Blogging Blog

A Blog for New Bloggers

Youtube Search Box

I’m sure many of you probably have noticed that YouTube’s brand new embedded player started to include a search box when you pause a video and when you move the mouse at the top of a video.

Even though I personally find this new feature too aggressive, the search box is actually a very brilliant way to find other similar videos on YouTube. The player by default shows about 6 results at one time, but you can navigate using the two arrows and you can view other video thumbnails before even selecting it. To go back to the list of search results, simply click on the Search button.

Google Search History in Google Suggestions

Google has recently added a cool new feature where it shows your Search history in their traditional Search Suggestion. That means when you type in a query, it tries to find related pages that you have already visited in the past and displays them as suggestion.

When you create a Google account, Google enables their Web History option that saves all your queries and the results you clicked on. Google Web History service can be extended to all the web pages you visit if you install Google Toolbar.

Google Search History in Google Suggestions

As you can probably Imagine Web History has many different uses, but Google hasn’t really made it very useful other than offering some very basic recommendations and trends. Google decided to personalize the suggestions offered when you type a query on Google’s homepage by adding searches from your history. Just Like how it is done in Firefox’s search box, the historical search queries are displayed at the top, but the major difference is that Firefox saves the searches on your computer, while Google saves them in the cloud (under your account).

Create Documents from Gmail

Do you know that you can quickly create a new document in Google Docs directly from your Gmail? If you enable “Create a document” in Gmail Labs and you activate keyboard shortcuts, you can press g then w to open a blank document anytime.

This cool new Gmail Labs feature feature simply adds a new right option next to each Gmail threads that lets you create a new document from it. Gmail merges the content along with all the messages from the conversation and saves it as a document in Google docs.

Gmail Blog writes: “No more copying and pasting the text from your email — just open the message you wish to convert, click the “Create a document” link on the right side of the page, and voila, you have a brand new document which you can then modify and share,”

Create Documents from Gmail

Another brand new feature from the house of Gmail Labs would be useful to you if you frequently use Google’s online office suite. The new feature is called Google Docs Gadget. It’s a simple way to access recently modified documents, to find documents and to place a link into a message using drag & drop.

Google PDF Viewer

Google has very recently implemented a PDF viewer inside Google’s popular email service - Gmail.

So next time you receive a PDF message in your email, Gmail gives you the ability to view the PDF without installing a PDF viewer like Adobe Reader.

Google PDF viewer

Google PDF Viewer Example

This is indeed an excellent addition to Gmail. I believe it would be even better if Google could provide an interface for browsing all our Gmail attachments, where a user will be able to find files and email them.

125 X 125 Advertising Plugin

Nowadays the 125×125px advertising format is extremely popular for Wordpress blogs and this wordpress plugin  makes managing the ads very easy.

Wordpress Plugin for Advertising 125 X 125 Block

Its a very easy plugin to use and it lets you do some very advanced stuff  like customizing ad positions changing ad layout etc. So If you are looking for a quick and easy way to put 125 ads on you blog check out this great plugin.

Delicious 2.0

The popular social bookmarking site Delicious today launched a complete redesign of their current website. They have already improved upon a few things however the biggest change that you will probably notice is that now forwards to the new domain

According to their blog, they have upgraded the following

Speed: We’ve moved to a new infrastructure that makes every page faster. This new platform will enable us to keep up with traffic growth while ensuring Delicious is responsive and reliable. You may not have noticed, but the old back-end was getting creaky under the load of five million users.

Search: We’ve completely overhauled our search engine to make it faster and more powerful. Searches used to take ages to return results; now they’re very quick. The new search engine is also smarter, and more social: you can search within one of your tags, another user’s public bookmarks, or your social network. Now it’s easier to take advantage of the expertise and interests of your friends, not to mention the Delicious community at large.

Design: Finally, we’ve updated the user interface to improve usability and add a few often-requested features (such as selectable detail levels and alphabetical sorting of bookmarks). Our goal has been to keep the new design similar in spirit to the old one, so all of you veterans should be able to jump in without any confusion. At the same time, we’re hoping that newcomers to Delicious will find it easier to learn.

For a full list of what’s been updated please check out their What’s New page.

