Integrity Link Checker for Mac… Can I do without Xenu?

If you manage websites of any decent size, you’re probably familiar with Xenu Link Sleuth for PC. It’s an incredibly powerful tool that allows you to check links on your site for errors. Well, bummer for me, it’s Windows only and I’m on a Mac. I’ve pretty much replaced every other application that I used on Windows, but a Xenu replacement was the, shall we say, missing link? (har har.) So, after a client emailed me with yet another broken link on his website, I finally went on the hunt.

There appeared to be two major contenders when I Googled “link checking tool for mac”…

Braxton’s Link Tester (BLT) looked pretty good. The website displays a 3.5 mouse rating from Macworld. After reading Macworld’s review, I ruled it out because there is no option to exclude specified URLs or domains.

Then, I found Integrity by Shiela Dixon at Peacock Media. Integrity is inspired by Xenu, and it’s freeware. Hooray! Have I found the last piece to my Mac migration puzzle? Am I finally free of the PC?

I’ll be using Integrity over the next few days and will post a full review in a couple weeks. Check back for updates!

How to identify bad SEO companies

If it wasn’t so irritating, it would be funny.

I just received an email forwarded by a client from an SEO firm trying to contact me. The SEO firm sent an email to the client’s “info@” address to try and reach me to solict SEO services.

I admit: I’m baffled.

I’ve received plenty of phone calls for SEO services directly, from firms obviously mining WHOIS information, but this was the first time someone had gone through the trouble of locating an email link on the client’s web site, and then sending the client an email to try and reach me. I mean, if you’re going to take the trouble to go to the client’s web site, which many firms of this nature do not, why not spend a little time on the “Contact Us” page and email the marketing director, well, directly?

I suppose I could be giving them too much credit… They may have just taken a stab with the “info@” address & not visited the site at all. Either way, I don’t think we’ll be working together anytime soon.

Here’s a tip: While you need valid contact data in your domain registration information, it might make sense to have a unique email address for your registrant and domain contact info. Or even unique addresses for each contact type like “admin-contact@,” “technical-contact@,” etc. Doing so will help identify firms mining WHOIS information for their leads.

Big Caveat: Don’t change information on existing domain registrations unless you have to!  Some search engines pay attention to changes in domain registration information.

State of Kansas Doesn’t Advertise This…

I went to the DMV yesterday to get my new car registered. It’s not really new, but my mom’s old 2000 Mitsubishi Montero. I had all of my forms in hand, ready to go. Their hi-tech push-a-button-give-a-number system was down, so I approached the first window to declare my business and get my number.

I presented all of the appropriate paperwork and asked about also turning in the plate for my old car that I sold. I explained to the lady behind the counter that my old car was registered under my maiden name. She asked for my maiden name, which is Wright, and then just happened to ask if I was related to Susan Wright-Garcia (listed on the title for my new car). I told her, yes, that’s my mom. She then asked if I’d like to save $406.00. Duh!

Apparently, sales tax is waived in the state of Kansas if you purchase the car from a “lineal ascendant”. This would be grandparents, parents, son or daughter or their spouses. Siblings, aunts, uncles, nieces and nephews do not qualify.

I took the photocopied form from the lady and headed home to fax it to my mom to sign. Now, I am pretty good at researching the proper procedures for dealing with the DMV, especially since their closest office is just far enough away to make the trip a chore. I thought to myself, how could I have missed this? I would have possibly blown an extra $400 if it wasn’t for their faulty hi-tech push-a-button-give-a-number system. So, I went back to their site and looked on the page with all of the instructions for “Titling a Used Vehicle“. Nowhere on this page do they mention this money-saving fact. I searched for the form, which is available on their site as a PDF. The form is TR-215, Affidavit of Relationship.

So, there you go all you used car buying Kansans! Save yourself some money and use that form!