So far, thanks to the Idle hubs "feature", I have had my second month in a row where I haven't earned $50 through the HP Ad program... and these are the only 2 times, out of the history of me using HP Ads, that I haven't reached the $50 mark.
Weren't the idle hubs supposed to help us?
Are we just supposed to keep waiting for the changes to kick in?
Since HubPages ignored me asking, twice in the forums and once in a direct email to them, for them to review my account and take the Zzz's off my holiday hubs, it looks like I'll be removing 365 hubs from here. They think they're worthless and I'm fine with getting 100% of the ad revenue on my own site. Every single one of those hubs got traffic around the holiday date, before they turned on the idle program.
When is anyone going to plug the hole in this sinking ship and stop gluing glitter around it and telling people it will be OK?
I realize that Squidoo now has the same kind of traffic HubPages use to before the ship started sinking, but copying them obviously isn't going to work.
Hey Bendo, I realize the pending thing and Idle hub status is frustrating. I agree with you on what you've said. I also think it's not an ideal situation.
Have you tried editing your content just to get it out of Idle? I have heard that can work and hopefully will mean your christmas hubs etc will still be able to make you some money.
I too am also seeing a decrease in earnings. I am close to not making a monthly payout and may not qualify for a monthly payout at the end of this current month.
Form your hubs you seem to know how to make money elsewhere on the net such as your own site/blog etc. I realize your content has age on it's side on HP, but maybe you should concentrate more on building some other baskets elsewhere. I'm not telling you to jump ship, I'm just sharing what I plan to do over the next 12 months myself in order to combat the reduced income from HP.
The problem is that with seasonal hubs, if they're not given special treatment, they will always go idle again and I have 365 seasonal hubs because I wrote one a day last year. There are real holidays every single day of the year and I built up a huge following with my daily holiday series.
So, just to keep them from going idle I'd have to edit one a day pretty much and it's just not worth the time. I mean I created a video for every holiday last year, celebrated the holiday as I recorded, did research about the holiday, took a few pictures, wrote the hub and so on... it was a lot of work and to have to do that much work from here on out makes me want to take them somewhere they are welcome.
I'm not sure but think that is what caused the steep decline in my earnings last month as well.
From what I've seen, it doesn't take much to make hubs active again...change a photo, highlight a word, change a title, etc. You don't have to rewrite the entire article. Also, gotta tell you, I've been here 10 months and have 110 hubs right now and have NEVER hit $50 per month, even though I rank well into the 90's most of the time with my hubber score. I've given up worrying about the money and fretting about the changes...but I don't do this to earn a living. I do believe there are glitches in the system, as there are with anything new that comes up, and with time, they'll get them worked out, but the key word here is time. Good luck!
Yeah, but as I said, I have 365 holiday hubs and I'm not going to edit them every day just to keep them from behind idle. People search for the holidays in advance and on the specific day so I'd never know which seasonal hub to pull out of the idle trenches.
I've been on the site for 5 years and have always hit the $50 mark, so it's a different situation.
Wow with that many posts on even a blogger blog you would be earning more than 50.00 dollars a month in my opinion. I think you should move some to a blogger blog or better yet a self hosted word press blog. Then all the money you make is yours and you are in charge. There is no idling your posts. Good luck to you.
Yeah I have a personal site, self-hosted WordPress blog, where I've already added the front page and have January and February's page up. Just have to get the rest of the months up and then start putting up the individual holiday pages. It'll be a while but it's worth it!
Can you explain what you mean by having "January and February's page up", Bendo?
I'm guessing he means an index page for, say, January, with the list of holidays each linking to an individual aricle?
I have set up what looks like a calendar hanging on a wall on my site. The first page is like the cover and it has a link to every month. And then each month gets its own page where it looks like a calendar, with the boxes and numbers for the days.
But in every box is a shrunk down version of my video for that holiday, so they can play the video and know what to celebrate for that day. And beside the number for the day it says the name of the holiday, which is hyperlinked to each individual holiday's page.
On those pages you get a full view of the video, the content that tells you what the holiday is, why it's a holiday and how to celebrate, and those pages will have Google Ads, Amazon and Commission Junction ads on them. So you can see I have a lot of work cut out for myself haha.
Hope that explains it? I'd link you to the page but that'd be self promotion.
It has sadly been the same for me too with regard to earnings! I am staying though because I still like this site and can't say that about Squidoo!
i've been on here over 2 years and i have never even made $10 so it is irrelevant to me.
You seem to be quite angry and frustrated. I checked your hubs. They are very clean and well-formatted. Sorry to see you in such a desperate situation. You have obviously put a lot of time and effort on this site.
Not sure why you can't relocate elsewhere that you think has better earning possibilities. But perhaps it would be best just to have your own website.
Good luck. Life comes with problems, as well as with solutions.
