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I’m a marketer. I know more about traffic generation than most others, and I surely know more about marketing than developers.
But what if I told you that developers can generate you more traffic than an SEO or any other type of marketer?
And no, it’s not because the developer implements changes to your site… they are just able to produce more traffic.
What’s crazy about this is that it’s cheaper in the long run than paying marketers.
Most of you know that I have an ad agency, Neil Patel Digital. And although I always want more big companies to pay us, typically a developer can generate you more traffic than I (or any other ad agency) can drive.
It sounds bad, but it’s true.
Here’s what I mean…
I’ve shown you my traffic over time. You already know I get a lot of traffic, but, in case you forget, here’s my latest traffic numbers:
In the last 31 days, you’ve helped me generate 1,864,246 unique visitors and 4,764,739 pageviews. That’s not too shabby!
Even at my level, I still haven’t tapped out as only 25.1% of my traffic is repeat visitors.
Now, can you guess how much traffic I had during the beginning of the year?
808,747 unique visitors.
So how have I grown from 808,747 to 1,864,246 in 10 or so months?
Well, one thing that helped was the purchase of the KISSmetrics blog. By combining both of the blogs together, I instantly increased my traffic.
It helped me generate an extra 510,442 visitors per month.
But that’s not what I am talking about when I say developers can drive you more traffic with SEO.
There was another thing I did this year which really helped my traffic grow… more than the KISSmetrics blog purchase.
Can you guess what it is?
I bought Ubersuggest back in early 2017, and I ended up merging the tool into NeilPatel.com in February 2018.
The moment I merged the tool into NeilPatel.com, here’s what happened to my traffic (keep in mind the last month is on a partial month):
My traffic went from 808,747 to a bit more than 1,176,243 visitors a month between February and March.
The original Ubersuggest (version 1.0) doesn’t look anything like what it looks today. It looked more like this:
The original tool cost $120,000 to acquire and $15,000 on development to clean up the code, add some simple features, and merge it into NeilPatel.com. In addition to that, I had API expenses that cost me around $2,000 a month.
That alone got me Ubersuggest 1.0.
Now I didn’t have to buy the tool, I could have created something from scratch like my SEO Analyzer, which I am currently redoing and merging into Ubersuggest.
The first version of the SEO Analyzer cost me around $30,000 and since then I have continually spent more to improve it.
As you can see from the graph, the SEO Analyzer has driven me 435,115 unique visitors so far this year. And those visitors generated 3,143,220 pageviews.
The best part about the SEO Analyzer is that it is easier to maintain than my blog. It only costs $1,173 a month for hosting.
All in all, tools have generated me more consistent traffic than anything else. I don’t have to worry about social media algorithms or Google updates… people just keep using them even when you stop putting effort into them.
At this point, you are probably wondering how hard it is to market these tools. Because if you pay a developer, they probably won’t just get instantly popular.
And you are right, they won’t.
But it isn’t rocket science. If you build something that is somewhat decent, it will naturally gain popularity.
All you have to do is write a blog post or two about your tool and just be patient. If you can get others to blog about your tool, it will, of course, help even more.
Just look at Ubersuggest. It has continually grown even though I haven’t done much marketing for it till the last 30 days.
As you can see during the earlier months it kept growing in popularity just because I kept it up and running.
If you don’t have an audience as I do, what I’ve found is people will mention your tool if you just email them. I know link building is tough, but not when you are giving away free tools.
You can search Google for list-based posts within your industry. Some of these lists will focus on or include other tools. Just email out people and see if they will mention your tool.
I love JohnChow.com and I have to say I am a huge fan for years.
I know you are busy so I will get to the point. I noticed that you wrote a blog post called “10 Marketing Tools You Ought to Use” but I noticed that most of those tools cost money.
I recently released a free marketing tool called Ubersugget and it helps people get more traffic from Google for free. 🙂
Let me know what you think of the tool and I would be honored if you included it in your list.
In addition to that, you can always put your tool on Product Hunt.
When I wrote a blog post about the latest release (Ubersuggest 2.0) and then I got on Product Hunt, I saw a big spike in traffic and usage.
Over time, the traffic normalized and came down… but as you can see from the graph above, the traffic is still better off than before.
Best of all, it is also causing my brand signals to go up, which is a huge factor in Google’s algorithm.
Just look at the chart from Google Trends. I am catching up to Buzzsumo and Ahrefs fast. SEMrush, on the other hand, is still crushing me.
You guys know I am crazy, or at least my friends say I am. So, in the spirit of craziness, I thought it would be fun to make Ubersuggest a good marketing tool instead of something that was mediocre.
You’ve already seen how I have cleaned up the UI and added data from sources like Facebook.
And just by doing that I got a 38.12% increase in branded traffic.
In the next few weeks, I am going to make the tool even better by adding more keyword ideas.
I am going to take concepts from Answers the Public and start showing comparison and question-related keywords.
