An ongoing topic I've seen over the years I've been on Hubpages is "How do I make my low traffic hubs better."
I saw it again today in a Hub Pro thread (if you haven't already, should definitely opt in - it was a fantastic experience.)
My best advice to anyone who is writing online is:
If it is doing well, make it even better. If it sinks, forget about it.
Any hub which is getting good traffic is obviously doing something right. However there is ALWAYS room for improvement. It may be in images, CTAs, monetisation, layout, content, even linking out to other related content you've written, to make the most use of your traffic.
If it is getting traffic, you're doing something right. If it's NOT getting traffic, you could spend months or years trying to find that magic solution.
There is nothing wrong with tweaking low traffic hubs. Just make sure you're spending much more time tweaking the high traffic ones or, better yet, copying them.
You forgot one thing: topic. You can write the best hub in the world but if it is about a topic that is heavily written about or that has little interest to readers (or if Google decides for some reason that others write better than you do about the same topic), no amount of tweaking will save it!
That last sentence is hilarious; if we could reliably copy the success of our successful hubs we wouldn't write duds in the first place!
The formula for success is simple; use absolutely stunning photographs and write brilliant, useful, clever, and unique copy. It's simple, but it isn't easy.
I disagree with the idea that there's little point to polishing a piece if it isn't already successful. I take it you've never had a piece sit almost dormant and then suddenly pick up views when the right person shared it at the right time? All it takes is one popular blogger, one popular online magazine, one popular YouTubist, or one clever Tweeter to share a piece for it to suddenly take off.
The suggestion of going over and over and over successful hubs seems like it has very limited usefulness for average hubbers. You may have dozens of high-traffic hubs but I would bet serious coin that the average hubber doesn't. The average hubber may not have more than a handful of high-traffic hubs, if they have any that truly classify as high-traffic at all.
You can have a very clever concept but not have good enough photos to get it shared online. You can have very interesting photos paired with text that just doesn't do them justice. If you fix those things, it can increase views because your piece can change from not worth sharing to worth sharing.
With time and practice, you can learn to copy what works; using the keywords, comments and things that made the article interesting and engaging, applied to a similar topic.
You can have amazing content but an article can fail miserably; if it's in a competitive niche OR one no one is searching, then it will likely never gain traction.
Yes, I have had hubs and web articles sit and do nothing for months or years. I just let them sit; I make no move to improve or remove them, I just leave them. If they ever do get traction, THAT is when I choose to give them more work.
If you're a regular writer, chances are that there will always be new hubs gaining traction. If you're not, you should be writing new content, not spending time obsessing over what's already written. You could probably write 5 new hubs in the time it takes to tweak one.
Actually, I couldn't create five hubs in the time it takes to retake photos for one, to edit the grammar of one, or to research and write a paragraph or so for one. A much larger quantity of diverse work almost always takes me a much greater amount of time than a much smaller amount of focused work does.
I agree that creating new content is far more valuable than going over and over our hubs whether they have high traffic, low traffic, or none unless we see something clearly wrong with them that we can fix.
I do the same but it doesn't significantly increase traffic. Maybe I'll see a difference in time.
When Hubpro came out I got inspired to edit some of my hubs with good traffic and did see some increases. But I also saw similar gains with okay-traffic hubs that had really low word counts and a low ratio of expository text to math symbols. At the account level I think it's worth making improvements where they're most needed, especially if you don't have a lot of high-traffic hubs to begin with, as is the case for many. Got to start somewhere. But it makes complete sense that Hubpro focuses only on high-traffic hubs at the site level.
My highest viewed hub (on my other account) is a recipe, and sadly there is little more I could say. The majority of my hubs do well at certain times of year due to their content and topic so I don't think dedicating time to editing them is worth while, but each to their own and it may well work for some people. I would rather spend time writing new content and promoting current hubs. On this account the majority of my views come through FB groups, I found they are brilliant for niche topics, especially recipe related ones!
Fantastic tips. Thank you. I will take note of these advice and apply on my stuff.
