Working Green: 50 Tips To Reduce Your Office’s Waste

Thursday, August 9, 2007 at 2:07pm by Site Administrator

From daily smog to the rising threat of global warming, it’s pretty obvious that we all need to clean up our act a little. Much has been said about how to go about doing this at home, but what about in the workplace? Copiers, computers, even old floppy disks, can make a huge impact on the environment. Here’s are a few ways to reduce your office’s effect. Paper and printing products

Nearly every office, large or small, relies on large quantities of paper. Check out these tips to help reduce the amount of paper and printing products that are used at your workplace.

  1. Use both sides of paper: When making copies, set your machine to use both sides of paper and cut your consumption in half.
  2. Shred and reuse unwanted paper: Instead of throwing away old documents, shred them and reuse them as packing material in shipments.
  3. Reuse boxes: When you get shipments in, save your boxes so that you can use them again for shipments out.
  4. Offer paper recycling: Put a paper recycling receptacle next to every printer, copier and fax machine so that employees can deposit unwanted paper in them. Discuss recycling with your cleaning crew or appoint a person to bring your paper to a recycling center each week.
  5. Avoid color printing: Color printing generally uses more ink, so print in black and white when you can.
  6. Print in draft mode: To conserve even more ink, print in draft mode. It will generally lighten the shade, but you’ll still be able to read your copy clearly.
  7. Buy paper wisely: Create a policy to buy only chlorine-free paper with a high percentage of recycled content.
  8. Consider alternative paper: Think about buying paper made from hemp, bamboo or organic cotton.
  9. Buy recycled toner and ink: Cartridges contribute metal and plastic to landfills, but buying toner and ink that’s refilled can help alleviate this environmental burden.
  10. Distribute memos via email: Instead of printing out memos for distribution, email them and let employees decide whether or not they wish to print them.
  11. Store manuals, policies and other documents online: Don’t print out huge employee handbooks. Allow employees to access PDF copies at their leisure.
  12. Provide air dryers in the bathroom and common areas: Reduce paper towel waste by providing air dryers as an alternative. Take it a step further and provide reusable towels.
  13. Reduce margins: Reduce your margin settings so that your printer uses less paper.

Transportation

You may not consider commuting to be a part of your office’s environmental impact, but your transportation policies can make a large difference. Encourage telecommuting, biking, and other green transportation options by taking these steps.

  1. Encourage employees to walk or bike to work: Make walking or biking an easier option by offering showers and private changing areas at your office.
  2. Offer a bonus for green commuters: If employees agree to walk, bike, or take public transportation to work, offer them a small bonus for encouragement.
  3. Support alternative schedules: Allow employees to work longer hours, but fewer days, in order to let them stay at home once a week or more.
  4. Create a carpool program: Many of your employees may want to carpool, but don’t know where coworkers live or simply don’t have the courage to ask around. You can help by administering a program to get them connected.
  5. Offer telecommuting: If some or all of your employees’ work can be done at home, give them the option to telecommute.
  6. Encourage efficient vehicles: If you provide company cars to employees, consider purchasing hybrids. Additionally, encourage employees to rent hybrids or other high-efficiency cars when they take business trips.
  7. Videoconference: Whenever possible, try to videoconference instead of traveling to meetings.
  8. Offer bike parking: Provide employees with a secure space to park their bikes in order to encourage this mode of transportation.

Equipment

Manufacturing office equipment contributes greatly to reducing air quality and landfill waste. Consider these tips when you’re purchasing equipment for your business.

  1. Buy used furniture: When appointing your office, check out sites like Craigslist or FreeCycle for cheap or free used furniture. You can also check out remanufactured cubicles for both cost and environmental savings.
  2. Recycle floppy disks: Turn your old floppy disks into a pen cup or other useful storage unit.
  3. Buy used copiers and faxes: Manufacturing equipment like copiers and faxes creates lots of waste. Buy used equipment to eliminate waste, but make sure that they are still efficient.
  4. Unplug equipment when not in use: Encourage employees to shut down and unplug copiers, printers and other equipment when they leave the office every evening.
  5. Recycle your e-waste.: Cell phones, computers, printers and other equipment can often be recycled. Look for recycling programs in your area that accept these kinds of materials.
  6. Buy high-quality equipment: When buying equipment, be sure to purchase something that will last and not become obsolete quickly. That way, you’ll avoid having to buy new equipment and contributing to manufacturing waste.

Electricity

Small changes in air conditioning, lighting, and fixtures can make a huge difference in your energy consumption. Follow these guidelines to save the environment and save on your electricity bill.

  1. Change your thermostat: Set your thermostat a few degrees lower in the winter and a few degrees higher in the summer. Encourage employees to bring personal fans and sweaters to ensure that they stay comfortable.
  2. Switch to compact fluorescent bulbs: As your current light bulbs burn out, replace them with compact fluorescent bulbs. They are more efficient and last much longer than traditional bulbs.
  3. Buy from a green energy company: Many utility companies generate their electricity using wind or other alternative energy sources. Consider purchasing your electricity from one of these companies.
  4. Create an after hours and weekend thermostat setting: If you know your employees aren’t going to be in the office, create a setting that conserves more energy during these hours. Be sure to allow an override function so that it can be changed if someone decides to come in to work.
  5. Turn off lights when not in use: Ask employees to turn off lights when they leave. Invest in automatic switches in places like the bathroom and supply areas so that they turn on and off whenever someone enters or leaves the room.
  6. Take advantage of natural lighting: Install windows and skylights so that you can use natural daytime light instead of electrical lighting.
  7. Buy Energy Star fixtures: When buying fixtures, look for the Energy Star label to save at least two-thirds less energy than regular ones.
  8. Unplug vending machines: When your office goes on vacation or leaves for the weekend, unplug vending machines.

Computers

Like other appliances, computers can be major energy hogs. Adjust screen savers, energy plans and quality to streamline your company’s computer efficiency.

  1. Unplug computers when not in use: Encourage employees to shut down and unplug their computers when they leave the office for the day.
  2. Buy for quality: When shopping for computers, buy units that will last and avoid becoming obsolete too quickly. This way, you’ll avoid contributing to e-waste.
  3. Buy for energy savings: When shopping, be sure to ask if your computers, monitors and printers are energy efficient.
  4. Give your computer a nap: Ask your IT department to set your computers to go to sleep when not in use. Creating short energy breaks can cut energy use by up to 70 percent.
  5. Banish screen savers: Make sure that employees know screen savers won’t save energy. They eat up lighting and processing energy. Instead, set screen savers to "none" or "blank screen."
  6. Buy smaller monitors: You can reduce your monitor’s consumption by up to 30% by using a 2 inch smaller monitor.
  7. Consider laptops: Consider buying laptops instead of desktops, as they generally use less energy and are more efficiently made.

Miscellaneous

Every little thing adds up when it comes to office waste. Check out these tips for even more ways to reduce your consumption at work.

  1. Use simple cleaning supplies: Discuss cleaning supplies with your maintenance crew. Ask them to consider using cleaners like baking soda or vinegar instead of commercial products.
  2. Do the dishes: Provide reusable dishes, silverware and glasses for luncheons.
  3. Provide filtered water: Instead of bottled water, provide employees with filtered drinking water and reusable cups.
  4. Install low-flow faucets and toilets: Help conserve water by installing low-flow faucets and toilets in restrooms and other common areas. This will also help conserve electricity by reducing your water heater’s output.
  5. Buy local, organic coffee and tea: If you provide coffee or tea service to employees, be sure that it’s local and organic to reduce your environmental impact.
  6. Consider office sharing: If you have a number of employees that don’t use the office regularly, consider assigning offices based on a schedule. You’ll save on utilities, equipment, furniture and more.
  7. Plant a tree for gifts: In lieu of sending a holiday gift to clients, plant a tree in their name.
  8. Buy sugar and cream dispensers: Avoid paper packets and save waste by offering employees sugar and cream in large dispensers.

The Poor Entrepreneur’s Toolset: 100 Freebies for Bootstrappers

Wednesday, August 8, 2007 at 2:31pm by Site Administrator

Starting and running a business can be a pricey endeavor, but not everything has to be expensive. From printers to a wide variety of great freeware, the internet is chock full of free stuff that can help out the poor entrepreneur. Here’s a list of 100 free products and services that can help you save money as you grow your business. Productivity Software

  1. BizPlan 3— Do you need to write a business plan, but aren’t sure where to start? BizPlan comes complete with templates that give a detailed framework for how to go about writing up your next venture. If you have any questions, it comes with an extensive help guide.
  2. Launchy— Launchy makes your start menu obsolete by indexing programs and documents. How is this helpful? Because Launchy allows you to start any of these programs with a simple keystroke, meaning your hands never have to leave the keyboard.
  3. Backpack— Get yourself organized by using Backpack. Create to-do lists, notes, files, images. Also make use of the calendar with reminders that can be sent via email or to your mobile device.
  4. Central Desktop— Working together has never been easier with programs like Central Desktop. You can collaborate on projects, communicate, and share files with clients and coworkers.
  5. iOrganize— iOrganize helps keep work efficient by storing notes, ideas and bookmarks in one place.
  6. Viapoint— Viapoint helps you organize and find emails easily and quickly, by client or project.
  7. Stikkit— Like virtual Post-it notes, Stikkit’s little yellow notes can be used to keep in touch or work with clients and coworkers.
  8. Webnote— Webnote allows users to take notes using a web browser, then save and return to the notes on any computer. That means you can access them even if you’re not on your own system.
  9. Neptune— Neptune is a web based to do list tool that helps you keep track of your daily tasks. You can even get an email report every morning and upload files to store with your projects.
  10. Ta-da List— Keeping track of multiple projects can be difficult, but Ta-da List can be a big help. It allows users to create to-do lists and even share them with others so items can be checked off as you go.

