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Squidoo Introduced a New Featured Lens Threshold

Squidoo is millions useful pages...
Squidoo introduced two new policies this past week. Not actually policies... Let's say that they introduced two new features to all lensmasters. Today I am going to talk through the second one as it affects all lenses and all lensmasters all at once.

What is going on right now? Starting yesterday, the number of featured lenses will be reduced to 175,000 instead of the 350,000 that were already a reduction of the previous number of featured lenses on the site. This means that all lenses below the 175,000 mark won't be featured or found by search engines. This also means that if you have lenses languishing in the 175,000 and above mark, they will not be featured on the Internet any more. Only direct traffic will be able to reach them.

Direct traffic will only be able to reach WIP lenses

Unfeaturing these lenses means that they will be marked as WIP (work in progress) and search engines will not see them any more. This means that they will not be enable to index these lenses in their database and, therefore, unable to serve them as their search results.

This also means that your lenses will be visited by people who received your link and/or clicked on it from your social media profile, for example. Direct traffic will be the only way to discover your work.

What are the lenses concerned?

From what I could read on HQ's blog, lenses that have a rank superior to 175,000 are lenses that have not been updated in many years. However, I know that many lensmasters who updated their lenses not long ago have some that are ranked higher than 175,000.

They also stated that lenses with such a lensrank are those that get no traffic. This is not absolutely true: many lenses that get traffic are ranked above 175,000 because some categories seem to be ranked higher than others. For example I have lenses with low traffic figures ranked higher than lenses with higher traffic figures. Just because the category is not that popular on the site.

Another reason seems to be that these lenses are incomplete. Well not all of them since there are millions of lenses built and only 350,000 featured until Friday. This does not imply that they are incomplete but more than there is a huge competition and that it is not easy to be featured on the site.

I will not criticize their decision : it is their site... I am just a writer that posts her articles on Squidoo and earns some pennies for doing so. 

Is there a benefit to such a new policy?

HQ seems to think that there is a benefit to this: it is supposed to make the site look good in search engines' eyes. They try to do whatever they can to get back in to Google's good graces as, if you are a lensmaster, you have noticed that the major search engine punished Squidoo like a mother would have done to a child who would have stolen the honey pot.

I don't buy Google's will to own the Internet but many site owners to abide by their rules. I think that if everybody online would stop using G for searching and advertising, they would be forced to work for the good of their customers and not the sake of their shareholders. Sites like Squidoo would become once again favorites and we would all benefit from that.

But I digress and criticizing G is not the purpose of this post.

What reducing the number of featured lenses means for us?

From some people's perspective it is best to have a site with less pages than a site with more pages that aren't visited. 

I don't agree with this opinion: with more pages available, G and other search engines might find out that the site is worth a second look and a second exam. They might even find pages to feature in their page results. However with only 350,000 pages featured on millions, they can't have any idea of what is available on Squidoo.

I'm pretty sure that there are worthwhile lenses hidden in the above ranks. Now with the reduction to 175,000 it will be harder for search engines to find out that Squidoo has a big collection of quality pages. 

Keep in mind that within the pages with the lowest rank there are pages that benefit only from internal traffic. This doesn't mean that they are of quality.

There is a huge number of lensmasters that do not dare updating their lenses for fear to have them locked, others didn't log into their Squidoo account because of the lack of incentive for doing so.

These are people HQ should care for: I know many of them and know their pages are of top quality. If they would update them they would help bringing back traffic to the site.

As said earlier, less traffic means less revenue. But this does not seem to be important these days as if Squidoo had decided to cut on revenues any way sooner or later.

Cutting on featured lenses will help the site recover and get more traffic.

Once again, I disagree. How all lenses after 175,000 can help all lenses before 175,000 generate traffic? In no way. Instead, all lenses above that number would help people find all lenses below that figure.

Even worse picture: with less lenses and, therefore less traffic, if all 175,000 lenses got 1 visit each - some would have 4 some would have zero - the site is about to lose 175,000 visitors and potential ad clickers and buyers.

Cut on the number of featured lenses, you cut on the revenue as well.

My view on this is that instead of reducing the number of featured lenses they should have increased it to 500,000 or even 1,000,000. Doing so would have given search engines some food. They would have found lenses that are worth featuring, they would have forgiven Squidoo for... what? Being a membership site, a writing platform that was once successful.

Ah well that is life and it is not my site. I just can sit and watch. With sadness...

