Automated cross posting (opinion)

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I manage 40 sites that are similar, but different. For the sake of a simple=
 explanation, think "car sites"; one is about Chevy, one is about Ford, one=
 is about Pontiac, etc.

Each of these sites offer free classified ads. It's not uncommon, though, f=
or an ad to be appropriate for more than one site; eg, a lot of GM parts ar=
e interchangeable between Chevy and Pontiac, so they would be appropriate f=
or 2-3 of the sites, and some things (like paint) might be appropriate for =
ALL of the sites.

Sometimes, people will copy them over manually. But most of the time, they =
don't; they'll post on the busiest site, and neglect the slower ones.

Currently, when you submit an ad, the system looks for certain key words, a=
nd if it thinks that an ad could be appropriately copied to another site, i=
t's emailed to me for review. If I think it should be copied, I'll do it ma=
nually. This is a big job, though, and can take a couple of hours each day.

So, I'm trying to streamline the process. My first thought was to just copy=
 the ads instead of emailing them to me for review. The problem, though, is=
 that they MIGHT have already placed a similar ad, in which case I'm now ju=
st creating a duplicate.

My next thought was to search for those keywords, and if there's a match th=
en prompt the poster and ask if they would like to copy them to one or more=
 of the other sites (listing the ones that match those keywords). They woul=
d simply check off the appropriate sites and submit.

My concern is that in doing so, those people that currently do visit the lo=
wer traffic sites would no longer have to do so, which would result in less=
 traffic to those sites. Which, of course, translates to less ad revenue fo=
r me. But at the same time, it might remind the other posters that those ot=
her sites actually exist.

What do you guys think? Would you risk losing some current traffic in the h=
opes of gaining new traffic?

Re: Automated cross posting (opinion)

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You could so something like:

Choose those categories which apply:
__ Chrysler
__ Pontiac
__ VW
__ Ford
__ Audi

Then depending on what was choosen, post to what ever categories the user

Craigslist does something similar, ads in San Fernando Valley crosspost
to Los Angeles without the user having to do it.

Adrienne Boswell
Arbpen Web Site Design Services - /
The Good Plate - Fresh Gourmet Recipes - /
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