3 weeks in and a few hubs created, can you help me to get the most from hubpages and give back to other members too. What do you wish you knew when you started out?
Think niche, write niche..... and persist. Then persist some more.
Write about what you love or know a lot about. Also, read all the rules before you dive in. You have to be patient, you won't make money for about six months, but once it begins it's steady.
I disagree about the "niche" advice. If you are able to concentrate on one niche and write knowledgeably and well about it, you'll be FAR better off starting your own website or blog. The beauty of HubPages is that you can write about a variety of subjects and HubPages has already created the niche sites to host your various writings.
I agree with this comment from Marisa, if you know your topic, start your own site, that exactly what I did and it worked perfectly!
Absolutely agree. I started a niche site 4 years ago and it's excelled beyond my wildest dreams.
I now use Hubpages for either quick time based viral content, 'testing' a subject before creating a site, guides, or 'homeless' content I'll never write more than one article about.
If you're going to write on the Internet, you have to learn to roll with the punches. We are at the mercy of the search engines, and they are fickle creatures. The article they loved last month suddenly becomes poison.
The first time I was getting good traffic and the bottom fell out, I was totally despondent and didn't write anything for quite a while. Now I know that it's to be expected. It's kind of like playing the stock market.
Try to write good, useful stuff and keep doing it no matter what your numbers say. For HP, I think the thing that saves me is diversity. One niche tanks, and another rises.
It's hard to answer "what do you wish you'd known when you started out", because the things I needed to know then, are not the things newbies need to know now. So much about the site has changed.
The main thing you need to know is that HubPages is not one site, it's a suite of sites, and your goal must be to write Hubs that will be transferred to the niche sites. Otherwise you are probably wasting your time.
Your profile says you're experienced with Google search so you'll know that Google strongly favours specialist (niche) sites. That's why all the big generalist sites have closed down, except for HubPages. HubPages was also failing, and that's why they created the niche sites, using the best Hubs from the main site.
They are still trawling through the main site to select more Hubs for the niche sites. Also, every new Hub that's published is considered for the niches. Obviously, the end result will be that the main site will eventually consist only of Hubs that don't make the cut. As you know, when Google ranks an article, it considers both the innate quality of the article plus quality of the whole site it's on, so you can see there won't be much point in having articles on the main site in the long run.
To write articles that make the cut - look at the Stellar Hub guidelines in the top corner when writing, and try to tick as many boxes as make sense (you will never tick all the boxes because polls, tables, etc are not relevant to every subject). Take a look at my Hub the Basic Rules (you'll find it on the slider on my profile). I'd also suggest reading the one on Etiquette, because the notion of "giving back" to other members is erroneous.
The social network on HubPages is fun and motivating--but it's a myth to think that by following, reading and commenting, we're somehow helping each other. The activity of our small community is a drop in the ocean and makes virtually no difference to our traffic or our earnings. Recently, HubPages has started featuring some of its top earners on the front page (you have to log out to see it, try it), and everyone has been surprised to see they are Hubbers we've never heard of. That's because they focus on writing good Hubs and networking outside HubPages, to attract a paying audience. That may seem anti-social, but in the long run it does all of us a lot more good than patting each other on the back in our own little circle!
Thanks for your detailed and concise reply, very useful information that I will be using going forward. I did submit my first hub to the relevant niche site, but have not heard anything - I assume this is what happens if it not considered right for the site, do you receive a message if a hub is moved to a niche site such as hobbylark?
All new Hubs are automatically considered for the niche sites, so you don't need to manually submit them. The manual submission process is for old Hubs, or substantially revised ones.
If a new Hub is considered suitable, it will be moved within a month after publication. If it hasn't been moved in that time, you can assume it wasn't deemed suitable. In that case, there's no point in submitting again UNLESS you revise it substantially to improve it.
Poetry, creative writing, essays, spam and saturated topics (weight loss, making money online) will almost never make you money.
Your participation in the site (forums, hub commenting, following) has no impact on earnings.
As long as you don't write spam, hub and profile scores should be ignored and have no impact on earnings.
A good hub is written like a magazine article - stands alone, informs, has an easy to read layout that includes clear subtitles and images to break it up into bite size chunks.
Your hub title is the most important part of your SEO, as that's what helps Google decide which searchers to show it to.
People Google answers, not questions (thanks to Cardisa for that one).
Writing in topics with low competition (ie, Google results show not many relevant answers), can get a lot of traffic. So can lists.
Creating images with titles on them (MFP - Made For Pinterest) is a great way to generate traffic from Pinterest.
After you share your hub links via social media etc, keep an eye on the Stats - Traffic Referrers. I added Pinterest Boards last year to support my hubs, and some other related hubs I found here.
Surprised to find that Pinterest is the 2nd highest referrer of traffic (google.com is #1) to my hubs.
So if you have not already created a Pinterest account, you may want to do so now.
Side note - for my own website - Pinterest is 3rd highest traffic referrer.
Thanks for the advice and suggestion, I will look into creating a Pinterest account.
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