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How this works

Castle Surf wants to provide as much aid and assistance to webmasters as possible.  This system is designed to help webmasters get traffic to their sites in a simple, cost-effective way.  This benefits the webmasters in a couple ways:

  • More traffic means potentially higher ratings on statistical sites, such as Alexa and SiteRanking
    • Higher statistical ratings mean potentially higher relevance on search engines
  • More traffic means more exposures and impressions are made of your site and it's advertisements
  • More traffic means better positioning at 'topsite' websites
    • TopSites are just more categorical-specific versions of a statistical ratings site
  • More traffic means more potential customers coming through your website

One mistake that many Traffic Exchanges make is telling a webmaster that they will be "flooded with targeted customers, ready to buy".  That is not the primary purpose of a Traffic Exchange.

The primary purpose of a Traffic Exchange is to generate traffic to the website, period.

That being said, if your target audience is "webmasters working on promoting their websites", then you will probably reach some potential customers.  But even then, do not expect high conversion rates.  Webmaster surfers are all in the same boat: they want more traffic, for higher ratings, for better rankings, to get customers from the larger search engines.

General Concept

In a nutshell: You visit other websites through one of our viewer systems and earn 'tokens'.  Each token entitles one of your pages to be shown to someone else.  For those interested in tech-speak, we only offer Manual Surfing options.

You are a webmaster, and you want web-surfers to see your website, for all the reasons listed above. Castle Surf will show your website to other users, at a cost of 1 'token each time your website is shown.  So, as long as you have 'tokens' available, your site will be shown to our other Castle Surf users.

[In train-speak: We'll let you put your station on our tracks.  Trains carrying passengers will stop at your station, as long as your station has 'tokens' to stop the train.  Passengers earn tokens by riding the train to other Keystone Station.]

Tokens are gained in a couple different ways:

  1. When you first join Castle Surf, you are given some tokens
  2. You can choose to 'be a passenger', and surf other sites through one of our display systems.  For every site you visit, you will earn tokens
  3. We also sell tokens, with bulk-discounting available. i.e.: When you buy more tokens, you pay less per token.
  4. You can display our referral page.  Each display to a unique user on a given day will earn some tokens. 
  5. You can also refer other members.  If someone signs up through your referral page, you get tokens when they sign up, and a percentage of their token earnings when they are a passenger.
  6. If someone you referred purchases something or upgrades their membership, you get some tokens from that, as well.
  7. We also now offer a Banner Exchange: Place a line of javascript on one or more of your website's pages, and every time that page is viewed, you earn between 0.1 and 0.15 tokens, depending on the size of banner you select.

Different earning and referral ratios are available to different 'levels' of membership.  For specifics on how many tokens are earned in different ways at each level of membership, see our Membership Levels page in the Pricing section.

Terminology used on Castle Surf:

We are using a 'train' motif to add a little color and individuality to our Traffic Exchange.   

Yard - A website (or part of a site) that dedicated to Traffic Exchanging.  A yard contains tracks and boxcars, to carry passengers between stops, Keystone Stations, and other yards.

Tokens - A unit of value.  1 token allows a member to show one page they wish promoted 1 time.  tokens may be earned through viewing, referrals, or they may be purchased.

Stops or Stations - A page on a web site.  This is what the passenger views  to earn tokens.

Keystone Station - A block of related stops that can be presented in a particular order to passengers.  This allows webmasters to create longer, more attractive, or more meaningful messages to passengers.  [Does anyone remember the old 'Burma Shave' signs?]  This also has a nice side-effect, since it will look to site-statistics systems as though each user is 'clicking through' multiple pages, creating longer visit times.

Tracks - A connection between way-stations, and between separate yards.  This software provides the tracks to move passengers around the internet.

The Train - The TrEx website is the train... it takes passengers on "treks" through various websites in exchange for tokens.

Passenger - A web surfer, using our viewer to view sites like yours in exchange for tokens (or cash).  This is also the generic term used for any membership level.

Riders - A high-volume passenger.  They get extra benefit by being a more-frequent passenger.  This bonus can add on to any membership level.

Yard Hands - A monthly membership fee allows the Yard Hand to manage lots of Stops (many pages to display), create Way-Stations, and travel faster and more profitably than a Passenger.

Engineers - A monthly membership fee entitles the Engineer to travel on faster trains, and earn more tokens per stop.  As 'drivers of trains', Engineers have an advantage over Yard Hands.  Again, more Stations, and faster travel.

Boxcars - A specifically structured group of unique passengers, designed for extremely high-volume site requirements.  This refers to a special type of surf system we will be presenting in late 2004.

Local Controller - A monthly membership fee entitles the Controller to manage more stops than an engineer.  This is also the first level where 'way-stations' may be created, to provide more persuasive advertising.

Station Master - An option for those in extreme need of very heavy traffic.  A monthly fee provides a station master with extreme speed, and options for 'private boxcars' (priority in main rotation within a yard).  Station masters have the most control within a given yard of any user outside of the Yard Master, and may create up to 5 way-stations.

Yard Masters - A member of VS:TrEx network.  Yard Masters can run their own copy of TrEx on their own site (their own yard), bringing in Passengers, Yard Hands, and Engineers through their site, expanding the TrEx network.  To learn more about the TrEx network, we have created a section called all about the network.

We envision TrEx as the 'Central Yard Controller', shuttling 'boxcars of passengers' across 'tracks' to 'way-stations' and other 'yards'  where 'passengers', 'riders', 'engineers', 'yard hands', and 'station masters' can all benefit.

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