LotusJump Review: Do-It-Yourself Online Marketing Service

small_business_trends_lotusjump_screenshot_v2

LotusJump is a web-based software system that helps you improve your ability to get found online and in the search engines.

It is an automated system that:

  • points you to a wide variety of activities that you can do yourself to increase the number of places your business will be found online;
  • organizes those activities with a convenient online to-do list so you can structure your work;
  • provides automated reports to measure your progress.


How It Works

LotusJump searches through thousands of online venues to identify opportunities where you can get a listing for your website; pick up editorially-earned backlinks; get blog and media coverage; network and/or share content on social media sites; and develop online PR and buzz for your brand.

If you’re thinking of cheap software that automatically submits your website to hundreds of useless, spam-filled directories — ditch that idea right now.  This is not that kind of system.

Rather, to use LotusJump effectively will require much more of your creativity and smarts.  You WILL have to be hands on.  But the results will be many times more useful than “directory submission” software.

LotusJump identifies the places where you may be able to get listings or press/blog coverage,  submit an article to be published, create an online profile page, etc.  It’s up to YOU to actually go visit those locales, understand the requirements, and follow through.  It’s for this reason that LotusJump creates the online to-do list — because you’re going “to do” these activities.

To get started, you choose the keywords that are important to your business.  Then LotusJump presents a long list of visibility opportunities tailored for those keywords.  This will save you many hours of time that you would otherwise have to spend searching for relevant places where you can develop online buzz, or publish an article, or create an online listing, or develop backlinks.

The following three steps illustrate LotusJump’s process:

LotusJump algorithms for SEO

One of the best features about LotusJump is that it’s more than just a basic task list. Each task comes with detailed instructions that explain what that task is and how to do it. In these next two screenshots, you’ll see what I mean.

First, in this screenshot (click it to open larger image) you see a partial list of the activities that have been returned for the keyword “small business.”

Easy online system for do it yourself SEO

The list page is easy to scan.  You can click on the “X” to delete anything that looks like it doesn’t fit or that you do not want to do.  You can “pin” any items to your to-do list that you definitely decided to tackle (notice the orange push-pin).

But what if you’re not sure what the task involves?  Then in that case you click on the item.  It takes you to a detail page that explains more.  From there you can make a better judgment as to whether this is a task you actually want to take on.

DIY search engine optimization - LotusJump


Pros and Cons

LotusJump offers many benefits, but here are two major ones I want to highlight:

  • LotusJump shows you how and where to build relevant links that point to your website. This is the hardest part of SEO, in my opinion. Seeking out quality linkbuilding opportunities out there is really hard work, and this service does it for you.
  • It organizes all of your tasks into a familiar email-like inbox format. Each of these tasks comes with the necessary instructions to help you improve your visibility, rankings and traffic.

With all of its great benefits, there are two small limitations:

  • It doesn’t yet help you solve your on-site optimization. It assumes that you have successfully completed all of your own on-site work to make your website pages as search-engine friendly as possible – things like title tags, which again are the easier part of SEO.  According to LotusJump execs, this is likely to get solved in a future release.
  • Some of the tasks may not be relevant to you. For example, if you’re targeting a broad keyword like “apple,” you might get tasks for Apple iPods, or apple pies.  This problem can be addressed by either modifying your keywords or deleting the irrelevant task.

Again, these are small hurdles, and probably won’t slow down your efforts to get found online.

Who Should Use It

LotusJump is great for small business owners who lack:

1) time or expertise to do SEO research and link-building from scratch, or

2) resources to pay an outside SEO firm or individual expert on contract.

This is a do-it-yourself service primarily aimed at the SEO beginner/intermediate (which probably includes most small business owners).

Conclusion

Could you do some of this yourself without using a service like LotusJump? Absolutely. Would it be as easy, painless, and inexpensive? No.

According to Andrew Pincock, CEO, there are some very accomplished search agencies and business owners doing their own SEO who have signed on to use LotusJump, and that speaks volumes about how useful and effective it is. Even if you have a technology person or team on your payroll, you could use this affordable service to organize all the link-building and buzz-building tasks and make that person or team more efficient.

With LotusJump you get an affordable “research assistant” that is constantly searching and filtering online resources for you (and giving you instructions on how to complete them).