Do you often feel very low or low confidence when you are writing a blog post? Have you encountered a situation where you feel that you are not good at blogging just because you didn’t earn enough money in the first few months? Many people often come across this situation at the start of their blogging career. If you are looking for a few ways that will help you to motivate yourself and boost your confidence, take a look at your blog and do one of the following things:

1. Set a Mile Stone

No matter how small or big your mile stone is, enjoy it fully. You should celebrate a mile stone whenever you have achieved it. This self encouragement will give you a confidence in blogging. If you are thinking of what to set as your milestone, you should just look at your blog’s statistics. You can celebrate your first 100 RSS subscriber or 500, the number doesn’t really matter; The most important thing is to set a mile stone and celebrate it when you have achived it. Write a post about how you feel for having that many subscribers. Share your tips and tricks for getting to that milestone.

2. Read Past Comments

Go through your past posts and read the comments that was left by the readers. Sometimes this will make you realize how well you have been doing in blogging. This is an excellent way to build up your confidence. Even negative comments will give you a enthusiasum to achieve something through blogging. Look at the comments and see how many people have loved your writing.

3. Change Your Blog Layout

Are you bored with the current layout of your blog or probably the way things are laid out? What about changing a little bit or adding something new to your blog? Changing the look and feel of your blog will definitely encourage you to write more in your blog.

4. Organize a Compeititon

If you are getting very less traffic you should think of hosting some sort of competition at your blog. Competitions won’t necessarily get a lot of traffic but you will get a good quality of readers at your blog by hosting a competition. If the readers like what you are writing  they might even subscribe to your blog.

5. Giveaway Gifts and Freebies

After all who doesn’t like free gifts? If you are giving away something for free, the readers will often bookmark your site and share it with others. People will also help you by voting your blog in many social media sites like stumbleupon and delicious.This will bring you heeps of traffic.

Hopefully these tips were useful for you to get some confidence and go back to blogging!

Feedburner Hack

Joop Dorresteijn who is known as an editor for The Next Web, has found a great backdoor for artificially manipulating the feed count of a blogs FeedBurner chicklet. Basically, its a very simple hack - all you need is an OPML file with the same feed url copied and pasted as many times as you want and then importing that file this into your NetVibes account.

This video explains how it works :

Feedburner hacked! from Boris Veldhuijzen van Zanten on Vimeo.

I really appreciate Joop for exposing this hack so that FeedBurner can  fix this issue soon. Personally, I wouldn’t advise anyone to try this hack because its just silly and might get your feedburner account in trouble.  Inflating your subscriber count may sound like a cool thing to do but when they fix this whole thing you will suddenly drop from 10,000 subscribers to say 100. How cool will that be then?

Blog SEO Tips

Many bloggers usually prefer simplicity when it comes to SEO.  They often don’t follow every latest hack or trick for optimizing their blog to rank better in the search engine. To some extent its better to avoid extensive SEO as sometimes it may detract from the most important part of blogging - which is writing.

So I thought of putting some of the top SEO tips that are very simple to implement and follow. I hope you will find it useful.


  1. Try to set some  strong categories. It’s a very basic step, but often not considered effectively. Things you should remember:
    • Keep the category name simple
    • Research - know your top search terms, and compare similar searches
    • Emphasize your keywords without duplicating them
    • Organize - Organize all your posts in categories. Make sure you have at least 5 posts in one category. Having only 1-2 posts in one individual category looks really bad. On special cases you should try using ‘tags’ instead.
  2. Name your images: You should always name your images properly as it populates greater keywords into the post, and also promotes Google Image traffic.
    • image-name.jpg where “-” is often used to separate the words.
    • “Image Description Text” in Title / Alt Text areas is also important so that search engines can understand what your image is all about. And It is also very useful when your image fails to load for some reason.
  3. Use effective titles. Keep it Short, with strongest keywords first. Think of what users usually search for. For instance,  if you are writing about taking Iphone’s firmware backup, your title should be something like: “How to Backup Iphone firmware” or “Iphone firmware Backup” etc.
  4. Use text formtting (bold, Italic, underline) effectively - This allows the search engines to pick up important keywords that searchers are looking for. It is also increases the readablity of your blog.
  5. Use bullets and other lists, where appropriate - they are easier to scan through and grouping words together as a bullet point gives you a better chance of targeting your keywords.
  6. Use tags - both general tags (which lend themselves well to general searches) and specific tags. As many as appropriate.
  7. Promote yourself using the social media- use social services such as Digg, Reddit or Stumbleupon, as well as online forum participation, to promote your posts and articles.
  8. Participate on other related blogs - leave useful comments on other blogs of the same niche. Don’t spam them! Make useful comments and it might even encourage the author of those blogs to link to you.
  9. Watch your blog text length - Never let images or video clips live on their own. Always describe them in enough text for search engines to appropriately identify your posts and rank them.
  10. Use Pages to summarize and link to important posts
    • Depending on your current setup, these can be more optimally positioned for SEO as they will usually be
    • Effective pages will give you the opportunity to highlight your most popular content - to link to many posts on your site. Examples include Top 10 lists, Popular Post excerpts etc.

