and large very good. I have noticed the odd mistake usually it’s just words that are slightly wrong or sentences that are slightly off. But probably, to be honest, that’s also to do with my Kiwi accent and the fact that I’m not particularly a good speaker. I think if you had a sort of clear American style accent which is probably what the transcribers are expecting to hear, the accuracy would be better. It’s not bad at all. I would give the accuracy rating for the audio I’m having transcribed about a 95%. So I’m more than happy with it. If you do focus on speaking really clearly and making sure that you don’t mumble or anything like that, you should get an even higher accuracy percentage.
Another thing is the ability to rate and review the person who’s done the transcribing. So you just give them a star scoring and if you score them less than three stars, I think it is, they won’t work on any of your projects again in the future. To be honest, the transcribing I’ve had done, all the people I’ve rated really highly. So, that hasn’t been a problem for me. But it is good to have that ability to say, “Hey, I’ve got a bad transcription back and I don’t want to work with this person again.” You don’t get to pick. The platforms just sorts it all out for you. But it must have a way of keeping track of who’s worked with who. So, that’s really cool.
Yeah, and then the next thing I really like about Rev, as I’ve mentioned before, is the pricing. $1 a minute. You know, 10 minutes of audio if you speak at a decent pace, that’s enough to produce a good length blog post. And you know, even if you’ve got to spend another 10 or 15 minutes editing what comes back to improve the sentence structure for writing and things like that. I mean, probably in half an hour, you can have a really good blog post or article done. I just don’t think that unless you’re really good at it flowing with your writing, you just can’t do it as quickly with just writing. Speaking and then having it transcribed and then editing it is just so much better. It’s so much easier to get your thoughts down, in my opinion.
And other things that I like about Rev are just small things. The platform is very nicely polished. It’s easy to use. It’s clear what you need to do. The instructions are great. There’s good support. All that kind of thing. There’s lots of payment options available. So overall, yeah, really good, I think.
Things I Don’t Like About Rev
Of course, down sides, for some people it might be too expensive. They might want to only pay 50 cents a minute. I think at that price you’d be getting some pretty average transcription. You know, if money really is a concern you might have to look for a cheaper option.
Other things I don’t like about it. I have heard from the perspective of people actually doing the transcription, it’s not a particularly good service to work for. Basically, that they keep having pressure put on them to bring their rates down and increase the turn around time and everything like that. You know, I guess it’s sort of endemic in the whole gig economy, or whatever people call it these days. It’s an issue too big for this review and I do review products and services from the perspective of the people using them as the customer. But I think that’s it’s worth noting.
So, if you do get someone do a good transcription for you, make sure you give them a really good review just so you know they’re being appreciated. I actually think there should potentially even be a tip option added so if you’re really impressed and you got you got your transcription back fast. You know, if I’m spending $20 on a transcription and the job’s done in less than an hour and it’s pretty much perfect, I’m happy to tip them $5 or something like that as long as I know that tip is pretty much all going to the transcriber, not to Rev. Because I have heard that they aren’t the most generous with pay. That’s something to bear in mind if that sort of thing’s really important to you. If you go find an independent contractor and pay them a dollar a minute, are they going to be getting that full dollar a minute. So yeah, that’s just something to bear in mind.
Another thing to consider is there will be mistakes in your transcription file so you do need to allow some time for editing as well. Unless you’re just happy to throw up the content as it is or you want verbatim transcription. But look, I think I don’t need to keep this review too long so I’ll jump straight to the conclusion.
Rev.com, is it worth trying? Is it worth spending money on? If you need audio transcription done. You know, you want to create content for blog posts or articles or you want to turn a video series you’ve done into a written version and add it as a bonus to your product. Even if you do things like reviewing client websites. Let’s say you do SEO audits. I think it’s much better or much easier to actually sit there with a recording software running and your SEO tools open, and the client’s website in front of you and talk through it rather than just typing. Typing just does my head in. I’m even, I’m fast at it. I find that I just get distracted and sort of broken in my stream of consciousnesses way too easy.
Humans are made to speak. I think we all know that we learn to communicate verbally before we ever did in writing. If you back many thousands of years. And I don’t think anything’s changed really in terms of fundamental human nature. We are better generally at speaking than we are at writing. So, if you have a need to turn audio into words, spoken audio into words, rev.com is the place to do it. It’s fast. It’s easy. It’s fairly priced in my opinion. It’s not the cheapest but cheap and fast and good don’t tend to go together.
