Thursday, July 7, 2011

Free Comics Online Updates

As you might have noticed, the RSA free comics page is ad supported. It originally had three Google ads, but I cut that down to two. Instead of the third, I opted to give that space free to comic book retailers. I also redesigned the page so it was a little less cluttered. So, as far as being ad supported, there's two Google ads, one rotating comics retailer ad, an ad for my online store, and a mention that the current issue being viewed may be purchased. I also moved the ads off to the right so they're a little less obtrusive. Hey, I want the support, but I don't want the ads to make the site a pain in the ass to visit.

The free 160 x 600 skyscraper space for retailers is a gesture of good will for all those poor souls that are still plodding along in a world where, increasingly, everything is moving to digital (the iPad must be killing them). I feel bad for them because I think most shops are pretty cool places, however I don't see a rosy future for them. Even online comics retailers will eventually dwindle to a very few. Their challenges are huge, so I'll do what little I can. If you're a retailer, email me.

If you view the page in a text-only browser, you'll see some text that you won't initially see on the site (you can also click the "Info" link at the bottom then scroll down to also view it). This is there for a couple reasons; for accessibility and because the site is, for the most part, generated dynamically and composed of images. Without this text, those with disabilities wouldn't see anything. Also, search bots and Google's AdSense would see nothing except the page's title, description and keyword metadata (not much to go by if we want relevant ads and SEO). The text is definitely keyword driven, but it's also honestly describes what the page is all about; reading free online comics, Ralph Snart and an online comic book store. Some grammer and sentence structure was purposely altered to either add or strengthen certain high CPC keywords. It's not the most beautiful writing you'll ever read, but what it does provide is worthy and descriptive, if not down right valuable, content.

Whether any of this does any good, I'll let you know...


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