From there I am going to add traffic estimation data on URLs, which I hope to release by the end of the year.
That way, you’ll be able to type in a URL and get data on how many visitors from Google a site is generating as well as their top keywords and pages.
And then I am going to add all of Buzzsumo’s features.
The overall goal is to keep releasing new features, and then announce them each time.
As I do this, my brand queries and traffic should increase each time. This is how I am going to grow from 1.8 million unique visitors to 3 million by the end of 2019 (that’s at least my personal goal).
It really is easier to grow your traffic by just paying a developer to create free tools than it is to pay marketers.
I know I am a bit crazy and am spending more than most people are comfortable with, but that doesn’t mean you can’t follow in my footsteps.
Just go on Google and search for “scripts” within your industry. For example, if you are in the real estate industry, search for “mortgage calculator scripts”.
You can do this for any industry.
You’ll find tools that you can buy for a few hundred dollars (sometimes even for free) and use the code and just put it on your website. This will allow you to have a tool that you can release for free with little to no effort.
Now, I will warn you that you won’t do as well as me because I am spending a ton of money on development. But you will probably do better in the long run than just burning money on ads.
In an ideal world, you should release tools, do SEO, run paid ads, send promotional emails, etc. In other words, you should use all of the channels out there to grow your business. Especially leveraging developers!
So what do you think about the concept of generating traffic through developers? Are you going to start leveraging it?
The post Move Over SEO: How Developers Can Generate You More Traffic appeared first on Neil Patel.
“Who so loves believes the impossible.”
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In fact, I myself have enjoyed a consistent meditation practice for more than 20 years now, and I find it extremely helpful for cultivating awareness and mindfulness, reducing reactivity, and sharpening my focus and productivity. But, as with so many beneficial practices that become widely popular, it is also a victim of its own success. There are a lot of misconceptions about meditation—and some of these fallacies are roadblocks that may be stopping you from starting your own practice (or sticking with it) and reaping its many rewards.
Read on for the top five myths about meditation to stop believing today and for facts that I hope will encourage you to try it for the first time, or revisit the practice again.
In many ways, a meditation practice is the antithesis of modern life. Meditation trains us to keep our awareness and attention in the present moment, yet today we’re taught to focus on the road ahead—to continuously strive to do and know more. As I’ve noted before, many people now wear busyness as a badge of honor and believe an overloaded, hyperconnected, always “on” life is the measure of success—some kind of 21st century status symbol. “Oh, I’m so busy!”
But I argue that busyness is a cultural disease, one that wrecks both body and mind, and meditation is the antidote. That’s why I want to help you better understand meditation and dispel its most ubiquitous myths.
There isn’t one precise definition of meditation—another probable reason for misunderstandings—in part because a multitude of different methods and traditions fall under the umbrella term.
Think you have to be “good” at meditation to get something out of it? Think again. Follow along as I debunk this and other common myths about meditation and share the facts about this beneficial practice.
Despite the various approaches, there are some underlying generalities: Meditation is a mind–body awareness practice. Through it, you learn to experience your feelings and sensations without judgment and stay present in your life, even in the face of great difficulty or pain.
Although there are many types of meditation, most have these four elements in common: (1)
Transcendental meditation (TM) and mindfulness meditation are the two types studied most often. In TM, you focus your attention on a mantra—a sound or words you repeat to yourself—whereas with mindfulness meditation, you usually focus on your breath or other physical sensations.
For good reasons, the much-touted benefits of meditation have drawn the attention of the medical and scientific communities. In fact, the famous “relaxation response” technique—the ability to lower stress in the body through a form of meditation—was developed and popularized by Harvard cardiologist Herbert Benson, MD, in the 1970s. Skeptics dismissed his claims that the relaxation response was a path to better overall health, but research continues to bear out his theories. (2)
In recent years, the number of randomized controlled trials (the gold standard for nutritional research) involving meditation, and mindfulness meditation in particular, has skyrocketed. From 1995 to 1997, only one such trial was conducted; between 2004 and 2006, that number jumped to eleven. But from 2013 to 2015, more than 215 trials focused on mindfulness. (3) Because of this ever-growing interest from researchers, we now have a better understanding of meditation’s wide-reaching impacts on health and well-being.
Let’s explore many of these benefits further as I debunk some of the most common myths about meditation.
This is perhaps the most pervasive myth about meditation. If you’ve heard and believed it, I bet it’s the main reason why you haven’t yet started a practice or have given up in frustration.
Some research has concluded that we have approximately 60,000 thoughts a day, or roughly one thought every second. (8) Whether that number is actually higher or lower doesn’t really matter. It illustrates just how difficult it would be to empty your mind during meditation. What’s more, going into a session believing you should be able to hit the mute button on your mind only creates more internal noise.
Meditation is about simply becoming aware of your thoughts, feelings, bodily sensations, and surrounding environment on a moment-to-moment basis—paying attention to what is, rather than focusing on the future or dwelling on the past. It’s about learning to witness your thoughts—not get rid of them altogether—and eventually step away from reflexively judging yourself and others.
