Announcing BlackMonk Version 4.0 - There's something in it for everyone

Better writability for the publisher, and better readability for the audience. What could be more virtuous about a CMS? We would like to introduce BlackMonk 4.0. This could easily be our biggest release yet, because we have redefined multiple modules of BlackMonk, thereby enhancing a range of operations. Articles, Gallery, Community, Design, Performance… You name it; we’ve improved it.

Publishing Articles:

Authors get their own vanity profile page with links to their posts, that they can show off. We also figured that if the editor likes them, then everybody likes them. That’s why we introduce the Editor’s Pick page, where admins can display a select few featured posts.

 

 

“Breaking news” for all those instant timely updates and “Top ten stories” should let you create a sense of urgency and take advantage of your readers’ attention span.

Rich media like videos and photos spice up stories like none other. But uploading the same media in two locations is inefficient. That’s why we’ve come up with embedding media. Videos, audio clips, tweets, Instagram photos, Vine videos and more.

 

That way, you can also make it easier for your readers to interact with those media, right from your web portal. For instance, readers can like, favorite and retweet media instantly.


On the reading front too, we have news. Readers can now mark articles as favorite so that they can read it later. They can also subscribe to the articles of their choice.

 

Gallery and stock images:

Getty Images and Shutterstock are now integrated with BlackMonk, letting you browse through  thousands of stock images for your articles and gallery.

 

 

 

Just configure your API key of Shutterstock, Getty Images and Flickr in our settings, and you are good to use millions of great images on your web portal.

 

For the Community:

Q&A is now more social. And precise. We have enabled sharing of Q&A’s on social media, which will amplify the reach of the questions. In addition, admins can prune out those answers and questions which just don’t cut it.

 

Design:

We have always believed it is more about how you say it than what you say. Justifying that claim, you can now configure custom themes with the choicest fonts and colors.

 

 

Or you can get started right away with the predefined themes that we offer.

 

 

 

And it is also possible to dynamically change the labels on the home page from your website. You can name and rename every section on your portal. That’s an opportunity to get creative. Banner zones has also been under the microscope to deliver better impressions of those ads.

In addition to all the above, there are enhancements that are invisible to the eye, but ensure smoother and consistent loading of content. Auto-loading events when searching, and upgraded universal analytics code are a few to note. Visible or invisible, they all have one common objective; better write-ability for the publisher, and better readability for the audience. Try BlackMonk 4.0 for your web portal today.

 

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Released: Android App for BlackMonk

BlackMonk Android app

We are pleased to announce the release of the Android App for BlackMonk CMS. The all new Android app allows publishers to deliver a fabulous user experience on ALL Android-powered mobile phones; users can now look-up information on the go! The current version of BlackMonk Android app  includes articles/news section, business finder, event calendar and classifieds.

Here’s a quick look at the key features:

Delightful content presentation

The Android app makes reading articles and news stories a delightful experience. Users can quickly flip through news stories, browse through categories and view images in slide show mode. The app also enables users to keep tabs on upcoming events, as well as bookmark events/news stories for future reference.

Map based search & geolocation features

The app provides a convenient way for users to look-up nearby supermarkets, gas stations, restaurants or any other local business. Users can either run a text search or use the map to find nearby businesses. Once user has selected a business, the app launches GPS enabled navigation for turn-by-turn driving instructions. The map based search and GPS enabled navigation features are also available in event calendar and classifieds section of the app.

Powerful user engagement

User engagement on BlackMonk powered portals gets even better, as the app provides a convenient way for users to comment on articles and review business listings/events.

Download the official BlackMonk Android app for a hands-on experience:

https://play.google.com/store/apps/details?id=blackmonk.mobile.activities&hl=en


BlackMonk v3.7 with built-in promo pages for marketing and more

BlackMonk v3.7

BlackMonk v3.7 gives publishers the essential marketing toolkit to help them attract new advertisers & cross-sell to existing advertisers. The new releases also introduces enhancements in deals and contest apps as well as many other features which enhance the overall user experience.

'Done for you’ marketing

BlackMonk has always been at the forefront of innovation with respect to monetization. And, each successive version of BlackMonk has introduced new features which’ve helped publishers create a lucrative online promotional space. However, even a promotional platform needs to be marketed, so we’ve created promo pages which can be used by publishers as marketing collateral.

Built-in marketing pages for publishers

Featuring impactful graphics, crisp copy and pleasing design, the new promo pages create a lasting impression on potential advertisers. Promo pages make it easier for publishers to market their website as a lucrative destination for online advertising and promotions.

Newsletter promotion for deals

The previous version of BlackMonk (BlackMonk v3.6) gave publishers the ultimate edge over established deal sites, by creating a system where merchants can enjoy greater control over their deal campaign. BlackMonk v3.7 introduces newsletter promotion for deals. The new feature makes it easy for publishers to send out newsletters to subscribers - informing them about newly added deals. Publishers also have the option to build subscriber base by importing contacts through a CSV file.

Automated and manual winner selection for contests/sweepstakes

Manual winner selection for contests

BlackMonk allows publishers to run timed contests/sweepstakes, which helps drive engagement and attracts referral traffic. BlackMonk v3.7 introduces new enhancements to the contest app, which gives publishers more control over winner selection. Publishers now have the option to automate winner selection as well as select winners manually from a list of qualified entries.


