Early in my blogging days I spent a lot of time seeking out networks to belong to where I could engage other bloggers and promote my articles. After sorting through dozens of networks, I eventually settled on a handful to focus on where I’m actually getting votes, enjoying the community and engaging with other members. One of my readers here at info carnivore recently asked me if I could publish a post outlining social voting networks for bloggers, so here it is… If you haven’t read one of the most popular articles of 2010 here at info carnivore, now is a good time to read “The best and worst social networks for bloggers“, find out what other bloggers say about their favorite and most hated social networks.
Without further delay, here are ten social voting networks for bloggers, internet marketers, those interested in SEO, MMO, etc… I don’t spend time on all of these anymore, but I have checked them all out. Some I enjoy, others I find are a waste of time. For that reason I’m listing them in order based on my personal preference and the amount of traffic they tend to drive to my site. Of course, social networks fit everyone differently, so what doesn’t work well for me, may be your favorite network! Working our way from ten up to my favorite network at number one… here we go.
MMO is a relatively new and small social network. I place it in this list because of its area of focus (obviously making money online), however I’ve found navigating the site to be frustrating, and there seem to be a lot of problems with the interface. The site is also so new it has not caught on yet (for instance top story on the front page today had only six votes). It may be worth checking out as if you were to spend a little time there you could likely dominate the front page and gain some new exposure. For myself I’ve attempted on several times to submit stories and the login/submission process always frustrates me.
9. Mixx Classic
Mixx is long established and has a solid reader base. One of the great features about mixx is that you can design your own mixx, receiving stories in your feed (similar to digg) that are of interest only to you. Mixx is easy to join, but is so big that it is likely that without some serious time invested your stories will be lost in the crowd. You may have quality content, but if you don’t find and make friends and spend time on the network your stories will simply not get voted up.
These two networks are products of John Sullivan an eclectic Texan blogger who is confident he will one day rule the blogosphere (spend two minutes talking to him and he’ll tell you he’s got the best and brightest ideas), these networks however are mediocre at best. Small and not featuring a whole lot of activity, they are very cliquey. It is easy to become a member and submit your posts, and John is faithful with always providing his members with free dofollow links. This again is another one of those networks where you’ll invest a little time and find yourself near the top of the leaderboard very quickly. Blogger Luv for instance has a grand total of 404 members (and that hasn’t grown by more than a hundred or so members in the last 6 months!). I have yet to see a blip on the radar for traffic driven from either of these sites.
BizSugar is an established network featuring small business news and tips. For this reason you’ll have to be selective about the posts you submit here, since not all categories will qualify. BizSugar essentially focuses on marketing, business, technology and startups. I haven’t submitted a whole lot here yet, but the posts I have submitted did get noticed. If you are submitting quality content you will gain votes, and traffic back to your site. BizSugar is well designed, nice to look at and easy to navigate. I suspect I’ll be spending more time at BizSugar in the near future.
SERPd is a network of really intelligent people, who like quality content primarily focused on SEO and internet marketing. The community is growing, and yet quality content gets noticed, and engaged with quickly. I like the interface and the visual aspects of SERPd and it’s a network I would spend more time at, BUT… recently SERPd implemented a policy that requires every second link to be from a domain OTHER than your own. It makes being a member really difficult, as you must constantly spend time searching for content to submit that is not yours. I’ve tried submitting articles but OFTEN they are already indexed and as such it takes a lot of wasted time to submit something to SERPd. If you don’t mind submitting others content regularly then this is a great network to be a part of, and one I would like to engage with more.
Zoomit is a Canadian site, and maybe that’s why I like it. Though it’s not all that big yet, it does have some great things going for it. The content at zoomit is very general and covers a broad range of topics, pretty much anything (appropriate) goes. If you manage to get voted up to the front page on zoomit you will be pleasantly surprised by an enormous amount of backlinks generated by zoomit for your post. (You can find out how this all works by reading the article “How two webmasters discovered 25,000 surprise backlinks“, written by David Leonhardt the founder of zoomit. Zoomit is easy to join, and it’s only stipulation for submission is that you vote on a few other stories first. You must have three votes in on other articles before you can submit an article (simple to do!).
4. Old Dogg
Old Dogg is designed for those who miss the old Digg. It is a network with supreme potential. The topics on Old Dogg are general and broad, and tend to be focused more on entertainment and news then specifically blogging or internet related tech stories (though there are categories for technology, social media and security – all topics of interest to info carnivore). Old Dogg seems to be growing quickly and as such it is a challenge to get noticed and is one of those networks that will require an investment of your time to be successful with. Since the potential for a bigger audience is great this could be one network worth spending time on.
Blokube though small and relatively new is a lot of fun to be a part of. The site focuses on the niches of blogging about blogging and internet marketing. For a site that wants to promote interaction among bloggers, Blokube is doing just that. It is easy to meet, connect with, and discuss blogging ideas, tips and opinions with other bloggers. If you’re a blogger writing quality content then you owe it to yourself to check out Blokube and submit some of your articles. I have written a more thorough review about Blokube that you can read up here, “A Social Network for bloggers and marketers“.
Bloggers is unique as a social voting network because it is broader than most voting networks in its scope. It is also more of a blogging directory, and in a sense a popularity contest. I actually don’t even use the site much for the voting aspect (my articles are submitted automatically via RSS). Bloggers can receive votes as well as their blogs and their articles. The system appears to be easy to game since bloggers are voting for anybody and everybody without a care as to who they are or what they are about. One thing about Bloggers that I really like though is the user reviews section where a blog can receive a written review and a score (based on 1 to 10) from its readers. Having a handful of good reviews and endorsements can be a good thing, and bloggers has the potential to drive traffic – especially if you are ranking well for keywords on their site.
1. Blog Engage
As far as social voting networks for bloggers, in my opinion nothing can compete with Blog Engage right now. Popular, interactive, quality content, lots of votes, contest, friendly owner, adsense revenue sharing… what more could you want in a social voting network? Blog Engage is growing continuously and their contest are fantastic and an opportunity to pick up some extra cash. I recently interviewed Brian, the owner of Blog Engage and you can read that article here. A while back I also wrote a post with a more detailed look at my thoughts about the Blog Engage community, find out more here.
Other Networks, your suggestions?
This list is by no means exhaustive. There are PLENTY of other networks. If I overlooked one that you enjoy and use on a regular basis please mention it here in the comments so myself and our readers can take the time to take a look! Share your thoughts, what do you think about these voting networks, do you spend time on any of them? Do you agree with my countdown or disagree?