We can feel a lot of pressure to get things done “right,” at work and at home. But during meditation, we can release that pressure.
For example, in one study designed to measure meditation’s impact on pain, 15 non-meditators attended just four 20-minute classes on mindfulness meditation—for a total of a little over an hour of formal training. Employing what they had only recently learned while subjected to a pain-inducing heat device, these novice meditators experienced significantly reduced activity in the brain’s primary somatosensory cortex, which is involved in creating the feeling and intensity of pain. In fact, while participants meditated, researchers couldn’t detect any activity in this pain-processing center at all. (9, 10)
Another study found that people experiencing high levels of stress had a marked decrease in stress-related communication within their brains two weeks after completing a three-day meditation course. (11) Other research has shown that just four days of meditation training enhanced novice meditators’ ability to sustain attention, a benefit previously only reported with long-term meditators. (12)
If meditation can have such positive benefits on those who are new to it, imagine what it can do for you if you embrace a consistent practice.
As we’ve established, modern life makes for busy schedules. So here’s the good news: as little as 10 minutes of meditation a day can be helpful. Not to mention that a regular practice can actually free up your time by helping you become more productive.
Ten minutes isn’t an arbitrary number. One 2012 study found that just 10 minutes of meditation daily improved participants’ focus and attention over the course of a few months. (13) Research into Kirtan Kriya (KK), a type of yogic chanting meditation designed to take only 12 minutes a day, has found that it can mitigate stress and improve cognitive function, even in seniors already exhibiting memory loss or impairment from mild-to-moderate Alzheimer’s disease. (14, 15)
To make it a daily habit (like brushing your teeth), you might try incorporating it into your routine at the same time each day. Can you find 10 minutes for yourself? Try it!
Typically, images of meditators show them sitting cross-legged, with their hands in a specific placement known as a mudra. While mindfulness meditation is often performed seated, the only true requirement is that you sit comfortably. If a cross-legged position isn’t comfortable for you (for some people this stresses their hip flexors or knee joints), try sitting naturally on a cushion or in a chair—and switch positions as needed. You may be most comfortable with your back supported.
Other types of meditation are not practiced while seated. For instance, walking meditation uses movement to help you foster awareness. (16) Qi gong and tai chi are also types of meditative movements.
There are even meditative practices you perform lying down. One, called body scanning, involves lying on a floor, a mat, or your bed. You begin by focusing your attention either at the top of your head or the bottoms of your feet; you then shift your focus up or down your frame, bringing awareness to your entire body. (17)
You may be more likely to fall asleep if you meditate lying down, which is why this position isn’t typically advised, especially for beginners. However, the body scan and related practices can be useful sleep aids.
Meditation is for anyone and everyone. Although it has roots in Buddhism and Hinduism, meditation itself is not a religious or spiritual discipline. And as we’ve discussed, it has far-reaching health effects that go beyond stress management. We’ve also seen that you don’t need the luxury of time to make the practice a valuable part of your life.
Meditation is also beneficial for adults and kids alike. While studies involving children and teens are limited, researchers have begun to evaluate the role meditation may play on the developing brain. In particular, several studies have shown that meditation can benefit kids with ADHD, leading to better concentration and improved behavior. As it can for adults, research also points to meditation’s ability to reduce stress levels in young people and improve their mental health. (18, 19)
While the information shared here makes for a compelling reason to start or continue meditating, research has only begun to scratch the surface of the many ways in which it can improve health and the specific benefits of each meditative approach. I look forward to reading new research as it is published and sharing it with you here.
If you’re ready to begin or further develop your practice, there are a variety of free resources online. Lifehacker has some helpful information, and the UCLA Mindfulness Awareness Research Center has a free meditation podcast with guided weekly meditations. I also like the Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction Program, and some people have found apps like Headspace and Insight Timer to be useful. Learning meditation is often easiest if you take classes with a qualified instructor (there are even online classes), and drop-in meditation studios are popping up everywhere.
Now, it’s your turn to chime in. Did you believe any of these myths about meditation? Have you tried to establish a practice before, or are you planning to start? What are your favorite tips and resources on meditation? Comment below and share your thoughts!
The IFBB World Cup event, open to all National Federations and the categories: Men’s Bodybuilding, Men’s Classic Bodybuilding, Men’s Fitness, Games Classic Bodybuilding, Men’s Physique, Men’s Physique Muscular, Women’s Physique, Women’s Wellness, Women’s Bodyfitness, Women’s Bikini Fitness, Women Fitness…. will take place in Cluj Napoca, Romania, next November 23.
The event will be organized by the Romanian Federation, presided by Gabriel Toncean, who has visited personally such a fantastic venue for this amazing event.
Find out more information about the event in the Inspection Report: https://ifbb.com/wp-content/uploads/PDF/Inspection_Report_WorldCup_Romania_2018.pdf
Don’t miss it!!
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