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Saturday, May 27, 2006

BlogRolling - What else is out there?

Blogrolling: (noun) The section of a weblog that lists the sites that the blogger reads on a regular basis. A blogroll is usually displayed on the side of the blog.

As I'm expanding my knowledge of the blogging community I have come across a lot of great services that a content provider like myself can offer to you my readers. Blogrolling is another service I will be 'rolling' out on this site very shortly. Essentially, blogrolling allows you to see what I read on a regular basis. I have found other peoples blogrolls to be very helpful in finding information because they link to sites I never knew about.

I first read about blogrolling at CommonCraft.com, here is a direct link to the post. While blogrolling is often used as a term, it is in fact a brand created by Jason DeFillippo to allow bloggers to easily add links to their blogroll. You can check out the BlogRolling service or sign up for your own account. Essentially, blogrolls are express connections between blogs. The sites I put on my blogroll are ones I find interesting and that I think my readers should check out. Additionally, putting a blog on my roll says to that writer that I think they have a good site and I want my readers to have access to it. This is how blogs stay connected and everyone benefits from educating themselves about what else it out there.

The origin of the term blogrolling can be traced back to the American political term 'logrolling', for supporting another's pet bill in the legislature in exchange for reciprocal support. While there is no guarantee of reciprocity in blogrolling, when you link to another blog they will see your readers and should reciprocate.

There are some essential questions to ask when considering who you want to blogroll:
  • What are you interested in?
  • What do you write about, what is your niche?
  • Who is your target audience?
  • What are the interests of your readers?

Above all remember that this is your personal opinion and there is no right or wrong answer. There can be some drawbacks to maintaining a blogroll such as losing potential readers to other sites. But, these are generally outweighed by the additional readers that are brought to you from other sites. Ultimately as a blogger your goal is to inform your reader on whatever topic you can and leading them to other sites can help accomplish this goal. As long as you continue to write good articles on important topics you will always have readers.

Let me know what you think about blogrolling and how it has affected you. Check out my BlogRoll on the right column for some of the sites I read regularly. Thanks for reading!

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