Office Software

  1. OpenOffice— Open Office is one of the best options for an all-in-one free office suite and is available for almost all operating systems. The suite comes with programs that can help you with word processing, spreadsheets, presentation, databases, vector drawing, and editing mathematical formulas.
  2. GNOME Office— GNOME Office is another free complete office suite. For users of Linux, Windows and Mac OS X, GNOME provides free word processing, spreadsheets, and database utilities. Those using Ubuntu will have increased functionality with additional programs for drawing, creating diagrams, editing images and managing projects.
  3. Google Apps— Google gives Microsoft a run for its money with its suite of easy to use and free office applications. In addition to the popular email client Gmail, Google Apps also offers a personal calendar, word processor, and a spreadsheet editor. Because the programs are web-based, all information edited on them can be shared easily and in real time.
  4. NeoOffice— Developed in conjunction with OpenOffice, NeoOffice may be a better choice for some Mac users. It has the same features as OpenOffice, including a word processor, spreadsheet, presentation program, and graphics program, but they have been made for the Mac.
  5. ThinkFree Office— ThinkFree Office is an office suite designed to be similar in look and feel to Microsoft Programs, plus it can read and write all Microsoft Office file types. The suite includes a word processor, spreadsheet editor, and a presentation program.
  6. KOffice— For those who prefer Unix, KOffice is a compatible office suite complete with tons of great programs for word processing, spreadsheets, presentations, diagram drawing, vector drawing, painting, reports, charts, databases, and project management. While currently only available for Unix, Linux and Mac users, KOffice is working on developing a Windows version of its software as well.
  7. Zoho Office Suite— Similar to Google Apps, Zoho Office Suite is on online group of programs offered free to use. Zoho has a word processor, spreadsheet editor, project manager, database manager, calendar, notebook, web conferencing and a presentation creator.
  8. ajax13— A web-based office suite, ajax13 offers attractively designed programs for word processing, drawing, listening to music, editing spreadsheets, and creating presentations.
  9. gOffice— gOffice is another web-based office suite with integrated word processing, desktop publishing, presentations and spreadsheets. At 99 cents per month, it’s not exactly free, but it’s incredibly cheap and can allow you to take your work with you anywhere.
  10. ContactOffice— Contact Office lets you create a virtual workplace where you can manage your data from any computer with an internet connection. While it does not have word processing or spreadsheet capabilities, it can be a good substitute for Outlook with its email, contacts, tasks, notes, and phone call manager.

Accounting Software

  1. BillQuick Lite— BillQuick Lite is a great timecard and project management tool for small businesses. It works for almost any kind of billing system and allows you to keep track of time and expenses in an easy to use format.
  2. Wesabe— Wesabe can help you get a handle on where the money in your business is going so you can make sound financial decisions.
  3. Instacalc— A web based calculator, Instacalc is packed with features. You can create spreadsheets, charts and graphs as well as convert units easily or even send links to calculations you’ve made.
  4. FreshBooks— FreshBooks makes billing much easier so you won’t have to waste precious time sending out client invoices. FreshBooks allows users to manage and send invoices, handle work orders and generate reports with ease.
  5. Dimewise— Dimewise, a web based program, can be a great solution for business owners that need to be able to access their finances from anywhere.
  6. TurboCash— TurboCash can be great for businesses with special accounting requirements, as it gives a lot of flexibility in how it’s set up. If it doesn’t work for you in its current state, it allows the source code to be changed. This isn’t something just anyone can do, but modifying an existing code is much cheaper than building software from scratch, and can be a good option for those with special needs.
  7. Adminsoft Accounts— Adminsoft Accounts is a versatile and completely free accounting program that allows users to record customer details, print sales invoices, keep track of money owed, and record supplier details.
  8. Lazy8 Ledger— Those with experience in bookkeeping might find Lazy8 Ledger to be a great free solution. You can keep track of your finances and create a number of reports.
  9. Miser— Miser is an easy-to-use program with ledgers and sales analysis as well as security to keep your records private.
  10. One Step Accounting— Designed with small businesses in mind, One Step Accounting is a user friendly program with a variety of features including: general ledger, invoicing, bill paying, and inventory tracking.

Print and Web Design

  1. ezCheckPrinting— ezCheckPrinting allows you to design and print your own checks on computer check paper, saving you money on purchasing checks from your bank.
  2. Vista Print— For the cost of shipping, Vista Print will send you 250 free business cards of your own design.
  3. Businesscardland— If you’re the DIY type, you can use the free templates and design program on Businesscardland to print your own business cards at home.
  4. WordPress— There are dozens of sites for creating free blogs out there, but WordPress allows the most customization so you can create a blog that truly represents your business.
  5. ExpressionEngine— You can get a free version of ExpressionEngine online and use it to help create and design an impressive website packed with features.
  6. Nvu— Nvu is the free alternative to expensive web design programs like Dreamweaver and FrontPage. It can even help novice users to create an attractive business website.
  7. Microsoft Live Office Basics— Microsoft provides free web hosting and email to small businesses who might not otherwise be able to maintain a web presence. While the templates available are somewhat limited, they do make it easier and simpler to set up a site. You’ll also get to choose your own domain name, 500 MB of web storage, and support for up to 25 email accounts. Not too shabby for a free service.
  8. Avery Labels and Cards Kit— Business owners can try out a sample pack of Avery labels, cards and other products free of charge just by filling out a short online form.
  9. Website Templates— While having an original website can be an asset, sometimes you simply don’t have the time or resources to create one. That’s when web templates like these can come in handy. Choose from hundreds of designs to find something that suits your company.
  10. Xerox Free Printer Program— If you need a color printer but can’t afford one, it may be worth it to check out Xerox’s free printer program. To qualify, a business must be U.S. based, have more than one employee, print at least 2,000 pages a month and be able to pay with credit card. The catch is that you have to purchase your ink refills from a designated retailer and provide monthly reports of your usage.

Marketing and Sales

  1. Alexa— Alexa allows users to track the popularity and traffic of their website or blog. This information can be very useful to businesses who want to increase traffic through key wording or updates.
  2. Avail Suite 2.6— Designed for the small or home based business, Avail Suite helps you to manage consulting, contracting and freelance jobs as well as schedule appointments. You’ll also be able to manage your invoices and customers so you can keep track of your sales.
  3. Vstore— Vstore is a free online storefront. There are no commissions to pay for the service and you’ll get access to a subdomain, shopping cart, web hosting and design tools.
  4. HitTail— Most people have access to their web logs, but many find them hard to read and understand. HitTail will do the work for you and give you suggestions on how to change your site to make it work even better for you. The service is free for websites with 100,000 or fewer hits per month.
  5. AgoraCart— If you’re selling things directly through your website, chances are good that you’ll need some kind of shopping cart system. AgoraCart will allow you to set up a simple template-based store if you’re just starting out. For established businesses, AgoraCart also supports the integration of fairly sophisticated Web designs, but you’ll need to be a little more tech savvy to set them up.
  6. Google AdWords— Google AdWords lets you put free ads for your business on a variety of web pages. There is no up front fee— you only pay when people click on your ads so there is little risk in giving it a try.
  7. Overture Credit— Get some free advertising through Overture, Yahoo’s ad program. New users only need to sign up to get a $75 free credit.
  8. Webspector— Webspector automatically tracks changes in web page content to help you keep an eye on what your competitors are up to.
  9. Moneybookers— Moneybookers helps you safely open your business up to the international market with secure worldwide payment acceptance.
  10. Cafe Press— Cafe Press offers on-demand printing for promotional items. It can be a good way to get your company logo out there on products like t-shirts, coffee mugs, and baby bibs.

Communication

  1. Campfire— Campfire is a web based chat tool that works great for online meetings with clients and coworkers. Features include file sharing, live image previews, and Basecamp integration.
  2. FaxZero— Archaic as it may seem, some places still rely on fax machines for communication. Using FaxZero, you don’t need to purchase a fax machine for yourself. Simply use FaxZero to send a fax to anywhere in the US or Canada for free via the internet.
  3. K7— For those cases when someone wants to fax something to you, you can use K7. K7 assigns users a free phone number for faxes and voicemail which is then routed to your email.
  4. GoToMeeting— Keep in touch with clients and coworkers using GoToMeeting. It allows users to send files and collaborate in real-time. The website offers a free trial, but the full program has a monthly fee.
  5. LogMeIn— If you don’t have a laptop, taking your work on the road with you can be a bit of a problem. Luckily, LogMeIn allows you to access your computer desktop from anywhere and even share it with others for collaboration.
  6. Comodo— How can you make sure that your private emails stay away from prying eyes? Comodo can help you to seal your emails using a security certificate which verifies that the email hasn’t been altered or opened along its route. A digital ID for Comodo is available free of charge for one year of use.
  7. Who’s-In— Who’s-In allows you to easily keep track of who is in or out of the office at any given time. A 5 person version is available for free on the website or you can request a trial period for a larger number of users.
  8. Basecamp— If you’re working in a group on a business project, Basecamp can be a valuable utility to have. The online service allows users to log onto the site from anywhere to post messages and work collaboratively on the Writeboard. The free version only allows for one project, but additional projects and services are available with paid plans.
  9. SightSpeed— SightSpeed is one of the best places on the net to get free video conferencing and video emails. The free version only allows conferencing between two locations, but for a small business it might be all you need.
  10. MeetingAgenda Lite— MeetingAgenda allows users to share desktops and files easily and comes complete with a built in messenger for keeping in contact with coworkers or clients.

Instruction and Management

  1. Free White Papers— Get access to an extensive list of white papers on a wide variety of business-related topics including management, marketing, operations, sales, and technology. All articles are free to businesses professionals that qualify.
  2. Business Plan Workshop—If you’re starting up a new business or expanding your existing business, a business plan is most likely going to be required by banks and most other sources of finance. CIT Small Business Lending Corporation offers a free online tutorial which explains how you should develop your business plan, including a list of items which should be discussed in your plan and a helpful guide to financial jargon.
  3. Business Management Courses— The Small Business Administration offers over 40 free business-related courses, most of which are available to take online. The typical course only takes about 30 minutes to complete, so it can be easily squeezed into your workday.
  4. Work.comWork.com provides tons of business how-to guides for any aspects of entrepreneurship you might be unfamiliar with or need a little guidance on.
  5. Skinny Shoestring eBooks— Skinny Shoestring eBooks aren’t entirely free, but they are priced low so that nearly everystartup or small business can afford them. You can find information on marketing, building a website, or just general startup advice.
  6. My Own Business— Here you will find a free course on starting and running your own business. The organization is non-profit, so all materials and resources are available free of charge.
  7. ShareItNow— ShareItNow allows users to quickly and easily share a desktop. It works well for training sessions, product demonstrations, and web tours.
  8. Planware— An important part of planning for your business is planning for your finances. This is where Planware comes in. It provides free Excel templates for both financial projections and cash flow planning.
  9. StatusView— StatusView provides an easy a free way to keep track of where all your employees are at any time.
  10. SchedulerLite— SchedulerLite can help scheduling employees easy and pain free.