So yeah, look, rev.com, give it a try. It will honestly speed up your content creation process so much. What might have taken me two hours to write, maybe even more, I’m thinking of my Wine Up review. You know, that’s come out at about seven and a half, eight thousand words I think. Now if I wrote that all myself, just typing on the keyboard, that probably would have taken me the best part of the day, to be honest. Even though I’m a fast typer in terms of the speed on the keyboard. It’s that getting the ideas down in a sort of very conscious stream. Instead, it’s probably been an hour’s worth of talking time in front of the microphone and then maybe another hour of editing and adding images, which doesn’t really count anyway. And so approximately a quarter of the time it’s taken and what, a cost of $50, $60 US to have the audio turned into words. That’s unbeatable in my opinion. It’s so fast and easy.
So yeah, look, rev.com. Absolutely worth using. Fantastic service. Just make sure you do rate your transcribers highly if they do a good job for you and hopefully they’ll get to work on future projects of yours. Go try it out. Just record something. Just record a minute of you talking about something you enjoy doing on the weekend or whatever. Or do your next blog post as a bit of a podcast type thing and have it recorded. It’s just so cool. It’s really one of the best services that I’ve used in a long time and I’ll be using it pretty much on a weekly basis now for as long as I can.
So yeah, rev.com. Check it out. You won’t regret it.
I’ve just finished paying for a reseller hosting account on Hawkhost to host some “viral media sites” that I’ve got under development. I’ve never used Hawkhost before, but found them being recommended by Luke Kling of Peerfly/FPTraffic fame.
This page will be the home of my Hawkhost review, all updated and relevant for 2019. I’ll be adding to the review as I go about setting up my site(s) on Hawkhost.
Things I’ll be looking at:
Quality of customer service
How easy it is to get sites setup
Speed and reliability of the hosting
So make sure that you stay tuned and come back soon to check out my review of Hawkhost when it is all finished!
What Is Hawkhost?
Hawkhost is another hosting company. There are just so many out there that it can be hard to know where to begin. You’ve probably heard of the big ones like GoDaddy and BlueHost – but Hawkhost is definitely not such a prominent name.
As mentioned above, I decided to give Hawkhost a try because it was recommended by Luke Kling. He’s one of my favourite personalities in the affiliate marketing game (especially with all the hard work he puts in to FPTraffic) so I decided to follow his recommendation and give them a try.
There are a number of different options available with Hawkhost, all of which naturally vary depending on exactly what type of hosting you’ve chosen.
I personally chose a reseller account, as I plan to be using a whole bunch of different domains and hosting different sites. However, at the moment I just have a “main” website hosted on there.
It’s been a while since my last review here at Reviews Boss – my apologies for this, but I’ve been crazy busy with some other exciting projects. However, now I’m back on deck and ready to drop some seriously good reviews that will hopefully help you save money and get better results (as well as uncover some powerful tools and training that you might not have otherwise come across!)
Because this is going to be quite a lengthy review, I’ll just be dripping out elements of it as I go along. I’ve decided to change my review style a bit and just add additional content to reviews as I go along. So although it will be a bit more “stream of consciousness” on this site from now on, the big upside for you is that there are going to be a lot more reviews and detailed content to go through.
So anyway, let’s get this show on the road and dive into my Majestic SEO review.
What Is Majestic SEO?
Basically, it’s a backlink analysis platform. If you’re looking at using Majestic, then you probably already know that backlinks to your site are an essential factor that goes into determining how well you rank in the search engines for any given keyword.
At the end of the day, the more high quality links you can pick up, the better.
How Much Does It Cost?
There are a number of different pricing plans for Majestic, depending on exactly how much of a “power user” you are. You can also pay
Please note that Majestic is priced in British pounds. Thanks to “Brexit” there has been a marked decline in the value of the Pound – now is a better time than ever, especially if you’re using American dollars, to get a Majestic SEO subscription. You can purchase denominated in Euros or US Dollars, but considering the value of the Pound, you are probably going to get the best deal purchasing in that particular currency.
If I’m to be honest, I think that Majestic’s pricing structure is a bit too confusing and convoluted. There are so many different tiers, and monthly/annual pricing for each tier. “Silver” tier also has a quarterly option available, priced in a monthly equivalent amount (that is actually the option I have for my account, as I do sometimes “go off the boil” with SEO and web marketing software).
