Can You Still Make Money on Hubpages?

Hubpages Payout Email

Email notification of monthly payout. User agreement prohibits Hubbers from showing exact earnings.
Email notification of monthly payout. User agreement prohibits Hubbers from showing exact earnings. | Source

Are Hubbers Still Making Money?

So many hubbers are disenfranchised with online writing, even here at Hubpages. Through the years, Hubbers have had their high online earning times and we have experienced some low earning times here recently.

The online writing community has become saturated with sub-par content and ways make money quickly scams that people are frustrated. (grammatical error on purpose...see questions about what makes quality hubs below).

In the beginning in 2006 through around 2010, Hubbers were able to successfully earn payouts quite frequently. Some of the best hubbers, like Marye Audet, Kathryn Vercillo, Habee, and Jimmythejock were able to earn substantial incomes each months as late as of 10/2011.

But, Google Panda changed it all....or did it.

Google Panda Attacks Online Writing

Google's Panda Update seriously tanked traffic and earnings for many online writers.
Google's Panda Update seriously tanked traffic and earnings for many online writers. | Source

Google Panda Update Hurts Online Earnings

Let's be honest, Google Panda hit All online writers and online writing communities like a ton of bricks. What was the purpose of the Google Panda update? Initially, the intent of the Google Panda update was to "weed out" low quality sites and highlight "scrapers" and move them to lower page rankings and move higher quality sites to the top.

What actually happened was that we found that social networking sites such as Youtube, Facebook, Twitter and Instagram surged to the tops of the lists of search engines, while online writing communities found themselves plummeting in the page ranks.

I had been at Hubpages for just over a year when the Google Panda Update happened. So, I wasn't hit as hard as some of the original Hub members but I felt the affects going forward. Gaining traffic was like pulling teeth. Earning pennies a day for the first few months after the update was crushing.

Many new hubbers and old alike, were discouraged. Many even left Hubpages all together.

What do the blue triangles mean?

Help! Experiencing a large decrease in traffic to my hubs.
Help! Experiencing a large decrease in traffic to my hubs.

Why am I not getting any traffic to my hubs?

But, even with the giant setback that Google Panda created, and some believe still continues to create, one can find success at Hubpages. The key is to continue to adapt.

Gone are the days where you can simply write a hub, publish it, and just watch it grow in both traffic and earnings. I know you are tired of hearing Hubbers say, to earn a payout you have to have good, quality, content rich hubs. But that really is the truth.

No one wants to read articles that are basic, generalized, and offer nothing new on the subject. For example, I have not told you anything you already didn't know in this article. This was done on purpose to highlight this next point:

If you don't have anything new to add to a subject, than don't expect to enthrall thousands of viewers a day, and retire of the earnings of a hub that regurgitates information that is already out there....better yet don't even say it at all.

There are certain types of hubs that will not earn tons of money even if they garner lots of views. Examples of these are:

  • Blog posts - Hubpages is not a blog, so random thoughts about what you did today will not be featured and will only lower the quality ranking of the entire site.
  • Poems - although poetry is a beautiful form of expression, it is not a keyword, content rich piece of writing.
  • Spam - these are hubs that have more eBay and Amazon capsules than they do words, or hubs that try to promote individual websites.

How to get those red triangles?

How to increase traffic to your hubpages. Red triangles indicate a significant increase in traffic in a short duration.
How to increase traffic to your hubpages. Red triangles indicate a significant increase in traffic in a short duration. | Source

Rebuild Traffic and Earnings After Google Panda

How to rebuild your traffic and earnings after the Google Panda Update? While you cannot control the quality of content from other Hubbers, you can control the quality of your content. What does quality content mean?

Well to Google, quality content means a variety of different things but they published a series of questions to help online writers better determine what qualified as quality content. Here are a few of the questions that were published on the Google Webmaster Central Blog shortly after the Google Update.

  1. Does this article have spelling, stylistic, or factual errors?
  2. Does the article contain insightful analysis or interesting information that is beyond the obvious? (see my previous point about not telling people what they already know)
  3. Would you trust the information present in this article.

For a full list of Google's questions, click here.

Backlinks

Just any backlinks won't save your traffic and earnings anymore.
Just any backlinks won't save your traffic and earnings anymore. | Source

What do you mean backlinking isn't important?