In summary, LotusJump is for the business owner who wants to improve their online presence, but doesn’t know where to start, and can’t afford to outsource. If you have some time, initiative and a desire to improve your website rankings and your brand’s online visibility, then take a look at LotusJump.

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TJ McCue - Product Editor


TJ McCue TJ McCue is the Product Editor for Small Business Trends and an entrepreneur who publishes Tech Biz Talk. TJ is a former Wall Street Journal columnist. He also writes for Forbes and American Express OPEN Forum. He loves learning about technology apps and software services - share yours with TJ.

41 Reactions

  1. Thanks for the review TJ! If anyone has additional questions, you can always hit us up at support@lotusjump.com or @lotusjumpseo on Twitter.

  2. Martin Lindeskog

    TJ: This sounds like a great service. I have to check it out. How much does it cost?

  3. Oh My! Thanks for sharing about this TJ. I’m very much interested to use it. Btw, you have not mention the cost? I hope it’s not that expensive… :(

  4. Wow, I had never heard of this before but it sounds quite useful. Thanks for pointing the way here! Going to go check it out now . . .

  5. There are two price points: $24 and $49 per month for 3 or 10 keywords (http://www.lotusjump.com/pricing-and-features.php). If you have an e-commerce site and want to optimize for more of your product pages with many more keywords, email us for a custom quote (support@lotusjump.com).

  6. This is definitely a good product to know about, that’s for certain. I would love to hear from people who have used it.

    Julie T.
    http://www.jadcc.com/blog

  7. Anita Campbell

    Hi TJ, thanks for taking the time to write such an in depth review for the rest of the Small Business Trends community. I’ve been using LotusJump and really digging it. It’s a neat system — without it we wouldn’t know where to start.

    Big kudos to Andrew and Robert and the rest of the LotusJump team.

    – Anita

  8. Thanks for the heads up. I am also optimizing my small business marketing campaign and I found this to be very resourceful. Thanks for the share!

    Reggie Ike

  9. TJ McCue

    Thanks everyone for the positive comments, much appreciated. I was very excited to review this service as I know so many small biz owners who can use it. I’m one of them!

    @LotusJump Thrilled to see you guys here so quick, but then again, I would sort of expect if anyone knew when a conversation started it would be you guys!!

    @Martin and @Bianca — The service price points are listed below in a link by the responsive LotusJump team. But I think it is super affordable given the results. I will try to mention others that I know are using it in the comments over the next week.

  10. Joel Libava

    Hi TJ,
    You know, I signed up for it when it was offered for 10 bucks a while back. After 2 short months, I quickly tired of it.

    It is too slow! It grabs too much non-relevant info.

    It has turned out to be a major time-waster. I think they did speed up the delete function a tad, but they lost me.

    Great idea. It needs to be taken up several notches. Anyone else agree with my little old review?

    The Franchise King
    Joel Libava

  11. This looks very interesting. I’m intrigued to see what kind of a help it could be for me. I’ll have to consider trying this out. It’s a bummer that they don’t offer a free trial though. :(

  12. @Joel — I see you jumped on the Duct Tape Marketing Cyber-Monday promotion ($10) — we appreciate the feedback. We’ve made some updates over the past few months. We’d be happy to set up a call with you to discuss.

  13. TJ McCue

    @Joel
    Thanks for the review from another user. I appreciate your candid feedback on your experience. You have some valid points. I am not arguing with your perspective and experience.

    Part of what I immediately like right now is LotusJump’s lightning quick customer service reply! The fact that their system is being used to monitor the blogosphere and websites helps me see that it will also be tuned into my keywords and phrases and online marketing needs.

    My take is this — it is a lot of work to keep up with all these tasks and even with some chaff (which you point out), I have mostly found wheat. I’m not trying to paint an all-happy review; improvements are part of life and needed on the LotusJump system in some areas, too, but for the price point I have not found another option that comes anywhere close. Getting found online is not super difficult, but staying found is harder. I believe LotusJump helps you stay found, stay relevant. You have to delete some tasks, for sure.

    You are very active online, Joel, so many of the tasks may be in your regular routine and thus less valuable to you as a savvy web marketer. I mean that in a positive way, just to be clear.