Is There A Free Version?
You can get a limited number of free searches every day by creating a free account. However, you only get top level statistics (the Trust Flow and Citation Flow) of the domain/page you are searching, and you will only get to see a small number of actual backlinks.
If you are only interested in getting top level stats, then you may be able to get away with a free account. And if you are feeling particularly naughty, you can get unlimited free searches by using a VPN program like Private Internet Access.
However, you will be missing out on the best elements of Majestic’s analysis by using only the free version. I strongly recommend that you spring for a paid membership.
What Can I Do With It?
As mentioned a number of times so far in this review, you can use Majestic SEO to enable you to analyze the backlink profile of any website or web page. In particular, you can look at important metrics like:
The number of backlinks pointing to the site
The number of referring domains pointing to the site
Trust Flow & Citation Flow (these are Majestic statistics – if you’re at all familiar with SEO, then you may well have heard of these metrics already)
Topical TF & CF metrics
Anchor text profiles
The exact links pointing to the site
Pretty much anything else you could hope to do with regards to analysing backlinks
Who Is It For?
Majestic SEO is for anybody who wants to analyze the backlink profile (and individual backlinks) of any website. It doesn’t just have to be your own. You can use it on client sites, competitor sites, and any other site or page under the sun.
Uses for Majestic SEO’s backlink analysis include:
Analyzing the backlinks of a competing site/page that you want to outrank
Finding potential sources of backlinks for your own site/client sites
Broken link building (go to backlinko.com if you want to learn more about this)
Checking your site’s backlink profile for potential “bad neighbourhood” links
Basically any task you can think of where you need to look at what links are pointing to any given page or site
Is Majestic SEO worth having a subscription to? If you are in any way interested in getting ahead with SEO – whether for affiliate marketing, client-based SEO work, running in-house campaigns for your employer, or for any other reason – it is definitely worth having in your “tool box”.
I know a lot of SEOs, especially the more advanced ones, recommend Ahrefs over Majestic. However, Ahrefs is a lot more expensive than Majestic. If you’re wanting a good way to get started with backlink analysis, then I do believe that Majestic SEO does a perfectly good job.
Welcome to the latest review we have. You may have seen our other reviews released recently, the one for the Chakra Activation System, and one for The Amazing You. Lets keep the great work going with another amazing review today.
So, this review today comes from a special reader request. It is a review for the Secret Brain System. I had been planning to do a review for this product on my own as it had really started to make some waves, but had been holding off as I had been busy. But when I got the user request, I decided to get up, get motivated and get to work.
Lets get started. What exactly is the Secret Brain System? Well it’s a broad title, and the product itself is also quite broad. It comes via digital download, and it is basically for anyone who wants to improve their life, and to reach their goals. There is not a super specific goal, and it can relate to pretty much anyone who wants to do something with their lives. Which I assume is almost everyone. Or at least I hope!
It costs $47, which is the very standard price for a product like this. So no abnormalities there. Would it be great if it was cheaper? Sure, but somethings can be too good to be true. This price indicates to me that this product is reliable, and the creators know what they are doing for sure.
REVIEW TO BE COMPLETED SOON – Go here to check out the official Secret Brain System website in the meantime.
Hi guys, how’s it going? Your humble host here again, with another review of a keyword research service. You’ve probably read some of my other keyword finder reviews in the past, and I’m really excited about this one as it’s a topic I enjoy writing about.
Anyway, I digress. Let’s take a closer look at KWAlert.net
What Is It?
As the introduction of this review suggests, KWAlert.net is a keyword research tool. It’s a website that you load up, and then use to find keyword suggestions.
This is as opposed to something like Long Tail Pro that is a downloadable software.
What’s Different To Other Keyword Research Tools?
Right now you’re probably thinking “why would I bother to switch from a proven tool like Keyword Shitter to KWAlert.net?”
Well, there is one HUGE thing that you might want to consider:
Trending Data Search
This is something I haven’t yet seen incorporated into any other keyword research tool. Basically, KWAlert.net can run a search that identifies trending keywords based on your seed keyword. From what I can tell, this is based off of Google Trends data.
Here’s an example of a search using the trending feature:
So you can open up any of the long tail results found and check its trending data.
This is a great way to get some insight into trending searches that you can capitalize on.
What I Like
No download or install needed. This means KWAlert.net is compatible with just about anything that can connect to the Internet. You also save hard drive space and bloat.