Customer Service and Relations

  1. Highrise— Highrise allows you to keep on top of your customer relations. It helps you keep track of your customer contact information, create tasks, set deadlines and interrelate all of them. You can even have a daily task summary sent to you so you can keep on top of what your customers want.
  2. Mailman— Mailman can be a great way to send out electronic newsletters. Mailman helps you take these mass mailings off of your PC, where they can bog it down, and onto a server where they can be processed more easily.
  3. Free CRM— Free CRM can help with your sales process from managing prospects to established customer relationships. Slightly more in-depth than Highrise, it allows you to more easily see if your sales are on track for your budget.
  4. Breeze— Create and send email campaigns with Breeze’s easy to use format. You can even get reports to see who has opened your email.
  5. Wufoo— Wufoo makes creating forms, surveys and invitations for your customers easy with its free online builder.
  6. Relenta CRM— Relenta helps you keep track of customer relationships through email, contacts, and activity management.
  7. Scratch and Scribble— If you find ecards too impersonal but don’t have time to write cards yourself, use Scratch and Scribble to send handwritten cards to your clients. It isn’t entirely free, as you have to pay for postage, but it can be worth it for the time it saves.
  8. LiveChat ContactCenter— LiveChat ContactCenter is online customer support software that allows users to store business contacts, chat, send files and establish conferences to help improve online customer support. A trial version can be downloaded for free.
  9. Sky Blue Support Helpdesk— Sky Blue is a fully featured program that allows users to create a customer support center. Tabs allow users to easily switch between different screens. The free version allows up to 1000 calls and 500 customers.
  10. Web+Center 5.0— Web+Center is a suite of 4 CRM and help desk programs: Customer+Center, Tech+Center, Business+Center, and Pocket+Center. It includes an asset management component, group calendar, customer surveys, FAQs and time spent invoicing as well as automatic HTML notification options for cell and email.

Free Samples

  1. Trade Pub.com— Business professionals can get dozens of trade magazines for free. With numerous titles, there’s bound to be something that will apply to your line of business.
  2. Boxes from the USPS— Business owners are often unaware that the USPS will provide packaging and mailing material to you free of charge. Simply fill out a form online and they’ll be mailed directly to your place of business.
  3. SiamJava— Starting and running a business sometimes requires long hours, and a little coffee can help make it easier to stay alert. Get a free sample of SiamJava coffee when you supply your address in the online form.
  4. Accu-line— Pens and office supplies are easy to misplace, so it never hurts to have too many. Get free high-quality pens and rulers from Accu-line.
  5. Post-its— There are a variety of free samples you can get from the Post-its website. Sortable post it cards are one of the free offers.
  6. Sun USB Drive— Portable storage is a very useful resource for the mobile business owner and you can get a free 128 MB USB drive just by ordering a Sun catalog.
  7. Coffee Mug— Get a free Optima coffee mug to go along with your free SimaJava coffe just by filling out a short online form with your address.
  8. Paper from 3M— Try out a free sample of 3M’s Print to Last paper just by filling out a short online form.
  9. Free Postage— While not entirely free, this could be a good offer if you do a lot of mailing. Order a Pitney Bowes digital postal meter for your office and you’ll get $50 worth of free postage.
  10. Business Free Recycle— Get free supplies and equipment that other businesses no longer have a need for but could still be valuable to your small business.

Networking

  1. LinkedIn— LinkedIn is one of the best online networks for businesses. Find opportunities and contacts through people you already know.
  2. askCHARITY— askCHARITY provides free online media contacts for charities worldwide.
  3. XING— XING is a business network that provides more than just a directory. It also has unique discovery capability and advanced contact management tools
  4. Ning— Ning allows you to create your own social network. Place a network on your webpage and customers can network with each other.
  5. Ryze— Ryze can help you expand your business network and make new valuable business contacts.
  6. Ecademy— Ecademy provides a free place for you to advertise your business as well as make new business contacts.
  7. Biznik— Biznik provides local business networks all over the US. Biznik-sponsored events can give you the opportunity to meet new friends and contacts in person.
  8. FastPitch— FastPitch allows you to create a free business profile and market your business to companies worldwide.
  9. Cam-100 Video Shopping Network— Upload videos of your products and services to this network and potential customers can watch and contact you directly to negotiate a sale.
  10. Orkut— Orkut is an invitation-only networking site. All invitees are vouched for by someone else on the site. This helps eliminate many of the problems with bogus accounts that have plagued other networking communities.

While there may be no such thing as a free lunch, there sure are a whole bunch of other great free things if you know where to look. Hopefully at least a few of these suggestions will help your business to save a few dollars that can better be spent elsewhere.

Top 100 Foods to Improve Your Productivity

Tuesday, August 7, 2007 at 3:21pm by Site Administrator

Besides eating to lose weight, why not eat to improve your productivity? Whether the following foods help sharpen your eyesight, keep your brain focused, or just fill you up without making you feel lazy, you’ll find they’ll help you keep your day on track.

Energy and Brain Foods

Most of us can be productive in the mornings, but if you find that you’re unable to concentrate or simply lose the energy to keep going many afternoons, these energy and brainpower boosting foods are what you need.

  1. Eggplant: As long as you don’t forget to eat the skin, it doesn’t matter how you ingest your eggplant. Eggplant skin contains the nutrient naunin, which keeps your brain sharp by increasing communication between your brain cells and messenger molecules. You won’t be able to help staying focused after eating eggplant.
  2. Raisins: If you need a boost of energy, steer clear of the carbs and grab a pack of raisins. These high-energy fruits are low in fat and calories and rich in antioxidants which help restore your body’s most important cells. Visit the Sun Maid Web site for recipes and product info.
  3. Lima beans: Now that you’re over the age of eight, we hope you can finally appreciate why your mother made you eat your lima beans. Lima beans give you tons of energy from iron and dietary fiber while preventing your body from absorbing too much sugar. Iron helps you get a good night’s sleep, as it prevents anemia, a leading cause in sleepless nights for women.
  4. Corn: Eating corn can help combat stress, so eat up. The important nutrient pantothenic acid is prevalent in corn, which helps metabolism and alleviates stress.
  5. Figs: Figs have the best kind of dietary fiber that maintains high energy levels while keeping your appetite far away. Whether you find fresh figs or a pack of the dried fruit, enjoy its natural sweetness.
  6. Tuna: While doctors continue to debate over the good and bad effects of tuna, especially when consumed by pregnant women, there’s no way to ignore the fact that tuna is the original brain food. Not only does tuna help you focus, it also fends off depression. Tuna is good for your heart and helps prevent childhood asthma. Visit the U.S. Tuna Foundation for more information on recipes and mercury levels.
  7. Spinach: Make like Popeye and inhale that spinach. Full of practically every nutrient you could think of, spinach is the easiest way to take in all your vitamins at once. In addition to fighting cancer and building strong bones and muscles, spinach reduces stress and help keeps your brain young and focused.
  8. Chicken: Chicken is a lean alternative to beef. It is filled with protein and important B vitamins that give you loads of energy and speed up your metabolism. Eat chicken several times a week and you’ll never be too tired to exercise again.
  9. Turnip greens: Turnip greens usually don’t get as much credit as they should. A not-so-popular vegetable among children, turnip greens help keep your mind sharp as you creep into old age.
  10. Green beans: Top off your salad with fresh green beans and feel your energy bounce back. Green beans are packed with iron and zinc, as well as immune-strengthening vitamins A and C.
  11. Cod: Cod, like the other fish that appear on this list, is an optimal way to get your protein without indulging in a lot of calories. It also helps your brain stay focused and ward off depression.
  12. Hummus: This all-natural food is an easy way to get some energy-boosting protein fast. Spread hummus on whole grain bread or rye bread for a tasty and quick snack.
  13. Pita bread: Pick a hearty wheat or whole grain version of this ancient food to reap its health benefits. Pita bread generally has a few more calories than regular sliced bread, but it will help you stay full and focused longer.
  14. Peanut butter: Get back in the game after just a swallow of this childhood favorite. In moderation, peanut butter makes a great snack. Indulge in a spoonful to curb your appetite and cravings for sugar. Click on peanutbutterlovers.com for a fun look at peanut butter’s history, recipes, and its own special month.
  15. Kidney beans: These large beans are vital for maintaining high energy levels for long periods of time. Add to chili for a satisfying meal.
  16. Honey: Drizzle a little honey on your morning toast, and you’ll not only get rid of your sugar cravings, you’ll also decrease your chances of catching a virus or other nasty disease.
  17. Walnuts: The omega 3 fatty acids found in walnuts help you think more clearly and keep you focused your day. Also excellent sources of protein, walnuts are a delicious alternative to potato chips.
  18. Sunflower seeds: Sunflower seeds are another popular, but uncommon, way to beat fatigue. They require a lot of work to eat, so your mouth will get a lot of exercise, forcing your body to work for its food.
  19. Lemons: A squeeze of lemon in your tea or even sucking a sliced lemon for a few seconds will wake up your mouth and give you that extra pep you need to finish the day.
  20. Sage: Banish forgetfulness with an extra dash of sage. Sage has been proven to improve memory, so you can start untying those strings from around your finger.

Eyesight

For many entrepreneurs, long hours in front of the computer screen has become an absolute necessity. These foods will help you ensure that all that time spent staring at a 17 inch screen doesn’t wear your eyes out.