I've been starting to delete the hubs that don't see traffic, I have a mini niche that never did that well, most of them are there. I notice that even when I re-read my best hubs, I sometimes still find a typo, or a comment I made that's either out of date, or that there's a new fact I can add. So it pays to read over your best stuff now and then, just to keep it competitive.
The hub NOT to edit is the top earner with the red skull! My best earner (by far) is because of Amazon commissions rather than number of page views. The red skull is because HP changed some policy a few months ago concerning ads. If I edit the hub, HP will no longer pass it to Google unless I comply with the policy, which I think will reduce my Amazon ads on the page. I'm not passing judgment on the policy, but beware if you've got a star hub that's flying under he radar--grandfathered in.
Hi, Howard! Reducing Amazon ads doesn't always reduce your number of sales. In fact, one well-placed ad can do up to 15 times better than multiple ads. I think I know which Hub you are referring to, and this Hub should be edited and improved. I think you will find that improving the Hub by reducing the ads and improving the layout, will improve your traffic and your earnings. The reason we place the skull on the Hub is because we believe your Hub would provide a better reader experience if it didn't have any violations. My advice: create a better reader experience by editing your Hub—only include products that are useful and that you personally recommend, make all of your photos full width, and research your competition and see what your competitors are doing and possibly add content to beat them. We really are at a precipice at HubPages in terms of quality. Everyone has to do their part to improve their Hubs. Start at your highest traffic Hubs and work your way down.
Another note (not specifically to you, Howard, because you write very well), install the free version of Grammarly and check all of your Hubs for grammar and spelling. We all miss typos and can benefit from a little help!
Just to be CLEAR. I said TWO things in the OP, not one!
1. Edit your high traffic hubs.
2. Copy what makes them successful.
Personally I keep editing to a minimum and instead do 'spinoff' hubs using keywords and related topics from my successful articles, quite a lot.
Changes to Hubs are not always 'improvements.' If you look at the Hub that last went viral on Facebook after HubPro editing, you'll see a disaster. That Hub used to rank #3 for its primary search term. After editing, it now ranks #4 globally and #5 for U.S. search results on Google. And the same ranking change happened for other primary search terms on that Hub.
The reasons for the change in ranking are a result of what the HubPro editor did to that Hub:
http://hubpages.com/forum/topic/129865? … ost2724319
Anyone who is making changes to a Hub which is highly ranked on Google search engine results is taking a great risk.
Writer Fox; How do you find out what your ranking is on Google regardless of where you write.
Now this is a no-brainer question. Why is one of my lousiest hubs getting consistently the highest page views??
Despite all the Pandas, etc, I think Google still likes good keywords. One keyword per article may be a plus. Nonetheless, if you have not updated keywords for a couple of years you might revisit that even on your highly visited articles. These articles that only get so-so visits are the biggest candidates by far.
While editing my hub on the uses of honey in ulcer cure, I tried to break larger content capsule into smaller ones, I selected a paragraph and posted a part of content in new capsule. But when I clicked the old capsule it showed 0 content. What is wrong. I tried to retrieve the content but failed. Any help. Could hubpages restore the previous content.
I personally find that a bit of both is true - I tweak my high traffic hubs every now and again - add a bit more content, photo's, etc. just to keep them fresh.
As for not working on the others, why not? What I have found is that some of my less stellar hubs, traffic-wise actually picked up over time. I do work on them to improve them so that they are good and then I promote them on Facebook, etc. I have found that this does work - whilst they still do not outperform my best hubs, that little bit of extra work has definitely paid off for me in terms of an increase in traffic.
The key is to have good quality content + lot's of pix and at least one video and not to overdo the affiliate links - at least, that is what I think the key is.
The hubs I think are my best don't always reflect that view wise. It's hard to decide what people want to read about, so I just write about what I know. I do think Google is a monopoly and it's a shame we have to cater to them. When I am searching for anything, I sometimes must get to Page 2 or 3 before I find any useful information.
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