Posted by Holly Day


PLR Healthy Cooking Tools + Reviews

Healthy cooking tools and reviews plr pack
JR Lang produced a great package that I'm thinking about buying these days. I don't know if I'll ever have the time to rewrite the content and publish it on a cooking/cuisine blog I own but didn't update in ages. However I just love this package and think that anyone blogging in cooking/cuisine niche will love it as well.

This pack isn't as huge as the previous one I already posted about but it is filled with absolutely up to date files that will make your audience run to your site. Healthy Cooking Tools Report + 20 Cooking Product/Book Reviews (plus slideshows) is a pack you owe yourself to own.

Here's what you can get your hands on:

16 healthy cooking tools reviews

These are highly rated on Amazon and come with great search volumes
  • ArtCook Fresh Herb Keeper
  • Breville JE98XL Juice Fountain Plus Juice Extractor
  • Hamilton Beach Digital Steamer
  • Misto Brushed Aluminum Olive Oil Sprayer (now that is one I MUST BUY for myself)
  • Ronco ST5000PLGEN Showtime Rotisserie Platinum Edition
  • Etc.

4 healthy cooking recipe book reviews

Books that are also best rated on Amazon.

These two great packages are meant for your to get commissions on all sales.

But here are the plusses I love...

20 Slideshow videos, slides and images

20 slideshow videos related to the product that are reviewed plus 200 slides from the slideshows AND the 20 PP files. Images work great on Pinterest and sites like Polyvore or Instagram. PLR article packs rarely come with images and this is what makes this one such a great opportunity.

The high quality of the
Healthy Cooking Tools Report + 20 Cooking Product/Book Reviews offer reminds me from the times I used to Internet affiliate marketing to my mailing list. I remember how excited I was when I shared a great pack for sale on the Internet with my reader. The newsletter was set to be sent all Sundays. Early morning I checked everything to make sure I didn't miss a single thing, even though it was not that important.

But I digress. I think this pack is ideal for anyone who is in the food blogging niche and with a bit of work can make the most out of it.

See you soon for a new blog post - related to your favorite writing platform.


Posted by Holly Day


Cooking and Recipes Rock on the Web

My strawberries - don't copy or download. Thanks.
I'm not accustomed to promote things on my blog but have to admit that this time, I found something that I literaly fell in love with as soon as I saw it.

As said in some posts during my ebook publishing short guide a few weeks ago, recipes and crafts rock on the Internet. Blogs about cooking, dieting, healthy eating and about DIY stuff are those that get the most traffic.

Huge Healthy Cooking PLR Package

PLR comes in handy when you have a lot of work to do. It also is agreeable to have PLR articles on hand when we run out of ideas on what to write in order to keep our sites updated. It happens to me quite often. PLR articles always saved my time - they provide me with ideas and I just have to rewrite them (I do that myself and only use a rewriter software for article distribution to directories purpose).

That is why I wanted to let you know that JR Lang put together a stunning Healthy Cooking PLR package that you can use in almost any way you wish - you just can't pass on rights or use her name as the author. 

It comes with a lot of pages and graphics; which makes it a great buy.

The package includes an ebook that provides you with 77 pages of healthy cooking tips. From reasons why healthy cooking and, therefore eating, is essential to materials that enables you to cook food the right and healthy way; from methods for cooking to health related facts.

In this ebook you will find great articles to personalize and publish as an e-book or Kindle (requires more personalization). A good use of this ebook is to split it into as many articles as there are topics covered.

This is a gold mine for you if you blog about cooking and if your readers are looking for healthy eating tips and tricks. These articles are surely going to work pretty well with the Summer time beginning in a few days.

The book also includes 120 images that are copyright and royalty free. And you know how hard it is to find low cost pictures that you can use in any way you wish on the Internet. There is also a shopping list that comes with 15 pages filled with tips to give to your readers or potential subscribers. Here again a bunch of pictures illustrate the ebook.

In addition to this already huge package, you will also be given 15 healthy cooking articles that you can use as blog posts or compile into a short report to give away to your site/blog readers. 

Another great feature are the 3 image collages and 2 infographics that you can use to drive traffic to your blog/site through sites like Pinterest where big pics are always enjoyed.  

