Content is essential to having search engines spider a site regularly. Blogs, as regular content solutions, go a long way towards having spiders return on a regular basis. Now, two blogger markets have opened up in the past week or two making access to content creators very easy.
The first market to open was Performancing's Blogger Exchange. There, people can buy, sell, trade or just plain advertise blogging services, blogs, and other blog-related items, such as post swaps, blog tech services etc. The market currently seems to be offering some interesting, quality jobs. Best of all, registering and joining the market/exchange is free! The layout is clean and simple too (more on this below).
The second market is popular ProBlogger Darren Rowse's exchange. Many of the jobs are for Darren's succesful b5media blog network, which of course many bloggers will be snapping at. On the flip side of things, advertising here costs $50. Darren's getting people to pay that, but it might discourage people with good ideas who are short on funds. If I'm using blogspot hosting and only coughing up for domains (which are, after all, assets that can be resold), I'm not putting out $50 to find another blogger.
Some other notes:
I like Problogger's clean individual pages. They need to take care of integrating foreign characters though, as this quotation shows: "Notas de fÃƒÂºtbol follows Spanish soccer and, with a bit less intensity, international soccer."
Performancing allows you to directly message other exchange users, a feature the ProBlogger exchange lacks. I imagine this will be quickly added, as Darren (or Yaro? I can't remember where I read the tip...) is an advocate of making things easy.
I notice that the layout is a little different, with job titles leading to individual pages with more information. I like both formats, though I think each content exchange might be better off using excerpts.
With regards to price, I suppose it's perhaps a matter of direction; Performancing keeping things more indie, with Darren aiming for the corporate market. It might backfire though, with more bloggers populating the Performancing exchange.
Of course, things like this have existed in the past. Internet classifieds have been around since at least Craigslist, and possibly earlier. The difference here is that the target market is more focused, and it's obvious from Performancing's comments that there is interest and a good response to adverts. Having attempted (unsuccesfully) to recruit via Craigslist, I must say this exchange is a welcome addition to the blog universe.
Having said all that, this is going to make SEOs' lives a lot easier. If a customer wants a content solution, you know you can have this outsourced easily. Furthermore, I can easily see SEOs crowding these exchanges and driving up wages for bloggers as they compete to hire the best and brightest content creators out there (and probably some of the mediocre ones too). This is definitely an appendix to my top 10 SEO tools list.
I wonder when the search engines will offer their own blogger classifieds? Given their expansion into blogging (Google owns blogger.com and does search for MySpace; Yahoo owns blo.gs), I say this is an inevitable development. The question is: will they create their own, or just buy out Performancing and Problogger's exchanges?
Update: I just bought some good domains for this emerging opportunity. If anyone is interested in buying, let me know. I've also just remembered an article I wrote at Site Flip entitled content appraisals, which will likely be interesting for this new market. You can check out the content appraisal tool that this websites for sale site, Website Auction Hub did with my article (the owner purchased the rights from me to do that ).