  1. Strawberries: As with the other fruits on this list, strawberries help your eyesight. If you’re glaring at your computer all day or just enjoy watching a lot of TV, you’re going to need all the help you can get. Eating strawberries has also been linked to preventing cancer.
  2. Carrots One cup of chopped carrots will give you six times your recommended daily value of Vitamin A. They improve eyesight, especially in the dark. Rumor has it that carrots will also make your eyes sparkle.
  3. Smoothies: Smoothies made with real fruit are a tasty, filling way to take in a significant amount of fruits. You’ll feel like you’re indulging in a naughty snack, but you’re not. Find a Smoothie King near you!
  4. Flaxseeds: If you’ve been working or studying all day, your eyes are probably feeling a little dried out. Flaxseeds help prevent dry eye syndrome, allowing you to feel fresh even after a hard day.

General Productivity Boosters

The foods in this category don’t just boost your productivity in a single way, but rather they help you across multiple categories.

  1. Salmon: Not just a fish dish delicacy, a single serving of salmon is also full of healthy benefits. Low in calories but high in important omega 3 fatty acids and protein, salmon will keep your appetite at bay while you concentrate on your busy day. Salmon is known for keeping high-blood pressure in check – a benefit for the demanding currency trading lifestyle. Salmon also lowers your chances of sunburn, dry eyes, stroke, prostate cancer, and even minimizes feelings of hostility in young adults. Without the distractions of moody adolescents, you’ll be able to get twice as much done! Click here for delicious recipes.
  2. Shrimp: Low in calories but high in Vitamin D and protein, shrimp is an excellent choice for a snack or even a whole meal. Good for the heart and the brain, shrimp will help you age gracefully while it decreases your chances of Alzheimer’s.
  3. Water: Water is probably the most underestimated health drink on the planet. Water speeds up your metabolism, keeps you hydrated, helps skin stay acne-free, and kills appetite. You’ll also be flushing out your digestive system and colon. Visit betterhealth.com for even more benefits!
  4. Turkey: This lean meat isn’t just for Thanksgiving. Turkey is a huge source of protein and energy. It helps your body fight cancer. Just don’t eat a turkey sandwich for lunch if you’ve got a busy afternoon ahead of you because turkey is full of tryptophan that make you sleepy.
  5. Mustard Greens: Mustard greens prevent the chances of your body developing asthma and helps relax your muscles if you already have it, allowing you to breathe more easily and regularly.
  6. Dill: Dill is a popular seasoning not just for its zippy flavor but also for its ability to control bacteria growth. It contains calcium, iron, and magnesium, helping your bones stay strong while you rush around.
  7. Plums: Not only do plums have a lot of iron, they improve your body’s chances of absorbing enough iron.
  8. Sweet potatoes: Sweet potatoes, also known as yams, are surprisingly good for you. Despite their sweet taste, they have been recently labeled as the "antidiabetic food." As it turns out, sweet potatoes maintain a balance of your blood sugar levels. They also contain an impressive number of antioxidants and proteins.
  9. Papaya: The benefits to eating papaya are endless. The colorful fruit helps protect you against the potential damages of secondhand smoke, rheumatoid arthritis, and even the common cold.
  10. Pear: If you’re allergic to many of the fruits on this list, try a pear. Pears are hypo-allergenic, so they provide you with all the healthy benefits of any other fruit, without the nasty side effects.
  11. Cauliflower: Like most other vegetables included on this list, cauliflower has an immense amount of Vitamin C and impressive detoxifying capabilities. Just don’t pour on the ranch dressing, or you’ll also be getting a lot of fat and calories. Visit cauliflowers.com for new twists on the vegetable.

Avoiding Colds and Other Common Illnesses

Being productive is as much about minimizing downtime as it is about having more energy. These foods will help boost your immune system and ensure that your out of commission for fewer days each year.

  1. Orange juice: Unless you like getting colds, you’d better drink your OJ everyday. As a prime source of vitamin C, orange juice will keep you energized and healthy…not to mention out of bed and sneeze-free.
  2. Bell peppers: Want to maintain your busy lifestyle? Better include bell peppers in your daily diet. It doesn’t matter what color, red, green, or yellow, each variety of bell peppers is full of Vitamin A and C, as well as other nutrients which will keep away joint pain and nasty colds.
  3. Green tea: You may not believe it, but green tea is as healthy as it is trendy. Full of beneficial antioxidants, green tea also strengthens your immune system, saving you a trip to the doctor. Visit the official green tea Web site to find out which flavor makes your taste buds tingle.
  4. Pumpkin seeds Pumpkin seeds are a tasty, salty snack that reduce symptoms of arthritis and keep you on the move. They strengthen your immune system, so instead of chowing down on sticky candy this Halloween save those pumpkin seeds and snack away.
  5. Summer squash: Summer squash, or zucchini, is a tasty vegetable that fights diseases big and small. Packed with Vitamin C, folates, and fiber, squash fights against colds and arthritis, metabolic disorders, and even cancer.
  6. Ground cinnamon: Next time you feel a cough or the chills coming on drink some tea spiked with ground cinnamon. The spice’s warming powers will ease your discomfort and may help ward off the cold altogether.
  7. Garlic: As long as you pack some mints, it’s more than okay to indulge in a little garlic. Garlic is a natural anti-inflammatory, meaning that it is an excellent way to help your body fight infections from the common cold to HIV.
  8. Apricots: Eating apricots regularly will reduce your chances of getting sick. This fruit is also good for your heart and keeps your eyes sharp.
  9. Cayenne pepper: Sprinkle a little cayenne pepper on your meal, and clear up a stuffy nose, wake up a lazy mind, or speed up your metabolism. Cayenne pepper also acts as a natural pain reliever, so simple aches and pains won’t be able to stand in your way.
  10. Cranberries: If you’ve got a urinary tract infection, you won’t be able to concentrate on anything. Drink some cranberry juice (cranberry juice concentrate won’t do the trick) and down a handful or two of the fresh fruit itself. You won’t have to wait too long before the natural healing effects take over.
  11. Cloves: Add cloves to homemade soup or when baking a spice cake, and you’ll not only protect yourself from dangerous environmental toxins, you’ll also ease any annoying joint pain.
  12. Clementines: Clementines are a delicious, portable fruit, so feel free to take 2 or even 3 along with you as you head out the door. Clementines may be small, but they’re loaded with potassium, antioxidants, and of course Vitamin C. Dip in chocolate for an extra special treat.

Improving Digestion and Sleep

All the energy foods in the world won’t do you any good if you aren’t getting a decent night’s sleep or are constantly having stomach pains. The foods in this category will help to settle your stomach and ensure that you will be rested for the next day.

  1. Black beans: Black beans give your body the right kinds of dietary fiber which help clear out your digestive system and keep your tummy from growling between meals. Great as a topper on salads or mixed with salsa for a delicious dip, black beans are also an excellent source of iron, which gives you more energy and focus throughout the day.
  2. Bran cereal: Bran is a huge source of dietary fiber, which keeps you full and cleans out your digestive system. Great for battling constipation, bran will keep your mind on your day and not on having to use the restroom.
  3. Avocado: Avocados are full of dietary fiber and potassium, which will keep you from cramping up due to bloating. Add a little avocado to your salad or appetizer menu and sleep like a baby.
  4. Apples: You already know that an apple a day keeps the doctor away, but do you know why? This sweet snack has a lot of fiber which cleans out your digestive tract while preventing stroke and lowering cholesterol levels.
  5. Brown rice: Your body digests brown rice much more easily than white rice, all the while soaking up the grain’s valuable nutrients. Brown rice lowers cholesterol and is packed with energy-giving fiber and manganese.
  6. Onions: Adding onions to any dish will add taste while lowering your blood sugar. Onions are also good for the overall health of your stomach, settling that queasy tummy during a hangover.
  7. Grapefruit: Loaded with Vitamin C, grapefruit is one of the best ways to fight a cold so you’re alert during the day and decongested enough to sleep at night. It even gives protection against painful kidney stones.
  8. Pound cake: Munch on pound cake or another sensible dessert to help you drift off to dreamland. Studies show that carbohydrates and comfort food ease your body into a deep sleep. Just be careful not to overindulge or you’ll start packing on the pounds fast.
  9. Pinto beans: Beans, beans, magical fruit. While most beans boost the ability to clear out your digestive tract in no time flat, pinto beans are probably the best at it. Also a great source of fiber, pinto beans are just another food that keeps your mind on your work, not your appetite.
  10. Celery: Celery is a great source for Vitamin C and is a popular diuretic. Say goodbye to bloating and cramps when you pile on the celery.
  11. Cucumbers: Kill two birds with one stone when you eat your cucumbers. Loaded with fiber, cucumbers are full of water, which your body needs to help you digest the high-energy giving fiber.
  12. Peppermint: If you’ve got a stomach ache or just need to perk up a little bit, try some peppermint. Peppermint is a known muscle relaxant which eases your tummy. It helps you breathe easier, clearing up nasal passages and easing sinus pressure. Get rid of that headache and get back your concentration. Visit botanical.com for a profile on the herb.
  13. Ginger: Beat nausea and gas with ginger tea or ginger snap cookies. A powerful fighter against motion sickness, morning sickness, and bad gas, ginger eases your tummy muscles and combats gas naturally.
  14. Pineapple: A serving of fresh pineapple eases your digestive tract and will keep cramps at bay, all while satisfying your desire to nibble on something sweet.
  15. Cantaloupe: Cantaloupe is one of the best sources of Vitamin A, but it is also rich in potassium. A good choice for anyone who does a lot of walking or running. Cantaloupe will keep your muscles elastic and cramp-free.
  16. Soybeans: If you’ve been having trouble sleeping, eat soybeans with your dinner. High levels of tryptophan will increase your chances of falling and staying awake all night long.
  17. Asparagus: Cooked in a casserole or laid gracefully along a plate of lamb, asparagus is full of healthy benefits. A natural diuretic, asparagus combats bloating and PMS, while also protecting a new fetus as it develops inside the uterus.