It's not that backlinking isn't important, but Google Panda has changed the game. Part of the algorithm looks at the backlinking and determines whether it is "legitimate" or "farmed". But what does that mean?

It means that throwing in a bunch of backlinks through all of your hubs to your other hubs is not going to help you, in fact it will hurt you. Also, certain types of backlinks are not valued as high.

Backlinks from "content farms", i.e. Reddit, Tumblr, Ezine will not be valued as high as individual websites that don't have significant subdomains. So even if you are members of other online communities and link between articles on different communities, you could actually be hurting your ranking.

Please Answer Both Polls

Please answer both polls or the results will be skewed. Results will be published in future statistics hub.

Hubpages Views Poll

How many average daily views do you have?

  • 0-10
  • 11-99
  • 100-499
  • 500-999
  • Greater than 1,000
See results without voting

Article Design is Crucial

Being able to make money writing online, isn't about just writing tons of articles. You need to capture an audience not just with your words, but with the visual displays as well.

Interactive articles are more likely to get repeat views and gain a loyal following. Here are a few tips to improve the design of your hubs.

  • Break up your text boxes - this means that even if you are still writing about the same subject, save that text box and start another. This will allow for google ads to be placed more conveniently and be aesthetically pleasing to the eye.
  • Break up the content within your text boxes - this is crucia,l especially if you have pictures, ebay, or amazon capsules to the right of text. It is easier to read an article if there are spaces between sentences. Rule of thumb is put a space every 2-3 sentences.

Hubpages Earnings Poll

What are your average daily hubpages earnings?

  • $0.00-$0.10
  • $0.11-$0.99
  • $1.00-$5.00
  • $5.00-$10.00
  • Greater than $10.00
See results without voting
  • Preview, Preview, Preview - use the preview hub button at the top to review your hub. If you don't like the look of it, why is anyone else going to?
  • Picture Quality - don't use grainy pictures, or reduce the size of the picture to the smallest to hide the quality.
  • Don't write like you speak - most people do not speak with proper syntax and grammer. If you find yourself writing with run-ons, too many pronouns, or slang you need to have someone else proofread your text. Or you can copy it into Microsoft Word to get some grammatical suggestions, though it won't catch all.
  • People like quizzes and polls - readers love to leave their opinion, so give them something they can answer.

Utilize the free tools that are available to you

If you were to google SEO content or best keywords, you would be inundated with sites that profess to show you how to get rich overnight.

All you have to do is pay anywhere from $9.99 to $49.99 for a book, cd, or audiotape detailing on the inner secrets of the Google Panda algorithm.

Most of these are scams, and good ones. Few, may actually have helpful information.

But why pay for something, when there are so many free tools out there for you to use.

Hubpages Search Term Data

Utilize Hubpags Search Term Data in the Stats section.
Utilize Hubpags Search Term Data in the Stats section. | Source
  • Hubpages Statistics - Use the Search Term Data under the Stats - Search section to update your hub to capture more searches. It will list the most recent searchs and the search engines used to find your hub.
  • Google Websmaster Tools - Increase your traffic by adding a sitemap to your Hubpages.
  • Google Keyword Planner - let google help you find quality keywords and key phrases
  • Google Analytics - get free in depth information on the type of traffic to your hubs, whether it's organic traffic, and what your traffic is searching to find your hubs.

These are just a handful of the free tools available to you to help you increase traffic to your Hubpages and other online articles.

Happy Hubbing

Hub writing is not rocket science, but it does take dedication, perseverance, and the willingness to put in work.

The saying "You are what you eat" can be applied to writing too. "You get out what you put in".

Happy hubbing and good luck!

More by this Author


Comments 25 comments

cmahan profile image

cmahan 17 months ago from Michigan

People blog and not everyone makes a ton of money doing it. HubPages provides an alternative for people who want to blog/write but do not want to mess with the upkeep of their own site. I don't write here much anymore and have removed a lot of content to place on my own sites; but every once in a while I come back to visit an old friend.


Research Analyst profile image

Research Analyst 2 years ago

This is informative, thanks.