Finds some good results. This is always a fairly subjective thing to say, but I’ve found that there are some good long tail keywords turned up from my seed keyword searches. The depth isn’t as good as Keyword Shitter, but it’s also faster and not really designed to be exactly the same thing.
Trending feature is awesome. Is it the be-all-and-end-all of trending data? No … but it sure is a good way to get some ideas of potential search and social trends that you can tap into for better promotional efforts.
Emails for new keyword updates. To be honest, I haven’t yet tested this feature myself. However, it does appear that for deep scraped keywords there is an option to receive an email update every day with more long tail results. I’ll report back when I’ve had the chance to test it myself.
What I Don’t Like
Not as many suggestions as some tools. From what I can gather, the max keywords you’ll find is 2000. This is plenty enough, but it’s also a lot less than something like Keyword Shitter.
Needs better instructions due to more complex features & different search types. For example, I still don’t understand the true difference between fast scrape and deep scrape (in terms of how it actually find results).
CSV report has an annoying bug. Every time I download the CSV dump of the keywords I find, I open it up and the “date terms added” field is merged into the keyword itself. I just use .txt export now. Hopefully this gets fixed in the near future.
As I mentioned above, you don’t get any keyword volume or CPC data with this particular tool. But that’s no big issue! Just make sure you have Keywords Everywhere browser extension installed, and then copy the text file dump into it. Voila, you’ve suddenly got volume and CPC info for all the keywords you found!
You can thank me later 😀
KWAlert.net is seriously cool. The fact that it helps you tap into trending data is freakin’ sweet (I bet you said that in a Peter Griffin voice, didn’t you?). Tapping into trends can be a great way to stay ahead of the game when it comes to SEO. If you’re doing things like selling trending products on Facebook via Aliexpress drop-shipping, then KWalert can probably help here as well.
It’s free, it’s fast, and it works well with some unique features, such as trending data and ability to email new results.. What’s not to love? Although it doesn’t provide the most in-depth terms, it’s nonetheless an awesome addition to any web marketing arsenal and well worth your time. I suggest you head over to KWAlert.net, bookmark it, and give it a try.
I was approached by the owner of KWAlert.net and asked to review it. I agreed (obviously lol). However, the fact that I was asked to do the review has not had any bearing on my opinion. I’m always happy to review a product, service, or website if asked … but even if I’m given comped access I don’t let that influence my views.
If you’ve been anywhere on the Internet, then you’ve probably come across a Google Adsense ad. Heck, I’d be willing to bet a million bucks that you’ve probably clicked on at least one Google Adsense ad in your time.
I’ve been active and making money from Google Adsense for a number of years now. I’m the first to admit that I’m not an Adsense master, and I certainly don’t make enough from it to fly first class and drink Dom Perignon. However, I’ve had enough experience and earnings with the platform to be able to give an honest, informed opinion.
What Is Google Adsense?
As I mentioned above, Google Adsense is an advertising network. Well to be more specific, it is the publisher side of an advertising network, allowing you to run advertisements on your websites and mobile apps that can earn you money (either per click or per impression).
Google Adsense links in primarily with the Google Adwords system. In case you haven’t heard of Adwords, it’s a platform that allows advertisers to get ads to show in Google.
The most common type of Adwords ad is the “search” ad, which you will probably be familiar with. It looks like this:
However, what we are interested in is Google Display ads. They look a bit like this:
This probably looks familiar to you. In fact, you will have definitely seen ads like this (especially if you’re not a prolific user of ad blockers).
When an advertiser places an ad on the Google Display network, it can show in ad slots that have been installed by publishers on the Google Adsense network.
Basically, with Adsense you can sell space on your website where advertisers can place their advertisements through the Adwords network. All you have to do is have a website, set up an Adsense account, and then install code on to your website where you want ads to run.
Google then shows ads to your visits based on a variety of factors, such as whether your content keywords match the keywords the advertiser is bidding on, topic matching, or whether your visitors are on a remarketing list (those creepy ads that follow you around the Internet).
No, it’s completely free to join. Google make their money on the “arbitrage” of the ads. Basically, they charge the advertiser $x per click, and pay you $X-Y.
Is Google Adsense A Scam?
