Saturday, January 5, 2008

No One Buys My Paintings

Make sure you have included on your blog some way of getting hold of you! You know: Contact Info. There are an astounding number of blogs out there that do not have any contact information on them.

Having Zero Contact Info Will Affect Sales
We need to understand the difference between privacy versus deliberate, abject obscurity bordering on non-existence. The latter will have a direct impact on sales.

But, David, I don't want my e-mail address on there for spam-robots to harvest and start sending me offensive images, medical enhancement ads, mortgage info, solicitations of marriage from Russian women, or all that other stuff I already get in my InBox anyway.

I understand. And I don't want you to, either.

But you need to have contact information on your website or blog. You just need to make it spam-robot proof.

Here's How
Use a free service to encrypt your e-mail address, such as the one I have bookmarked at this site. Enter your e-mail address (carefully) in the proper field then click the 'Encode' button. Finally, select everything in the box and Copy it to the clipboard.

Here is what you have stored in memory right now. When you Paste it, you will see it all as one, long line, and without color differences as shown:
Code Snippet

The Clipboard
Think of the clipboard as a wallet for your computer task. When you copy, you are putting money in the wallet. As long as you don't paste, you have not spent your money. You can do a whole lot of things on your computer, and that money will still be there when you need it. Unlike a real wallet however, if you copy something else, it does not add the new money to the wallet — it replaces it.

Now, the code, as you've just encoded it will display your e-mail address on your web page, and will look something like this:

Yes, you can see it, and it's a working link, but spam-robots cannot see it.

If that's good enough for you leave it as it is. Or add "E-mail me: " before it, to get this:
E-mail me:

But maybe you'd rather just have this instead:
Purchase Inquiry? e-mail me!

You'll have to modify the code — and it's not that difficult. In the first code snippet I posted above, everything in red is the part you replace with what you would like the link to say. Leave the ">" and the "<" on either side of it:

If you copy that and store it somewhere in a text file, you can use that snippet of code anywhere in your blog, posts or sidebar and you'll have the right kind of robot-proof link every time! You miht even like to insert it into the descriptive paragraph of your Profile, in teh About Me section.

One Step Fancier
One other cool trick will help you determine if people are writing to you from your blog or website:

Add the following immediately before the last double-quote (see the blue text) like this:

Try it — It'll send me a thank-you: e-mail me


Diana Moses Botkin said...

Wow, David. I don't know how you find the time to do this stuff. But thank you for sharing your gifts with someone like me who is a techno rainman.

Some of this is um.... definitely...definitely... over my head, but very very sparkly.

I'll try out the simple stuff soon!

rick nilson said...


Your paintings are wonderful. I started a blog a couple of months ago and I live in a rural area where art galleries are something vacationers visit on summer days when there is too much rain to go to the beach. I have considered Ebay but the haystack seemed overwhelming. I can't post a painting every 3.5 seconds. I have always wondered if artists did sell paintings on ebay or if having an ebay store was just one more thing. If I may ask, do you sell work there?

Diana Moses Botkin said...

Okay, David. I finally did this. Thank you for sharing.

One thing; I think that final letter (m) in the last code box you show is a typo.

Diana Moses Botkin said...

Hmmm. This worked well on my website contact page, but for some weird reason blogger changed the code from the HTML window and substituted an email address with extra spaces, rendering it nonworkable. I've tried it several times.

Is there something I should add for blogger to keep the HTML code intact?