New Challenge: Taking My Worse Performer And Making It One Of My Best

During the 2-plus years I have been on Squidoo, I have made over 200 webpages. Some perform nicely, always getting traffic, making sales and helping to generate a monthly income for your truly. That is one of the main reasons I am so active on the website. There are other webpages that for whatever reason have sunk to the bottom of the heap, unnoticed and unloved by Google and the other SERPs. I have one that I built around September 2008 that sank faster than a rock tossed into a murky pond. It didn't really catch my eye or that of others on the Internet. Eventually it settled to the very bottom of my Squidoo dashboard, with a terrible LenRank of over 457,000 - well out of the running for any money and bypassed by all including myself.

Someone posted on the Squidoo forum that they wanted to do something called the Tier One Challenge (that's a link to the forum). What people are trying to do is take one of their under-performing webpages and try to make it a Tier One. To make it into Tier One, you need to have a LensRank of under 2,000. That is difficult even for experienced folks at Squidoo and for webpages that are especially well-written. If your webpage does have a LensRank of between 1-2,000 average for a month, you are eligible to receive the Tier One payout of usually around $20-$30 (not including any sales your page may have generated) so it can be quite lucrative to have as many pages in the Top Tier as possible. The problem is you have many thousands of others trying to do the same thing. There are some people who consistently have 20 or more in the top 2,000 while there are also others who have never had a single page make it. So this is an especially difficult challenge to accomplish.

So I read the challenge and several of the responses. I looked at my dashboard for a likely candidate and as my eyes ran down the list on my dashboard, right at the bottom was the perfect choice - my webpage about Scotty Bowman. It was sitting there - glaring at me from neglect - with a LensRank of 457K. It had never made a cent and had little to no visitors since I had first published it 2 years ago. This was the perfect challenge as I had been promising myself that either I would get this page up to the Tier 2 level (LensRank 2001-approximately 10,000) or I would delete it. And even though it had under-performed, I cannot delete some webpages.

First of all, who is Scotty Bowman? I imagine you are asking. He is actually quite well-known, especially in ice hockey circles as the winningest coach in National Hockey League history. Over his 27 year coaching career Bowman's teams won the Stanley Cup 9 times. He coached the Montreal Canadiens, the Pittsburgh Penguins and the Detroit Red Wings. Bowman has had an absolutely stellar NHL career and deserves much praise which he does receive. Being a hockey fan myself (I have dozens of great pages on teams and players at Squidoo you might want to check out) I created my page about Bowman when I first started at Squidoo. Looking at it 2 years later, I can see many flaws in it which contribute to it's poor showing. Lets take a look at the stats for the page:

Created in September 2008, it received no visits from September 2008 until August 2009. NONE! That should have been a red flag for me to fix it, but I was busy creating new pages and working on those that were more successful. I would "get to that Bowman page later."

Here are the visits to the page from September 2009 until September 2010:

September 2009: 1 visit
October 2009: 1 visit
November 2009: 4 visits
December 2009: 2 visits
January 2010: 0 visits
February 2010: 2 visits
March 2010: 3 visits
April 2010: 2 visits
May 2010: 6 visits
June 2010: 2 visits
July 2010: 6 visits
August 2010: 2 visits
September 2010: 3 visits

So nothing as far as visits for the first year and 34 visits for the 2nd year. Time to fix this page.

What I've done is to start re-writing the content and adding more to flesh out the story of Bowman's career. There are a lot of side stories that tie in to many of my other hockey pages about individual players and teams on Squidoo which allows links to those pages where I can add to these secondary pages and add even more detail and increasing the original content across all my Squidoo pages. By making this one page stronger with my own original content the related pages become somewhat stronger as a by-product meaning more acknowledgement from Google and the search engines that "Hey, here's some content about this subject found no where else and it is relevent to what people are looking for" and bringing more people to my pages. More visitors means an enhanced opportunity for those people to buy things or go through my other pages and come back.