As Lauryallan suggested you to try and edit your hubs to get them out of the idle state.
I believe once your hubs are out of the idle state, you will be able to start getting revenue for them and will make your payouts regularly. Another way I would like to suggest, is to share the links of your idle hubs on social media networking websites. Even you can ask some of your friends to do you a special favor by visiting at least your November and December related hubs so that they are out of the idle state and can start performing in November and December.
My holiday hubs are for every single day of the year. There is a real holiday every day of the year and that's why I have 365 of them. So, I'd have to be asking people to get me links and editing my hubs every day of the year and that's not realistic.
There's a welcome home for them on my own site, it will just take a while for me to move them all.
No-one noticed that idled hubs that have been edited and brought awake again, fall asleep again within a couple of weeks?
The only way to keep it out of sleep mode is to edit it weekly, or hope it is awake when the correct time of year comes round (if it is a seasonal hub) so that it at least gets some traffic before falling back into its stupor.
No matter how well written it is, if it isn't getting traffic it is idled.
Yeah, and it has to be traffic from outside of HubPages for it to seem worthwhile to the HP staff.
It's impossible for me to know which hub to edit and when, since it's for daily holidays. My holiday calendar on my site will be fun for people to go through when finished though; it really highlights my videos and I'll get that ad revenue back for all the work and money I put into my hubs last year.
Don't know if this helps but I was just editing my profile and noticed a check box to turn on idle hubs or to switch them off.
That only changes if they are shown on your profile; they are still not shown in search engines, but people and possibly search engines can find them through your profile.
They will still have the code that tells search engines not to index them. If you turn that option off then they are hidden even from your profile, so no one will ever find them unless you link them to the specific hub.
I always thought that seasonal hubs would be the worst hit by this idle business.
I still don't understand what HP stand to gain by placing another barrier in the way for hubbers to hurdle in order to get traffic. Surely, that's Google's job to ensure things are ranked properly.
When you consider how many hubs are seasonal there's a lot of traffic that HP and individual sub-domains are going to lose. And to do this in the run up to christmas seems absurd. I can think of anyone who would risk one of the most lucrative times of their business calendar to try and experiment that they have no idea will actually work. Makes me wonder if Google have paid HP a few to be the guinee pigs for this one.
I've only been here for a couple months so I don't know what it looks like to have great traffic. Needless to say, no payout happening for me anytime soon. I do, however, live with the dreaded anticipation that one of my poorly trafficked hubs will have zzzs anyday now. What is the criteria? Can it happen anytime without notice? Are new hubbers given a chance to build traffic before our hubs are idled? Everytime I get those blue arrows I say, "ok, this is it," and it doesn't happen. The anxiety, rules, issues, concerns of hubbers, etc, are getting to be a bit much.
I finally got Zzzed. I knew it was coming. A poem of course. I will try to edit and see what happens. Ey-yi-yi :-(
The blue arrows come and go, but it's the ZZZ's that you have to worry about. This is just an indication of overall traffic, not an indication that your Hub is snoozing. I know, I had to get over this issue, too. I get paranoid even when my Hubber Score goes down. But fluctuating is a sign of the times. Just ride the "waves of good content" solidly and you will be fine.--Deb
The other years I've been here, the leadup to Christmas is the time when I start seeing the most money and Amazon sales. Some years up to 4x as much. This year my earnings peaked around July - and since the introduction of idle hubs they've been going down - despite the fact I only have about 4 idle hubs on this account, ones which never got much traffic anyway.
This is usually the "rise" time of year, but I'm not seeing it yet - so something, maybe idle hubs, maybe not, is effecting my hubs across the board.
That's no good...
I use to like coming on here and I'd see like 3 or 4 of my holiday hubs with red arrows, and it was always the ones that were going to be happening soon, or the day of. So, I got use to seeing this constant wave of traffic ripple through all my hubs.
I'm not sure what could help bring this site back...
And it's weird that Squidoo was never really hit by Panda or Penguin... they might have had a blip but they kept climbing and they get close to the amount of traffic that HubPages use to get in Feb 2011.
And really, I think Squidoo's format really sucks... Like the trophies, levels, cartoons and the millions of things you can add to your lenses are nice, but there's so much clutter on that site and tons of spam; like where you let others ad links to your lenses. And I've written 3 lenses on there and they tanked and are now "works in progress", which is what it seems like HubPages copied when they brought in idle hubs.
I have no idea why Google likes that site...
They don't have subdomains, their site is a mess and I'm looking at the "lense" of the day right now and it's packed with ads (28 ads).
Could very well be politics... Somebody was somebody's dorm mate or classmate, etc.
Yeah, it's odd though to look at all the things HubPages told us were the problem and all the things they sold to us as being good changes, but Squidoo didn't switch to subdomains, didn't cut down on ads or anything like that. I wonder if Google doesn't like the HP Ad setup or something?
