vbSEO - Who's using it, what's the scoop?

Discussion in 'Forum SEO' started by NICOCLUBcom, May 30, 2006.

  1. Jim McClain

    Jim McClain Senior Citizen

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    My considered opinion...

    Concerning this same topic, this is something I posted on another forum that I no longer participate on:

    I sure can't speak with the authority of BSG, but I use the vBSEO script and thought long and hard about it before I made the decision. I've tried to start 5 forums of my own and most of them were failures. I still have 2 forums going and one of them is limping precariously with 1 foot in the grave (oddly enough, it's www.1FootInTheGrave.com).

    My newest forum, the one I prob'ly have the most emotional investment in, is a vB forum called www.TheFloorPro.com. I have been involved in flooring forums for the last 6 or 7 years and seen most of them deteriorate to the degree that they just don't feel right any more. I feel partly responsible because I worked as a moderator and co-admin off and on at one of them. So TheFloorPro just has to make it.

    Yes, $150.00 is a lot of dough. For a successful forum with some form of advertising, would your ad revenue cover your expenses (not just vBSEO, but the hosting and forum software, etc. too)? I would hope so. I have every intention of having a successful forum. I may not get rich on it, but it should pay the overhead and contribute to my income.

    Maybe you don't make as much "per hour" as I do and maybe you make a lot more, but for every single person considering the expenses of a forum and website, you must figure your own worth into the equation. In my regular job I make $75.00 per hour or more (sometimes a lot more, sometimes less). Now, can I do, with my limited skills as a webmaster, the kind of coding, configuring and optimizing that vBSEO does in even 4 hours? Hell no!

    I look at the cost of vBSEO as an investment. It does what I only wish I could do and it does it far better and faster than I could even if I was twice the webmaster I wish I was. To be sure, it's far too early in my situation to determine the effect. Heck, I ain't even ranked yet I'm so new. But there are some features that are apparent immediately and make it easier for a bunch of old fart flooring dudes to figure out what's goin' on in this new fangled forum.

    I can do so much more with my time now. I can work on the graphics and prepare some quality content and that seemingly never ending task of just managing members. vBSEO has saved me plenty already. It hasn't brought income to the bank yet, but I haven't implemented any ads yet either. But I think when I do, it will be better than without the benefits of vBSEO.

    From what I understand about established forums, it may be more difficult a transition to vBSEO than a very new forum like mine. The older forums may already have pages indexed and many members have links and Favorites/Bookmarks. Although vBSEO does redirects very well, there can still be problems to overcome. Newer forums don't have that disadvantage and I hope this gives me a better start in the right direction.

    There are a great many talented people who can write their own scripts, mold their .htaccess files into works of Mod Rewrite art and collate keywords for every single page with a wave of their code wands. I ain't one a them people and don't know anyone who is -- and willing to do it for even a free carpet job. So, vBSEO is a huge bargain to me. I consider it a wise investment. I haven't even realized its full potential and already, as you can see, I'm a big fan.

    Best R'gards,

    Jim
     
  2. Peam

    Peam Neophyte

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    I installed VBSEO about 1 week ago now and I have not had any issues with it at all
    if anything I am worried about having to many guests on at once while experiencing high traffic from registered users
    I have also made it so they are able to access all the forums since guests must register first

    as far as my testing with it... I highly recommend it :) take care and good luck
     
  3. BrandonSheley

    BrandonSheley loving life

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    nope. there are 2 or 3 forum admins that didn't like what vbseo was doing, or they didn't want to wait any longer and switched back to slandered links.

    those reviews are in there also ;)
     
  4. oninuva

    oninuva Enthusiast

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    i am wondering if vbseo will change the links into .html instead of .php
     
  5. BamaStangGuy

    BamaStangGuy Fanatic

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    Yes
     
  6. oninuva

    oninuva Enthusiast

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    o ok... how come vbulletin.com and .org dont use it and how come TaZ dosnt use it?
     
  7. hari

    hari Tazmanian

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    Because SEO by itself is highly overrated topic. Too many people think SEO is the be-all and end-all of community building. The quality of SE traffic is very poor and the conversion rates from guests to members is not great. The average visitor (nearly 80-90%) who comes to your site from Search engines spend less than 30 seconds on your site. This is something I've learned after analyzing my traffic for more than one and a half years. Remember, most people who use search engines are not the ones who'll stay long on a single site much less become active members on a forum - they're more likely to keep jumping from site to site until they find specific information...

    SEO is only one side of the story. I personally would rely on social networking as a far more important method of forum promotion and of course let the organic SEO of the diversity of forum content take its course rather than try to optimize it by different means - much less pay for it...