No, not at all. It’s one of the biggest, most-trusted and well-tested advertising networks in the world. Issues relating to Adsense and non-payment/closure of account tend to come from non-compliance with Adsense ToS. This is often the case when people stumble across a clever method of making a lot of money with Adsense but violating the platform rules. If Google catches you out they can and will ban you from Adsense, and any pending payments you have will not be paid out.
Provided you operate within the rules, you should have no worries about getting paid out on time, every time.
How Much Money Can I Make With Adsense
That’s a “how long is a piece of string” question! The amount of money you can make with Adsense depends on:
The amount of traffic your websites receives. The more traffic you receive, the more impressions and clicks your ads will get, meaning more earnings. Adsense really is a volume-based platform for most people.
The type of traffic your website receives. Traffic from organic search clicks tends to yield better results than social media traffic, for example. If you’re dependent on lower value, higher volume traffic, you’ll need to get more clicks to make an equivalent amount of moolah.
The niche/topic of your website. If you’ve got a website about picking a good personal injury lawyer, then you’ll probably get a high CPC on your ads (as advertisers will be paying a fortune for their ads). On the other hand, if you’re trying to run a generic site that is about cat memes or something like that, then your CPC will be low and you’ll need a much higher volume of clicks to make good money.
Ad placement. Placement of ads in various locations (e.g. header banner, below post content, in-post etc) can have a significant impact on impression and click-through rate, therefore substantially affecting performance. I won’t go into Adsense placement optimisation in this post, suffice it to say that there is some excellent content out there on this particular subject, and it’s something you should take very seriously.
Demographics. This is something people don’t consider, but it’s important in my opinion. Young people are more likely to use mobile devices, and also more likely to use ad blockers when browsing. Older people – potentially less tech savvy – are more likely to be on desktop/laptop computers, browse without ad blocker, and click ads.
I will say that Adsense isn’t the easiest way to make a lot of money online. It is an effective platform, time-tested and trusted and easy to set up. But because you generally need a high level of traffic to really see results, it can be quite disheartening to beginners.
What Is The Best Way To Make Money From Adsense?
In my opinion, there are two key ways to make good money from Adsense:
Build up high-quality, authority sites that draw strong organic rankings and traffic. Use the platform in conjunction with other monetisation methods as well. This is the strategy taught in courses like RankXL (which I hope to review in the near future).
Generate large volumes of traffic through social media, e.g. Facebook pages/groups, Twitter, Pinterest etc and monetize it. Often social traffic can be hard to “lock down” with affiliate offers, physical products etc if the content you are pushing is the standard viral-type content/clickbait you see across the gamut of social media. Adsense is a perfect match for this type of traffic, as it isn’t dependent on matching products to prospective customers.
When Shouldn’t You Monetise With Adsense?
This is only my personal opinion, but there are a few instances in which I think advertising with Adsense isn’t a great idea:
You’re trying to promote high-ticket affiliate products or your own products. In this case, ad banners can be distracting and reduce the likelihood that someone clicks on your affiliate links. Remember that it is much easier to make $100 from an affiliate commission than it is to make $100 from Adsense. If you’re going to use Adsense on this type of page, use it sparingly so it never takes away from the key action you want people to complete.
You’re running a professional services website, ecommerce store, or anything else that isn’t a site where you are simply trying to monetize “information”. This is a massive rookie error, but I’ve seen it done a few times. There is nothing more off-putting than visiting the website of a bricks and mortar business that has Adsense ads installed.
You already run multiple other ad types. Unless you are specifically going for the “uber ads” look, where every article is broken up into multiple pages so you can cram the ads in, you are better sticking to a couple of key ad types. Remember, many people just block ads now anyway – or they hit the back button immediately if greeted by an overwhelming crush of ads!
Overall, Google Adsense is an excellent platform for monetizing websites; especially if you have lots of traffic, or at least a decent volume of traffic in a niche that offers good CPCs.
Setting up an Adsense account is easy (provided you’re in a tier 1, Western country) and getting your ad code and installing it is also straightforward, particularly if you are using a CMS like WordPress where many themes now come with included ad slots.
As long as you follow the rules, there are also no worries about not getting paid on time. Remember, Adsense is backed by Google itself!
I don’t do this lightly, but I want to talk about the truly horrendous customer service I have experienced with Konker. If you go through my review in the sections below, you will see that I had been fairly positive towards Konker in the past – identifying it as an online service marketplace with good potential (just a lot of bugs that needed ironing out).
