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Easy-Poll.com Offers Free Online Polls for Webmasters

January 31st, 2008

easy-poll-surveys.gifOne way for a fledgling website to gain traffic and encourage repeat visitors is for its administrator to add interactive features such as polls or surveys. A new service called Easy-Poll.com is offering webmasters a way to install such features on their sites free of both monetary costs and on-site advertising.

Website owners can register for a free account at Easy-Poll with a minimum of information - only a first name and email address is required for signup and confirmation. After registering and logging in, members can use the simple interface to choose between multiple choice and yes/no polls, and then choose among a few different styles that affect the background and button colors for each poll.

For multiple choice polls, it is possible to include up to 10 different options for answers. After the member provides the necessary data such as the URL of the website, the poll question, and the desired answer choices, the new poll can be displayed on the member’s website for visitors to begin recording their opinions. The polling data is tracked and stored on Easy-Poll’s servers, making it convenient for webmasters because no extra databases or software needs to be installed in order to run the polling widget.

Easy-Poll also works with many popular online services, making it possible to create myspace surveys, xanga surveys, or blog polls with platforms such as Blogger or Typepad. Each member can create up to 99 yes/no questionnaires or multiple choice surveys, enabling you to collect data on a wide variety of topics. This can be useful for bloggers with significant numbers of regular readers because they can use the polling data to assess the particular preferences of their audiences and monetize accordingly.

Meanwhile, the Easy-Poll.com site itself definitely appears to be in the beta stages. The content is rather sparse in places; for example, the “Terms of Use” page is currently empty save for the title, and the Help/FAQ section contains only two questions. It is also unclear exactly how the site is generating revenue. There is no charge to webmasters for running the polls, nor is there any type of advertising or revenue sharing agreement. My best guess is that the site is offering the free polling service as a way to build a large user base and traffic stream, after which additional paid services or on-site advertising can be added later.

At any rate, as long as the service is free and there are no unacceptable terms, it is still useful for certain applications. After I build up a larger readership for this site, I might try it out myself as a way of assessing how many people are actually reading the content.


Savebuckets.co.uk Launches Useful Price Comparison Site

January 22nd, 2008

price-comparison.JPGIf you are the kind of person who likes to shop around for the best deal before committing yourself to a potentially expensive purchase, websites such as Savebuckets.co.uk can help you save lots of money during your online shopping adventures. Savebuckets does not actually sell any items directly; rather, they function as a convenient price comparison guide that lets you compare prices of products across a wide range of online retail outlets.

After discovering the site earlier today, I decided to try it out by testing the main search engine for “PC games”, a category from which I actually buy products occasionally. The search returned 167 results. Interestingly, the top result was not an actual PC game but was instead a Logitech joystick, while the fourth result was a full PC system designed for gaming enthusiasts. Most of the other top results displayed some type of PC game software, however, and upon clicking on one of the product images, I noticed a convenient menu on the left side of the screen that listed most of the major categories and genres of games.

This led me to what I was actually looking for - after clicking “Strategy”, I was able to browse through an ample selection of interesting titles, some of which were being offered for surprisingly low prices from UK shops. Unfortunately, many of the lower-priced titles were out of stock, but I still found some good ones that were available through Amazon or other major retailers.

Overall, Savebuckets has a simple but quick-loading and functional design that allows for speedy browsing of products without the hassle of heavy on-site graphics or annoying advertisements. The site is designed primarily for shoppers located in the UK, and all prices are denoted in British pounds. This is perhaps the site’s most significant drawback; if you happen to live outside of the UK, you may need to convert currencies or search for shops that are closer to your local area. Otherwise, Savebuckets is a good, all-around price comparison site that can help you find a good deal on most popular items, and may also allow you to discover lesser-known retailers offering products that you could not find elsewhere.


Bettercaring.com Provides Information on Elderly Care Options

January 6th, 2008

bettercaring-logo.gifOne of the side effects of relatively high life expectancies found in most developed countries is that there are a greater number of people who may require some form of home care assistance as they reach the end of their natural life spans. If you or an elderly relative should find yourself in such a situation, Bettercaring.com can provide information on various assisted living options ranging from home care services at your current residence to locating suitable nursing homes should the need arise. The site also provides factsheets and links to advice on relevant funding options and financial assistance issues.

From a functional standpoint, the site is fairly simple and easy to navigate. There are three convenient text buttons (labeled with a T) in the upper right corner of the home page that allow you to increase the font size of the text for better readability. The top navigation bar is color-coded and links to the main areas of the site, including care information, the search function, and a discussion section. There is also a sitewide footer bar that leads to the more business-oriented pages of the site such as the contact page, privacy policy, and a link for Bedvacs customers that resolves to bettercaring.co.uk.

