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17 Common Resource Box Mistakes
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17-Common-Resource-Box-MistakesYour resource box is every bit as important as your article, so please don’t think you can spend lots of focused energy writing a beautiful article and then slap on any old resource box at the last minute.

In fact, in Article Marketing, the resource box is the reason for the article!

The article is where you give, providing helpful information for your readers, and then the resource box is where you “take”–you get to tell a little about yourself , give a link to your website, and also try to convince people to visit your site.

The article is not an end in itself–in addition to being a way of sharing educational information with your readers, your article is a vehicle for building links and funneling visitors into your website.

So, don’t forget to spend time on your resource box and be sure that you aren’t making any of the most common mistakes:

Mistake #1 : A resource box that only contains a link and nothing else. Here is the info you should include in your resource box:

  • an author name
  • a little bio info
  • a reason to click through to your website
  • a link to your website

Mistake #2 : Too long URL in a text resource box (over 60 Characters). When your URL is over 60 characters, you have an increased chance of the link breaking in a text resource box. As a solution, you may choose to link to a top level domain (which should be shorter) for a text resource box, and reserve the longer URLs for an HTML resource box.

Mistake #3 : Not formatting your URL properly in the text resource box–it has to have http:// at the beginning and .com at the end. So, a properly formatted URL would look like this: http://www.submityourarticle.com

Mistake #4 : Not giving any author bio info. At its heart, the resource box is an author bio. Some publishers will outright decline an article that has a resource box with no author bio, and readers certainly appreciate a little bit of info about the author. It also gives you a chance to convince the reader that you are indeed an expert on this topic and your information can be trusted. Including author bio info helps establish your expertise.

Mistake #5 : Not mentioning your author name. Do include your name! If you’re more of a staff writer for your company and don’t want to focus the attention on you, then at least include your business name.

Mistake #6 : No reason to click through. It is not enough just to give a link to your website and expect the reader to take it from there–you need to encourage the reader to click through to your site by giving them a reason to click. Why should someone go to your website? What do you have to offer them there? A free report? More information on this topic? Be sure to offer some sort of reason to click the link in your resource box.

Mistake #7 : No link! Article marketing is effective at driving traffic to a website, and an essential ingredient is the link in your resource box. The link is the doorway to your website. The link is what Google will see when it’s establishing the authority of your website and adjusting search engine rankings. The link is the reason why you’re submitting the article, so don’t forget to put it in your resource box.

Mistake #8 : Too many links! Pick one or two strategic spots that you’d like to drive traffic to or build links to (such as your home page and the page where you offer a free report where people can sign up for your list), and leave it at that. No need to put a link to every site you own! Know that the more sites you link to, the more confusing it is for a reader to figure out which site to go to (most people will not click every link in your resource box if you have several).

Mistake #9 : Trying to put italics or bold in your URL. That can mess up the link and cause it to break. Don’t try to get fancy–it’s not necessary to bold, underline or italicize the link.

Mistake #10 : Providing too much contact info. I call this “business card syndrome”, where your resource box looks more like a business card than an author bio. No need to include phone number, email address, fax number, and your mailing address. Just put your website URL. If someone wants to contact you, they should be able to go to your website and find that info. Don’t take up valuable space in your resource box giving extra forms of contact. As a form of contact, a link to your website is enough.

Mistake #11 Putting punctuation directly after your URL. Avoid adding punctuation immediately after the URL, such as a comma or a full stop (period), as this can create problems on certain web sites when they automatically convert the URL into an active link.

Mistake #12 : Not testing out your links! Be sure to preview your article and test the links in your resource box. Just click them and be sure that they are going where you want them to go. We all have the ability to make typos, so you want to discover that before you submit your article.

Mistake #13 : HTML resource box: just having hyperlinked keywords and nothing else. The HTML resource box should include the same level of information as a text resource box (all the info I listed in Mistake #1).

Mistake #14 : HTML resource box: forgetting to hyperlink your written out URL. An HTML resource box pre-supposes that you are hyplinking anchor text–you are choosing which words to link to your site. If you include a written out URL (http://www.SubmitYOURArticle.com), you need to specify you want that hyperlinked too. If you do not, then a link will not be formed.

Mistake #15 : HTML resource box: using too many words as anchor text. Limit your anchor text to 3 words (if you are targeting long tail keywords you may end up hyperlinking up to 5 words), but keep in mind that some publishers have limits on how many words you can use as anchor text, and if you go over 3 the article may be declined.

Mistake #16 : HTML resource box: Hyperlinking your name or business name. With an HTML resource box, the idea is to hyperlink your keywords, rather than your name or business name.

Mistake #17 : HTML resource box: Not hyperlinking any keywords at all, but just your URL. The benefit of the HTML resource box is in hyperlinking your keywords. If you just hyperlink your URL, you might as well skip the HTML resource box and just use a text resource box.

How Did You Do?
Most likely, you have made at least some of these mistakes before–I know I have!

I hope that this article catches some of you before you make these mistakes so you can avoid the “Ugh! No, I didn’t just do that!” feeling.

Either way–live and learn :) ! We all make mistakes, especially when learning something new. So, if any of these have hit home, just resolve to make the correction next time. You have plenty more articles where you can create powerhouse resource boxes.

Additional Resources

How To Create A Resource Box: The Ultimate Guide

5 Ways To Be Sure That Your Resource Box Links Work

Are You Making One Of These 7 HTML Resource Box Slip-Ups?

Photo by swisscan


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8 Responses to “17 Common Resource Box Mistakes”

  1. A very comprehensive post that helps us put together an effective resource box!

    I also believe that relevance should be there. If your resource doesn’t have anything to do with the content above it, the body text of the article.

    The resource box could offer a solution, more free information, free tools, etc about what has been mentioned throughout the article content.

  2. Thanks for this. It was great to see the list and go yes, yes, yes. I am doing most of the right things. Now I know what I can do to improve it even more.

  3. Michael says:

    Steve,

    Thanks for a very informative and as usual excellent article. I keep learning more and more the more I read. Thanks.

  4. Mithun Rao says:

    I would like to add that the author resource box should be short and sweet. Not very lengthy

  5. Great tips. There’s so much to remember. I’m wondering if article marketing by amateurs works!

  6. Useful advice — I didn’t know it was best to restrict and text to just three words. I’ll make sure I do that in all future article submissions.

  7. Elmien says:

    Thx a mil. I’m relatively new and here is where I get good solid info that helped me a lot. Very much appreciated!

  8. Steve,

    You and your website provide very generous and valuable informaition. It is an honor to be affiliated with your work.

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