It is well known that link popularity is a major factor that affects the ranking in search engines. Writing and submitting articles is one of the easiest ways today for internet marketers to gain links and targeted traffic for their business, blog or service. It is completely free but it takes a lot of work to submit articles manually. To help you in the process here is a list of the most popular article directories.

How it works: Most article directories allow you to write something about yourself or your website in what is called the resource box. It is usually located just below the article, and this is were you can put links to your website. Make sure to use the keywords you are optimizing for as the anchor text. It’s also better if the article you are submitting is relevant to the topic of your website.

Don’t submit the same article to several directories, search engines like unique content. Submitting original content will give much more weight to your links. If you submit the same article to more than one directory the search engines might flag it as duplicate content and penalize it. You need to make some changes to the article before submitting it to another directory. That way you will gain the maximum benefit of each submission.

Promote your articles! Share the links to your articles on social networking sites, like Twitter and Facebook. This way they will get more traffic, and that means more people will click your links in the resource box.

FirefoxThere are thousands of useful add-ons for Firefox. Below is a list of add-ons to make traffic exchange surfing faster and more secure.

NoScriptIn my opinion, everyone surfing traffic exchanges should use the NoScript add-on. When surfing traffic exchanges, you are visiting a large number of sites. Some of them might have exploits, malware and viruses. NoScript disables scripts and plugins on all sites except the domains you add to the whitelist. It will block all malicious scripts and XSS attacks and keep you safe while surfing. NoScript will also block annoying sounds, automatic downloads, popups, frame breakers and other unwanted scripts.

KeyconfigKeyconfig allows you to change the keyboard shortcuts in Firefox. By creating a keyboard shortcut for ‘next tab’ you can quickly switch to the next traffic exchange without using the mouse.

Auto Toggle Tabs – Auto Toggle Tabs allows you to automatically switch to the next tab. This add-on adds an entry to the tools menu where you can set how long each tab will be active before switching to the next one. Delays from 2 to 60 seconds can be set.

Fox Splitter – This add-on splits the content area of the Firefox browser, allowing you to view several traffic exchanges in the same window. After you have loaded all your traffic exchanges in tabs you can choose to tile all tabs vertically or horizontally – and they will all gather in the same window. With this add-on you don’t need to switch tabs at all.

Tab Mix PlusTab Mix Plus enhances Firefox’s tab browsing capabilities. This add-on has many features to improve tab browsing such as duplicating tabs, controlling tab focus, tab clicking options, undo closed tabs and windows and more.

Logiscape Technologies Inc. is one of the biggest players in the traffic exchange industry today. They have been in the business since 2001, developing and operating some of the most innovative traffic exchange programs on the internet. Their network consists of 5 free traffic exchanges, all with unique features to help you get more traffic: (Alexa Rank 16,405) is the largest of the Logiscape traffic exchange sites. There are several ways to earn credits on TrafficEra. Like other traffic exchanges, you earn credits by surfing and viewing other members’s sites or by referring new members. But what sets TrafficEra apart from other exchanges is the team-surfing feature. You can join an existing team or create one yourself. Each team, consisting of 25 members, compete in the weekly surfing contest with prizes of 50,000-1,000,000 traffic credits. There are also daily ‘clock-races’ with even more chances for your team to win credits., Traffic Syndicate 25 (Alexa Rank 27,941). On TS25, your downline is built based on how active you are. At the end of every week, all members are ranked and placed in a ‘syndicate’ depending on their weekly activity. This means you will earn credits for everyone surfing below you in the Syndicate Downline. For bonus credits, there is a surfing game where you can win up to 1000 credits when you uncover all the letters of the word “SURFING”. In addition to this game, there is another game where all members of your syndicate work together. If your syndicate is the first to uncover all the letters of the word “JACKPOT”, you win the progressive jackpot. The jackpot is added to the syndicate value for the week. (Alexa Rank 62,921) is the newest Logiscape site, launched in September 2009. This is the only Logiscape site where you can earn real cash. Standard members earn 10% commission on upgrades and credit sales, upgraded members earn up to 50%. Another way to earn real money with Hitsilo is in the monthly loyalty points draw. Every month, $1000 is given away to members who reach the loyalty point requirement. Loyalty points is very easily earned simply by being active. You will receive points for logging in every day, surfing and clicking links in e-mails Hitsilo send out. (Alexa Rank 98,216) is quite different from other traffic exchanges and can seem confusing at first. On this site, you earn credits by surfing ‘traffic pods’. There are 1000 traffic pods, each pod consisting of 10 web sites. After surfing 10 pods (100 sites) you will enter a Bonus Pod where you can win ‘pod points’. After surfing 100 pods you will enter the Super Pod, with even bigger pod point rewards and a possibility to win cash prizes. If you are a standard member you can receive ownership of a traffic pod by being ranked in the top 25 surfers of the week. Once you own a traffic pod, 50% of your pod points will be converted to traffic credits every week. You will also earn credits when other members are surfing in your pod. (Alexa Rank 147,853) is the oldest of the Logiscape sites. HitPulse has been online since 2001, and works much like a traditional traffic exchange. When you surf you will earn traffic credits and Power Points. Power Points can be converted to traffic credits or be sold for LogiBucks.

