There's a lot of talk around the forum lately about article marketing, especially with EZA pulling their new and improved "screw the authors" bullshit.
Now, don't get me wrong. I love EZA. They've sent me a lot of traffic. However, I firmly believe that they're headed towards an ad-fest with crap articles - essentially, they're heading away from what got them to the top of Google in the first place. And soon, they're going to lose their rankings, lose their authors, and be a shell of their former self.
Who knows, maybe they'll turn things around. I've just seen a lot of bad stuff go on there that makes me believe they're on their way out. Not today, not tomorrow, but sooner or later, they'll be done for.
So there's been a lot of buzz about what the new best article directory is, and I thought I'd throw in my 2 cents here.
First of all, let's talk about what makes a good article directory.
*A fast approval period
*Good tools for authors
*Good SE rankings
The first two are pretty straight forward. You want your articles approved ASAP and you want good tools so you can test what is and isn't working and improve your craft.
Good SE rankings, however, is a bit trickier. So let's talk about how an article directory would get them.
Essentially, Google wants to give its users a good end result. Therefore, it's going to send them (ideally) to the best quality site that will answer all their questions.
That means that the higher quality the information on a domain is, the more likely it is Google will return that result high in its SERPs. After all, users want decent, well-researched, clearly-written content, not crap. And lately it seems like EZA is more than happy to publish anything and everything.
My belief is that, if it isn't already, Google will soon be developing algorithms to figure out what is and isn't well written content. And when that day comes, you want your site to be useful, informative, and have a good end-user experience.
Now, the only article site I've seen offering these three things (good rankings, fast approval time, and a decent amount of tools) is Allen Greaves' Website-Articles.net
Before I get some nasty posts, I'll just point out that I'm not really "friends" with Allen (although I do respect him a great deal, but I don't think he really knows who I am), and I'm not getting any commission out of this. I just know Allen has a service that a lot of Warriors need right now, so I thought I'd bring it to your attention.
Some people in Allen's article directory are getting CTR's of 75 - 90%. That's because there are no ads on the pages, and you can add pictures and videos to increase the "stickiness" of your website. There are also crazy amounts of reporting tools so you can figure out exactly what is and isn't working (Allen's a bit of a testing nut himself so that's probably where it all came from).
In addition he publishes a monthly newsletter that keeps you up to date with the latest trends in article marketing. Like I said, Allen's a testing junkie and I think he spends more time looking at stats then he does looking at his wife Seriously though, he always has brilliant, cutting-edge insights that really help you out.
Now, Allen's directory isn't free. It's $10 a month, which, let's face it, is peanuts. BUT, this means that only "serious" article marketers can post their articles, meaning the quality of the whole site is good (see the above points about the SEs). It also means that you get a lightning-fast response - my articles are usually approved in a few hours!
On top of all this, Allen is one of the nicest guys you'll ever meet, and if your articles aren't getting results, all you have to do is email him and he'll help you out. Once you're a member, of course - I don't think he has the time to reply to a hundred thousand emails from people who can't even be bothered to pony up the $10/month for his membership.
Allen is one of the most brilliant minds in article marketing I've come across, and has a great book on the subject which blows away anyone else's. I think it's free with membership but he might have removed that offer, so don't quote me on that.
Allen's directory is pretty much the polar opposite of what EZA has become, and his first focus is to his authors. His directory is starting to see some really hot rankings (beating out EZA in many cases, I believe) so it just makes sense to join up now and take advantage of it.
His website: Exclusive Article Marketing Community
Check it out, and if you're serious about article marketing, do yourself a favor and sign up. You'll be glad you did.