Category Archives: Work at Home

Learn from my experience working at home as freelance writer. Tips and useful information for those who want to work from home.

Branding your blog

Branding is essential for your blog as it creates important messages for your clients. It helps them see how different you are from your competitors.

When you create your content it is necessary that you have in mind what picture you present to your customers.

Here are some hints to follow for the purpose of having a branded blog.

Come up with a creative and catchy blog name. Naming gives the first impression to the audience. Therefore make sure is it related to the product or service you are blogging. Also, are easy search terms included in the name?

Select a unique address. Many bloggers use WordPress.com but having your own URL is more authentic. Put a tagline as well as taglines tell more about the blog`s content. What is the blog about? An effective keyword in the tagline is a must. For example, if you have a blog on learning Spanish, you can define the type of information you present with “Actionable Spanish. “

Carefully choose the blog theme and the colours. The theme gives the overall framework of what you present and adds up to your brand name. Pay attention to the sample texts given by default and change them so that the captions look catchy to readers. Colours are an integral part of branding, so at this point keep in mind the psychological effect colours have on people`s perception and feelings. Now you can say I am not following this. It is because speed is against design and I bet in speed above everything when it comes to SEO results.

Typography is another element to be considered when branding a blog. It refers to the text in a blog and it can be incredibly influential on visitors to your blog and may have either positive or negative impact on to prospective customers. Typography expresses the general attitude about your content. The more creative and innovative you are, the more you can reinforce your personality and ideas by using the right typography.

Creating a blog brand in content writing for example, means considering the length of posts and the language that is used. Depending on the topic, you may go for longer articles, such as in language learning instructions or you may just share short notes in the entertaining business. As for the language, no matter whether you write in a standard language or in slang, good grammar and correct spelling are important.

Another authentic feature when branding your blog is to produce a voice for your blog. Remember that in the cyber world there is no real human interaction and you need to be recognizable as a brand among your visitors. Here comes the true meaning of “a brand”. Ask yourself these questions: “How do I sound to my readers? Will they recognize me? “

Finally, you need to protect your exclusiveness. You may choose one of the many public online copyright licenses.  Decide about the terms of use on your blog and whether you allow others to use your content. If you do, on what conditions they can do it. Do not forget, you are the one who is creating the brand.

The importance of fluent communication with clients

Someone once said that the client is always right. But until getting to say that your client is always right, you have to first get to know some information about who you are working for.

Why is this important?

The client is ultimately the one who decides whether he or she wants to work with you or not. Knowing who your client is gives you the upper hand. You can learn to adapt to their needs and what things to say or not to him or her.

Adapt your offer

Adapting your offer to the needs of your client is key. For example, if you are a Spanish content writer and your client is from Latin America, then you should adapt your vocabulary to that of the region, as it can be a bit different from the one in Spain.

Spelling and vocabulary are not the only things that you should take into account. For example, when applying to a job which requires technical writing skills, send them a sample of similar work, as opposed to your poems from 5th grade that you are so proud of.

Communication is key

If you are not sure what to do regarding an aspect, you should always double check with the client, as it is better to be safe than sorry. For example, if you are writing a SEO article, you should ask beforehand if the client wants the keywords to be highlighted, in bold. An other example would be whether the post should include images. All these aspects are key, because knowing them beforehand could save you a lot of work and time.

Feedback

The job ends, but your relationship with your client does not always stop here. It is important at the end of every task to ask for feedback. By knowing what you did wrong, you can improve your skills and not repeat the same mistake again. Also, you can use this opportunity to modify the things that your client is not happy with in order to ensure that you have delivered your task in a satisfying manner. It will leave both you and your client happy with the job that you have finished.

Respect deadlines

Regardless of your client, respecting deadlines is very important. Not doing so can reflect badly on your part and it can also have negative consequences such as: not being paid the full amount or the client never working with you again.

Knowing who your client is represents a key aspect in any type of business, regardless of whether it is freelance or not. You should take into account the above mentioned elements as they can take the relationship with your client to the next level. These little things make you get higher paid jobs and long lasting relationships with clients. Here is an other article that you might find useful.

