Internet Tools

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Site Search Scripts

A client asked me about putting a search engine on his site so that visitors could find selected products. Having a search engine on an ecommerce site makes it easier for return visitors to find pages that they visited previously. Having a search function on a site is a usability issue that could result in lower sales if it is not present.

Below are some search engine scripts that I found while doing research, but I have not evaluated them in anyway, but did note when I found a user rating.

Premium Site Search Scripts

For a professional ecommerce site, I would recommend using a premium search script rather than a free search script.

http://www.site-search-pro.com/ $39 (high user rating)

http://www.freefind.com/plans.html paid ($19-$79)and free options

http://risearch.org/eng/risearch_php/index.html $10

http://www.aleadsoft.com/ $59 for standard or $99 for pro and has a free trial version.

Free Site Search Scripts

Free is a nice thing, but often times it does come with a price. The price for using a free site search script is often that in addition to searching your site, adds for other sites will appear in the search results. If potentially sending visitors away from your site does not bother you, then I would suggest signing up for a Google Adsense account and using the Google site search tool bar. In addition to the Google site search, I have also included several other free site search script options here as well.
http://www.jrank.org/

http://www.javascriptkit.com/script/script2/google_site_search.shtml

http://www.perlfect.com/freescripts/search/

http://www.google.com/coop/cse/

http://www.freefind.com/

Got any other site search engine scripts that could be added to the list?

Written by Pixelhead on January 16th, 2008 with 17 comments.
Read more articles on Google and Internet Tools and Uncategorized.

Flickr uses Picnik for Online Photo Editing

After reading Techcrunches report about Picnik being live on Flickr , I went to the Flickr blog and read about the newest Flickr feature that enables online photo editing using Picnik’s Photo editing services.

To use the service while using Flickr, you must be signed it to your Flickr account, and then when viewing your photos, click the edit button at the top of one of your photos. You are then taken to Picnik where you see all the editing options that are available to you from a Picnik’s free account.Picnik Photo Editing

Its a pretty simple interface that includes such options as cropping, red eye reduction, color adjustments and more. There are plenty of advanced features available as well, but many more features can be obtained by upgrading your free account for a little less than 25 bucks a year. For someone who does not want to make the purchase of Photoshop, this might be an awesome tool to use for editing of photos. I will probably continue to use Photoshop, but I can also see myself using Picnik while using Flickr.

Also, while surfing the net, there is a Firefox addon, that lets you edit graphics online through the use of your right click menu. There is also an extension for IE if that is your browser of choice. Here is the Picnik tools page for a list of available photo editing tools .

In addition to Flickr, Picnik can also be used with Facebook, PhotoBucket, Picasa, and Webshots, and it’s API is available for others to use and develop for other applications.

What do You Think?Picnik Edited Photo

This is the first Internet based Photo Editing site that I have used or reviewed for that matter. While doing the review I was exposed to several other sites. Does anyone have any experience with any other photo editing sites? What do you think about PicniK?

Tags: , , , ,

Written by Pixelhead on December 11th, 2007 with 23 comments.
Read more articles on Blogging and Flickr and Graphics and Internet Tools and Photography and Photoshop and Pics and Site Reviews and Technology and Uncategorized and Web 2.0.

Blogging Tutorial Group Writing Project

The blog TheWritersManifesto is or rather was holding a Group writing contest, and all of the entries to the Tutorial Group writing project are below followed by my top three pics in reverse order.How To Write Pic
Megan Bayliss has a great post How to Respond To Disclosures of Sexual Child Abuse. A very serious topic as compared to all the others, but one that any parent/grandparent or childcare worker should read.
Rishi gives some Tips to Get Best Out of Product Related Ad Networks.
Karthik writes about Upgrading Your Theme to WordPress 2.3 to be able to use tags for posts. Karthik also does a brief sell for using tags. The main benefit being the increase in the number of pages for your site.
Aseem Kishore has a really use post that teaches How to Find Good Ideas and Content for Your Blog.
Kyle Eslick shows How to Ad Edit Buttons to Your WordPress Theme.
Adam(moi) shows how to Add a Blog to Flickr.
Sumesh gets a little technical and shows How to Add Plugin Function Calls Without Breaking Your Theme.
Simonne shows How to Get Your Favorite Stumble Upon Pages in Your Feed Reader, cool tip for creating a feed for any Stumbleupon user including your own.
Shivaranjan tells us How to Move Self Hosted WordPress Blogs Across Webhosts.
Jacob Share has the Obnoxious Guide to Environmentally Safe Job Hunting.
Terry Didcott tells How to Install A Self Hosted WordPress Blog.
Doug Woodall shows us How to Thwart the Barbarian Spyware.
Joanie Raisovich gives some Tips for Getting Through Nano,National Novel writing month.
Kryistina has an Environmental Tutorial that was written for Blog Action Day, that gives advice about moving your house in an environmental manner.
David Rogers has a great post How to Solve A Problem.
CSS shows Simple Photo Editing Using GIMP, which is a good post about using Gimp, a free online program, to edit photos. I will have to give it a try and compare to Photoshop.
Dee gives some good advice about Making Friends with A Neighbor or Co-Worker, which can be used in our real lives.
Em Dy tells how to Plan Your Vacation Online
Sarah, the Gnomeynewt tells How to Attract Comments on Your Blog.
Gal teaches The Best Excerises You Might Not Be Doing (Series).
Jen Lawton shows us How to Set Up An Online Fundraiser.
Fred gives some good advice about How to Set Up the WordPress Pinging Service.

