(edit) oops! ebay that is ... never been to eby
On the new rules, both stated and speculative ... I pondered and thought
I trolled the forums threads and read the blog for information and direction, but I did not speak, least I make an ill-informed or stupid comment
as the deadline for hub corrections looms, I went through over 100 sales hubs, deleting ebay capsules and reducing the number of listings to comply with the new rules, - which in-turn - destroyed the usefulness of these hubs to readers in probably 90% of the hubs
Then I laid awake considering all the honest efforts, now useless, wasted, nothing more than keyword magnets that will still draw traffic but will no longer deliver value to the visitor.
So I said the hell with it, right or wrong I will speak.
The new "50 words for each product listing" rule does not work for ebay listings.
It is unworkable, illogical, and ill-conceived. It is a screwed-up knee-jerk reaction along the lines of "one size fits all", and we all know how that and "zero-tolerance" policies work so well in real life.
Wait ... I know the knives are drawn, but before you start slashing ... the caveats:
1. I greatly appreciate the hubpages team, their hard work, commitment, and sincerity are the main reason Hubpages is the great site it is. - but even the good guys get it wrong once in a while.
2.I also appreciate that Hubpages has provide me access to this site, - free, and they they continually strive for improvement that will benefit both of us.
3.I like poets and poetry - remember that when you get to the part where poems are cited.
Now slash away if you must but, here is my reasoning.
The new rule is barely workable for Amazon listings because they are more like an inventoried store. Pick your product - here is your price - take it or leave it
But ebay is an auction setting, (putting aside that they also have inventoried sellers), that can have widely varying prices for similar items. Which, may disappear or reappear on a weekly basis.
Joe Blow's Porcelain figurines are in demand
even better, Joe Blow's Girl figurines are the most sought after.
So, I write a 500 word hub that contains an intro with educational information about the product category
It also contains a large chunk of content describing why ebay is the best choice to shop for Joe's girl figurines.
Just for the sake of argument - assume the 500 words of content are well-written and useful to the reader.
So I get to use 10 product listings
The problem - there are 10 sub-categories, ie. girl with duck, girl with flowers, girl with boy, etc. All searched for by shoppers.
and still - there are 20 ebay listings for each sub-category, some with good deals, some not
So, I can no longer show my reader the various choices available to them because I can only show 1 listing for each sub-category, ( and even then I have to leave 2 out), they are on their own to search for more choices, well, if they have to do that why come to my hub, I'm no longer useful to them.
and before you say it ... it would be totally spammy to do a hub for each sub-category, the reader would be pissed each time they had to click to a new page for choices that could be right in front of where they are.
So ... a well-written hub, with good content that served the purpose of its visitors, and served the purpose of bringing qualified traffic to hubpages, is now a useless blob of content that no longer serves any of the above purposes.
But yet, a 100-word poetry hub is beyond reproach. Do you think Google looks at the weak content, (ps in human eyes it may be a great poem, and a work of art), of a poetry hub and says "yeah - this is the good stuff that provides valuable service to own searchers - and then boosts the site's ranking and search authority?
It is said that "it is better to be thought a fool, than to open one's mouth and remove all doubt"
Take your pick - but I think a "Good" sales hub that provide what the searcher was looking for is valuable content. With this new rule (most, I know exceptions will be put forth), ebay hubs are no longer worth the effort.
Come on Hubpages - fix this one ...
I know what you mean... I deleted 100 sales hubs because in the new format those hubs simply didn't work. They didn't provide value. I will replace them with non-sales hubs, and then probably get rid of the last of my sales hubs.
But hubpages is taking the hit to improve the reputation of its site as a whole.
Whether it will work or not, I don't know.
A lot of discussions here on why we should have our own sites may have been borne from these experiences.
I wouldn't say it's barely workable. It works. I've always preferred an aesthetic balance between products to text. And also narrowing down the choice for visitors. Some people have grabbed (almost) every single product. A person could get the same results at Amazon by doing a very general search. What people are after are narrowed down and informed choices.
I see your point of view about the Ebay listings.
But one would hope that there is more than enough textual information in the hub as a whole to justify the X amount of ebay/amazon products that are being used. A 300 word hub means there can be 6 products.
Is a hub with less words than that going to be of much value to the average visitor, or enough fodder for a hungry search engine bot?
'Weak content' ? Please explain how creative niches are part of weak content and how you evaluate it.
Since when creative niches fall under - 'authority and value to readers clause' ? Whether google likes it or not, deviantart/flickr has tons of artists posting their stuff. Nobody on that site cares what google or any other random person considers valuable. Same is the case of poetry.
I have never used eBay so don't really have any input. What I will say however is that there is generally no reason whatsoever for a poetry hub to have an eBay or Amazon capsule on it.
The only scenario in which I could envisage such use of those capsules is if a poet was using Hubpages as means to generate sales for his own poetry book. And if that was the case, I can't see why it would need more than a couple of capsules (say, two capsules, one for an Amazon listing and one for an eBay listing).
Unless the points about eBay and Poetry were entirely unrelated? As a non-poet (I used to write it, in my teenage angst years), I think that there is a place for poets on this site, in fact I think the solution could be the emergences of poetry.hubpages.com which is governed by different rules.
I've been thinking that might be an idea too .. seperating the fiction stuff from the info stuff (maybe we can sideline the christian fundamentalists that way too ;-)
Gods and goddesses, yes!
Fine idea, I say.
Yes, I agree. This is a good idea. I love reading good poetry too and I write poetry once in while. But some poetry are just too short, albeit they are good poems. When I hop I tend to leave poetry alone as I am not a good judge of what is good or bad, even if it hits me on the head. lol I certainly vote for a different forum to showcase their talent as poets, e.g. as suggested by ryankett-- poetry.hubpages.com
He is correct.