Part Time Blogging

You may have read a lot about pro blogging and what it takes to become a full time blogger and earn more than enough to have a living. This is one of the most common topic among active bloggers and there are tons of nice articles that cover various aspects of the subject. With the huge amount of focus that is currently given on becoming a pro blogger, I think often the opportunity and benefits of becoming a profitable part-time blogger is widely overlooked. Earning a reasonable amount of money on a part time basis is actually more desirable than most people realize.

Part-Time Blogging: What Are the Benefits:

Less Pressure on Yourself - If you are a part-time blogger then you will probably have a day job which entitles you with a full-time income. You won’t have to pressurize yourself to produce or to earn large sums of money from your blog right from the start. So you will be able to concentrate more on your ‘blogging’ rather than ‘making money’. If you’re able to live well from your full-time income, the income that your blog generates will be like extra money. If you come across a bad month when you don’t make as much as you would have hoped, it’s not that big of a deal.

Good Supplementary Income - Even though you don’t have the pressure to produce an income from your blog that can support your lifestyle, you do have some opportunity to earn a very good income even from being a part time blogger. I  believe, one of the best reasons of blog part-time blogging is the opportunity to build an passive income that continues to grow, even when its just a part-time effort. If you are lucky you might come to a point where your supplementary income may be more than enough to consider giving up your day job and becoming a pro blogger, or you may choose to just continue part-time and enjoy the extra income.

Professional Status - If you have studied engineering to become an engineer or law to become a lawyer you can still be all if you are a part time blogger. You can persue whatever carrer that you dreamed of and still enjoy part time blogging. You don’t need to quit your day job and jump in right away to blogging in order to become successful. Many full time bloggers don’t have that luxary to do so. They have given up their job and their carrer to become a full time blogger - and although they earn enough now to make a living, you don’t have to necessarily do the same thing.  As a part-time blogger you have the luxury of earning some money and building your business without the risk that would come along with going full-time right away.

Allows for Re-Investment - Blogging for Money (A.k.a power blogging) is a business like any other. Part of being in business is willingness to spend money and invest in the business. Most bloggers are very hesitant to spend any money for their blog and are always looking for free options.

While being careful with your money is a good attitude, but having a willingness to re-invest some or all of your blogging income on your blog itself will give you a better chance of making more in the long run. Usually Part-time bloggers have a much greater ability to re-invest their earnings because in most cases they don’t rely on that income for necessary living expenses.

5 Tips for Part-Time Bloggers:

1. Always Have a Plan - This is especially necessary for part-time bloggers as its a very critical point. Always Set a goal - Do you want to eventually earn a full-time income from your blog? Are you happy with what you are earning right now? Of course both your plan and goal can change over time, but it is important to have a working plan of where you want to go with your blog and the steps that you need to follow in order to get there.

2. Use a Schedule - If you are a part time blogger, you only have a few hours available to spend on your blog. So being efficient and able to do proper time managment is eassential. In order for you to achieve maximum efficiency you will need to schedule your time to assure that you’re working on things that will produce solid results, rather than just wasting time surfing.

3. Don’t Try to be the Jack of all trades - Many of us face the challenge of directing our efforts into one particular thing that we are good at. You probably have ideas for several new blogs that you are keen to start or several other online methods of making money. Its always best to avoid the temptation to take on too much at one time. You’ll see better results by focusing your efforts and energy on one thing at a time. Be truthful and realastic with yourself about what you can handle and what you simply don’t have time for.

4. Approach Part-Time Blogging as Asset Building - Part-time blogging is really all about building an asset online. From what I have seen in past,  blogs that are popular are often sold for thousands of dollers. Whether you want to eventually sell the blog once it becomes popular or keep it, the blog is always an asset to you. If you start to look at your blogging efforts as asset building you’ll see more of the long-term benefits and payoffs and you’ll w0rry less on the hours that you’re losing for other activities.

5. Always Re-Evaluate Your Goals  - When you first started blogging you probably had some basic goals that were slightly different than they are now. This is a very natural thing. Once you start  to learn about what’s involved with running a profitable blog and the various opportunities that exist, you may change your mind in some time in the middle and  have a complete set of new goals. It’s always a good idea to sit down and evaluate why you are dedicating your time to blogging and where you are hoping to go with it.

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