Directly under the top navigation bar, there is a quick search area on the home page that will allow you to locate available care homes within a certain radius of any UK town or postcode. For a more detailed search, you can use the “care search” section to define specific criteria such as the type of care provided, weekly fee limits, and the presence of a variety of features such as gardens, lifts, or easy access to public transportation. Meanwhile, the discussion section includes a community forum, news briefs, editorial comments, and personal stories from readers.

Overall, Bettercaring.com is a good resource of information on elderly care issues. The site is poised to become more interesting and informative over time as the community forum and blog sections continue to grow and accumulate more content. The only real disadvantage that I see with the site is that the search function and much of the discussion assumes that you are interested in care home options only within the UK (this includes England, Scotland, Wales, and Northern Ireland). If you are looking for elderly care options outside of the UK, the site can still serve as a decent resource hub, but you will probably need to look elsewhere for information on specific locations of elderly care homes in your area.


VisionBedding.com Offers Custom Photo, Sports Bedding Options

December 23rd, 2007

Today I discovered a new site called VisionBedding.com that offers an interesting type of personalized gift service. The company specializes in making various kinds of bedding materials and then customizing them with your favorite photo images dyed into the fabric. This allows you to order specially designed bedding products such as photo blankets, photo pillows, photo duvets, and even photo dog beds. It is also possible to create your own digital images with programs such as PhotoShop and use these to make your own original bedding design.

Most of the bedding products are made from a combination of very soft micro-suede fabric and polar fleece. They can be cleaned with a regular washing machine and dryer; Vision Bedding recommends using a gentle cycle for washing and a low heat setting for drying. The colors of the dyes should not fade with washing any more than they would with normal clothing.

In addition to the customized photo options, you can also choose from several different pre-existing designs such as these from their Sports Bedding section:

sports-bedding-racing.jpg sports-bedding-basketball.jpg sports-bedding-soccer.jpg sports-bedding-surfing.jpg sports-bedding-motocross.jpg


Overall, there are over 500 different styles and themes to choose from. Vision Bedding can also create custom styles for you upon request.

The concept of customized bedding is an interesting one because I have never seen this kind of product offered in regular stores before. This gives VisionBedding.com an advantage over most other retail bedding outlets because they can offer a specialized service and create a unique product for each individual customer. Therefore, if you are in the market for bedding materials and would like to buy something special that no one else is likely to own, VisionBedding.com may be a good place to start.


SendEarnings.com Review

November 17th, 2007

The website SendEarnings.com, sometimes written as “Send Earnings” or “SendEarnings”, is a multi-faceted GPT (Get Paid To) program that allows members to make money through activities such as receiving paid emails, completing surveys and offers, playing online games, and referring other people to the site. You can sign up to the program for free by clicking on the banner below.

sendearnings-signup

How to Earn Money

1. Paid to Read Emails - Once you are registered, the program will typically send from two to five emails per day to your designated email address. The amount that you receive for clicking on these varies from one to ten cents, with an observed average of about three cents per mail. Getting credited for these is a quick, two-step process: first click on the image that you see after opening the email, and when the next page loads, click on the confirmation link with black text that reads “Click Here to confirm reading this Email” or something similar.

2. Cash Surveys - SendEarnings allows you to complete one survey per day for a $1 reward. Most of these surveys are routed through Greenfield Online. If you “screen out” on the first try, you can keep taking more surveys until you eventually get one that you can qualify for and complete.

Occasionally, additional rewards are possible with these kinds of opportunities. For example, on the first $1 survey that I took through SendEarnings, I got lucky and was invited to a T-shirt product sample study. Eventually, I received another $15 for following through with the product test and also got to keep the three T-shirts for free after the study ended.

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ToBux Review: AdBux Clones Just Keep On Coming

October 30th, 2007

Yes, here we go again. Yet another AdBux clone has surfaced, and as of this writing appears to have attracted over 5000 members already. Normally I wouldn’t bother posting about this because there are already dozens, perhaps hundreds of similar sites all using the same basic script. But this particular program that I discovered has two notable “features” that set it apart from most of the other AdBux clones. The first is that it appears to have originated in France and even has a French promotional banner.

Things get even more interesting when we begin to look at the various pages of the site and actually read the content. The home page title tag reads “Tobux really cash money”, while their explanation of the program to potential affiliates contains statements such as “advertisers trust us through our words and our offers to them offered a price mediocre”. The News page is especially remarkable; the content is approximately half English and half French, with the English portions of the text displaying such gems as “Your payout rĂ©alised in 24 hours opening worked” and “Begin dice now has to earn money”.

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Gift Card Exchange Site Discovered

June 21st, 2007

While searching through Google results yesterday for a source link on an article that someone sent me, I discovered a potentially useful site for people who want to buy, sell, or trade gift cards. This site piqued my interest because gift cards are a common way to receive compensation from paid surveys and reward programs that do not always pay out in direct cash incentives. The name of the site is Star Gift Card Exchange and is apparently being operated from the Chicago, Illinois area in the USA.

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