BlackMonk v3.6 with new revenue model for coupon marketing & sweepstakes

BlackMonk v3.6 is all about giving publishers the competitive edge. The new release allows publishers to offer unbeatable promotional opportunities to local & niche businesses. Plus, publishers now have the ability to run contest and sweepstakes programs aimed at driving engagement on social networks.

Lead the game in coupon sales

While deal campaigns are a sure-shot way to boost sales, businesses interested in coupon marketing are often thwarted by the rigid terms of deal websites. Most deal websites offer very little flexibility to businesses with respect to payments terms and redemption rules. As a result businesses see less profits despite increase in sales volume.

Self-service system for adding and managing deals

With BlackMonk v3.6 publishers can offer businesses a lucrative space for coupon marketing. The enhanced deals app enables business to run deals campaign with full control over voucher inventory, redemption rules etc. The new interface makes it easy for businesses to manage deal campaigns and keep tabs on voucher sales.

BlackMonk v3.6 makes coupon marketing a win-win proposition for publishers and businesses by eliminating the issue of financial liabilities. Businesses can create deals without making any upfront payment to publishers. And, when customers buy coupons/vouchers they pay a fractional amount which is retained by the publisher, while the rest is paid directly to the business at the time of redemption. This unique model of conducting deal campaigns gives publishers an edge over competing deal websites.

Drive engagement trough contests and sweepstakes

BlackMonk v3.6 allows publishers to run contests

BlackMonk v3.6 introduces contest app which allows publishers to create contests (featuring multiple choice questions), or run exciting giveaway campaigns. The contest app provides a convenient way to create timed contests/sweepstakes with the option to automate entry screening and winner selection - based on predefined parameters. Contests and sweepstakes are strategic tools through which publishers can drive sign-ups, build subscriber-base for newsletter campaigns as well as get facebook likes and twitter follows.

In addition to above features, BlackMonk v3.6 introduces numerous workflow optimizations and feature enhancements aimed at delivering an exceptional web portal experience.


BlackMonk v3.5 – The most advanced web portal software for online publishing

BlackMonk v3.5 introduces path-breaking advancements that enable publishers to create a delightful user experience. BlackMonk provides enhanced monetization capabilities that enable publishers to create highly profitable revenue channels. The latest release also introduces new responsive templates featuring minimalistic UI that brings content to the center stage - providing users a great way to browse and read content.

BlackMonk v3.5 delivers enhanced functionality across all areas including: SEO, site management, geo-location features, reports and more.

Add a new dimension to your online directory business

The online directory business is based on traditional subscription model that has remained unchanged for years. BlackMonk v3.5 adds a new dimension to the directory business, by merging the traditional subscription model with commission-based coupon sales.

Publishers can now allow directory subscribers (merchants) to sell coupons on the website’s deal store. Merchants can add deals via their directory listing, set coupon inventory and receive payments through online/offline mode. The system allows publishers to set a commission rate, and automates all financial computations as well as payment processing.

This unique revenue model allows merchants to drive sales, and creates high potential revenue opportunity for publishers.

Keep ahead of trends and achieve goals through actionable insights

In order to achieve business goals, publishers must keep-up with the changing preferences of users and advertisers. BlackMonk v3.5 provides enhanced reports through which publishers can track traffic, monitor business performance and keep tabs on revenues.

Business Reports for Actionable Insights

The advanced reporting system, provides a convenient way to track more than 100 KPIs across variable timelines. It enables publishers to find answers to questions like: which area of website is most popular with users, which service earns maximum revenue, what kind of content is shared by users – and so on. The reports offer valuable insights, which help in formulating strategies - aimed at achieving desired business objectives.

Enhance content presentation with mobile ready templates

Now, publishers can maximize the visual impact of their website and promote readership by making content more accessible. BlackMonk provides mobile ready Opal and Ivory templates - featuring content focused design that allows users to browse and read content with ease. The new templates ensures great content presentation across all sections of the website, and provide seamless user experience across computers and mobile devices.

Drive traffic through Google rich snippet optimization

We understand that search driven traffic amounts to more than half of the total page views received by web publications. Which is why BlackMonk has always provided strong SEO features that allow publishers to improve search rankings through customization of SEO configurations - at page and section level. BlackMonk v3.5 enhances the SEO capabilities by optimizing content pages to leverage the benefits of Google rich snippets.

Rich snippets is a feature of Google Search, which structures the description of a search listing – based on nature/type of targeted content. For example, the listing of a product review includes: story title, date of publication, star ratings and brief summary. Google rich snippets optimization helps in boosting website traffic, as search listings featuring well-structured description are reported to have a higher Click through Rate (CTR).

Create beautiful pages with inline editor

In addition to creating editorial content, publishers need a convenient way to create and manage generic pages like ‘About us’, ‘Advertise with us’, ‘Terms of Service’, ‘Editorial Guidelines’ etc.

BlackMonk v3.5 introduces the advanced inline editor that allows publishers to create pages with rich formatting, photos and videos. Unlike the conventional WYSIWYG editor where content is edited within a small text area, the inline editor gives the experience of editing a live web page. The handy context menu provides all the formatting plus media insert options, and can be invoked with a single click.

Syndicate content to websites and apps

BlackMonk now provides an API framework to allow publishers syndicate content to third party websites and apps. The framework makes it possible to selectively fetch content from specific section of the source site.

BlackMonk v3.5 is the most powerful user focused and business focused publishing platform – that helps publishers to grow their audience and generate higher revenues. If you are interested in taking your publishing business to the next level then click here to get it touch.