Understanding the Basics of Links

Defining link building

Hyperlinks or simply links make it easy to direct our search among various pages on the Internet. Links can be built in different ways and they are not easy to create. However, when you learn how to build links they will bring you double benefit for your search engine optimization in the competitive cyber world.

How are links built in HTML?

Firstly, a start of a link is created, marked as “a” which comes from anchor tag. This is followed by a link named “link referral location” showing that another link will follow. At the end is the closure of link marked by `a` again. It may look like the following sample:

<a href= “https://www.pinterest.com”>pineditorials</a>. Here, `href` means `hyperlink referral. The link starting with `www` indicates the URL and it can be either a website or any other internet address leading to a file or image, for example. Also, you may come across local links which are marked with # meaning that you can be led to another part of the currently opened webpage. The second part of the sample link given above indicates the so called visible text of the link. If clicked, it further directs the user. It can be easily recognized as it appears in blue or any other colour.  The symbol > indicates the end of the link.

The relation between links and search engines

As mentioned, links are the way to higher ranking as they are used by search engines to discover new pages and evaluate how well the page qualifies on the web.  When the search engines find the pages they take the content of the pages put it to their indexes. Through this, each page is ranked for relevant keywords. The process is thoroughly explained in the following video.

Important factors that influence ranking are the content of the page and the number of links coming from other websites and their quality. If the externally linked webpages are of high quality, your ranking is likely to be ranked well by the search engines. At the present, Google is the most powerful search engine apart from yahoo, MSN and Bing. PageRank is one of the inventions for measuring the quality of a webpage giving foundation to a ranking algorithm for measuring page quality.

However, as in each race for success there are cases when users try to take advantages of the possibility of ranking with no efforts. For this reason Google has implemented some update options to control unfairly use of ranking. When they come across a webpage that is not worth being ranked, they simply throw out the webpage. Moreover, Google started with penalties in link building for over-optimization. This is important to know if you want to take the full benefit of link building.

 

How to Write reviews for affiliated products or services

Affiliate marketing is very useful to enhance sales of goods or services.  The workflow is easy:

  1. You have a website about a topic related
  2. Join an affiliate program
  3. Place adverts
  4. You get revenues from the conversions (not from the clicks)

One of the most common ways to do it is by writing reviews about products and services and adding your affiliate links in the page.

In order to be able to write a good review you need to make a solid strategy and keeping in mind certain useful information.  Although the specifics may vary for different sites there are some standard requirements.

First of all, you need to be familiar with the product or service that you present. Describe how it functions and give reasons why people should buy it.  Using the keywords users will use when researching in Google searches is an imperative. Don’t think that success is easy. Profitable affiliate programs and keywords have a great competition. It is difficult to cope with the complicated search engine algorithms and it always take time and money.

Next, your concept should be original. Offering a unique content with a possibility to engage users and leave comments is something that creates user-based signals of a frequently visited website on Google. If you do not allow users’ voices to be heard, they will soon leave your website.

How are products sold? You can use your blog to earn from affiliate marketing. Convincing your readers that the product or service is really good because you used it yourself is not enough for them to spend their money. You need to know the importance of audience size and the types of conversion rates that you may expect. Of course it is crucial to know the quality of visitors and the type of marketing you use, but numbers are important. If 100 people spend 1$, then 500 readers might bring 500 $. Easy to calculate, the more readers you attract, the more money you will make.

Speaking of blogging and making sales, unfortunately most readers expect information to be free, therefore consumable content is more attractive to people. If you write about widely used devices like cameras or mobiles, your readers are likely to buy what you write about. However, with blogs which are not about products it is more difficult to affiliate products to promote but you can often find something to sell. For example, if you write about online working you can focus on tools you use and then review them and make money from affiliated sales.

In the following link you can watch how purchase can be made through an affiliated link

You can find a number of really good product review site on the Internet with some examples on the following link.

In general, apart from the description of the product or service, you have to make an effort to show the user how easy is to get and use the product. Your objective is the reader visualizsing themselves using the product or service. Also give additional information like, niche, about the founder, what id their goal and key challenge. Name the key stats. Facebook, Twitter, Google = and so forth. Also, give a top content, some top promotions and what readers can learn from it.

