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related content widgetHave you ever found yourself with several browser tabs open while blogging, searching for references, images or related information to support and link to in your article? You probably have. How great would it be if that information came to you while you were writing? This would not only save you time, but also would jumpstart your creativity since you wouldn’t have to stop your thought process to navigate away from your work.

Zemanta strives to help bloggers with this every day. It works on most browsers and blogging platforms, making it practically universal – perfect for bloggers.

The Idea Behind Zemanta

related content widget

Zemanta is simply a company that is about social blogging. Isn’t blogging social already? Well, kind of. However, Zemanta strives to connect you, the blogger, with similar bloggers and a larger audience who are interested in the same topics that you write about. For example, let’s say you have a food blog where you post about creative recipes that you have recently tried. You want an audience who is interested in the same thing right? Of course – that’s what every blogger wants. And you want to connect with other bloggers and writers who enjoy sharing similar information and content right? Again, of course. Zemanta assists you with this, enhancing the social aspect of blogging even more.

How Zemanta Helps You, The Blogger

As I said above, Zemanta is all about assisting you, the blogger in connecting with others who wish to read or share about similar topics. There are several ways they accomplish this; through providing links to related articles, suggesting images, providing links to keywords within your article, suggesting tags, and by enhancing the social connection between you and others with the same interest.

Versatile across blogging platforms and browsers

zemanta review


As the image above states, once you’ve installed Zemanta it will automatically load on blogging platforms including WordPress, Blogger, Tumblr, TypePad, Posterous, Movable Type, and Drupal. As far as browser support goes, it supports Mozilla Firefox, Internet Explorer, Google Chrome, and Safari. Note that the actual name of the extension varies some from browser to browser. In Firefox it is called “Blogger’s Personal Assistant,” while in Chrome and IE it is called “Related Content.” In Safari it is simply called “Zemanta.”

If you would rather not use a browser extension, there is also a bookmarklet available, which I actually mentioned in a previous article on MakeUseOf 5 Web-Based Tools For Any Browser That Every Writer Should Use 5 Web-Based Tools For Any Browser That Every Writer Should Use As writers, there are a lot of tools at our disposal. And since I’m also interested in technology, I’m constantly finding applications and techniques that are helpful. I wanted to keep it simple by providing... Read More .

Provides resources through related articles

Adding related articles into your blog post is a great idea for a couple reasons. For one, it provides your readers with more diverse information and shows them that you aren’t only interested in them reading your blog, but you also want them to read great content elsewhere too. Secondly, it makes fellow bloggers of those blogs happy that you’re directing traffic their way. Because of this, it could very well result in a relationship with that blogger and they might just link back to you later on.

Below is what it looks like in your dashboard (screenshot taken in WordPress)

zemanta review

Below is what it might look like on your blog:

zemanta related articles

Suggests images similar to your content

Adding images to blog posts can be a daunting task. First you have to find an appropriate image. Then you have to make sure that it’s under the rights that make it appropriate for you to use. Zemanta takes care of these worries by displaying relevant images.

Also, there are several options you have when embedding an image into your blog post.

zemanta related articles

Below is the finished product. As you can see the embedded image includes the source.

zemanta related articles

Easily link in-text keywords to outside sources

Although linking to articles is great, sometimes simply linking to a keyword or several at a time works better. It allows the reader to explore more on that linked topic that may not even be the exact topic of your blog post. For example, in the article on my personal website about creating a personal website, I may want to link to Wikipedia to give more information about what a domain name is. This allows me to stay on topic while still providing information to my readers which they might find relevant personally.

This is how it appears when a reader is viewing your blog post:

Stronger SEO through tag suggestions

related content widget

I’m personally not an expert on search engine optimization (SEO), however I do understand the important of tagging your posts and the affect it has on results in search engines. I don’t think you really need to know the technical aspect to realize that it has importance in getting your blog out there.

That said, sometimes we simply aren’t sure what tags to type, or don’t want to take the time to type them all out. Zemanta displays tags that you might want to associate your post with, then leaves it up to you whether you want to include them or not. You simply add them by clicking on them.