As if this package wasn't big enough, the author also added:

  • 100 tweets dedicated to the topic so that you can schedule promotion on Twitter;
  • 8 healthy recipes "for a week" ebooks (healthy breakfast for a week, healthy lunch for a week, etc.)
  • 10 email autoresponder sequences to help you build your list.
As you can see this Healthy Cooking PLR package is worth talking about. And you can use it in any way you want: compile all articles, rewrite them, add even more pictures; turn it into an ebook or Kindle and make a profit out of it. Split all ebook articles and post them to your blog, monetize using Adsense and/or Amazon products. 

Don't forget to personalize your PLR articles

Rewriting all articles is not hard to do: using the Spin Rewriter Software you will quickly and easily transform all articles into new and unique ones. Using this software is easy as a pie: upload your article or all your articles and depending on your preferences, let the software spin it automatically or keep control of what the software does. It's the only one software that is able to turn spun articles into readable ones. I use it and am very fond of it.


Posted by Holly Day


More Squidoo Hoops To Jump Through

I'm back from my break abroad. Weather was splendid, compared to weather in my area, it was a relief: I saw and felt the warm sunlights, I could swim in the wonderful turquoise sea, I could tan on the superb white sand beaches. 

All in all, even though the partner wasn't always of the best humor - he now is responsible for more business tasks, especially the one of the car we rent to tourists and residents - and my best friend of an absolutely bad humor for the whole two weeks, it was a great time spent in a lovely country. 

However, Squidoo followed me to that holiday spot. Hey after all, I have my laptop on there, I thus can log into my account and see what happens.

And what happened didn't make me happy at all! While on my vacation time, I found out that two lenses of mine were flagged for... er... well, dunno the reason. At least at that time I was clueless because my mail provider didn't allow me to log into my mailbox from abroad.

Since I could not access my mails, I could not learn how many time would be left for me to fix the two flagged lenses. I suspected that one of them was flagged for being over commercial - it was a lens dedicated to Holly Hobbie games available in stores. It got a lot of content although also a lot of products (no more than 10 in any way since one can't find that many different Holly Hobbie games in stores). But over commercial was what I thought of when I saw that lens flagged.

Sadly for the other one, I had no idea what the reason would be. It was a Halloween lensography, filled with lots of content as I always did for lensographies and didn't see a reason for it to be flagged.

Then the very next day of this discovery, I wanted to log into my account and delete the Holly Hobbie lens while trying to save the Halloween one. Problem: my laptop died. So I could not do anything apart from waiting till the day I'd get back home.

I will not pretend that I had sleepless nights on there because of my lenses, but this was a bit annoying knowing that there was something to be done and not being able to do anything. 

Given the low traffic and earning figures on Squidoo these days, I decided that I did not want to spend money going to a Publinet - cyber cafe - trying to find out more about the lenses.

Good on me, when I got back home on my desktop computer I could learn why these lenses were flagged, that I was given 14 days to fix them - and the 14 days were just expired. 

All I did was deleting both lenses that were flagged. Were they "over commercial"? The Holly Hobbie one, was probably filled with too many products, although balanced content. 

However the other one didn't feature a single ad! It was a Halloween lens, that would just feature my Halloween collection on Squidoo and would feature less lenses than in the past since I deleted almost 50% of my Halloween pages on there. Moreover, I always created lensographies WITH actual content as I never liked those that would be only filled with an intro and a bunch of links.

Anyways, even though some seem to be satisfied with the low traffic figures of Squidoo these days - "new lensmasters" for the biggest part of them - I am not. I know what Squidoo was capable of using the power of its best lensmasters. Most of them have left and brought their work along with them while others had it locked and deleted. I am NOT satisfied with the current traffic trends and certainly not with the direction things are getting to.

And because I'm upset with these numbers I don't waste my time trying to figure out why and what was caught in the filters, how to get out of that trap, etc. I can earn money doing other things. I'm upset with the loss of 100 lenses I created these past years but I just cannot think of spending hours trying to save them to see that, in the end, they don't get the traffic they used to generate in the past.

I am today hopeless regarding the future of the site. I think those days of "information" pages are over, they don't generate the kind of traffic they used to. Nowadays people want quick stuff, Google indexes stolen pages before genuine ones, with such bad configurations right from the start, we are all condemned to work for peanuts. Add to that the fact that we are unsure as to whether our lenses are going to be ok for a while and you will understand why I did not really bother saving the lenses.

Ah well that's life. Time to get back to work (on my sites). I'll see you later.

Posted by Holly Day