    It continuously surprises me how people don't understand the psychology of 99% of the web. It almost appears that forum admins live in a different world. I don't think an average forum user goes around searching the web for forums to join... I myself never came across any forum I am active in by using a search engine.
     
  8. oninuva

    oninuva Enthusiast

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    ok... that just changed my mind about buying VbSEO, thanks i just save 150$

    :D :D :D $_$
     
  9. Jim McClain

    Jim McClain Senior Citizen

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    Maybe I'm not average, but I would say most of the forums I belong to and almost all of the ones I am active on, including this forum, I found with Google. I found another forum that was forum administration oriented through a link from a web design forum and it was teh crap. I have found a lot of crappy forums by following the links of other forum members (some good ones too, of course).

    People use search engines for different purposes. Your experience might be related to a different category of visitor. It's prob'ly not good to generalize in this regard. I am about to do a search for an .htaccess problem. If I don't find the answer here or at a couple of other favored forums, I will Google for the answer (I want it now). If I find the answer at another forum, I will join that forum and prob'ly end up participating there too. At least for a bit.


    But again, I'm prob'ly not your average forum user. I hope I am above average. :D

    Jim
     
  10. hari

    hari Tazmanian

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    I'm sorry. Relating a personal experience doesn't cut it. I'm talking about raw numbers. I've analyzed a lot of stats and it's simply an overwhelming conclusion I've come to by research. SE terms are so wide and diverse that people looking for a forum to join are probably 5% of the traffic.

    It should be different for large forums. Simply put the diversity of SE terms that large forums get will ensure enough traffic to have a critical mass to sustain itself. No small forum can hope to compete with the large, established ones on SEO, simply because of the huge variety of SE terms that large sites benefit from. This quite apart from all the issues I mentioned in my previous post.

    I get a substantial amount of of SE traffic (probably less now after switching forums) but when I did, I had very few people joining through that. Most, and I repeat most of the members you get for a fairly small forum will be through social networking, period.

    Ironically somebody added me to a social networking site like digg (for an article on my blog) and the traffic boost was so huge that I had to ask my url to be removed from there. Again, when i was added to stumbleupon recently, it overwhelmed my web stats. I got 1500+ unique visitors in a single day and more than 10 registrations for that day which is something of a record for a small community like mine.
     
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2006
  11. BamaStangGuy

    BamaStangGuy Fanatic

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    and this is based on what? I find the complete opposite. Almost all my new members find me via Search Engines.

    They find the information they need and leave. So are you saying that you don't want those 80% coming to your site? I'll take them then. Those 80% are also responsible for clicking my adsense ads and making me money.

    You only looked at one thing and not the whole picture. Just because those 80% (and I am not even saying 80% is true I am just going by what you say) come to your site and leave that is an ad impression and a person who can possibly click on your ads. It is not all about members members members!

    and click your ads, and hey if they find the information on your site who is to say they won't link to your page from other sites? It happens all the time.

    Coming from someone who thinks getting members is the only valuable thing and since SE's don't convert well to memberships (according to him because I got a totally different story to tell regarding that) that those 80% are not worth going after.

    Good for you. I do that as well along with constantly build links. I like to cover all aspects and push my site as far as I can.

    :biglaugh: You obviously miss the part where people click ads and we make money.

    Maybe not in your topic but again, THINK OUTSIDE OF YOUR LITTLE BOX. People are searching for Mustang Forums ALL THE TIME. I get new members all the time finding me by typing Mustang Forums, Ford Mustang Forums, Mustang Sites, etc etc in SEARCH ENGINES. On top of that my thread pages are heavily optimized in order to get as far to the top for their content as possible in order for people to find my site and either 1) Join 2) Find information they like 3) Find info they like and then link back to it from another site 4) Click my ads 5) click the red box and never return.
     
  12. BamaStangGuy

    BamaStangGuy Fanatic

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    Are you joking? Digg doesn't count. That is one time traffic. Sure you get the trickle effect of it over time but it is widely known that Digg users do not click ads and like you said a mainpage digg can easily bring down a small server. A lot of good that link did for you when you had to have them remove it.

    You talk about these "raw numbers" but give us no background on it. :rolleyes:

    and what is this crap about small forums not being able to compete with large ones? I outrank some of the BIGGEST Ford Mustang web sites on the internet for many high traffic keywords.
     
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2006
  13. hari

    hari Tazmanian

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    If your main aim is to make money via ads, I guess your approach would be different.

    I'm talking about serious community building.

    I don't deny SEO's importance. But it's got to be put into perspective in the bigger picture which *you* seem to be missing. I've seen lots of successful sites out there make money without any SEO, much less pay for it. So your experience doesn't count for me either...