I have a broad experience writing reviews for affiliate purpose. If you are looking a writer for affiliate reviews in Spanish do not hesitate to contact me.

Rules for working from home

Working from home might seem like the ideal thing for you. You have are your own boss, you have a flexible schedule and you can dress however you want. In addition, you can select your own clients and take on whichever amount of work you feel like doing for the day.

It seems almost ideal, right? Well, it is what most people wish for in their lives, but it can also go wrong if there is a lack of structure. Do not worry, because this post will help you get a bit organized and less distracted. So let’s get to it.

Below are some rules or tips (call them whatever you want to) that might help you.

  1. Set a place specifically for work

Even though you are your own boss and you can theoretically do anything that you want to do, working chaotically might not do the trick. You will still need to have the idea of a home office, whether it is simply a table in the kitchen or in the living room. If you want to go all the way and have the possibility, you can even set aside a special room for this purpose, or simply isolate a space which you use it as a working area. If you need more tips about how to make your home office a more efficient space, click here.

  1. Create your own schedule

Strict schedules might have been the thing that made you decide to start freelancing or working from home as opposed to working in a company. Well, the thing is that you do need some structure and planning in order to get things done. For example if you have an online blog, you should at least try to make a content plan for the year or at least for the month. This way, you will not be left without ideas and keep your blog up to date. If you have other tasks, it is always good to keep an agenda as this way you will make sure that you will complete all of the tasks in time.

  1. Networking is very important

Stanley Milgram once conducted this experiment known as the small world or the lost letter experiment. The subjects had to get a letter to a certain person, but if they did not know him, they had to give it to someone who they thought might know him and so on, until the person got the letter. The result showed that you need approximately 6-7 people in order to get to who you need to. This is why networking is important. The more people you know, the easier it is to get to who you need. Also, it can help your business or blog get more attention.

So these are only some rules for working from home. Here is another article that might interest you and it has more rules that you should consider when working from home. I hope they are useful and maybe you already apply them.

Google Webmaster Tools Basics for Freelancers

Being familiar and using Google Webmaster Tools is an important asset if you want to optimize your site. It is a set of tools by Google that can give you an insight of what is happening on your website. Also, you will be able to make decisions according to real evidence instead of just making guesses about what to do.

There are several steps to take when you decide to log in to Google Webmaster Tools. First you need to add your website and to confirm that you are the owner of the site. After verifying your ownership, you will start seeing data on a dashboard. You will be able to have a look at a range of useful stuff such the amount of traffic you get, the pages that have been indexed by Google, etc.

For better ranking of your page, it is important that your website is configured. For example, configuration with site mapping will help Google to define what the pages on your website are so that it will be easier for them to index them. It is related to the traffic, the more indexed sites, the more traffic you get. Sitemaps are submitted in XML format with less than 50,000 URLs. On the other hand, if you don’t want some pages to be indexed, like private logins, you can create robots.txt file to block all the searching engines including Google.

The Diagnostic section is a useful part which tells you if something went wrong on your website. Even more, it can direct you how to solve the problem. For instance, any programs that may disrupt your computer may be discovered and you will get a warning like “Google has detected a malware on this site”. It is necessary to avoid getting malware on your server. Google will not rank your website if there is any danger of going to an infected site. No one wants to get their computer infected by being careless. Make sure to do a cleanup if you notice any malware.

These are some of the features Google Webmaster Tools offer to website owners. There are many more benefits you might enjoy if using it. It is completely free and it is worth having as it will guide you throughout the traffic by giving instructions what you need to do in order to improve your Google Traffic.

Go for it!

Common proofreading mistakes and how to avoid them

Whether you have your own blog or proofread texts for other people, there are some mistakes that most people make. It is quite important to avoid them as sometimes a spelling error could make your argument invalid or denote lack of education. It is crucial to have a flawless piece of writing especially on the Internet, where people will judge you and if you have the misfortune to find a so-called “grammar nazi”, then you are doomed. Do not worry, because this post is going to help you avoid being humiliated on the Internet, so read ahead.