In an update I posted in January 2019, I talked about the fact that due to a serious bug in the platform, my account basically disappeared. I was unable to login (because my account could no longer be found). This was causing me issues as I needed to get in and grab some details about some of the gigs I had ordered.
As I’ve mentioned before, Konker doesn’t really have much in the way of support. There’s no live chat or ticket system or even email address. What you get is a private Facebook group that you have to ask to join. Inside this group there appears to be one guy who looks after support.
TL:DR? I was banned from Konker support for requesting assistance with the recovery of my account (or at least the personal data of my account). No apologies, no attempts to assist. Just straight up blocked from being able to request any help.
I now have no way of knowing what has happened to my personal information – whether it is truly deleted, or just locked away on a server somewhere under a pile of bad code.
January 2019 Update
I’m revisiting my Konker review – for a really simple reason. It’s coming up end of financial year here in NZ, and I want to get my accounts all sorted and submitted to the accountant.
I decided to go into Konker to export invoices and receipts for both gigs I have sold, as well as gigs I have purchased.
Lo and behold, a wild problem appears:
Firstly, I cannot log into my Konker account. I go to log in and my email address I used to sign up for the account is not recognised. There’s no option to log in with a username either. I also cannot reset my password because, once again, my email address isn’t found.
What would you do in this circumstance? Surely you’d go straight to support. Well here’s another doozy – Konker doesn’t really have support. It has a Facebook group (that you can’t post a thread in anymore, only comment on posts by the admins). There’s one guy – as far as I can discern – who is responsible for all the support.
I made a comment on a post asking for you to post any issues, explaining the situation. I got a reply back from the support person saying “email communication is down, you’ll need to wait”. Fundamentally, I’m not satisfied with that response. If your login and password reset system is broken, you should be doing EVERYTHING in your power to fix that. But this issue has been ongoing for a while now, and I can see others in the support group are having similar issues.
This is just another example of the kind of bug that plagues the Konker platform, and makes it feel very “hacked togeher”, as opposed to something like Fiverr that is polished and professional.
Another major error I’ve discovered in this process is that one of my gigs is now being sold by someone else. Seriously, I set up the gig, got initial orders and reviews, and now if I go to that gig URL it’s been “hijacked” by another seller. Madness!
But the biggest problem I’ve encountered (apart from being able to log in) is sufficiently serious to make me recommend that nobody who takes their business seriously should use this platform: You cannot get invoices for payments or purchases.
From reading through the Konker FB group, it has become apparent that you simply cannot go into your dashboard – when it’s working that is – and download invoices for gigs you have purchased or sold. Instead, you are told to rely on Paypal receipts/invoices. But this is massively problematic for a few reasons. Firstly, Paypal invoices and receipts made through Konker do not pass any information about the gig you ordered or sold, apart from the price paid and the email address and Paypal name of the seller. Secondly, because of the affiliate system in Konker you can wind up with gigs (that you ordered or received with an active affiliate cookie) that have a second output. So say you spent $10 on a gig, and you found that gig by clicking an affiliate link (or someone just hijacked the whole site with their affiliate links … happens quite often) when you get a receipt in your Paypal account it will show most of the money going to the gig seller, but a fraction going to the affiliate. It’s just so confusing to reconcile this, because of how everything is hacked together with Paypal.
I’ll upload an obfuscated screenshot to show you guys what I mean. But in the meantime, suffice it to say that using Konker will RUIN your Paypal export history. It becomes an endless litany of inflows and outflows with no invoices to tie to them … and even worse when you cannot even log into your dashboard to screen capture or screen print a gig order.
Same problem goes for affiliate earnings. I have fractional little inflows (50 cents here, $2 there) from when I used to recommend the old Source Wave marketplace and dropped my affiliate link in a few places. Reconciling would be so much easier if your affiliate balance and gig sales balances were stored in Konker until you hit a threshold, e.g. $100, and then withdraw that all in one amount with an accompanying invoice.
Because of this problem, I simply cannot recommend Konker to anyone who wants to run a bona fide business with good tracking and bookkeeping in place. It’s not acceptable, in my opinion, to have so many small transactions with no data provided. And it’s doubly bad when the platform is always broken so you can’t get what scant data would be avaiable anyway.
Hi everybody. Sam here again with another review. Today it’s going to be a pretty short review. I want to cover a platform. Sort of an online marketplace, I guess you could call it. That online marketplace is called Konker.