Since Sweeva opened last month, just over 12,000 people have joined. If you haven’t heard about Sweeva yet, it is a whole new concept to traffic exchanges. Sweeva combines the old concept of traffic exchanges with social networking. What sets this traffic exchange apart from others is that everyone who is logged in is viewing the same site at the same time. People can comments and give thumbs up or down, giving you instant feedback. There is all kinds of new exciting features to help you make more money and more traffic. To learn more, join Sweeva by clicking the banner below.

Now that exactly one month has passed since Sweeva launched, they have announced a referral contest. Starting today, the member who refers the most people in 14 days wins an Apple iPad tablet computer. For a referral to count in the contest, they must surf at least 100 sites or upgrade their membership. Second prize in the contest is $100, third prize winner get a Sweeva t-shirt and mug, and 5 random referrers will get $10.

NeoBux opened in April 2008 and has been paying it’s members for 2 years. NeoBux is not a scam site, see payment proof here. So far NeoBux has paid out over $19,000,000 to it’s members! Neobux is unique in that it has instant payouts. Just seconds after a cashout request you will have the money in your PayPal or AlertPay account. No weeks of waiting like on many other sites, wondering if you are going to get paid or if the site is a scam. Standard members earn $0.01 per click and $0.005 per referral clicks. Usually, there are 4 ads per day. There is a very active forum and support questions are answered quickly.

Click Here To Join NeoBux

Payments: The minimum is $2 on the first cashout. The minimum will then increase by $1 each cashout until it has reached $10. Payments are instant to PayPal and AlertPay.

Direct Referrals: Standard members can have 30 direct referrals after 30 days of membership and 100 clicks. After the first 30 days the limit will increase depending on how long time you have been registered. The longer you have been a member the more direct referrals you can have. For standard members the limit increase will be: Days you have been a member – 30 divided by 4. So if you have been registered for 130 days your limit would be your first limit of 30 + (130-30)/4 = 55 direct referrals. If you have inactive referrals it is possible to delete them and make room for new active ones.

Rented referrals: Can be rented for $0.25 per referral in packs of 2, 10, 20, 30, 50, 70, 100. If a rented referral is inactive for 14 days it will automatically be replaced for free!

Upgrades: Upgrading your NeoBux account to Golden costs $90. Upgrading will give you a higher referral click rate, increased referral limit and cheaper rented referrals. After a Golden upgrade you can buy additional packs, ranging from $290 to $890, for even better discounts, higher limits and other benefits.

Related posts: Legit PTC Sites That Pays!

CashClicking is a traffic exchange from the people behind LinkGrand. This site works like all of the other free traffic exchanges but with one unique feature: you can sell your credits for real money!

In order to sell credits you must first buy a seller’s license. This is to cover all transaction costs and it will never expire. The cheapest license is $5.00 and allows you to sell credits for $25.

Bonuses: Win tickets while surfing to the weekly lottery with prizes of over 10,000 traffic credits. Daily “mystery-credits” to random members who have surfed at least 20 sites. There are also poker and blackjack games where you can gamble and win credits.

Upgrades: $7 for 1 month. This includes 1:1 surf ratio, double commissions, random referrals and a free Bronze Seller’s License (worth $5) which allows you to sell credits for $25.

Payouts: PayPal or check. Minimum is $25 and there is a cashout fee of $1.00 + 1% of the payment amount.

Referral program: Earn credits on 5 levels (10%-10%-10%-10%-10%). You also earn commissions when any direct referral upgrades or purchases a seller’s license.

Recognizing Scam PTC Sites

Some PTC sites were created just to steal your money. They might pay for a while, then close down and vanish after taking money for upgraded memberships, referrals and advertising. How do you know which PTC’s are legit and which ones will disappear and never pay? There are some things you can do before investing in a paid to click site to avoid getting scammed:

1. Do research. Before you commit even a small amount of time clicking or spending money on referrals and upgrades do your research. Search for the site on Google and see what comes up. Use your common sense, there will always be people who got caught cheating and breaking the rules who will complain and write bad reviews even for legit sites. If there is nothing but complaints though, you should probably stay away from that site.

2. Be skeptical. If a site offers $0.50 for viewing a 20 second ad, how can they afford it? Read the site’s rules. Maybe the minimum payout is impossible to reach or anything else that looks suspicious. If it seems too good to be true, it probably is.

3. Always be careful when investing in a new PTC site. You can see at which date a domain has been registered by doing a domain WHOIS-lookup. If you look at the WHOIS information you can also see if the owner’s personal info is there, or if he/she is hiding it. Someone trying to hide might not have the best intentions.