Zen is a Yandex advisory service. It automatically forms a feed of interesting articles based on user preferences.
The Zen tape is visible on the Yandex main page (turn down), at zen.yandex.ru, in Yandex Browser, Yandex.Loncher and the Zen mobile app.
We, creators and distributors of content, are interested in the following:
The daily audience of "Zen" - 10 million people, and over the year it has doubled.
The service leads traffic to the author’s website or channel for free.
"Zen" gives novice bloggers the opportunity in the first days to get tens of thousands of views.
The service pays authors for publishing.
For the balance immediately list the disadvantages:
Zen has an unpredictable algorithm. It is controlled by artificial intelligence, so even the developers themselves do not fully understand how it works.
The service has some flaws in the design and functionality.
With monetization, everything is also not as simple (and not as much) as we would like.
Now in order.
- Feed or RSS?
- How to register a channel
- How to connect the site to "Zen"
- How to connect to the channel "Yandex. Metric"
- How to write an article in the editor "Zen"
- How to insert text into a narrative
- How to add a link
- GIFs and videos
- Work with blocks and screens
- Prohibited content
- How to add a button or form of collecting money
- Tracking statistics
- How to track transitions to the site from "Zen"
- Lecture hall
- What themes go into "Zen"
- Statistics fluctuations
How it works
After the publication of the material, the service analyzes it (it takes some time: from several minutes to several hours) and begins to offer readers interested in the topic. Information about the interests of the user "Zen" gets from the history of the browser. In addition, he invites the reader to note which media interests him.
The user has the ability to "train" the algorithm - put likes, if he wants to see more publications on this topic, and dislikes, if he does not like the topic. You can also subscribe to your favorite channel or block uninteresting.
The authors have no way of influencing the robot: just create high-quality materials and watch the impression counter spinning.
How many impressions there will be and how far the topic will be interesting to users cannot be determined in advance: everything is in the hands of the algorithm.
Feed or RSS?
Zen gives authors two possibilities: to feed the channel or link to the service RSS-feed from their site. Example: channel and tape from the site.
RSS feed from the site
The traffic stays inside Zen, but you can link to your site.
Traffic goes to the site.
Texts are edited in the editor "Zen". You can create narratives.
No extra action is needed.
Articles are optimized for smartphones and tablets.
Depends on the site.
Headlines, leads and images are optimized for Zen.
There are glitches.
Monetization is possible.
There are statistics of hits in the feed, views, readings, likes and dislikes, you can connect Yandex.Metrica.
Only site statistics.
Need a website with at least two dozen articles in the blog.
Previously, Zen gave the media the opportunity to choose one of the options. Now it has become more difficult. To connect the RSS feed to Zen, you will have to start a channel and go through the monetization threshold.
Old texts from the site that were not distributed via RSS can be duplicated on the channel. Sanctions for this are not provided.
But the usual announcement of the format "Wow, we wrote down a cool article, read the sequel on the site" can not be posted: according to the rules of service you can not post material only in order to get transitions to an external site. Any post in "Zen" should have independent value.
If you do not have a website, this problem is not worth it - just open the channel in "Zen" and write there.
How to register a channel
Log in to Yandex and go to the Zen page for the authors and click Login.
Click the button with the letter "I" to get into your profile.
How to connect the site to "Zen"
You must have a channel with the monetization threshold passed. This is a must.
The blog on the site must have at least twenty articles with at least one picture for each. The site is over a month old. Publications should be relatively fresh.
To connect the site, create a specially marked feed RSS. The easiest way to do this is if your site is managed by CMS Wordpress (if not, read the detailed instructions in the Yandex manual).
For Wordpress, download and activate the RSS for Yandex Zen plugin. Go to the settings of the plugin and leave all the items filled in by default, except for the column "Subject records by default." There we choose the appropriate topic:
Click "Save Settings". All, the tape is available at: //www.my_sayt/feed/zen/.
Tape and channel are combined through Yandex.Webmaster. Log in to the service under the same login to which your channel is registered. Enter the site address and confirm that you have rights to it in any way possible. Return to "Zen", open the menu, insert the address of the RSS-feed and click the "Check" button, after which your application will be sent for moderation.
Moderation takes from three days to several weeks. After it, you will receive a response letter from Zen, and your tape will appear at // zen.yandex.ru/your_site.ru (see, for example, // zen.yandex.ru/texterra.ru). It’s impossible to enter the tape - it’s just a showcase where all your publications are displayed.
How to connect to the channel "Yandex. Metric"
By default, Zen shows only five characteristics: the number of impressions in the tape, the number of clicks per article or narrative, the number of readings, the time users spent reading (only articles, the narratives have no last metric), and the number of likes.
If you want to know more about your readers, connect to the Yandex.Metrica channel. Go to the counter creation page, think up a name, in the "Domain" column indicate the address of your channel, accept the terms of the user agreement and create a counter.
Go to the tab "Basic" and copy the number of the counter. Return to your profile, click the "Connect metric" button and insert the number of the counter into the field. Everything, now you can look at detailed reports on visitors of the channel.