Katrina Speights profile image

Katrina Speights 2 years ago from Texas

Good read, I'm in the process of learning all this stuff now. Thanks for putting it out there.


Novel Treasure profile image

Novel Treasure 2 years ago from US Author

I cannot wait to read what you write. I think writing for joy far out weighs writing for the dollar :)


Sulabha profile image

Sulabha 2 years ago from Indore, India

Your article was mentioned in the notification and so I read again. It is good and informative. It also reminded me that I have to write a hub.

Really! I have reached an age where I have a lot to say. Sometimes, it is paucity of time and sometimes there is a terrible feeling that I may lose a well-wisher, friend or relative.

Nevertheless, I will write at my own snail's speed. More than earning, I want to make somebody's life happy and good.

Wait, I will do it.


Availiasvision profile image

Availiasvision 2 years ago from California

I found it really helpful to participate in your polls and see how everyone else is doing.


VioletteRose profile image

VioletteRose 2 years ago from Chicago

Thank you, this is really inspiring for beginners like me!


Rasimo profile image

Rasimo 2 years ago

Thank you!


JG11Bravo profile image

JG11Bravo 3 years ago

Fantastic. Thank you so much.


Craig Easom profile image

Craig Easom 3 years ago from Great England

Interesting hub, Thank you


NateB11 profile image

NateB11 3 years ago from California, United States of America

Good information, clarified a few things for me. It's good to understand what Google is doing. It's encouraging to see that payment proof too.


Hackslap profile image

Hackslap 3 years ago from Sydney, Australia

Awesome article! .. i have made around 70 cents so far over the past 11 days lol ..

I'm going to try selling cars here via EBAY .. lets see how it goes..


Novel Treasure profile image

Novel Treasure 3 years ago from US Author

Good luck. Hopefully it is something simple to fix.


Shadow Jackson profile image

Shadow Jackson 3 years ago from Washington, DC

I actually haven't figured out why my Google adsense isn't activated either. I'm going to investigate now...


Mark Johann profile image

Mark Johann 3 years ago from Italy

This is a very useful hub. I am considering myself as part of this struggle to earn more and to have more traffic.


Novel Treasure profile image

Novel Treasure 3 years ago from US Author

You have no idea how good your comment makes me feel. I am so glad I can motivate you to continue on. I had gotten discouraged too and it was my fellow hubbers that helped keep me positive.


purnimamoh1982 profile image

purnimamoh1982 3 years ago

this particular hub was inspiring for me in a sense that after a fairly longer period of seeing a decline in traffic and earnings, I was quite demotivated to write anything. I was more interested in having a couple of comments on my hubs as well as some feedbacks. But the lowering of traffic somehow did not allow this. After reading this hub, I feel a bit motivated to stay on and keep writing. Thank you Novel treasure for the hub. Voted up and followed.


Novel Treasure profile image

Novel Treasure 3 years ago from US Author

Thank you! I hope it is useful.


Shadow Jackson profile image

Shadow Jackson 3 years ago from Washington, DC

Very detailed and comprehensive explanation! Thanks.


Novel Treasure profile image

Novel Treasure 3 years ago from US Author

I didn't even realize Simone had left. That really bums me out. I don't know that one can retire on their hub page earnings but I think you can make a decent supplement.


rfmoran profile image

rfmoran 3 years ago from Long Island, New York

Thanks so much for a well researched and thoughtful hub. I have concluded that hubpages is not a place to make money, despite the rare few who do make a few bucks. Our old friend Simone Smith (before she left HP) as much as said so in a hub she wrote about content farms. Insisting that HP is not a content farm, she noted that it's not a place to make money but a good place to enjoy writing as a hobby.


aquinby profile image

aquinby 3 years ago from Morgantown, West Virginia

Thank you! This was extremely helpful in explaining some of the dips in income that people have reported.


Novel Treasure profile image

Novel Treasure 3 years ago from US Author

How come you can't? Did your google adsense account get deactivated? There is some great information in the learning center to help with hubs and generating traffic if you are not seeing the results you are looking for.


Sulabha profile image

Sulabha 3 years ago from Indore, India

Thanks. It is certainly a big help.


Doodlehead profile image

Doodlehead 3 years ago from Northern California

YOU can.

I CAN'T.

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