Posted October 9th, 2008

Well it saddens me to say that my experience with SocialBot V3.0 was somewhat disappointing. The truth is, it sounded like a great social bookmarking program and I was excited to shell out the bucks to purchase. Unfortunately, that’s when things began to fall apart for me. Let’s review.

Let me start my review by saying, “I really wanted it to work”! SocialBot V3.0 sounded like it was going to save me loads of time from manually submitting my links to the Social Bookmarking sites which crashing my servers with traffic.

I was ready!

I pulled out the plastic (actually paid through PayPal) and purchased SocialBot V3.0 which went through without any hitches. I got it download and installed which only took a few minutes. So far so good.

The software GUI itself was pretty well laid out. Most everything seemed to make sense by looking at the buttons. Add sites, spider sites, submit sites… doesn’t look too hard.

The thing that took the longest was going through and manually setting up accounts at the 120 plus Social Bookmarking sites. I used RoboForm (free Roboform Guide) to register at all of the Social Bookmarking sites and TypeItIn to enter my user names and passwords inside of the software itself as it doesn’t seem to allow pasting by traditional methods.

Using those two tools really speeds things up and I was ready to go in no time at all… or so I thought.

The next step is to add in your “exclusions”. This means to add text that you want the spider to ignore like your .jpg, .pdf or .zip files. I did this, still no problem but I wish there would have been mention in the documentation to also add the pound sign (#) because a lot of links include that especially if you are using WordPress which the majority of my websites run on.

Next is to add in your websites. Again, very well laid out interface that makes it very easy to do. Once you add them in, you can choose to limit the number of pages SocialBot V3.0 spiders or allow it to spider them all. There is also an option to limit the number of pages bookmarked per day per website.

I’m liking everything up to now! I’ve invested a little time, a little money and now it’s about time to reaping the fruits of my labor.

All that’s left to do now before pushing that submit button and unleashing the crazy crowd of credit card waving customers is to spider the pages.

This is where things kind of fell apart for me.

For some reason, it wouldn’t spider my sites correctly.

When it attempts to spider your website, a box pops up with two sections. The top sections is “pending to spider” and the bottoms section is “spidered”.

The top section “Pending to spider” scrolls through my pages with no problem. I see them, there they are but… for some reason they aren’t added to my bottom “spidered” section.

It does get a few pages but not many at all, most of the times it would get anywhere from 3-10, maybe.. if I’m lucky.

I’m not panicky, after all, this product was being sold at my favorite internet marketing forum (pre-launch) by a well known and respected member. He had numerous, glowing testimonials from other long time members who had nothing but great things to say.

Here’s a snippet from one of the raving testimonials:

“I used it on a site that had been neglected by us for months. I gave the site a facelift and then ran the social bot through it. I received 256 unique visitors the next day to the site, with some staying on the site for more than 30 mins.”

Umm, I’ve really got to question the authenticity of that testimonial. Not because it didn’t spider my websites but because of the 256 unique visitors they claimed to have received the very next day but I’ll get to that in a moment.

Well, where was I? Ok, I was not panickly but also not estatic for obvious reasons but I felt reasonably sure we would be able to get this troubleshot and rectified.

Meanwhile, since I had already added in at least 10 of my websites, the least I could now was to try and submit some of the pages it did find. I had come this far, I was going to get something out there!

I selected one of my websites and clicked the submit button. Ok, I’m starting to get estatic again. Maybe it didn’t get all of my pages spidered but you can enter them manually, it even has a bulk importer, (now I know why that’s built in, lol).

Anyway, I clicked the submit button figuring to at least get 3 pages from each of my websites out to the 120 plus Social Bookmarking websites. In my limited math abilities that comes out to somewhere around 360 links out there.

That’s not bad and will do for a start until we can get this spidering issue resolved.

The submitting box pops up and shows the Social Bookmarking websites and the status as it goes through them. Completed, failed, failed, failed, completed, failed, failed, failed, and so on. You get the idea.

Out of the 120 Social Bookmarking websites, maybe about 10-15 were actually successful. You can’t really tell exactly because as soon as the submitter is finished, the submission window closes and there is no log to look at. The only evidence anything has happened is there is now some text next to your websites that says “last submitted on”.

I did this a few different times with different, manually added pages since it still wouldn’t spider, oh yes, I did keep trying to spider them. I watched closely as it ran through the submissions and made a mark for each “successful” which turned out to be less than 20.

I emailed support about my problems and given the fact that they are in a different part of the world and in a nearly opposite time zone from mine, their response was reasonably quick, within 24 hrs or close to it.

They asked for some of my websites I was having trouble with and I sent that to them along with the specifics of my operating system, etc..

Again, about 24 hrs later, I get a response that they had been able to spider the website they tried and came up with about 1500 pages. Oh, and they suggested that I add the pound sign (#) to my exclusion list. Ok.

Well, that doesn’t really help me that it works on their computer. I need for it to work on mine. There were no questions about what anti-virus I was running, am I behind a firewall, check these computer settings in case things are set too restrictive, nada, nothing, zip, zilch. Just, “It worked for us”.

I still want this to work, so I uninstall and reinstall SocialBot V3.0, nothing.

I verify I have the latest .NET framework which is required. Check!

I really don’t know what else to do so I email them back and tell them that it still does not work for me and this time there is no response, 24hrs goes by, 48hrs.

That’s enough I guess. I have other things I need to do and they have stopped responding to me so there really is no choice. I ask for a refund. In over 10 years of internet marketing, I have never asked for a refund before. This is my very first one and I did everything possible to avoid it. I would have gladly kept answering questions should they have wanted to troubleshoot the problem further than “It works for us”.

To their credit, the refund was nearly immediate despite the time zone differences although I was slightly disappointed that I had to find out about the refund by receiving a notification from PayPal.

No “Sorry it didn’t work for you”, no “Please come back again”, not even an email to let me know they had refunded. This is sad because I’ve always respected this marketer and would not have hesitated to do business with him again in the future.

As a matter of fact, he seems to strongly advocate good customer service on the forums and comes across as someone who treats his customers right, regardless.

So, in summary, I’m kind of disappointed by my SocialBot V3.0 experience. This review is an account of my own personal experience and in no way means that every person using this software had the same issues as I did or even any issues at all.

By the way. I mentioned earlier that I questioned the 256 visitors received by the person giving the testimonial above and while it may be true. I saw nothing, nada, zilch the next day or even now, many days later which is why I questioned the authenticity of the testimonial.

There’s always Bookmarking Demon if you want to automate Social Bookmarking or download my free RoboForm Guide and use the links in the WAH Toolbox above and do it manually.


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