Low Fat Filling Foods

Bootstrappers often lead a sedentary lifestyle, meaning that if you want to remain fit and productive you’ll need to keep your fat consumption down. The foods in this category are designed to fill you up without expanding your waistline.

  1. Salsa: Salsa makes a delicious add-on to breakfast eggs or virtually any appetizer, but it also helps control weight gain. An appetite suppressant, salsa helps the body burn calories throughout the day, keeping your mind from obsessing about calorie counting and snacking.
  2. Egg whites: All the protein of regular eggs without the calories and fat that raise your cholesterol. A favorite among dieters and athletes, egg whites and a sensible exercise routine will keep you looking trim and strong.
  3. Venison: Whether you shoot it yourself or buy it from the store, venison is a healthy way to enjoy your red meat. Extremely high in protein, venison is surprisingly low in saturated fat. Instead of feeling groggy and greasy after your meal, you’ll feel energized and healthy.
  4. Yogurt: Low-fat yogurt is an easy alternative to drinking a glass of milk each day. Yet another great source of calcium, yogurt is also rich in nutrients like B12, good-for-you bacteria and iodine, which strengthen your immune system and even adds years to your life.
  5. Cheese: Cheese isn’t just a valuable source of calcium; it also keeps your muscles elastic, which decreases your chance of experiencing injury or soreness. Be sensible, of course, layering a low-fat variety on your sandwich or eating a handful of cheese cubes is much more healthy than indulging in a greasy slice of pizza.
  6. Milk: Lowfat and skim milk are full of calcium but low in unnecessary fat and calories. Drinking a glass will keep your stomach full and away from the vending machines. Recent studies also suggest that milk helps your body’s ability to burn fat and lose weight. Drink up! Click on gotmilk.com to see the infamous ads.
  7. Almonds: Almonds are any weight watcher’s dream snack. Filled with good fats that your body can work off quickly, almonds stay with you so you’re not constantly craving more food. Keep a can on your desk and keep your stomach quiet while you work.
  8. Potatoes: Stay away from the sour cream and bacon bits, and you’ll enjoy your potato’s health benefits as much as the filling vegetable itself. Dieters often shun the potato because of its starches and carbohydrates, but eating a potato is a surprisingly low-calorie food, which also gives your body the cancer-fighting nutrients it needs.
  9. Tofu: A healthier alternative to meat, tofu still manages to deliver the needed protein, iron and other nutrients to your body. Tofu is a must-include food for any woman going through menopause, as it maintains a balance of fluctuating estrogen levels and rids your body of symptoms like hot flashes. Talk about improved productivity. Read about tofu here to find out where it comes from and how it’s made.
  10. Watermelon: Slicing up a watermelon is another great way to have dessert without having to count calories. Despite its simple construction, watermelon is a powerful cancer fighter and energy booster.
  11. Snow peas: This healthy vegetable doubles as a crunchy snack that might just help you stay awake. The low-calorie food means you can snap away on as many as you’d like, exercising your mouth and avoid falling asleep at your desk.
  12. Snapper: Another take on the fish plate is snapper. Snapper is great for your heart but low in calories, so don’t feel bad about going back for seconds!
  13. Diet soda: If you have to drink soda, better make it diet. You’ll eliminate empty calories and teeth-destroying sugar, but still benefit from the caffeine.
  14. Vanilla soy milk: Flavored soy milk makes drinking your milk as tasty as downing a vanilla shake. Instead of all that sugar and fat, you’ll enjoy the lasting benefits of protein.
  15. Whole wheat pasta: If you’re dying for Italian food, don’t deny yourself a hearty bowl of good pasta. Substitute white flour pasta for the whole wheat variety. Your body will work off the whole wheat faster, and after dinner you won’t be lying around complaining that you’re too stuffed to do anything.
  16. Low fat frozen yogurt: A cool burst of this refreshing dessert will wake up your mouth and your mind in no time. Indulging in a sweet treat also helps break up your day.

Controlling Blood Pressure and Becoming Heart Healthy

Entrepreneurs are generally an anxious bunch. All that worrying and hustling can be terrible for your heart, so its important to control your blood pressure

  1. Bananas: Bananas are rich in Vitamin B and C, but they’re most appreciated for their extremely high levels of potassium, which maintain blood pressure and reduce the probability of stroke. Bananas also contain a vital but often overlooked nutrient called fructooligosaccharide, which increases your body’s ability to absorb calcium and build strong bones.
  2. Dark chocolate: Indulging in a piece of rich dark chocolate once a day will satisfy your craving for sweets while lowering blood pressure and giving you a load of antioxidants. It’s also been suggested to act as an aphrodisiac, so what are you waiting for?
  3. Scallops: Scallops are packed with protein, magnesium and vitamin B12, reducing your risk of blood clots and heart problems.
  4. Romaine lettuce: When you’re washing lettuce for your salad, pay extra attention to the green, leafy kind. Romaine lettuce is packed with Vitamins K, A, and C, and is also good for your heart.
  5. Olives: Olives are another small but significant anti-inflammatory, as they reduce symptoms of asthma, arthritis, and even menopause. Whether you add them to your pizza or salad, don’t forget the olives!
  6. Kiwi: Another surprising food that alleviates asthma symptoms kiwi. It reduces the uncomfortable wheezing associated with the respiratory disease. Also an excellent source for antioxidants, refreshing kiwi will also help your body stabilize blood sugar.
  7. Grapes: Another heart-healthy fruit, grapes can help balance out fattier foods and prevent the formation of dangerous blood clots.
  8. Collard greens: Guilty only by association, collard greens are an incredible source of nutrients, not a greasy home-cooked artery clogger. Rich in Vitamins A, C, and K, collard greens are a menacing weapon against breast cancer.

Cancer and Long-Term Illness Prevention

While we commonly think of productivity in the short-term, when considering your health and that of your company, it is important to recognize that long-term illness can pose a very serious risk

  1. Blueberries: Grab a handful to curb your craving for sweets or sprinkle on top of a dessert to satisfy your Vitamin C and E intake. Blueberries also help your eyes quickly adjust to the dark and stay alert during nighttime hours. Blueberries help the brain stay young and avoid the progression of Alzheimer’s disease and other age-related brain degenerations. Prime blueberry season lasts May-October.
  2. Kale: The cancer-fighting advantages of this leafy green vegetable are enormous. Vitamins K, A, and C are abundant in just one serving, as are other key elements such as dietary fiber, iron, calcium, and omega 3 fatty acids. Kale protects eyes against damaging UV rays and lowers chances for arthritis. Good news whether you’re an athlete or your job has you locked to the keyboard all day!
  3. Cabbage: While cabbage contains huge amounts of Vitamin K and other important minerals, its health benefits are especially significant for women. Increasing the rate at which estrogen is broken down, cabbage is good for a cancer-preventing diet. Find any type of cabbage recipe on basic-recipes.com.
  4. Tomatoes: Tomatoes offer an impressive amount of vitamins as well as being a lead contender in the fight against prostate cancer. Slice up for a salad or roast along with tasty summer vegetables for a spicy side dish.
  5. Leeks: Adding leeks to your salad or soup will give your vitamin A and C levels a needed boost, as well as helps your body fight colon and prostate cancer. A vegetable with virtually no calories, leeks are a great snacking choice if you’re trying to quit smoking. Keep your mouth occupied and the weight off while you nibble on this semi-sweet treat. Find recipes here.
  6. Broccoli: Just one serving of broccoli will give you a double dose of your daily Vitamin C. Broccoli also helps prevent ulcers and prostate and bladder cancers. So add it as a side to your dinner instead of fries or greasy chips.
  7. Rye bread: Don’t reach for that sticky white bread any longer. Rye contains as much if not more cancer-fighting nutrients than vegetables and will help you feeling full longer.
  8. Raspberries: For a fruit so small, raspberries are an enormous source of antioxidants. Raspberries are one of the only fruits that contain ellagitannins, making them a must on our list and an excellent combatant against cancer. Visit thegardenhelper.com for advice on growing your own.
  9. Basil: Sprinkling just a couple of teaspoons on in your tomato sauce can help protect your family’s genes. Basil strengthens your DNA cell structures and protects against unwanted bacteria which could make you sick.
  10. Crimini mushrooms These darker mushrooms are rich in valuable antioxidants and iron, combating colon cancer and other diseases while increasing your chances of getting a good night’s sleep.
  11. Brussels sprouts: Another key ingredient to avoiding getting sick, Brussels sprouts are full of Vitamins K and C. They also work to clean out your system and fight many types of cancer.
  12. Seaweed: Don’t cringe, it’s good for you. And for your potential baby. Seaweed prevents many birth defects, as well as lessening menopause symptoms. Click for recipes.

Now that we’ve provided you with 100 healthy foods, you won’t have any more excuses as to why you’re feeling a tickle in your throat or why you’re groggy and lethargic because of a too-full tummy. Try to incorporate foods from this list into your daily meals, and you’ll experience better and longer productivity all day everyday.

Performance-based Pay Packages?

Monday, August 6, 2007 at 7:00pm by Site Administrator

Bwah ha ha ha ha ha ha ha. Disgraced ex-Home Depot CEO Robert Nardelli has been hired by Chrysler to bring it back to financial health. Oh ha ha ha. Is it April 1st already? Didn’t Nardelli basically damage Home Depot and take a huge severance package for his “good” work?

Here’s a tip, Chrysler: ditch Nardelli now. If you don’t, you can’t be too serious about gaining financial health. It’ll only cost you several million for his non-performance, but you can hire someone more capable that’d be willing to take a $1 salary, plus performance bonuses. And that’s real performance, not what Nardelli imagines in his head. Or are you that desperate to have someone that screwed Home Depot?

A note to new entrepreneurs… Being successful doesn’t mean you have to hoard your profits. Don’t be afraid to institute pay-for-performance compensation for your top employees. Here are a few simple reasons for doing so:

  1. Opportunity for select employees to increase pay based on results. Not everyone feels comfortable with this, but those who do are very likely to over-perform.
  2. You’re not stuck with a huge payroll and no profits to show for it.
  3. If you go public, you already show accountability. VCs might also favor such organizations.