Here's the graph to compare the two sites:
HubPages is in Blue.
I can't remember what changes had happened around the time HP crashed, and what caused such a big boost in traffic in 2010, so I'm going to look at the blog.
The iPhone App came out in Early June 2010
The Map Capsule was added on July 21st 2010
Interactive Ads were rolled out on Aug 4th 2010
The 60 Day Challenge started on Aug 11th 2010
Facebook Recommendations are added on Aug 30th 2010
HA! We were encouraged to write Holiday Hubs on Dec 21st 2010
Accolades came into play Feb 4th 2011
And there are, of course, tons of paid writing contests going on all throughout... I wonder what Google thinks about those? I wonder what Google thought about the success stories as well, that highlighted the earnings people made?
Does this graph take into account the size of the site (e.g. number of articles)? I wonder if that could be a mediating factor.... before knowing what content farms were, I was already starting to avoid Squidoo because the articles were usually gibberish or unrelated to the topic / no content just fluff. So if Squidoo is still allowing that, maybe people who cannot write are flocking there and posting 1000's of pages that get like 5 hits each? I don't know if this is true or just imagination.
It's possible that they do have more articles, but if you switch the graph over to page views it doesn't look that much different in terms of comparing where they're at and where we are. But they are getting more page views than HubPages ever did. HubPages maxed out at 1.6 million page views in a day on Feb, 21st 2011 and Squidoo maxed out at 2.6 million page views in a day on Oct, 22nd 2012.
But back in October of 2010, Squidoo is said to have 1.5 million lenses and right now HubPages says that they have 1.14 million hubs, so they probably have more lenses than we have hubs.
The thing is, their site is run by a bestselling author, named Seth Godin, so maybe he's got some insider info on how to keep his site rising, even if it is kind of crappy?
From memory Squidoo got a big "Google Hit" about a year or two before Panda. They recovered from it though, and haven't really been hit hard since.
I'm looking at their data as far back as Jan '08 and not seeing a huge drop off
Yep, there's that politics thing again.... Plus, I wonder how many links the Seth Godin empire has pointing to SquidLand...?
A site I've used before says that Squidoo's homepage alone has 316,659 links pointing to it. Alexa only shows 214,102 pointing to it though.
Alexa shows that there are 110,020 link spointing to HubPages though, so yeah. And the other site I use says only 25,782 links.
Squidland has many tentacles.
It really isn't a number of hubs thing, because Squidoo only allows its top 400k lenses to be indexed, anything that falls below that becomes 'work in progress', this is what the 'idle hubs' feature is trying to imitate. If you look at how many pages are indexed, you will see there are far fewer in Squidoo than in HubPages.
So possibly Squidoo's better traffic is because they hide their underperforming content from Google the way HubPages is trying to do. Whatever it is they're doing, they seem able to get away with a lot of the things that are supposed to be bad, according to HP, like a lot of ads, Amazon, Zazzle etc. affiliate links. But I've started doubting the wisdom of writing 1500 words of prose a while ago. Is this really what people searching the internet are looking for? Or do they want a loosely laid out page with a lot of open space where it is easy to jump to the bit of info you are looking for? Perhaps if somebody is looking at how to throw a Peppa Pig-Webkinz-Harry Potter themed party, then Squidoo is the perfect format for them to find what they need?
It also seems to me that there are a lot more savvy marketeers on Squidoo who put a lot of effort into researching what topics will be easy to rank for in Google and write lenses accordingly. Not that I think all successful people writing there are shallow marketeers, and not that I think all pages targetted at Amazon buyers are shallow or bad, some of them have really good info. and fulfill a real need.
I have had a look at the backlinks of a few lenses that had pretty good lens rank, like in the top 5k, and there didn't seem to be anything that amazing. A few links from blogs, forums etc., no evidence fo a really concerted link building effort.
You're right, and that is exactly what HubPages is trying to do. There are important differences in implementation, though - in particular, they don't "no index" new Hubs.
As for writing 1500 words - it's important to remember you have two audiences, real people and Google. You're right, many people don't have the patience to read 1500 words - but Google does. 1500 words allows you to cover a wide range of keyword phrases without keyword stuffing, so you have a better chance of ranking than a shorter article.
One prominent Hubber did some testing last year and found her 800 to 1500 word Hubs did a lot better than her shorter ones.
I have heard the arguments about 800-1500 words being better for long tail keywords and LSI, and I agree with them. The thing I'm wondering about is whether Google is paying attention to on-page factors, bounce rate, time on page etc. and if so whether that might give an edge to less dense pages. It is possible that what was true one year ago, no longer applies.
