Pimp my links: Yourminis

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For the fourth installment of the Pimp My Links series we’ll be featuring Yourminis, a flash-based personalized homepage. You can customize the minis (widgets) to watch YouTube videos, read RSS feeds, listen to music, check your email, and much more.
###MySpace Page
Yourminis recently added the ability to post your minis on MySpace and the company already has their own MySpace page that shows a couple of their widgets. Actually when I viewed the page the minis didn’t even show up for me, but that may just be a temporary issue.
The one thing their MySpace page doesn’t do good job of is showcasing all the things you can do with Yourminis on MySpace. Seeing that they’re obviously pushing their company pretty hard to the MySpace demographic they need to do a better job featuring all the cool ways you can integrate the minis into MySpace pages.
I’d also work on cleaning up the design of their profile page and making more friends. At the time of writing this they only had 593 friends, which is not nearly enough considering they are trying to promote the use of Yourminis on MySpace. After all, these people are your target audience and you need to reach out to them and then engage them with a spiffy page that really highlights what Yourminis can do for them. In regards to the design I can’t tell if it’s a page for Goowy or Yourminis, focus on one or the other or make two separate profile pages.
###Make it easier to share
There is currently no way for me to invite my friends to view my personal page, sure I can get a custom URL that I can then manually post to my blog or email someone, but I don’t see an option that lets me directly email friends to view my page. Not only does this make it easier for me to share my page but it also has the likelihood to cause a lot of people to share their pages that might not otherwise because it’s not easy enough at the moment. If I see that little link that says, “share with my friends” I might be prompted to actually do that. Ideally, they should offer this whether you have a Yourminis account or not.
###Widget anchor text
Yourminis has taken the first step towards making the minis (widgets) search engine friendly. They actually use straight HTML for the link instead of JavaScript, which I picked on MyBlogLog for doing a couple weeks ago. I have to at least give them credit for this because a lot of companies have failed on this one simple step. But there’s a small problem with the Yourminis links, they’re using an image instead of text for the anchor. Images are not as effective, but I can understand if they want to keep them because they look better than normal text. But, and this is a big but(t), if they do keep the images, they should at least add an “alt” attribute to the img tag.
Yourminis has a solid foundation for increasing the number of inbound links coming to the website and improving the ones they already have. However, after spending quite a bit of time with Yourminis, at the moment, I don’t think that linkbait is really the solution to the problem. Sure, the more links the better, and for more reasons than one. But what Yourminis really needs to do is focus on improving the usability of the site. If they do that the links will naturally follow because people will want to tell their friends about it. For example, the message on the homepage doesn’t clearly explain what Yourminis can really do for me. Yourminis is actually a pretty cool service, but at the moment when I hit the homepage, it’s not instantly clear exactly what it is and why I should use it. Keep in mind that I’m a savvy web user too, imagine what would go through the head of someone that isn’t quite as savvy.
Yourminis, you have been “Pimped”!
Now we’d love to hear your opinions. Did you like our ideas? Do you have more things to suggest? If so feel free to say it in the comments below. We are still accepting submissions for the “Pimp My Links” series, so if you haven’t sent us your URL you can do so through our contact form.

Cameron Olthuis

Cameron Olthuis

Cameron Olthuis

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