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SKWID-OO, n. v., adj., addiction: 1) thousands of people creating a handbuilt catalog of the best stuff online. 2) a free and fun way to make your own page and get traffic and online word of mouth and Google juice. 3) a place to find what you’re looking for, fast.
Squidoo.com is a sort of social networking site created by Seth Godin, well-known author and marketing guru. It is a free Internet platform that allows people (called lensmasters) to write about topics they enjoy and allows them to make money in the process. If that is not enough, it is fun, too! But, be careful, creating pages (called lenses) can also be very addictive. So, don’t say I didn’t warn you. Additionally, Squidoo and it’s lensmasters contribute thousands of dollars annually to various charities.
This is how it works – you begin creating your lens by picking a topic such as memory quilts or purse design, then you decide if you want to keep any proceeds from affiliate sales generated from your page or if you’d like to donate them to charity. Squidoo will walk you through the steps necessary to add information about your topic such as a description, links to favorite websites, photos, and they even make it easy to add related items for sale from Amazon, eBay and CafePress. Better yet, you can make those links to your own eBay or CafePress store, or you can pick and choose from other items or add your own affiliate links.
Squidoo will automatically place display ads and Google Adsense ads on the pages that lensmasters create and they share the earnings with them. Revenue from Google ads is pooled and then divided amongst the lensmasters based on their page rank and traffic, however direct sales from pages (ie. through Amazon, eBay, CafePress) are attributed to their lensmasters. Any sales from your own affiliate links are yours of course.
If you currently have an online presence such as a website, blog or store then you will benefit most from your Squidoo lens if you build it around a similar topic so that you can direct traffic back to your site and promote yourself as an expert in your field. Many Squidoo users have reported experiencing a profound effect on their website traffic due to higher page rank in search engines. We recently gave it a try and created our own Sewing Business Lens, and it truly was so fast and easy (Squidoo claims it takes 5 minutes – it took me four times that but was lots of fun) that I stuck around and made a lens about quadruplets based on my personal blog MultipleMayhem.com.