  1. Trusting Word Spell Check

Either you are using Microsoft Word or any other program, they usually come with a spell check. The thing is that most of the time, we usually look to see whether there is a word underlined with red and then modify it. The main problem with this that the program identifies words that are spelled incorrectly, but not according to context. For example, you can have the words god and good and accidentally put the first instead of the second. Your text will make no sense, however, the program will not detect any mistake. The same can happen with the misuse of an accent in Spanish and the results can be horrific. This is why, you should double check the whole text, not just the underlined words.

  1. Overlooking inconsistency

Due to the fact that there might not seem to be something wrong at first, inconsistencies get ignored most of the times. Also, there are many possible errors of this type that it gets really hard to identify them. The main reason why we fail to spot them is because if we take them individually, they are not wrong. However, when the structure appears again, in the text in a different form, that is when the problem occurs. Just to have an idea of an inconsistency, think about numbers. For example, you start your text by saying: “there are 3 rivers in…” and then continue by saying: ”the three rivers”. The same happens with symbols, time and dates. The best thing is to either only write them with numbers/ symbols or spell them out. Choose only one method.

  1. Doubling words or phrases

Repeating yourself is one of the most annoying things possible. You want to get the message across and it might not seem to much for you to repeat the same phrase twice, three times in a phrase like “buy this now”. However, for the reader, this is very irritating and it will make him or her lose interest in your work. Also, do double check to see if you have accidentally written the same word twice like for example: “he has always always done this”. A slip of an extra word will simply denote lack of professionalism and it will stain your reputation.

I hope that these tips help you improve your proofreading skills. If you want some more tips on how to better proofread your text check out this article.

If you want a freelance proofreader for your Spanish texts, contact me.

3 Tips on how to improve your writing

Writing might not always come easy. Some are more talented, while others have a hard time finding their voice, their writing style. Setting aside the part where you try to achieve that flawless writing in terms of grammar and spelling, writing is more than that. It is about sending a message, about engaging the reader. This blog post is about improving your writing in terms of making it more attractive. If however, you just want to learn some tips for content writing, check this out.

  1. Read Books

In school they always made us read books. It seemed useless back then and a bit annoying to take out some part of our play time just to read. The thing is that those books helped us find our style of writing. The more we read, the more our writing evolved. We started using more complex words and our sentences started evolving and so did our content. Nowadays, the same thing applies. Read books! It does not really matter whether they are science fiction, non fiction or romance novels. All that matters is that your writing will evolve as you will involuntarily adopt elements from the writing style of the authors whose works you read.

  1. Watch Ted Talks

You have probably heard about this worldwide phenomenon called Ted Talks. It is basically an event where people go an hold speeches and they are usually very engaging. You will learn from the way they speak, the structure of their monologues and how they give arguments in order to sustain their ideas. Soon, you will start adopting those concepts to your writing and you will realize in no time that your content is more interesting and your ideas are more clearly stated and have greater arguments. All of this, with little or no effort.

  1. Watch Stand Up Comedy

This might seem a bit stupid at first, but watching stand up comedy could really get your writing to the next level. How come? Simply watch a comedian capture the attention of the public. You will see how he makes a story out of everything. A simple walk on the street becomes a great adventure if you look at it through the right lenses. They can talk about basically anything without making you lose interest and also manage to make you laugh. That is simply magic. You know how when you make new friends you soon start adopting some words that they use, their style? Well, think of stand up comedians as your friends. Watch many videos and you will soon end up having engaging texts and who knows? Maybe even funny.

As mentioned above, writing is all about finding your voice and getting a message across. If you are having a hard time engaging your audience, then you should try out these tips. You might end up writing the latest best seller. You might even get new ideas, learn new things. You will have fun and your writing will improve. That is definitely something to look forward to.

What is Anchor text?

Speaking of internet marketing, everyone who is into the business should be familiar with the meaning of anchor text and its role in the search engine optimization. If it is used in a proper way, anchor text can help you to get a good search engine ranking.

Anchor text is the clink that is clickable in the hyperlink and that leads you to the target page. It means that it directs you to another location or document and this part is always printed in blue. For instance in Google, the word “Google” is an anchor text and it can be created with the HTML code <a href=”http://www.example.com”>Example Anchor Text</a>.

Some types of Anchor texts

Anchors can vary depending on the link profile. It is important to optimize your anchor text as it can help you to create a link profile consisting of various generic anchors.

