Compete.com Review – What Do They Offer and Why Should You Care?

Compete.com Review – What Do They Offer and Why Should You Care?

Compete.com is considered to be an industry leading data management and technology company. They offer a variety of products, but are most well-known for Compete Pro. Compete Pro is all about providing you with valuable information about your target market, including your competitors. Here is a closer look at everything that the Compete Pro package has to offer. Currently, there are multiple payment options ranging from $199/month to $499/month, although there are discounts if you pay annually.

Two Potential Drawbacks to Consider

Before looking at the specifics of this program, it is important to note that currently all of their information is tailored around the US market. This is because their data is primarily based upon the daily usage of websites by US users only. If you are targeting other regions, then you will not have concrete numbers to work with.

The second thing to consider is that it is easy to become overwhelmed in the beginning. Some people have noted that in the beginning, understanding and separating all of the services included in the Compete Pro package can be confusing. There is a learning curve that you will need to climb in order to get the most out of this product.

Compete.com Compete Pro Tools

Website Analytics

You can access website traffic data that spans up to 2 years. THIs will include the amount of traffic, number of page views, and allow you to utilize filter criteria in order to focus on visitors, growth, and overall website engagement. You can also compare multiple website simultaneously. Unfortunately, if you are concerned primarily with smaller niche websites, then there may not be any data available.

Search Analytics

There are multiple tools in the search analytics section that you can use. The first is a Site Referral tool. It is designed to help you understand what keyword phrases are driving traffic to your website. You can also discover keyword phrases that drive traffic to your industry in general. While this information is not 100% accurate, it is known for being one of the most accurate options on the market.

The second is the Keyword Destination tool. This tool is almost the opposite of the first one. Instead of researching based around specific websites or industries, you are getting data about specific keywords. Once you enter a keyword or phrase, this tool will tell you which websites are receiving the most traffic from it. You can also use this tool to find complimentary keywords and phrase variations that could be beneficial to target.

The final search analytics tool is a Comparison Tool. It allows you to do side-by-side comparisons of two websites based upon keywords, traffic, and other factors.

Ranked Lists

This analytics tool is designed to help you view your website in context with your competition. You can get a ranking list based upon visits, unique visits, page views, monthly attention, and total time spent on the site. The list can include anywhere from 25 to 500,000 domains.

Referral Analytics

The final tool is developed to help you discover which websites are sending you traffic as well as where you are sending traffic to.

Conclusion

Overall, Compete.com offers a lot of information for marketers and advertisers that can be used to formulate effective only marketing strategies. It provides information related to both past performances and current standings. The set of tools available in the Compete Pro package covers a range of metrics that can be used in a variety of ways. In terms of the information you can access, Compete.com is definitely one of the leaders. While it can get a little pricy, the information can be well worth when utilized correctly.

Is aMember Still a Good Option for WordPress Websites?

aMember has been around longer than most membership software programs. At first glance, you would assume that it would also be the best. While it does get high marks in many categories, there are still some defects that keep it from dominating the marketplace. With the release of aMember 4.0 a number of changes were made and many of the past issues were addressed. Overall, it is a much better product than the previous version. Here is a closer look at some of the most notable benefits and drawbacks to using aMember as your WordPress membership software.

Benefits of aMember for WordPress Membership Sites

Quality Content Protection

When it comes to overall content protection, aMember is definitely towards the top of the list. One of the biggest issues that many WordPress membership plugins have is that the content is protected exclusively through the WordPress framework. This means that if a member copied a link to a PDF file and shared it with others, then it would be readily accessible to everyone. By entering the direct URL to the PDF, the protections setup within WordPress has been bypassed. aMember allows you to protect files at the folder level. This ensures that entering the direct link will not leak access to protected documents or posts.

Excellent Support

One area where aMember excels is in its customer support. They have a very active community forum. Not only will other aMember users help you solve your problem, but the aMember staff always seems to be helping out as well. On top of the forum, they have also become well known for fast response times. In fact, they will even do your initial aMember install for you at no cost.

Easy to Expand and Customize Your Website Through Plugins

An issue that many membership site scripts have is that they don’t always play nice with other WordPress plugins. This is especially true if they aren’t designed specifically for WordPress. As a result, a number of membership site plugins designed specifically for WordPress have become very popular, such as the Magic Members plugin. For stand-alone membership software, aMember might be the most WordPress compatible in terms of working well with other plugins. This is largely because the entire program is scripted almost entirely in PHP.