The Zen support service informed me that the counters are connected only to articles and narratives, and not to the main page of the channel. Therefore, if you announce your channel on social networks or link to it from your site, the Zena metric will not be able to count the number of conversions.
How to write an article in the editor "Zen"
Click the green plus in the upper left corner of the screen and select "Article."
The Zen editor provides a surprisingly mean set of possibilities. And it is uncomfortable, buggy and counterintuitive.
If you type text and select it, the formatting menu appears.
You can make the text bold, italic, underlined. You can select the sidebar or the headlines H2 and H3.
If you select a text and link a link to it, and then continue typing further, all the following text also turns blue and turns into an anchor. Delete the link can not be, only with the text.
The interface supports bulleted lists and emoji, but you cannot create them in the editor itself: just copy it from somewhere. In short, the editor for today is so inhuman that it is better to type and format text in Google Docs, and then copy it into “Zen”. From the "Word", unfortunately, does not work - on the way formatting is lost.
If you place the cursor on an empty line, the menu for inserting images and code will appear on the left. If it does not appear, it means there was an extra space on the line, delete it.
Pictures, by the way, are also inserted crookedly - for some strange reason, an empty line appears above them and below them. To avoid unnecessary work on the design, also copy them from Google Docs. A signature line will appear if you click right below the picture.
The code insertion menu allows you to add to the publication videos from YouTube, posts from Instagram, Facebook, Twitter, Yandex.Maps maps and Yandex.Music playlists.
In most cases, simply copy the link to the desired page. The only problems arise with VKontakte and Yandex.Music.
In "VKontakte" click "Share" - "Export" - copy the item code.
In "Yandex.Music" - "Share" - "HTML-code" - copy the code - paste it into the editor window.
When the article is ready, click "Publish". In the window that opens, edit the title and description, select one of the pictures for the card.
The maximum header length is 100 characters. Descriptions - 398. But the longer the title, the less space is left for description. With 100 characters in the header, the lead disappears altogether.
The impression counter starts working not immediately, but several hours after publication.
Narrative - own original format "Zen". Most of all, it is similar to stories on Instagram, but narratives do not disappear within 24 hours. Here is an example:
Not quite a decent, but extremely popular narrative, which we placed in "Zen"
The best narratives of the day fall on a special promotional page. The narratives from there are shown in fourth place in the mobile tape, which increases the coverage of the publication.
To create a narrative, click the plus sign in the upper left corner of the screen and select the "Narratives" section.
The maximum number of screens in a narrative is 12.
The first screen is the cover of the narrative. She has limited functionality. On the cover you can add only a picture, video or gif, change the color of the background and write the title. You cannot change the font size in the header. I do not recommend adding videos and gifs to the cover - a static picture will be displayed in the tape and it is difficult to predict exactly which frame it will hit: no one guarantees that it will be successful.
How to insert text into a narrative
The text in the narratives is made up in blocks. The maximum you can insert three blocks of 296 characters each.
To increase or decrease the font, pull the block around the corner. Unfortunately, it is impossible to simply set the font size, you have to do everything by sight.
The text can be painted in different colors and select the substrate.
Unfortunately, the formatting is applied immediately to all the text in the block. To create text on the same screen with different formatting (for example, title and main text), use several blocks.
How to add a link
Link formatting works just like plain text formatting.
Please note that the anchor and link URLs are inserted in different windows. Just copy the working link does not work: the address must be inserted separately.
Zen does not recommend inserting too many references into one narrative: just one on the very last screen. Excessive number of links is bad for ranking.
You can upload a picture in jpg or png format. The latter is especially useful for creating design elements.
The simplest example: to make a rectangular background for text, draw a rectangle in Photoshop, save it in png format, paste it into a narrative and write on top of it.
For this narrative, I drew a white frame with rounded inner corners in Photoshop, saved it in PDF format and put gifs on top to bring them all to the same format.
GIFs and videos
In narrative, you can download videos in MP4 or GIF. Maximum length - 10 seconds, size - 30 MB.
Immediately after loading, the gifs or videos look like this:
A couple of times I encountered a bug: the processing of gifs lasted for several hours. If this happens to you, do not panic: publish the narrative, while the gifs are not loaded, you can not, but you can safely close the window and wait, the results will not be lost.
Work with blocks and screens
Each next added block will be placed on top of the previous one. To change the order, swap the block icons:
So that the block can be dragged, it should not be selected.
You can swap the screens themselves.
For convenience of formatting in "Zen" there are tickers: they allow you to align elements on adjacent screens.
Life hacking. To place blocks with the same formatting on different screens: located at the same height, same size and with the same size, click on the necessary block, copy it with the Ctrl + C combination and paste it onto another screen.
Another experimental format "Zen" - a video that can be viewed directly in the tape. Nothing is known about him at all, so we’ll omit this question before the information appears.
Zen has quite strict rules.
Prohibited content in Zen. Read the full rules in Yandex. Help.