With a bit of waffling, my top three pics in reverse order are:

3. The personal development post that teaches How to Solve A Problem.

2. Simonne’s post showing how to add Stumble Upon Pages to Your Feed Reader.

1. Megan’s Child Abuse post. Update: Megan’s site is no longer up and running so it was unlinked.

Written by Pixelhead on October 30th, 2007 with 12 comments.
Read more articles on Blogging and Contests and Internet Tools and Personal Development and Uncategorized.

Checking for Cache when Link Building

Sure it seems that Directory links are having less and less Google juice. Deep more relevant categories often are not cached by the deep Google spiders. So what can you do to ensure that you are getting the most Google juice for your buck or if the directory is free, for your time?

Before paying for a link, I always check to make sure that the page I am submitting to is cached. That is I copy the url, paste it into the Google search bar. If the page has been visited by the Google spiders, it will show up in the SERP’s.(Search Engine Result page). You can either submit to a page that Google has not visited and build links to the page so that you encourage Google to visit the page, or you can find a page that has been cached already.
What you can do is click around the different related categories of the directory, and copy and paste into the desired category page urls into the Google search bar until you find a cached page, or you can check the whole site to see what pages are cached using site:url. This will show you all the pages that are cached by Google. For example, putting site:http://www.pixelheadonline.com into the Google search bar, I see that 1,430 pages are cached in Google. Then all I need to do is page through the results and find an appropriate cached category page to submit my site.

1 more link building tip

If I go to the next level down in the directory, such as Business, and copy that url, and put in site:http://www.pixelheadonline.com/Business/ I can see that 17 sub-pages are cached. Using this method allows you to find cached subcategory pages in relevant categories without having to page through unrelated results.
So that is my tip for link building this post. Got any other link building tips you would like to share?

Update:

Check for cache with the site:url and with out the site:url. I believe that using the site:url returns pages that have been visited by the Google Spider that does deep searches, which are done with less frequency. If paying for links, I want to make sure that the links are cached by regular spiders as well as deep searching spiders for more Google juice for the link.

see Google Cache Update post for more current discussion.

Written by Pixelhead on October 2nd, 2007 with 25 comments.
Read more articles on Directories and Directory Submissions and Internet Tools and Link Building and Marketing and Uncategorized.

Directory Links, Are They Crap

Have you submitted a site to lots of directories lately? Go ahead go on over to DirectoryCritic,com and submit a site be it a favorite of yours or an ecommerce site. Go ahead I will wait.
Ok, your back. While you were out getting links, did you experience deja vu quite a lot. Directories can be easily created using a directory script, and often times the owners make little to no alterations to make the directory unique. As if it is not bad enough that the few templates are everywhere, the category database is everywhere as well.

Its not only me that sees this problem. In a DirectoryCritic Blog post Link Farm Clone Directories

says that characteristics of Clone Directories include:

Directory Uniqueness

Future of Directory Links

With all the clones out on the net, I believe that quality directories will become something that will be sought after. This will include directories that have not only a home page that is indexed in the search engines, but also has the majority of its sub-pages cached. When site owners start to have their site rankings hurt by using these bad linking neighborhoods, good directories will be in even higher demand.

Am I right? What do you think will happen to directories in the future? Will they go the way of the FFA (Free For All) pages?

Written by Pixelhead on July 9th, 2007 with 18 comments.
Read more articles on Blogging and Directories and Directory Submissions and Internet Tools and Marketing and Uncategorized and Web 2.0.

Pownce Beta Invite

I was reading Jon’s post Pownce – Kinda Like Twitter But On Steroids, and Jon was so convincing, I just had to get my hands on a beta invite. Jon, who is not a twitter fan, likes the concept of Pownce, which will allow for far greater message lengths than the 140 character limit for tweets.

Well anyway Jon was really helpful in making sure anyone who wanted an invite was able to network with someone to get an invite. Via a link to Scot Smiths blog, I found out that Scot had some invites left.

I now have 5 invites left if anyone would like one.

It was a pretty quick instal, that took less than five minutes. I have not really used it yet, but it is up and running. If anyone would like to add me to their network here is my Pownce url. I have also added my Pownce Id to My Networks page.

So now that I am a member, what can I do with Pownce?

Written by Pixelhead on July 6th, 2007 with comments disabled.
Read more articles on Blogging and Internet Tools and Uncategorized and Web 2.0.

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