I’m not going to do a long review here, but I do want to talk you through this plant form. It’s getting some notoriety, and it’s worth knowing about and knowing what’s good about it and what’s bad about it.
What is Konker?
It’s a place for you to buy and sell digital marketing services.
If you sell key word research, or you sell on-page UCO, or you sell graphic design, or you sell article writing or whatever, you can register for an account and you can sell that service. You can set your price and the product you deliver. There’s quite good flexibility there. On the flip side of the coin, if you want to buy services, you go there and buy them, too.
I think what Konker does is it positions itself as being a slightly more, should I say, libertarian marketplace than something like Fiverr. Fiverr, especially in its early days, Fiverr was all about those $5.00 services. I will photograph myself with a silly mustache on and holding a sign with your name for $5.00, or something stupid like that. Or, I will write you a 250 article for $5.00.
Of course, now you’ve got Gig Extras, and different priced services and all that. That’s just the platform evolving with the requirements of this sort of marketplace. Konker, there’s not restrictions there, gigs that are a few dollars. I mean, there are gigs that are hundreds of dollars on Konker. It’s free to register as a buyer or seller, as well. You just go to Konker.io and sign up.
As I said, it’s all focused on digital marketing services, so the sort of things you would normally need a VA for. There’s a good variety of services on there as well. There are some good ones that I’ve used in terms of link building, citations, things like that.
If you’re the kind of person that sells a service to a client, let’s say you’re a social media marketing guru and you’ve got some clients in that space, and they say, “Oh, what about doing some local CO for me,” well, you could trundle over to Konker, and if they’re paying you $500.00 for a CO, you could probably buy yourself a decent package of gigs that you resell to them for a $100.00 or $150.00. That’s a discussion for another day.
Things I Like About Konker
What I want to focus on really is this sort of … I guess the good things about the platform and the bad things because that’s really what I’m all about. Good things about the platform: a lot of flexibility for the seller in terms of the services you provide, and that results in a good selection of services if you are a buyer.
I think Konker’s done a pretty good job at that. The other thing as well is you can get paid by PayPal as a seller. That’s nice. Money comes into your PayPal account. It’s easy enough to get set up and start selling services as well. There’s ranking systems and feedback and all that kind of thing. It fulfills all the sort of basic marketplace requirements that a service marketplace or gig economy marketplaces have got to have.
The good points are the foundations there, but what I want to actually focus on more is the bad points of about Konker.
Things I Don’t Like About Konker
The bad points about it is really, that is very buggy. Whether you’re a buyer or a seller, there are a number of bugs that occur on this platform. Way too much regularity. They are concerning, because if they were ironed out, it would be really, really good.
What you have to remember with Konker is it’s an updated version of the old Source Market, so Alex Becker, you might of heard of him. I’m not going to go into opinions on him. Some people love him, some people hate him. I think he’s very good at what he does. He set up Source Market. I actually started out on the old Source Market, and then he, for some weird reason, rebranded it to Konker. I don’t really get why because Source Market saved the work pretty well. Konker promised a whole load of new features, but the flip side of the coin is it often seems pretty broken.
I want to run through some of the bugs you might expect to see, because they can be quite frustrating and almost disturbing in some senses. Bugs I have personally experienced … just the other day, I haven’t sold anything on Konker in quite some time. I’ve sort of moved away from doing lower value services. Really, if you want to work with me, you’ve got to spend probably upwards of $1,000.00 to get in front of me, unless you’re a client whose been grandfathered in on an old sort of platform or an old service that I offer.
It’s not to say I don’t want to do … there’s opportunities I can see for lower priced services with a faster turnaround time as well. Anyway, that all aside, I haven’t sold anything on Konker for probably six months, maybe even more, like 10 months. I can’t remember off the top of my head. I was browsing my PayPal account the other day, and suddenly there was a few transactions for money flowing in, and then one for money flowing out.
I didn’t recognize I had absolutely no … the amounts I was receiving and paying out didn’t seem to make any sense to me at all. It wasn’t a payment I was expecting to come in. There was no payments I was expecting to go out. I’ve got a good track of what comes out on a regular basis such as my FPTraffic subscription, or anything like that. I thought, “What the heck can this be?”
I went through all my email addresses looking for receipts and everything. In the end, all I was able to do was … I found the buyer email, the payor email in PayPal for the person who’d paid me the money, and I emailed them. They’re a business on the other side of the world. I’ve never heard of them before.