Just with adding more content, the LensRank of my Bowman lens has jumped from 457K to it's alltime high of 67,731. That is of course a long, long way from having a LensRank of 2,000 or better, but this little experiment won't be a success overnight. It will require a lot of work on my part - that's one reason why I am writing this post, which will help promote the page as well as my efforts on promoting it.

I am continuing to add new content to the Bowman webpage and working my HTML skills to try to make it even more aesthetically pleasing to the eye. Even if you have excellent content, presentation can go a long way in making a webpage a more enjoyable experience for your visitors. If you do have a minute, I would appreciate it if you could take a look at the webpage, here's a link: Scotty Bowman.

Also, because this challenge is getting attention from several different people on Squidoo, many are trying to get their webpages to rank - you can read all about it in the Squidu forum. One person actually created a new webpage just for this challenge and that can be found at Tier One Challenge where you can check out the other people submitting pages to this challenge.

I will be updating regularily about results and my actions taken to make the page better. One thing you may notice if you do read the posts in the forum thread is that I have included the webpage in my signature which will help by giving the webpage another backlink. That's yet another reason to be active in the forums.

My Latest Pages On Squidoo: Disney Fairies, Canadian Stamps, Coins, Betty Boop and Vampires

I've been so busy cranking out some new webpages on Squidoo, I've neglected to update here, so I thought I had better list my latest efforts.

Dress For Success Like Sheldon Cooper From Big Bang Theory
Disney Fairies Books
Must-Have Books For Coin Collectors
Stamp Collecting For Canadians
Cute Betty Boop Bobbleheads
Kotobukiya Statues
True Blood: A Guide To The Sookie Stackhouse Story

Quite a list! Most of this group are in Tier 3, although the Big Bang Theory one is in the 2nd Tier right now. It is mostly about the t-shirts worn by Sheldon Cooper (Emmy winner Jim Parsons) on the show. He favors lots of superhero-type of clothing - including a Flash uniform lol. One of my own personal favorite shows right now so I love being able to update this webpage.

I like the Disney Fairies webpage and it ties in nicely with the Tinker Bell calendar webpage I've had for some time. The "Stamp Collecting For Canadians" is another fun topic (well, for me anyway) where I get to write about another of my geeky hobbies and show some of the newest and oldest Canadian stamps. With a little elbow grease I think it will drift into the top tier as well, but that will take time and a lot of promotion to get my fellow stamp geeks to give it a peek.

Both the Betty Boop page and the one about the Kotobukiya statues are fun topics too. Betty Boop has a number of bobble heads with the lil sexy flapper in various guises. I'll be adding to this page and trying to add more about her. As any comic book/graphic novel fan would attest, the Kotobukiya figures are really something cool. Lots of excellent detailed work goes into this Star Wars figures and Marvel/DC superhero figurines. A little on the expensive side for me, but I know people love them and are becoming more and more collectable.

As far as collecting things goes, like most stamp collectors, I am also interested in coin collecting and added the "Must-Have" coin guides because it is another area I plan to expand into. Coin collecting is a fascinating area and I look forward to updating this page from time to time.

The last one listed is about the television series True Blood, starring Anna Paquin. It was a super-hot topic mid-September and I thought I would capitalize on that by putting an episode guide on Squidoo. It needs more work and sits around the 100K mark in Lensrank, but as season three of the vampire series just ended, it will have time to purcolate before season four kicks in mid-2011. By that time I think it will be something that the rabid fans of the show will love.

Beyond those (and I'm sure I am forgetting several new webpages), I have several more in my pipeline that will be up soon. I am doing a challenge where you have to do 5 new webpages for Squidboo on Squidoo with a Halloween theme. It is a little late to be capitalizing on the spooky season by creating new Halloween lenses, but you can still get new webpages to rank well if they are really good. Plus - don't think in the short term - create great Halloween pages NOW and work to get them that much better for Halloween 2011, 2012, 2013...
There's room for more at Squidoo and the Internet - tons of traffic is actively searching every aspect from Halloween costumes to pumpkins to decorations. Get your pages up now so you can have the best up in time for next year. And don't forget about Christmas which is steaming towards us yet again.
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