Keep in mind that the service is actively struggling with copy-paste and useless announcements that do not have their own value, but offer readers to go to the site.
The channel, which for the first time reached 7 thousand complete readings of the article per week, with an average reading duration of at least 40 seconds, can activate monetization. Zen gives you three options: connect the Yandex advertising block to the channel, direct ad sales through ADFOX or the Yandex advertising network and insert a money-collecting form. In short, the differences are that in the first case, "Zen" assumes all obligations: he chooses an advertiser, decides on taxes, finds a place to publish advertising. Nothing is required of you.
In the second case, you decide where, when and how to place banners.
Usually everyone chooses the first option, because it is easier. About him and talk.
"Zen" pays from 40 to 180 rubles per thousand views of one publication. Money can be withdrawn on Yandex.Walm or PayPall (for foreigners).
Moderation takes about three days, with a large load may be longer
A little bit about earnings:
Screenshot from the presentation of "Zen" at the conference "Friday"
Consider that these are top bloggers. Ordinary people often earn much less.
I will not delve into the topic of direct sales here - this question will pull on a separate article, but you can read the details in the Yandex.Dzen help.
How to add a button or form of collecting money
When the channel passes the monetization threshold, this button will appear on the left in the article editor:
On the Yandex.Money website, create a form or a button and paste the code into the window that appears.
If no option has come up to you, you can try to find direct advertisers, since more and more brands now prefer to order advertising from bloggers directly.
In Zen there is no paid promotion and they do not plan to introduce it.
The only additional opportunity is to apply for the Channel of the Day contest. The story about the channel and interviews with its author will be published in the rather popular magazine "Zen" and in all social networks. It will give nothing more. Watch all the channels of the day in the magazine "Yandex. Dzena". To apply, write to [email protected]
Channel coverage is clearly influenced by the number of subscribers: it is not only people who will be shown your publications. The Zen Algorithm analyzes the behavior and interests of your subscribers to find a similar audience. The developers claim that the length and complexity of the article is important. Exactly how complexity is evaluated is not specified. But, perhaps, we are talking about pictures, gifs and videos. Perhaps influenced by the number of likes.
Negatively, up to blocking the channel, affects copy-paste and stolen content.
The Zen support service informed me that the counters are connected only to articles and narratives, and not to the main page of the channel. Therefore, it is impossible to see how many people visited the page itself.
This is bad, because it is not possible to know how many people have followed the link if you are advertising your channel somewhere.
How to track transitions to the site from "Zen"
First, all the links to our site that were placed on the channel, we supplied with UTM tags to track the number of conversions. It turned out that you can act easier:
You can view the report in any analytics system in Yandex.Metrica: this is done in the following way: Reports - Standard - Sources - Sites.
This report shows why we stopped doing channel management - the number of transitions from articles and narratives did not correspond to the effort expended. At the same time, the RSS feed gives us a noticeable traffic without any effort.
According to Yandex, the daily audience of Zen is 10 million people. And it is growing rapidly. Over the fall, the audience has grown by a quarter. To increase coverage, Zen launched partner blocks on major media sites.
The fact that "Zen" is not a social network is clearly visible in the audience. Half of readers over 45 years old.
Screenshot from the presentation of "Zen" at the conference "Friday"
What themes go into "Zen"
There is one topic that definitely does not go into Zen - Internet marketing. I read the reviews of many users of the service, and not one said anything in the spirit: "Yo, bros, I’ve overstepped the monetization threshold on Internet marketing."
Zen itself distributes the top 20 topics:
Somewhere at the bottom you can find the Internet and technology. Screenshot from the presentation of "Zen" at the conference "Friday"
Just do not ask what they mean by hobbies and professions. I have no idea.
Fluctuations are such an interesting feature of Zen. They face almost the authors of the service. The topic is so important that "Zen" even devoted a chapter to her in the certificate:
Просто помните об этом, когда ваши новые публикации будут набирать намного меньше просмотров, чем предыдущие.
У "Дзена" есть недостатки. Начиная с неудобного редактора, заканчивая непрозрачным алгоритмом. But this service is now the only one that allows independent authors to immediately get traffic and monetize their blog. It does not require paid promotion and does not impose any requirements at all: only to create high-quality content.
Zen has positioned itself as the most friendly platform for authors, and he has reason to say so.
All minor flaws are forgivable compared with the great prospects of the service, let's not forget that in its current form, "Zen" exists only six months. So far, he has a funny monetization and small coverage, but huge prospects and a lot of free niches. I will show this picture again:
The social and political niche of traditional media is crammed. But here is very little about sports (we keep football in mind), relationships, psychology and health. So the road is free. If you start working with "Zen" now, you can get to the beginning.Performance Marketing from TexTerra - we are responsible for our work and bring new customers. You only pay for the result. Contact us!
As a fly in the ointment, I will remind you that Zen is among the experimental projects of Yandex, and the company has the ability to cover up its experimental services without explanation. But I want to believe that everything will be fine - a very promising new product has turned out.