I said, “Hey look, I don’t want to alarm you, but I think some money of yours has wound up in account somehow, and I want to pay you that money back because I don’t want to take money off you for free and get into trouble.” He came back and said, “Oh, yeah. This is weird. I had a bug with my Konker account. I was trying to buy a service off someone else,” and obviously what’s happened is he tried to buy the service of someone else, and then somehow I’ve wound up getting paid.
It wasn’t even an amount for service I’ve ever offered. It was just crazy. It’s basically like money was flowing to the wrong person. One of them might have lined up with one of my services, but then it got even worse because I can’t log in to actually shut down my account. This is a bad bit of password security, but for this particular account I had an email address I used, and I had a password that I absolutely 100% know of by heart.
I know I’ll never get it wrong, even if I got a frontal lobotomy, I’d still get this password right. I went to type that password in, and it just said, “Account not found.” It said, “Account login details not valid.” It’s basically saying either my username or password was incorrect. I then went to reset my password, and I entered the same email address. It then said, “We can’t find any record of this account,” even though I could still go on Konker and find my services for sale buried away at the bottom of a category somewhere and I could click into that profile.
That sort of thing is pretty worrying because there’s a guy on the other side of the world who had about $100.00 taken out of his PayPal account that wound up in my PayPal account. I’m on the hook for giving him the money back. I look bad, he looks bad because he spent money for nothing until I gave it back to him, which I was always intending to do.
It’s just a worrying scenario. Some of the other bugs with Konker, if you go in the private members group on Facebook, there’s a lot of issues with it. There’s been even a case, I believe, where someone actually manage to hack the whole site so that basically every PayPal transaction, for a reasonably short period of time, but it took a while for the developers to notice and for the other people to notice.
Basically, everything was being siphoned into this guy’s PayPal account. If you bought a service, the service provider would receive a notification that a new order had come through, and they would probably start working on it. The money never arrived in their account.
There was a whole lot of to-do with would those orders be canceled, and would people be on the hook for money and all sorts of things like that. In this day and age, that sort of thing shouldn’t be able to happen. If a hacker hacks a site, fair enough they might bring it down, they might hack an image on the home page and say, “Come check out this,” or something like that.
If you can’t run a platform so that people’s private PayPals can’t be hacked, well I don’t know whether you should be running it. There are other little bugs as well. Things not saving. I’ve a couple of gigs that are still pending on my order list, because someone’s paid me and then for some weird reason I can’t message them and I can’t find out any other details about them, either. Of course, like Fiverr, Konker has this system where you’re not supposed to try to communicate outside of the delivery system so you can’t take your regular customers off Konker and work with them and bypass the fees that they’d be getting.
Konker. Is it worth using? Well, there’s actually a lot of really good services on there. I think for like ACO and digital marketing, the services are better than what you’d find on Fiverr. The issue I’ve got is the bugs. It really does feel like something that’s sort of either been put together by some cheap, off-shore development house that doesn’t really care, or it’s just a case of careless, almost afterthought on the part of people who’ve created it, which is a shame because I think Konker could be really, really good.
I think the name is stupid, as well. Fiverr makes sense, because it was all about $5.00. Source Market was a little bit market that’s in the name. Konker, spelled incorrectly, I don’t understand it, but whatever. Look, there’s potential for it to be a good marketplace, but the bugs need to be ironed out. I just have a sneaking suspicion that I think it will gradually die a death, which is a shame because the ability to pretty much sell the service in the way you want to … mine is the restrictions you’d get with something like Fiverr is really good.
In that sense, they are to be commended for trying hard to make a much more innovative platform. It’s just those kind of bugs, anything that involves people not getting paid, or people paying too much, or people’s money going missing … you have to stamp that out, and that has to be fixed.
Even things like accounts being lost. I’ve got a level two account, really good feedback, all positive feedback for all the gigs I did with Don. I’ve made probably a couple of grand through there doing some little side services. I can’t get into it. The support seems pretty useless. Well worth checking out, but do be weary. Those bugs are annoying.
I’m not going to recommend in a sense that it’s the greatest thing ever, but I think if you can work around the bugs, there’s some pretty good services for sale. Things like TBN links, and other little services like little citation packs and things that are quite good. Konker.io, I’m into mines. The bugs are bad. It feels unfinished, it feels unpolished. There’s a nucleus of something very good there, but you do need to be weary.