Most paid blogging Web sites will pay to advertise on a writer’s already existing blog, or offer writing topics to compete for. With Today.com, writers are paid on the basis of posts and unique hits to their exclusively managed blogs. For each post, one dollar is added to the user’s account. For every thousand unique hits, two dollars is credited. In addition to the payment plan, the Langhorne, PA-based company is unique from other paid blogging sites in three ways. For one, Today.com is the exclusive host of the blogs. After being approved, each blog is given a user-chosen Today.com domain name, such as BayAreaShows.today.com. With Today, you are essentially managing your own small business, and the amount of money you make depends directly on the popularity of your blog topic.

Secondly, Today.com users do not compete with other bloggers for writing content. Other paid blogging sites will offer a topic for all members, with only few members (or less) actually getting paid. With Today, each posting is credited based on grammar, word count and relevance to your exclusive Today blog site. Although it is a good idea to keep relevant to your approved blogging topic, Today.com employees give plenty of latitude in their posting approval criteria.

Finally, Today.com allows its members to access the real-time traffic statistics of their blog. A Today.com user can review her unique and total page views, referring sites, and the search phrases that led to her traffic. Users can also monitor their traffic in relation to other Today blogs. Although this interface is not as advanced as Google Analytics, i.e. it does not provide geographic location or page viewing times, Today.com’s version is sufficient and improving.

Naturally, there are some areas of Today’s paid blogging service that need improvement. The look and feel of Today.com’s homepage is banal. Adding images, especially for the featured blog, would make the homepage more attractive, and consequently increase traffic. Also, Today.com advertises that a writer can bump up to a higher pay plan based on the popularity of her blog, but Today does not provide exactly how popular the blog needs to be. Informing users of these benchmarks, such as expressly setting an average traffic or comment requirement, will undoubtedly increase Today.com’s member base.