Sign Up And Reap Even More Benefits

To use Zemanta, you don’t need an account. However, I’ve found it very beneficial to have one – plus, there’s really no reason not to. Having an account allows you to add your own blogs and image accounts to your Zemanta profile. This allows you to find and link to not only your own past posts and photos, but it also means your blogs and posts will be indexed in Zemanta’s database making them more likely to be found and promoted by other bloggers that are similar to you.

Zemanta will also notify you when your blog is linked to. In addition, you can also link your Amazon Affiliate ID with Zemanta. There are a plethora of other options available as well.


Zemanta is an excellent tool for any blogger, no matter your experience, topic or frequency of blogging. If you blog, plan to blog, or maybe want to get back into blogging, try Zemanta – I guarantee you won’t be disappointed.

What is your experience with Zemanta? Has it improved your blogging experience? Do you have any additional tips in using Zemanta?

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  1. john rigby
    November 3, 2012 at 10:33 pm

    It is an extraordinary program for any serious writer. (I've been writing professionally for decades till I retired).
    Zemanta is magic. Replaced my research and support technical staff of four. It is actually sending me "back to work".
    It is a snap to use.
    It is a "door-opener" for connections to other writers.
    The only caveat for anyone serious, is to remember that Zemanta is a great source for IDEAS - not PLAGIARISM.
    Aim to keep visitors on YOUR site, not just send them away to another.
    THAT means finding a better way to express the information - make it easier to read, more succinct.
    Oh, and more complete in itself. :-)
    Unfortunately it DOES mean actually working, so only try and write about your genuine interests - passion is even better!

    • Aaron Couch
      November 4, 2012 at 3:07 am

      Excellent advice John! Thanks for your insight! And for reading too!

  2. Zemanta
    October 25, 2012 at 10:08 am

    Hey Aaron!

    First of all — big thanks for the blogpost about our product! We certainly hope that it'll fulfill your expectations.

    Bear in mind that you're always more than welcome to ask us anything about how it works or if something goes wrong (hopefully, nothing will). We're always ready to help you out!

    Here's our email address (support[at]zemanta[dot]com) or you can follow us on Twitter (@ZemantaSupport). Our Support Center is also always updating with new info, so you're welcome to take a look:

    Once again, thanks for your feedback and have a nice day!


    • Aaron Couch
      November 4, 2012 at 3:08 am


      Thanks for sharing that! I certainly appreciate it and I have communicated with the Zemanta Support Team on a few different instances.

      Thanks for taking interest in my article and MakeUseOf.

  3. Anonymous
    October 23, 2012 at 2:54 pm

    How do people get such wonderful ideas? It is a great program. Thanks

    • Aaron Couch
      October 24, 2012 at 7:50 pm

      I agree! It's pretty awesome - I just love the Internet. Thanks for reading!

  4. Dino Pearsons
    October 23, 2012 at 10:33 am

    I've seen similar tools for bloggers, but this one looks much better. I'll give it a go. Thanks for the recommendation.

    • Aaron Couch
      October 24, 2012 at 7:50 pm

      Absolutely! Thanks for reading. Let me know how you like it!

  5. Saurabh Banwaskar
    October 23, 2012 at 8:36 am

    Much Like It !!!!!!!!!!

  6. Boni Oloff
    October 23, 2012 at 7:25 am

    I also have trying this last year, but i think i prefer do conventional blogging.
    Just don't like it.

    • Aaron Couch
      October 24, 2012 at 7:49 pm

      Actually, in my experience, it helps you do conventional blogging. Do you mind explaining what you mean further?

  7. salim benhouhou
    October 23, 2012 at 7:00 am

    zemanta is awesome i use now for over 6 months .

  8. Justine Muller
    October 23, 2012 at 2:26 am

    I love this program... I have been using it on my self hosted WordPress site for almost a year and would recommend it to everyone. It is very helpful, especially if you are new to writing blog articles - it helped me with linking within my blog more so than any other tool. I also love that you can get an email whenever someone links to you... make sure to add all your websites into their database because you will get links if you have good content! This is an easy way to get new visitors to your website as well. Aaron has done a great review here... go and download this program - it's a must have in my book :)

    • Aaron Couch
      October 24, 2012 at 7:48 pm


      Thanks for reading and for your great comment! I love that you have found the value in Zemanta. It really is an amazing tool.