Need more reasons than that? Maybe fewer companies would go under if this sort of pay scheme were more widely implemented. You just have to be sure to quantize the necessary performance. One boss of mine promise me a raise if I could save the company a million dollars. I created a CMS (Content Management System) for 20 worldwide divisions to be able to create and manage their own web pages. I also stayed late past work hours to teach each region’s PR or web person how to use the CMS. I then showed my boss how this saved a million. Did I get a raise? Of course not, because this boss had a do-nothing motto.

What do you think? Should more entrepreneurs offer performance-based payment packages? Agree? Disagree?

16 Ways A Web Entrepreneur Can Improve His or Her Sex Life

Monday, August 6, 2007 at 2:41pm by Site Administrator

Now that you’ve successfully started your own business, it’s time to let the money roll in and watch the hotties line up at your door. Easy, right? Unfortunately, as time-consuming as it is to maintain your Web-based business, landing your dream date is just a teensy bit harder. It might sound ridiculous, but unlocking the keys to a man or woman’s heart requires effort, skill, and most importantly, lots of face time.

The dating world isn’t too much different from the business world, but there are a few variances that you should remain aware of. We’ve put together a list of basic but often overlooked ways for you to spice up your dating life and rechannel that ambitious energy into the bedroom.

  1. Step away from the computer. We know, we know. Without your computer, you’d have no business, no money, and no life, right? Wrong! You would still have a life, because the world manages to go on without the aid of a computer. Even though online dating sites can connect you to other lonely hearts, our goal is to help you improve your sex life, which can’t be done unless you get out of the house and meet some actual people.

    You don’t have to pull the plug on your trusty techno friend, but try to gradually give yourself some space away from the virtual world. Set aside a certain amount of time each day that you would normally spend on the computer, and instead, read a book, go for a walk, or catch up with an old friend. Spending time away from the computer will help you ease into a new social circle of friends and potential mates. Check out the New York Times Bestsellers List for book ideas or find a Starbucks location near you.

  2. Brush up on your pop culture and current events. Before you venture out into the unfiltered world of Real Human Beings, you might want to review what’s going on in the world. What are people talking about on the news? Familiarizing yourself with the latest in Hollywood gossip or White House policy will give you something to talk about when you find yourself stumped for conversation. Check out the E! Web site or CNN.com for a quick way to get your info.

    Your life might center around your work — after all, you’re the one who started it from nothing — but no one else shares the same investment. Others will quickly tire of you if the only thing you have to offer to the conversation are stories about what’s been updated on your Web site or the newest Pay Pal features you’ve been dying to try.

  3. Do something social. Having great charisma in the chatroom doesn’t count. It’s not your fault that being a web entrepreneur has made you antisocial while it made you millions, but you can do something about it now. After you’ve gotten away from the computer and amassed some good conversation starters, it’s time to open the door and step outside.

    Sign up for a class on something you’re interested in, go to a bar, or read a magazine at a coffee shop. You don’t have to venture too far out of your comfort zone. The class could help benefit your business, and the magazine you read might include articles about internet marketing. Visit the Community Colleges Listings Web page to find a class you’re interested in. As long as you’re surrounded by other people, you’re that much closer to snagging a hot date.

  4. Don’t ignore personal hygiene. What’s the best part about working from home? You can dress however you want! Comfy pajama pants and your college t-shirt may have been a cute pairing as you skipped down the hall when you were eighteen – but most of us are grown-ups now. The opposite sex generally responds to clean, tailored attire – not to mention fresh breath, deodorant, and brushed hair.

    Dress in something that makes you feel comfortable and confident, like a pressed shirt that brings out your eyes or a sexy little dress that shows off your legs but doesn’t embarrass your friends. See how the latest fashions will look on you at Style.comA light spritz of cologne or perfume will make the hottie in question lean in closer, but too much will turn them off completely. Find your scent at Sephora.com.

  5. Avoid stories that begin with "One time when I was on the internet…" Again, it’s not your fault that your job requires you to be well-versed in Web gossip and computer lingo; however, try to avoid excessively referencing the internet. It will make you sound like a loser with no sex life, and even though it might be true, it’s not a good way to impress a date.

    If you’re afraid you might unknowingly sneak some Web speak into the conversation, turn the talkfest back to your potential hookup. Let him or her direct the conversation, and listen to what they have to say. Having someone genuinely interested in what you’re saying is a huge turn on, so be sure to take notes!

  6. Keep it light. While you may be in the middle of a personal or business crisis, don’t turn your darling into your therapist. There’s a time and a place for weepy confessions, and it does not happen anywhere near date one (or two or three).

    Keep things light and cheerful, and try to focus on the present. Chat about the band that’s playing, what you love about the city, where you’d like to go on vacation, anything that puts you in a good mood but maintains a safe distance. Try visiting the Citysearch Web site to find out what’s going on in your town. If you’ve got a twinkle in your eye, chances are your date will follow your lead.

  7. Be original. It’s the same idea you have for your business plan. Think of it as selling yourself, instead of your product. Don’t worry, it’s not as sleazy as it sounds. Cheesy advertising gimmicks don’t work on your customers, so why use lame pick up lines on the hottie down the bar? Visit the Cosmopolitan magazine Web site for tips. They work for guys as well as girls.

    Instead of dropping a tired-out line, use the situation to make your move. Did a tipsy cougar try to come on to the guy you’ve been eyeing? Throw him an amused glance to share a secret joke. Did the bartender shortchange the perky blonde next to you? Stick up for her or offer to pay for her next drink. Getting creative is the best way to get noticed.

  8. Learn how to be the life of the party No, this tip doesn’t encourage you to dance on tables or take your clothes off. It does, however, challenge you to become the center of attention so that others will notice you.

    Be relaxed, tell a few good stories, and talk just softly enough that everyone has to lean in a little to catch every word. Click on this link to walk you through the dos and don’ts of telling a good story. Smile and have a good time, but keep it natural. No one wants to date a fake.

  9. Be confident. Starting your own business is unbelievably sexy…just don’t get into all the geeky details. If your beloved asks what you do for a living, casually mention that you run your own internet company.

    Believe it or not, the dotcom delirium is still romanticized in the non-computer savvy world. They will see dollar signs and might snuggle in a little closer. You might need to brush up on your internet history, though, so visit the Internet Society Web site for a quick review. If you play it cool, you’ll sound sweet and humble. No need to elaborate on all the html coding or your favorite computer model just yet.

  10. Touch and be touched. The best part about the early stages of dating are that even the slightest touch can ignite he most explosive fireworks. Once you make sure your palms aren’t sweaty, lightly cradle her elbow when you make a point in your story. If you have to excuse yourself to the restroom, place your fingers on the small of her back while you brush past her. Don’t be surprised if she can’t wait to get her paws on you.
     
  11. A little goes a long way. Who says an internet maven like you can’t be an old-fashioned gentleman? Simple gestures like holding the door open for your lady or scratching your man’s back seem insignificant to you, but giving extra attention to your date will make them feel special. Spoil them with a surprise like a bubble bath or a plate of their favorite dessert. Shop for candles and bubble bath to set the mood at Bath and Body Works or visit easydessertrecipes.com to get an idea for something sweet! It won’t be long before they’re willing to reciprocate the generous behavior.
     
  12. Listen and compromise. If you’ve started your own business, you’re probably used to things going your way. In the dating world, it’s not all about you. Communication is vital, but you’ll score more points listening to the object of your affection than you will talking their ear off. Click here for articles on appropriate dating communication.
     
  13. Know when to move on. You’ve tapped into your arsenal of best jokes and sexiest strokes but that gorgeous specimen is still not reciprocating, recognize the signs and move on. Don’t chalk it up at it as a loss yet. There’s another, hotter babe just around the corner who’s worthy of you and your fierce internet domination.
     
  14. Take it slow. Your love life will move more slowly than the business and internet worlds, so be patient. There’s no need to divulge all your scandalous secrets in the beginning of the relationship. A little mystery amounts to a huge aphrodisiac, so don’t rush anything. Allow your partner to feel comfortable, and just give him or her a taste of what’s next. A barely-there kiss on the corner of the lips let’s them know you’re interested but not clingy. They’ll be begging for more before you know it.
     
  15. Improve your stamina and get some exercise. Now that you’ve sealed the deal, you’d better be able to satisfy all your lover’s expectations. If the only exercise you’ve been getting lately has been that trip to the fridge from your computer, you’re in for some major trouble. Avoid this embarrassing shortcoming by engaging in a routine workout.

    You don’t have to sweat out an entire marathon, but take your dog for a walk around the block once a day or work out to a Pilates DVD a few times a week. Try out a membership to Gold’s Gym .Trust me, you’ll be VERY glad you’re in shape enough to last…a lifetime.

  16. Take the office out of the bedroom. Okay, we get it already. You’re lucky enough to work from home. But if you’re selling baby clothes out of your bedroom, you might want to stash the merchandise into the closet before bringing in a potential hookup. Nothing ruins the mood like a glimpse into the (unwanted) future. Oh, and make sure you use protection!

If you’re confident and ambitious enough to start your business, you’re bold enough to land yourself a hot date. Ease yourself back into the social world, get up the nerve to make a few original moves, and be prepared to make some room in your bed for the sexiest night of your life.

Comments (2) | Filed under: Skills

Carnival of Bootstrapping Entrepreneurs #4

Sunday, August 5, 2007 at 11:30pm by Site Administrator

Welcome to the fourth Carnival of Bootstrapping Entrepreneurs (CoBE #4). Critieria for inclusion: relevant to bootstrapping, entrepreneuring, startup/ small businesses. Criteria for exclusion:

  1. Non-articles (list of internal links instead of an article).
  2. Articles that exist purely to promote an affiliate link.
  3. Articles not relevant to bootstrapping or entrepreneuring. (Home jobs/ freelancing are not relevant. Enter those in either the Carnival of Internet Pros or the Carnival of Work Productivity. Though please read the requirements for those two carnivals before submitting an article.)
  4. Articles not formatted for easy reading (i.e., overly long paragraphs.)
  5. Multiple entries for the same edition – it depends on how relevant the articles are, but in most cases, all entries will be deleted without being viewed.
  6. Persistently not supporting the carnival by not linking back won’t mean exclusion, but priority will be given to new entrants or those who have been supportive. There are few of you included in this edition that have been in an earlier edition but have not bothered to link back.

