Date: October 29, 2016
Overall Ranking: Not Recommended
Independent business owner (IBO) toolbox is a business marketing platform designed to help business owners create their brand, network, build, and market their independently owned businesses. IBOtoolbox (IBOT) is an active social networking site for business owners.
All tools are free… No upgrades… No memberships… 100% free
Mr. Paul Williams, founder of IBOT stated the purpose of this business network as “The main goal of IBOtoolbox and IBOsocial is for people to brand themselves.”
NOTE: It has come to my attention in December 2018, that Mr. Williams is no longer associated with IBOtoolbox. Furthermore, it has been stated that website traffic generated to member ads is the result of bots generating fake traffic. Read more here. Consequently, I have changed IBOtoolbox from recommended to NOT recommended.
Introduction to IBOtoolbox
Since starting in 2010, IBOT has grown to be a very popular destination for independent business owners. As of today, Alexa.com ranks it as the 33,657th most popular site in the world and the 18,328th most popular site in the United States.
The success and popularity are due to achieving its goal!
IBOtoolbox provides a full set of tools for IBOs and very active social community, based on the volume of posts on the IBO wall. The tools available include:
- Contact Manager
- Facebook app
- Business blogger
- Lead generation
- Traffic System
- Press Release tool
- and a bunch more!
Of particular note are several benefits as discussed below.
Two Key Benefits of Independent Business Owner Marketing Platform
Of all the tools available to members, I find the Press Release tool and IBO Social Profile to be the best benefits. Others may say that the advertising resources rank on top.
IBOT is considered an authority site by the major search engines. Consequently, members’ published PRs will be indexed quickly by the major search engines. As a result, “authentic content” is preferred. And plagiarized content will be deleted and the member’s account suspended.
The second key benefit is the member’s IBO Social Profile. This is the key to personal branding! The social profile enables a member to display a personal image, business and contact information, business and social network links, video links, and a front-page editor to create a social profile web page. Members are also able to monetize their social profile with Google Adsense.
IBOtoolbox Pros and Cons
- It is free. There is an optional paid Club IBO that provides additional advertising among other things.
- A strong, active community of business owners
- The Press Release tool (business blog)
- IBO Social Profile
- Ability to earn credits for advertising – Members have the option of buying additional advertising credits. (This is how IBOtoolbox generates revenue.)
- IBO Wall posts scroll off the screen quickly during very active sessions. There is a filter function to select types of posts viewers prefer to see.
- IBOtoolbox is not a training site. It appears the assumption is that members are established business owners. However, there are webinars and separate training provided. Kris Karafotas runs a training platform. Also, IBOtoolbox has introduced a new function called IBOAnswers., which functions much like Quora.
- Scammers are among the membership. Membership is open to all without qualification. So there are people who promote dubious programs. As with any program, due diligence is required before joining any of them.
- IBOtoolbox allegedly generates fake traffic from using bots. Tracking data indicates traffic generated may be the result of bots.
I do not recommend IBOtoolbox for anyone looking for an independent business owner marketing network on which to advertise.
I have been a member since January 13, 2014. Based on the new information related to fake traffic, I have ended my association with it.
If you have any questions or comments, please fill in and submit the form below. I love feedback. I also would like to hear of other members’ comments about using the network.