This is all speculation, really I have no idea what is happening, but just because long articles were better a year ago doesn't mean that is still true now. It's just that it seems to me that I'm frequently outranked by pages that are shorter and shallower than my hubs.
I find a lot of Squidoo themes quite corny, but I think the page layout might be more inviting to readers than HP's denser layout. Possibly that helps them get traffic.
Imagination. Admittedly, the two ladies who pick Lens of the Day tend to skip over most of the educational, informational, and meaty-content pages on that site. But their tastes do not necessarily represent the sum total of what's actually ON the site.
What happened when Hubpages' traffic tanked in early 2011 is that it was slaughtered by the first Google Panda update. Most of the Panda updates since have not hit it as hard, although Panda 20 did.
There are a number of reasons for this. I've written on them at length for the past year and a half, so I won't regurgitate them here.
I, too, missed Hubpages' payout threshold in October for the first time since I've had any hubs to speak of. I also had hubs go idle which had been getting traffic, and now my daily traffic is down again.
I figure -- well, okay, so I'll get $95 in my unpaid HP earnings by the end of November, and I won't have had to pay the Paypal Transaction Fee for October's earnings.
Even though getting hubs out of idle status (especially if you have a lot) might be annoying, I think I would still do it if I was in your position. It probably wouldn't be the case that you would have to keep editing - I changed a couple of words on my idled hub on 30 August and although that barely made any difference to the hub it has not returned to idled status. if I wanted to the chance to get the traffic for christmas I would just change a word or two and see what happens. I accidently got one of my hubs out of idle because whilst reading it I saw a spelling mistake that had me changing a single letter and it is no longer idled.
I did the same thing, but they have just gone back into idle status this week.
I am no fan of the idle hubs feature. How will anyone ever find them? Even if they are getting low traffic they may have the potential to get more traffic later because of the time of the year etc.
I wrote this one hub a couple months ago (knowing it would prob not get potential traffic till later) but I check and it is now idle!
The time spent on this thread could have been spent editing or moving them, don't you think?
You are so right, of course - I think people are just in an agony of indecision. Editing seems too hard, because we don't know what's wrong with our idled Hubs, so what do we edit? It's far more sensible to move them elsewhere, since we should all be spreading our eggs over more baskets anyway.
However, many Hubbers (including me) can get extraordinarily attached to HubPages, and reluctant to move away from it even when it's not working for them. Look at IzzyM, whose main account got mightily Panda-slapped. And Bard. Their response to losing traffic wasn't to go off and start writing elsewhere - instead, they started new sub-domains here. So I don't find this thread surprising at all. HubPages is like an online home for many Hubbers: in order to leave it, they have to go through a grieving process - and talking about it helps.
Personally, I stopped writing for HP long ago, although I still spend far too much time in the forums. I've just unpublished my Hubs with less than 1,000 views (since I reckon they will all get idled eventually) and I'm going to move them elsewhere. But I'll probably still hang around the forums as an excuse not to do any real work...
If we never speak up then they will never know what we don't like, or how we are doing. To just tuck your tail, run away and never say anything will give others a false sense of what it's like to write for this site. They'd think it's all rainbows and we all get our own pot of gold, because no one is taking the time to let others know they are unhappy and why.
I very rarely write on this site anymore, and I won't again until they fix their issues. I spend time on my own sites, and have been since 2008, it was just nice to have another place to write and build a following.
wow! I can only wish to have $50 or more every month. It took me many months to reach my first $50
I can't speak to the issue, but your stuff is off the hook. Do you sell anything from your Amazon and Ebay capsules? You have one of the best point of sale set ups around. I am wondering how you do with them.
Yeah I make quite a few sales through Amazon that are coming from my hubs. I made a lot more sales in the past through this site, but the sales do still come in. I don't use eBay capsules though because they might bid and lose the auction and you're out a sale, but on Amazon if they buy you get a sale.
I've seen sales for things as surprising as the pink sunglasses I wore for the pink holiday.
Doesn't Ebay pay for a click? I thought they did. The pink sunglasses is what I'm talking about. I figured you should be moving some merchandise with your clever pitch. You should get some kind of reward for concept creativity.
They do now, I forgot about them changing that. I stopped using them way back when they only paid you for sales, and because people trust Amazon more than random sellers on eBay. Even though random people can sell through Amazon as well.
Thanks though! It was an idea I had to get me to write on here every day and to break into the world of YouTube. It seems to have worked out pretty well on both ends.
If someone goes to Amazon through one of your links and ends up buying something for a penny you make nothing, which is the same as being out a sale. I've had it happen to me a few times.
eBay pay for clicks not sales, although the amount they pay goes up if clicks lead to sales.
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One of my best performing hubs is marked as idle. It has had 31 views just this week - better than many of my other hubs that are not idle. I believe this is a mistake.Here is the hub: <link snipped>
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