To be fair to everyone, entries are selected approximately in order of submission. Please support this carnival by linking back to this post. Because of the volume of entries, only the first few have been summarized.

Pick of the Week

The following entry both wowed me and peeved me. You’ll see why in a second.

  1. Top 30 Entrepreneurs: My Input on Each by Ian Fernando of Ian Fernando.

    My advice: don’t call your article “Top 30 Entrepreneurs” when you bluntly say you in your very first sentence that you are only going to cover five. You lose credibility because your title is so misleading. However, you made up for it with a good overview of the five entrepreneurs that you did profile. Good job on the formatting – great use of images. (Goes nicely with your clean blog template.) Nice presentation of the challenge each entrepreneur faced. I’ve seen your other good writing in other carnivals. Just be more honest with your titles.

Summarized Entries

When time permits, I’ll pick 5-10 entries and summarize them.

  1. Effective Direct Marketing by Chris Tackett of Direct Marketing News. Direct marketing is essential to the success of some businesses. If that includes you, Chris offers some tips on being effective.

  2. Blog Comments Can Build Your Personal Brand by Krishna De of Today’s Women In Business. Some businesses can benefit from a blog. Others can benefit merely from commenting from a blog. Krishna shows you how commenting elsewhere can help with branding, especially if your business is very personal.
  3. FUD – Why Sell Is Still a Four Letter Word by Charles H. Green of Trust Matters. Selling strikes terror in the hearts of some otherwise capable entrepreneurs. Charles explains why, and presents an important paradox about selling.
  4. Kids and Entrepreneurship by Stacey Derbinshire of Starting a Small Home Business. You are never too young to be an entrepreneur. Stacey provides a couple of tips for adults who are in a position to positively influence a budding young entrepreneur.
  5. 7 Phrases Successful People Would Never Say by Edith Yeung of EdithYeung.com. Success comes from more than just hard-work. Edith points seven things you don’t want to say if you intend to succeed.
  6. How To Come Up With Good Business Ideas by Warren Wong of INTJ Personal Development. Some businesses need a constant source of fresh ideas. Warren offers four tips for producing good ideas.
  7. Oh, David Allen, Could it be I’m Falling in Looove Witcha Baaabaay? by Laura Young of
    Dragon Slayer’s Guide to Life. I gotta say I love this Spinners song, and the title of this article makes me snicker. David Allen is THE GTD (Get Things Done) guru. Laura explains why she likes him and the whole GTD perspective.

  8. The Key to Online Business: Do Something Small by Praveen of My Simple Trading System. Your business idea does not have to be large and complex. Praveen talks about microbusinesses, which cost little to nothing to start and get going.
  9. How to Earn 12.28% in a 4.5% World by Dax Desai of Dax Desai. Have some business funds that are currently unused? Dax shows you how to make them work for you, earning above average interest.

Remaining Entries

These are the remaining entries for this edition.

  1. Create Your Treasure Map To Riches by Millionaire Mommy of Millionaire Mommy Next Door.

  2. Flip This Product- A Simple Way to Launch a Great Business by CapForge of CapForge.
  3. When it Comes to the Next Best Thing, Forget About it by Ruth Mitchell of Buy Outside the Box.
  4. 5 Distractions To The Nesting Entrepreneur by Ant of The Beef Jerky Blog.
  5. Strategic Application of Offshoring in a CPA Practice by Mike Harmon of Basic Accounting.
  6. The Price Of Ignoring What’s Wrong by Sue Massey of Business Management Life.
  7. Some Business Opportunities in Nepal by Bhupendra Khanal of Business Analytics.
  8. Get More Done with Activity Logs by Dr. Robert Karlsberg of The Road to CEO.
  9. Promotion Goals For A Low Maintenance Niche Blog by Derek Beauchemin of DerekBeau.com.
  10. Expand Your Skills by Peter of Succeed With This.

That ends this second edition of the Carnival of Bootstrapping Entrepreneurs. Any articles submitted after July 27th that meet the criteria but not appearing here will appear in the next edition.

There are still many of you submitting multiple articles in a given week so that I may now have a half dozen of your articles in the backlog. If that’s you, then please ease off on submitting more until you see a couple more of your articles appear. Or make sure that you are linking back to earlier editions of CoBE in which you appeared. [It takes a lot of time to go through articles and summarize in an interesting way. So if you have not linked back in support, you're being bumped for more of the newer bloggers entering the carnival.]

One suggestion I’ll leave you with. If you submit an article that’s all about you, think twice. Share “how” not “what”. Who cares how much success you have had unless you share how you got there? Please tell us your entrepreneurial success story and how you got there. That’s what people want to read.

Please use the submission form for future editions. Limit one entry per week per person.

The Business Blogging Toolset: 100 Resources for Entrepreneur-Writers

Thursday, August 2, 2007 at 2:04pm by Site Administrator

In the past few years, blogs have become a big part of business on the internet. Everything from anthropomorphized cats to celebrity gossip can bring millions of visitors and a steady stream of revenue. It can be hard to figure of where to start with your own money-making blog, but we’ve tried to make it a little easier by condensing the essential resources you’ll need to start blogging profitably into this list. Check out these sources to get started right.

Blogging Platforms

The internet is chock full of sites that can provide a platform for your blog. There are advantages and disadvantages to all of them, so research carefully before deciding which will work best for you.

  1. WordPress— WordPress can either be a hosted platform or one you use on your own server. Basic access to WordPress is free of charge and there are a wide variety of templates available for customization. It also comes with some attractive features like spam blocking and integrated stats as well as numerous plugins you can add yourself.
  2. Blogger— Blogger is a free, hosted blogging platform. While Blogger might lack some of the usability that other platforms have, it makes up for it with features like the Audioblogger service which allows you to create audio recordings for your blog using your phone. Blogger is also useful in that you can upload it to your own website, meaning visitors to your site won’t even know you’re using it as a platform.
  3. Movable Type— Movable Type is a powerful blogging tool, but perhaps not the easiest to set up and use. It does, however, offer pretty much every feature you could want and will get you some blogging net cred. It is, however, not exactly cheap. Professional users can expect to pay somewhere in the neighborhood of $199.
  4. TypePad— TypePad is a more user-friendly version of Movable Type, with many of the same bells and whistles but in a much easier to use format. The functionality of your TypePad blog will likely depend on how much you’re willing to invest. Lower level packages aren’t very customizable, but the Pro level provides features like group blogging and additional customization features.
  5. Vox— Vox is a bit of a mix between a social networking site and a weblogging service. Customizability takes a backseat to ease of posting new content. Depending on the goal of your blog, this might work well for you.
  6. Text Pattern— Text Pattern is another self-hosted blogging system. It comes with valuable tools like Textile and Sections which allow users that may not be familiar with html to easily format web content. Textpattern also is great at blocking spam, but it lacks features commonly found on other blogging sites.
  7. Boast Machine— A free blog publishing tool, BoastMachine is mostly template driven, but allows for HTML customization. It has some notable security features like IP blocking and banning and has automatic backup and restore systems.
  8. Blog.com— For beginners, Blog.com might be a good place to start. With easy-to-use templates and setup, you can begin blogging within a few minutes. This ease doesn’t come without a price, however, as you are limited in the amount of storage and advanced features.
  9. B2evolution— B2evolution is one of the most fully-featured blog tools out there to use. Because of this, it can be a bit overwhelming for the new user. While there are a number of themes available, real customization can be difficult without some technical know-how. Still, the numerous features can make up for some initial difficulties with the learning curve.
  10. ExpressionEngine— ExpressionEngine is a blogging tool with some attractive extras. Aside from the usual blogging tools, it provides integrated image galleries and mailing lists. It comes with a variety of templates, but customizing them may prove to have a bit of a learning curve. You can host the blog on your own server or ExpressionEngine will host if for you, but either way, expect to pay about $199 for commercial use of the service.

Design and Content

You aren’t likely to get too much return traffic to your blog if it is hard to read or unattractive. Your blog’s popularity depends on the quality of your design as well as content. These ten articles should help you get on the right track to creating an attractive and interesting blog.

  1. 980 Word Press Templates— Emily Robbins serves up a huge archive of templates for your WordPress blog, allowing you to easily change the look and feel of your blog to match that of your business.
  2. 10 Blog Design Mistakes— Jakob Neilson discusses how to make your blog more user friendly.
  3. Tutorial for Blog Design in Photoshop— Breaking away from the standard blog template can make your blog look more attractive and be more memorable to users. This article details how to make banners, choose a color scheme, and design a layout.
  4. Blog Interface Design Tutorial— Luke Wroblewski and Jed Wood discuss how to make a better blog interface so you won't get bogged down with blog archives and comments.
  5. Gaining Blog Credibility with Design— Darren Rowse explains how the design of your blog can play a big part in how users view your credibility as a blogger.
  6. The Importance of Content— It’s easy to forget about the content when you get caught up in making sure your site looks good. This article discusses how to make sure your content stays a priority.
  7. Building a Better Blog— This article explains 5 elements that can help you improve the quality of your blog.
  8. 10 Sure-Fire Headline Formulas— Not sure how to grab the attention of potential readers? This article can give you some helpful pointers on making your headlines pop.
  9. Bringing Your “A” Game to Blog Writing— Being successful at blogging is due in large part to the content of your blog and how well you write about the topic at hand. This article explains how to bring your best skills to blog writing.
  10. Using News Aggregators for Content— If you’re having trouble thinking of ideas for content, this article describes how you can utilize news aggregators to come up with new and relevant ideas.

Marketing

While it would be nice to think that internet users will just stumble upon your blog regularly, the reality is that you’ll have to work hard to draw traffic to your site. After all, there isn’t much point to blogging if you’re the only one reading what you write. Here are some tools and articles that can help you get more traffic to your site.