  1. Generic anchors are usually combination of words like “click for more information here”, “check out” or “read more”. This is how you create a link to your site and it is up to your creativity how you will mix the words.
  2. Branded anchors are texts that use any brand name. Some of the well-known sites like Moz have a huge number of branded anchor texts.
  3. Brand & Keyword anchors-This is a combination of brand name and a keyword of your choice which helps you to build a strong anchor. An example of this type of anchor is “SEO services by Moz”.
  4. LSI anchors is an abbreviation for Latent Semantic Indexing which refers to the different kinds of your keywords or synonyms closely related to your target keyword. For example, if your target is “Bookshop” the LSI keyword may include “Digital library online”, “Book clouds” and so forth.
  5. Exact match-this anchor text can help you a lot in improving your ranking. They are the same as your target keyword phrase. For instance, if the target phrase is “link building” the anchor will be the exact match to it: “link building”. You should be careful with this anchor texts as they can make you get penalized by Google if used inappropriately.

How to optimize anchor text

Make sure you deliver various types of anchor texts. Some marketers believe that branded anchor text should have a greater distribution in comparison to generic anchors, for example. Also, when building backlinks, it’s useful to track anchor texts that have been used. This will show you where you are heading. Avoid using anchors with too many keywords and do not try to over optimize your page.

Pay attention to not to connect with infected or spam sites. There are some useful monitoring tools to use for this purpose like SEMrush, Monitor Backlinks and Ahrefs. Most importantly, look for sites that are not only relevant but authoritative as well. It will make good to your link profile. Websites with high authority and traffic may improve your link profile and increase your optimization.

When working as freelance writer, you will have clients asking you to write about a topic using a specific anchor text for your keyword. What you need to do is to put the link in that keyword within a sentence that makes sense and is coherent with the full text.

If you are looking someone to write your guest post with specific anchor texts in Spanish, do not hesitate in contacting me!

What is aCall-to Action (CTA)

How to do a business plan
creative commons licensed ( BY ) flickr photo shared by Bohman

Call-to Action is one of the crucial marketing tools. We have discussed before that everything like anchor text links, buttons and images is what make visitors take an instant action but how does it function actually?

A Call-to action is usually a picture or text line that directs your visitors to literally “take an action”. This can be something like:

  • signing up for an event,
  • downloading an e-book,
  • get a coupon
  • buy something
  • and other possibilities offered on the Internet.

You can put the CTA wherever you like, such as in your blog post, in an email or your website. A simple example of a CTA is a notion like “Download free e-book here”. You can use a single CTA or you can put multiple options, it’s up to you.

There are certain things you should include when adding a CTA

First of all, in other to attract visitors to click where you want them to, you need to create a catchy design.

In this regard, you should think of making it noticeable. The ideal size is thought to be 225px wide and 45px high. The first visual contact helps to attract visitors so make sure the CTA colours are different or in contrast to your website.

Also, sometimes it is not enough to say “click here”, readers need more information on what they are headed to. For example, what is it- a Prezi template, a manual for download or a sign-up for a Newsletter. It is believed that strong verbs create more clicks, though other types of words are also important like “these”, “now” or “free”. Then, keep in mind that CTA need to be short and concise. No one wants to waste time on reading unnecessary information. 90-150 characters seem to be ideal word count.

Another important point to think about when it comes to CTA is the landing page. It may be more efficient if visitors are directed to a specific landing page after clicking it and taking the visitor to any random page on your website. As an example, it is all right if you take a visitor to a “contact here” page if you sell services, but maybe not for an online store. It means it cannot be effective in generating leads and customers like a real landing page where someone can find a specific product.

This brings you to select the right CTA for every page on your site. As a marketer here you should identify the stages in the sales route. This is important because not every offer may be suitable for all the visitors throughout the route.

Ideally, after you have given a deeper thought to the above, you can start creating a CTA of your own. In case you need a more thorough outlook of the creation process and a beneficial optimization of your CTAs, you may like to look for some customizable Call –to-Action templates.

CTAs are powerful assets whose strength can boost conversion. Take an action by yourself-understand the basic points, functions and use and you are ready to create valuable CTAs.