    You also seem to negate the importance of organic SEO which brings a much larger variety of keywords to your site. Bottom line: No small site/forum can *ever* hope to compete with larger sites merely by SEOing. You're much better off building more content. There's absolutely no proof I got that SEOing improves ranking... none, in spite of my using the phpBB SEO mod for a year before I moved to vB.

    I'm not worried about mere traffic which seems to be your main concern. I'm worried about community building, participation and long-term relationships. In spite of growing SE traffic, it's hard to see any increase in membership rates or participation. I find absolutely no correlation between traffic from SE and community growth.

    You're obviously a fan of vBSEO which is your privilege.. Pay for it, enjoy it, use it... if you're going to get upset at every criticism of vBSEO, I cannot help it or stop expressing my criticism...

    And just off-topic: don't you think using robots.txt can improve crawler efficiency? I'm seeing an increase in indexed pages merely by restricting SE bots from accessing unwanted portions of my site.
     
    Last edited: Jun 29, 2006
  14. BamaStangGuy

    BamaStangGuy Fanatic

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    I'm sorry but I am pretty damn serious about building a strong community and making money at the same time. You act like that is not possible :suspect:

    Sure they make money, who is to say they can't make more? You think that is the most they can make and not push it further. You seem to be so content with just setteling for second best? Why? And quite frankly, and excuse my language, but I don't give a rats ass what you think of my opinion. You are not some superior being that I must have approval of. Get over yourself.

    Me too, I like getting the most traffic to my site as possible to maximize the chance of someone joining my site. If you are not going to reach out to all possible avenues of attracing people to your site, then you are the one not committed to building a thriving community because you are not going after everyone.


    I'm not even talking about VBSEO here. No where in my posts to you was it mentioned. My beef with you is the fact that you are telling these people some terribly misguided information. You are sitting here proclaiming to be all about building a thriving community yet you are so willing to not even spend time on SEO to maximize your sites exposure because your amazing research into stats says it isn't worth it. I'm glad I didn't listen to you when I was first getting started, I kind of enjoy getting 700+ referrals a day from Yahoo and many new members which find my site via Yahoo and other search engines. Like I said, you flat out said small communities could not compete with large forums and you are oh so wrong.

    What makes you think I don't use a robots.txt?

    and are you that naive to think that I am telling you that SEO alone does everything? Bottom Line: Build content and SEO at the same time. I did not say anywhere just SEO the site to death and you are going to beat out the large forums. :rolleyes:
     
  15. hari

    hari Tazmanian

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    Don't think I'm anti-SEO. Read my post carefully. I'm not going around making personal attacks against you so your aggression is unwarranted and out of line. My point, quite simply is that SEO is not worth as much as its made out to be. So stop dragging me into a verbal slanging match - it's going nowhere.

    Your point has been made as well. Let it rest at that. (and I'm serious).
     
  16. BamaStangGuy

    BamaStangGuy Fanatic

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    Your point has no backing. Period. Your "statistics and research" exist only to you. My point is you are selling yourself short and the people you advise here by telling them to skip SEO.

    This thread is open and I will continue to reply until it isn't. You are the one telling me that MY opinion and experience is worthless to you. You are the one who made this personal. Period. People should not go into buying a program like VBSEO thinking that it will solve all their problems but people like you do not help at all when you talk down the importance of SEO when there are so many forums attracting new members and more traffic through search engines. You are the one selling these people short with information. Just because a site already makes "big money" does not mean there is not room for improvement. That is not a valid excuse at all for someone committed to such a high level of community building.

    I strongly disagree with your views and to have you sit there and tell me to let is rest is ridiculous. This is a community for helping admins, not for me to be told to leave something this important alone.
     
  17. oninuva

    oninuva Enthusiast

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    you guys are making my brain hurt... i went to sleep last night thinking this would stop... Not.... and i'm thinking of buying it agian... LoL, sinse people will click me ads... anyways... these posts are tooo long... could someone sum it up in a few words? Is it worth buying?
     
  18. BamaStangGuy

    BamaStangGuy Fanatic

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    Can you please link me to your forum?
     
  19. Brad

    Brad Meh

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    The question you should ask yourself: Is it worth it too me, and my forum?

    I encourge you to ask around about that add-on before you put down that kind of money for it. Get some opinions from people already using it and search around vBSEO's forum to see how the support is. Look into free options before purchase, you may find one that suits your needs. Make sure your server can run this software (you'll need zend installed irrc, vBSEO is encoded).

    I do not run it on my forum simply because I know enough to rewrite my own urls (this requires a bit of work but anyone can do it if they are willing to learn).
     
  20. oninuva

    oninuva Enthusiast

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    www.gamerz-forum.com
     
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