  1. Blog Directory— Submitting your site to this directory of blogs can be a great way to increase your blog traffic and get your name out there.
  2. Ping-o-Matic— Ping-o-Matic is a free service which pings search engines when you update or add new content to your blog.
  3. Search Engine Optimization— This article discusses how to optimize your blog’s keywords and content to get more search engine hits.
  4. How to: Boost Your Blog Traffic— Paul Stamatiou gives advice on how to bring more visitors to your site through usability, content and search engines.
  5. How to: Market Your Blog in 2007— Darren Rowse explains how to effectively market your blog with 41 helpful tips and suggestions.
  6. 21 Tactics to Increase Blog Traffic— Not getting the traffic you think you deserve? Use these 21 suggestions to maximize your blog’s potential.
  7. How to Develop Stickyness— You don’t just want to bring new users to your site and never see them again. You want readers to keep coming back. This article explains how to make interest in your blog stick.
  8. 10 Effective Ways to Get More Blog Subscribers— One of the marks of successfully getting people to come back is a large subscriber list. Here you’ll find advice on how to maximize subscriptions to your blog.
  9. 25 Tips for Marketing Your Blog— Lee Odden gives 25 great tips for getting your blog noticed and visited.
  10. 13 Tips to Get Your Blog Noticed— This article provides some useful ways to make your blog stand out from the millions of others.

Blogs about Blogging

As odd as it may seem, there are numerous blogs out there that discuss the act of blogging itself. Here are a few worth checking out.

  1. Copyblogger— Copyblogger gives some great advice on successful copywriting for your blog.
  2. Blogging Pro— Blogging Pro can keep you up to date on blogging news, plugins and new themes for blogs.
  3. Scoblizer—Robert Scoble, author of Naked Conversations, focuses on technology and how blogs have affected business.
  4. The Big Blog Company— This site discusses blog marketing and emerging technology issues.
  5. John Chow Dot Com— Dot com mogul John Chow discusses blogs and how to earn money from them.
  6. Blog Traffic School— Yaro Starak writes about how to build blog traffic and maintain a great blog.
  7. Digital Inspiration— Digital Inspiration has numerous articles about blogging as well as other internet and technology related issues.
  8. Matt Huggins— Internet entrepreneur Matt Huggins shares news and advice about blogging and internet business.
  9. Daily Blog Tips— Get a daily dose of blog improvement advice with daily blog tips.
  10. Pronet Advertising—Neil Patel discusses internet issues, especially those related to blogging and social content sites.

Blogs about Business Blogging

Sometimes the best way to learn how to do something is to benefit from the experience and advice of those who’ve already done it. These blogs should provide some guidance and information for getting started on creating a blog for business.

  1. Advanced Business Blogging— This is a blog about marketing and creating a viable brand for your blog online.
  2. Blogging for Business— Ted Demopoulos discusses blogging and podcasts as practical business applications.
  3. Andy Wibbels— Andy Wibbels talks about blogging for small businesses.
  4. Problogger— Problogger gives advice on adding income streams to your blog.
  5. Blogging Business— Blogging business discusses how to market your business using blogs and RSS feeds.
  6. Business Blog Consulting— This blog gives advice on how to increase blog traffic and comments as well as news on the business blogging world.
  7. Blog Business World— Wayne Hurlbert gives his perspective on business blogs, search engine optimization, and marketing.
  8. Blog for Business— Blog for Business focuses on how corporate blogs can increase business and profits.
  9. NetBusinessBlog— NetBusinessBlog gives advice on how to make a living online using blogs.
  10. BusinessBlogWire— This is a blog that gives advice and tips on creating profitable corporate and business blogs.

Blogging Forums and Networking

Great blogs generate lots of traffic thanks to buzz about their site. You can create your own buzz by networking with other bloggers and submitting your articles to social media sites.

  1. Blogger Forum— This is a great place to chat with fellow bloggers and get some advice on how to begin blogging.
  2. Bloggst— An online community for bloggers, Bloggst has advice on starting and managing a blog as well as interviews with those in the know.
  3. True Blogging— True Blogging is a forum dedicated to discussing all aspects of blogging and blog monetization.
  4. Blogger Talk— Blogger Talk is another forum for bloggers to get together to talk about and show off their blogs.
  5. Bloggeries— Bloggeries offers a worldwide community for bloggers to exchange ideas and information.
  6. Webloggers— Webloggers is a discussion forum for just about everything to do with blogging, from legal issues to tutorials. It’s a great resource for newbies and advanced users alike.
  7. The Blog Herald— The newspaper of the blogging world, The Blog Herald contains news about issues relevant to the blogosphere.
  8. Reddit— Reddit brings together all of the best blog articles from the fields of politics, science and just fun stuff.
  9. Digg— Digg is one of the most popular social content sites. Making the front page is a great way to send massive amounts of traffic your way.
  10. Del.icio.usDel.icio.us allows users to easily share bookmarks and links. Adding a link to Del.icio.us at the end of your blog posts can help your articles be more widely read.

Search Engines

Search engines can be a very useful way to find out what other kinds of blogs are out there. They can also help you check out and work on your rankings to make sure you don’t miss out on any potential traffic.

  1. Technorati— One of the most widely used search engines, Technorati tracks over 93 million blogs. Make sure yours is one of them.
  2. Sphere— Sphere is a blog search engine with a twist. Not only can you find the blog you’re looking for, but also a contextual widget that shows related posts from other blogs.
  3. Google Blog Search— With the popularity of Google’s regular search engine, it was only a matter of time before they jumped on the blog search engine bandwagon. A little simpler than other blog search engines, it’s essentially a Google search limited to blog postings.
  4. Ice Rocket— Similar to Google’s blog search, IceRocket searches for content on the web that is posted in blogs.
  5. Daypop— Geared towards news and current events blogs, Daypop’s engine requires that your blog be updated frequently.
  6. Blogdigger— A small search engine, Blogdigger allows you to find blogs in your area.
  7. Waypath— Waypath allows searchers to easily find blogs they would be interested in reading with a “find similar” feature.
  8. Eatonweb— Eatonweb is a blog directory with categories and stats easily accessible on the front page. Submitting your own blog is easy, too.
  9. Blogrunner— Blogrunner provides a hot topics listing as well as features. It’s primarily geared towards news, but there are other topics listed as well.
  10. Blog Search Engine— Blog Search Engine is just that, a blog search engine. It also provides categories and a ticker of the latest posts on the front page.

Statistics and Analysis

Keeping track of where your traffic is coming from and how much you are getting can be an integral part of helping you market and optimize your blog. These are a few resources to get you started.

  1. StatCounter— StatCounter is a free statistics and analysis tool for keeping track of your blog’s traffic numbers.
  2. Site Meter— Site Meter is available in Premium and Basic versions, and can offer more advanced analysis of your site.
  3. Alexa— Alexa is a great tool for comparing your blog’s performance to other blogs on the internet.
  4. Google Analytics— Google provides a free and full-featured tool for determining where your visitors are coming from and how they use your site.
  5. Measure Map— Measure Map is a free tool to track your visitors’ habits.
  6. AWStats— AWStats is an open source tool that you can use to track your blog’s statistics.
  7. Feedburner— Feedburner provides a wide range of tools to help improve your blog’s RSS feed as well as statistic tracking.
  8. 103Bees— A great tool for search engine optimization, 103Bees gives detailed information on the search engine traffic your blog receives.
  9. MyBlogLog— MyBlogLog is both a community building tool and a simple blog analytics tool.
  10. ShinyStat— ShinyStat is a web analytics and counter tool with both free and paid versions.

Money Making Tools

If you’re truly interested in making a profit from your blog, you’re going to have to do something to draw in those dollars. These are a few resources that can help you make money through donations or by placing ads on your site.

  1. PayPal— Use PayPal to set up a button on your site that readers can click on to make donations.
  2. Google AdSense— Google AdSense is where many bloggers make the majority of their income. Ads are both pay per click and pay per view.
  3. Yahoo Publisher Network— Similar to Google AdSense, Yahoo’s ads are pay per click.
  4. Txtswap— Txtswap is a program that allows bloggers to exchange text links in order to bring in more traffic.
  5. Adbrite— Adbrite can provide payment for simple text ads on your blog.
  6. Chitika— Chitika is interactive advertising based on the content of your site. It tends to take up a little more room than other ads, but it also tends to pay a little more.
  7. BlogBurst— BlogBurst can help you get your blog published in big time media outlets and get paid for it.
  8. Text Link Ads— Text Link Ads is another resource for putting text ads on your site.
  9. Bidvertiser— Bidvertiser offers an innovative system where you set the bids on pay per click ads.
  10. ReviewMeWant to make a little cash on the side? ReviewMe is a marketplace for paid blog reviews.

Tools and Miscellaneous

These are just a few more tools and articles that can help you make and maintain a better and more profitable blog.

  1. Blog Basics— For the beginner, this site outlines everything you need to know about blogging.
  2. Structured Blogging— Structured Blogging is a tool that can help bloggers create better organized and formatted content.
  3. Qumana— Qumana is a desktop blog editor. It works on both Windows and Mac formats.
  4. GeoLoc— GeoLoc is a fun widget that shows where visitors to your blog are coming from.
  5. BlogRolling— This is a useful tool for keeping your blogroll organized.
  6. 101 Steps to Becoming a Better Blogger— Lifehacker provides an excellent list of tips to help you be more successful with blogging.
  7. WordPress Backup— This is a valuable plugin for WordPress that helps you backup your blog data in case something goes wrong.
  8. Sociable— Sociable makes social bookmarking easy by adding links to interesting links at the end or your blog posts.
  9. Blog Carnival— Joining a blog carnival can help you get linked more often and increase traffic to your site.
  10. Creating Scannable Content— Studies have shown that readers of internet articles don’t actually read them at first, they scan. This article details how to lay out your content to reflect this.

Whether you’re a seasoned blogger wanting to increase your blog traffic or a novice looking for advice on where to begin, these resources can offer great help getting you on the right track. Use them wisely and you can increase your chances of creating a successful and interesting blog, and maybe even becoming an online sensation.

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