Potential Drawbacks of aMember to Keep in Mind

aMember Have a Very High Learning Curve

The most common complaint surrounding aMember is that it is definitely not easy to use straight out of the box. As one of the more mature membership software’s, it has added a large number of features over the years. The end result is a fairly complex program. Once you get used to it, aMember is fairly easy use. At the same time, if you don’t have the extra time to really learn how the software works, then you can run into trouble.

Extra Integration Plugins Can Get Expensive

There are a growing number of plugins that have been developed by aMember that allows it to be integrated with a number of other 3rd party tools. These include: eFront, Invision Board, MyBB, SMF, phpBB3, and vBulletin among others. The problem is that each of these plugins has a price tag of $40.00. This can get expensive really quick, especially when you add in the license fee of $179.95.

Low Quality Affiliate Program

While aMember does offer a built –in affiliate management solution, there is still a lot to be desired. In fact, they even sell a plugin that integrates PostAffiliatePro to use instead of their own affiliate solution. While it can get the job done, it definitely doesn’t look good doing it. If you are serious about recruiting affiliates, then you will likely need to add a 3rd party solution.

Overall, aMember is everything you expect from membership software that has been around for more than a decade. It has a lot of features, is extremely stable, and overall is a quality solution. At the same time, some of the deficiencies are becoming even more glaring as newer WordPress management site plugins are quickly gaining traction and proving to be on-par with aMember in most aspects – especially if you are looking for a solution specifically for a WordPress website.

4 Magazine Themes For WordPress That Have Something Unique to Offer

Magazine themes have become exceptionally popular over the last few years because they offer a variety of unique benefits. The primary area that makes a magazine theme stand out is the homepage. The rest of the site tends to be similar to a traditional WordPress theme in terms of layout. This list focuses primarily on the default homepage layout and settings. Although with a little tweaking all of these themes could look nearly identical, this list is based solely off of how it looks out-of-the-box. Not only do all 4 themes look great, but they each offer something unique.

1. WP-MediaMag – Created by SoloStream

WP-MediaMag is a great magazine theme out of the box. Not only does it have 8 built in color options, but the homepage layout is uniquely beneficial. When looking at the homepage layout, there are 3 distinct areas that will offer your readers something different. The very top 1/3 of the site is a slideshow-style gallery that can include images, content, and video. Directly below it is a Recent Photos Gallery. This means that top 1/3 is very visually appealing and can draw people into your site. The rest of the homepage layout has two different styles – small columned excerpts and wide excerpts Again, very visually appealing, plus it gives you a chance to highlight both the recent content and category-based content.

2. DelicateNews – Created By ElegantThemes

It tough to only pick one ElegantThemes magazine style theme, however DelicateNews homepage does a much better job of highlighting content. While it doesn’t have quite as much content on display as many other magazine themes, it does promote all of the content extremely well. With a unique featured content area, custom slider, and recent posts section, the overall feel is very clean and doesn’t overwhelm a first time visitor. At the same time, of all 8 themes, this is the closest to not being a true magazine theme.

3. Manifesto Theme – Created By WPZoom

Like the WP-MediaMag layout, the Manifesto Theme does an excellent job of splitting up the homepage into sections. At the very top is a featured content area that is very eye-catching and allows you to promote 6 pieces of content while still focusing on one piece at a time. The tabbed category section right below the top 1/3 of the page is another unique feature that playing into the theme well. It has one tab for each category, so that you can feature you last 5 posts (through an image and title) for each category. This engages the reader and quickly introduces them to all of your latest news.

4. CooolZine– Created By Bloom.At (Available at ForestThemes)

The final theme to make this list is CooolZine. If you want a magazine style theme that is exceptionally unique, then this is the template for you. While it may be a little disorganized for some websites, it is very creative and definitely makes a statement.

There are hundreds, if not thousands of magazine themes available for WordPress This makes finding one that offers something unique exceptionally important unless you plan on doing a lot of modifications yourself. There is nothing worse than having your website look like everyone else’s A great theme is an easy way to immediately stand out from the crowd and engage your readers.