  14. TJ McCue

    @Amanda
    Thanks! I encourage you to try it out. For $25 you can’t go wrong and once you’re in, you’ll see why they don’t give it away. Personally, I’m not a huge fan of the free trial because I have a number of customers who struggle with lots of support for no money. I’d rather pay someone and see them survive as a business than take free, get hooked, and then see the company crater. Don’t get me wrong — free is nice! :-)

    But in this economy, and any economy, the free models have to be brutally tested. They’ve been around for a long time, right? Free samples, free trials. They have their place. Tons of great examples out there of Freemiums, that then also a Premium. Again, this is my personal belief around software-as-a-service mostly. I do lots of things for free to be of service to others, other biz owners. The Sales Rescue Team is like that — a lot of work, for no fee, but it has won me new projects over time. Opened up new relationships. Thanks Amanda!

  15. Anita Campbell

    Hi Joel, you probably don’t remember this, but did you try narrowing your keywords? Big broad keywords do return things that may not be relevant.

    Anyway, thanks for your review. With any luck, the LotusJump people will read your review and make improvements. They already have worked on some of my suggestions for improvements. :)

    – Anita

  16. Mark Anderson

    Wow, this looks great! Just signed up and can’t wait to dig in! THANKS!

  17. TJ McCue

    @Andertoons Hey Mark! I’m excited to hear you signed up. Would love to receive progress reports from you on how its going. No cartoons, just words! Just kidding. Let us know if LotusJump helps.

  18. Joel Libava

    Lotus Jump,
    Thank you for your speedy reply. I did contact one of your reps a couple of months back, and he did say that you folks were working on the “delete” functionality.

    There must be a better way to set up the interface. How about columns, or something. it just takes to long to keep moving through the links the way it is set up.

    I like the idea. I like the “look” of the site.

    Active online speed demons like me need to move through the non-important clutter, quickly.

    I am sure that I am not the only one to share my frustrations.

    Again, thank you for your speedy reply, and your willingness to hear me out.

    The Franchise King
    Joel Libava

  19. Joel Libava

    Anita, and TJ,

    This is how social media is supposed to work right?

    1. A product or service review is written
    2. A negative user experience surfaces
    3. Product representative comes on the review site {or a blog] and apologizes, and opens himself {or herself} up for suggestions. {Same day, too!}
    4. User with the negative experience shares a little more.
    5. A dialogue emerges. This may NOT have happened a few short years ago, but because of great innovators like Tony from Zappos.com, the “quality” companies join the revolution, and take care of business. Good stuff.

    Nuff said.

    The Franchise King
    Joel Libava

  20. @Joel — well said. Thanks again for the feedback! We definitely want to make LotusJump as easy and effective as possible for our users. I only wish my development wand was still working to make it all “better” at once! I promise we’re working on it :-)

  21. This looks fabulous! Thanks for highlighting it. This will help me with my rankings for my retail consulting practice.

    Have to go now, have to get started!

  22. Interesting software. I may grab a copy of it myself.

  23. TJ McCue

    @Ted Let us know what you think so we can all learn from your efforts at LotusJump. Thanks.

  24. TJ McCue

    Thanks for the suga’ at BizSugar.com. Much appreciated to all who have voted it up to the top. Thanks to Richmond Blogs, too, for the trackback and post.

  25. Nice, but overwhelming for small businesses trying to do it themselves.

  26. Hello,
    Thanks for sharing information about this controversial topic how we improve our ability to get found online and in the search engines.

  27. waoh……it is a web-based software system which helps me improve the ability to acquire found online and in the search engines.i have gotten many information from this thanks for it.

  28. Great post. Thanks for sharing these great information with us. I am also optimizing my small business marketing campaign and I found this to be very resourceful. Thanks for the share!

  29. I just signed up for LotusJump and am really excited to see how well it works. Still waiting for the task list to load. It said 15 minutes but it has been a few hours.

  30. Sorry for the temporary delay, Cool Springs! I checked, and it looks like your tasks have since arrived.

    UPDATE:
    We’ve identified the lazy computer that’s responsible for this lag, and under intense pressure he’s agreed to submit his resignation.

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  33. Does anyone have an update on the speed and usefulness of LotusJump for supplementing your on-page SEO efforts?

  34. Automation is the way to go. Any online business looking to have real growth will never do so unless systems are automated. It blows my mind there are programs available now that do the work of what previously took 100 people.

    John R Carlisle

  35. I just considered opening a small company. How can I try to find a loan ???

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