The product rules now - completely destroy any possibility of making a hub a useful place for a comparative analysis between products and locations for both the reader and the author.
In the past - one could compare ebay and amazon, various varieties of a product and various brands in one useful location.
That is over.
They have made the cardinal mistake of making blanket rules for seo, rather than for usability and the reader
Also the idea of "pick one item" lacks any credence to anyone who has any knowledge in marketing and sales psychology. On one hand a searcher doesnt want to many choices (offline and on) when reading a recommendation, they want part of their decision making process made for them - but on the other hand a selection of prices (not just items) is powerful in sales
look into Goldilocks pricing (the most commonly used...for a reason)
@Skyfire - Geez, now look what you have done, there is blood on the floor
The comparison was not whether poetry deserved a place on hubpages, nor whether it had human reader value.
The reference to "weak content" was to what, (I can only guess), Google sees as substantive original content that serves up what a search query asked for. Not the quality of the poetry. It would seem to me that a short 100 word poetry hub could possibly be compared, (in Google's algo), to content on a Bookmark site. When was the last time you saw one of those at the top of page 1 serps?
@ryankett - the point was not the validity of an ebay capsule, I think it must be related to the content to be valid. Like a capsule for a book of poetry would be fine on a poetry hub, whereas one for flashlights on the same hub would not.
And I think capsule validity would be a good requirement.
The point was that by its very nature, an ebay capsule, (related to auction items), REQUIRES more than one or two product listings. So if a 50-word product description gets the job done - would not forcing an author to expand it to 150 words to allow 3 comparison listings be promoting fluff and spam content?
and how's this for a yes and no answer - yes the point made did relate an ebay hub's content vs a poetry hub's content - in the non-human eyes of an algo's perception of content. But the point made between the content was totally unrelated with respect to a human readers perception of the content.
uh... did I just make the comparison muddier?
No, I totally agree with you. I have been making a lot of ebay hubs, and I subdivide the capsule just like you are saying to offer the various choices that a reader will most likely not have the skills to search out themselves on ebay. Or not want to. I think it is the breadth of the offerings that make them good.
I have changed my ebay hubs to 2 products in each capsule and for most it seems to work to fit the new rules, but it is not deal due to the exact reasons that you mention above in your first post.
@sunforged - yes, stating it as the sales technique of "Good-Better-Best" does illustrate the damage done to the usefulness of an ebay capsule now.
Of course there are exceptions - I still have many sales hubs for product categories where 10 listings for 500 words worked fine because of the nature of the product.
But you can't live by the exceptions. Especially when it is unnecessary to do so.
Think about it hubpages team - am I totally off base here?
Search query - 'phoenix poem'
Search query - 'Phoenix haiku'
All garbage and irrelevant results. That's broken google for you.
@skyfire - Chill out! You are taking offense where none was intended, I even noted beforehand that the comparison would be made, but that it was not related to the quality or worthiness of poetry hubs. Seems to be a sensitive issue with you.
And yes, Google's new algo does seem to be producing worst serps than before. There have been many other comments to that point.
My point was that hubpage's response to this change, respective to ebay capsules, needed rethinking.
@sunseven - I agree that it is wise to develop our own sites. But I don't think the effort needs to be to the exclusion of Hubpages.
This is a great platform that has, and can continue to be a valuable asset to online content writers. Both the monetarily and artistically motivated.
I am lucky in that I have only ever used Amazon, the 'Top 5 Best' or 'The 5 Best Value' formats are still possible, although I used to do well out of shoving 10-16 alternatves at the bottom in two side-by-side Amazon capsules to soak up the visitors who stayed to the end. That isn't really possible now.
As for the poetry monetization, I have had zero success in monetizing quote hubs with books of quotes, and suspect that the effectiveness of monetizing poetry with random poetry books would probably be equally as unsuccessful. Although every clickthrough to Amazon is a potential non-relevant sale.
I am keeping my portfolio, what is left of it anyway, and will be driving traffic to my hubs through articles on other platforms using low-value high traffic terms. This is proving to be a worthwhile strategy over the past few days, and could potentially be beneficial in the longer term if those articles themselves build some authority.
I agree on that point. Many converting 'text-ebay/amazon' placements are going to affect the earnings.
I think OP makes a valid point.
I have a few which were marked which value was contained in the organized choices given. I won't soil them by adding tons of useless text, and they won't make sense having the options so reduced, so I know I'll simply have to move the bulk of the page and take advantage of the outbound linking option.
@Darkside - Yes, The "barely workable" description for the new rule and Amazon capsules may have been overly dramatic, (the juices were flowing from my ire with the ebay situation).
I use Amazon also, and because of the nature of promoting inventoried merchandise, I don't need nearly as many listing as I do for an ebay hub. To me, they are like two different animals.
Although most of my ebay hubs are 500 -1000 words, I have to disagree with the premise that 6 listings for 300 words should be enough.
You can place a lot of quality in 300 words, and if it relates to a collectibles category, 6 listings is nowhere near enough.
But, to "give the devil his due", I can see the abuse of 40 or 50 listings with a few hundred words intro and nothing else but ebay capsules.
I don't believe that's my style, and hopefully they don't look that way to others.
You make a valid point about eBay. As I don't have an eBay account, it doesn't affect me. As for Amazon links, I have not sold anything since the changes, but maybe I'm just having a bad month on Amazon and I only have a few product hubs. I agree with having our own website when it comes to Amazon or eBay product sales. I think Hubpages is doing its best to help us with the new Google algo. As I've only been here four months and have less than a hundred hubs, I only had to edit a few hubs to comply with the new HP requirements. But as I said, you make a valid point about eBay and it's good to voice out your concerns... I've been known to whine myself.
@Rosie2010 - whining? I thought it was more of a tantrum.
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