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Adult Webmaster Tutorial:
Getting Submissions For Your New Link List

I launched Fetish Philes in August of 2004. As of the date this page was published (May 1, 2005) I currently have just over 5000 submitted links in the DB, and I get 50-70 submissions a day. When I first launched I was getting 0-5 submissions a day, but by about 6 weeks after I launched I was up to about 10 per day and submissions have grown slowly but surely and continuously.

There's no "magic bullet" to get your submissions up, it's a matter of doing a bunch of small things that are each good for a submit here and there. It's also important to remember that most freesite submitters don't do a site a day, so you'll end up with a lot of submitters subbing maybe 4-10 sites per month. In order to get your daily submits to 25, you'd need probably 100 or more regular submitters. These are many of the things I did when I launched as well as some things I still do:

---I've been on Security Man's submit page trade script since day one. You should get that code up on your submit page and keep it there. More Info Here

---Get your Link List listed on every adult webmaster resource site and board that you can find...most only require a recip on the submit page. You can check out my submit page (resource site recips are just a bit below the submit form) for some to start with. None of these listings will give you a ton of submits but they will add up over time.

---Get your site listed at The Link Machine

---I made special offers to members of the boards I was posting on, offering either a recip free listing or permanent extra weight in the listings for those submitting with a recip (my script allows for this). This got me a handful of daily submitters early on.

---Had lots of sites already in the database when I launched, mostly sponsor paysites and the sponsor hosted free sites I had access to at the time. This gave me a few sites in every category, so my initial surfers weren't confronted with a link list that had a bunch of categories but nothing in them. Even though some cats had nothing but a few paysites in them, at least there was something there. Also, potential submitters didn't see a big empty link list. Some of my cats have 6-10 paysites listed.

---Don't think your LL will make you a bunch of money right off the bat...it won't. The link list business model requires a ton of traffic to make a lot of money, since you've got to have a bunch of sites from a bunch of sponsors, and each individual site won't get that many clicks until your traffic is really rolling. However, when I took my first public submission I had over 300 sponsor links in the database (bear in mind I've got over 100 categories too). There are several different schools of thought on this, and nobody is right or wrong. In my opinion, there's no reason not to get the links in there for the surfers to see, especially if they're listed as "pay sites."

A small percentage of surfers at Link Lists are actually looking for the "right" paysite to sign up to, credit card in hand. In my opinion, the presence of a bunch of paysites on your link list won't deter freesite submitters at all, since the surfers looking for freesites will ignore the paysite listings. Just don't expect to see a bunch of cash from your paysite listings until your traffic base is established.

---Spend some time in the link list forums every place you can find that has one. Respond to every post asking "who would list this site", even if you're just saying you wouldn't list it and why not. Just about every time I pop into a thread to say I'd list a site it gets submitted to me, and more often than not I get a repeat submitter. Respond to every post asking "what category for this site," "please review this site" and such. Get yourself out there in front of the submitters as much as possible. Also, this will help you develop a relationship with other link list owners (most of whom are freesite submitters as well). Quite a few of my regular submitters are link list owners and TGP owners I've met on the boards. Also, always use the same nick on every board and use that nick on your submissions.

---Get some hard link trades going. It's tough as hell with a new link list to get category page trades, but get some built up as soon and as quickly as you can. Submitters like to see some PR on your pages and they will provide a small but important amount of traffic from other link lists

---I made the mistake of not being a tough ass reviewer from day one. I listed lots of marginal sites in my desperation to get my list built up quickly. Then I revised my rules and got tougher on my reviews, and the number of submits dropped slightly but the number of declines dropped dramatically. I'm quite happy with about 60 submits a day at this point and I only have to decline about 35% of them. Since I'm consistently adding hosted free sites as they're released, I get a few more listings with my ref code in them added every week as well. If submissions continue at the rate they're at today I'll easily be up to over 12,000 listings by the end of 2005.

---Don't list every Hosted Free Site (HFS) that comes along from a sponsor...lots of them, even from good sponsors, are crap. Review each one for content quality and such as you add them, try to look at them from the surfer's perspective, and only add the ones that are actual quality.

---Review quickly. I was obsessed with 24 hours or less review time initially, and it paid off. Now I take slightly longer sometimes, but almost never more than 72 hours. With a new link list it's more important to take care of webmasters than surfers. Also, while you're building the list up it's not a bad idea to add some sites to more than one category if the content will allow you to do that. Remember that your submitters want to be in the category that fits the sponsor they're promoting, but surfers pick the category for the content they want to see.

For example, if someone submits a site to me with lesbians in stockings and they submit it to "lesbian", if it's a good site I might put it in "stockings" as well just to build the category up. Multiple category listings for the best of the sites submitted to you will help you fill up the front end for the surfers. If you do this, make sure you let the webmaster know in the "approved" email if your script allows you to add comments to it, or send them an email if it doesn't. Unsolicited multiple category listings will help you develop a base of loyal submitters.

The Link List model is a long slow road, but it's got a lot of benefits and rewards along the way. There is a light at the end of the tunnel, though...right now, 8 months after launch, Fetish Philes pays for all my hosting, all my content, my new domains as I buy them, and has paid for the script I run on that site as well as a few other scripts. It just takes time and patience.

Remember that all of this is just what I've done and my opinions, and I'm always learning new things myself. I spent a fuckload of time getting Fetish Philes out there when I launched. Getting surfer traffic is just as important, and that's an entirely different battle to fight, and also important to keep your submitters happy in the long run.

Hopefully some of this helped.

~Mad Max


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