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How to Make HubPages a Residual Income Opportunity
My Experience Getting To Know HubPages - "then"
I started using HubPages about 10 months ago and currently have a total of 30 now including this and another that I am working on. The reason I started to write Hubs was because I had just learned that back links were needed for helping to get web sites ranked and as I had been working on a couple of fledgling sites without much success for over a year this was a bit of a breakthrough for me.
So I wrote of half dozen web sites and was pleased to see my score rise to about 80 which I knew meant that the links would be "dofollow" and therefore of value to my web sites. Then about a week later my score had dropped to less than 75 - help!
I wrote another couple of Hubs and got a friend to make some comments. I read a few Hubs myself and commented - my score rose again. This pattern kept on - I would write a new Hub every time my score dipped, every couple of weeks or so, and the Hubscore was back up again.
This was very frustrating - my Adsense counter showed that I was getting no clicks and the traffic was terrible. However, in the early days I was more concerned about keeping my links as "dofollow" and I hadn't really thought about making my HubPages a residual income opportunity.
Then a month or so ago I noticed that my traffic was creeping up a little and I received a couple of Adsense clicks. I began to take note and browsed a few other Hubs that discussed income opportunities from writing Hubs. I also visited an Internet marketing forum that had always given me good advice in the past and followed a thread where people were discussing the way they made money from HubPages.
A number of forum visitors were discussing their 100 to 250 Hubs that they had each wqritten and the money that they were making. It seemed that good quality Hubs took a little time to "mature" but after a year or so began attracting large numbers of visitors. I was hooked!
My Experience Getting To Know HubPages - "Now"
The introduction above was at a time when I was interested in growing a business based on the Internet. Since then I have learned a lot and have come to the conclusion that the Web is a fantastic resource but that it cannot provide any form of get rich quick scheme. Moreover, it will not provide substantial earnings (even with a lot of hard work) without appropriate financial investment.
However, the Internet can provide a superb forum for those interested in writing. It can also provide a sensible residual income opportunity for those prepared to invest time and energy doing something they like.
In any form of business you must have something to sell. Therefore, if you can write something informative, interesting or entertaining, and people want to read it - then you can earn some money.
Millions of people earn money from writing and the Internet is now probably the major marketplace for authors. It has also made selling your writing possible for many budding journalists and novel writers. Gone are the days when you had to submit work to an overstretched publisher in the hope of getting something in print. Now you can self publish - it only takes a few minutes and you have a potential customer base of billions. Yet it is still hard to make any money as you have to make sure somebody reads your work.
I have found that HubPages can give you the forum to write, and to earn some money if you are able to come up with the goods that people want to read.
Therefore, a couple of years on from my introduction above and changing thoughts have led me to make some amendments to this Hub! Actually I am re-writing all my existing Hubs, as well as thinking of new and interesting subjects for fresh ones. I am removing all commercial links, adding summaries, improving photographs - and generally treating every hub in a hopefully increasing portfolio as a continuing "work in progress".
A little extra income to fund holidays?
How to Write a Good Hub
Now that I was not simply interested in the link, my Hubs began to improve. I also began to enjoy writing them a lot more. The first step was to find the right subjects to write about. This meant using key words that people were using to search on Google (or Yahoo etc) that were not too competitive. For example, I did not want to write about "portable laptops" because although thousands of people surf every day for this subject, I did not want my Hub to compete with the hundreds of retailers and affiliate marketers who had better ranked sites.
So I took several subjects that I was interested in in the first place and searched for a range of keywords to go with these subjects. The idea was to have a number of closely related keywords that would allow me to do several hubs that could be linked together - this is one way that is recomended to increase your traffic.
How do you select keywords? Selecting keywords is easy but there is a knack to it. Many Internet companies will charge you a large amount to learn the secret which actually just boils down to knowing where to look for a couple of free bits of software on the Internet. Follow these steps if you are looking for keywords that will attract valuable search engine traffic:
- Select a subject area - for example "widgets"
- Find Google's free keyword tool
- Spend some time entering "widget" into the tool and getting a long list of keyword suggestions - you will also be able to get the value of the keyword (cost per click) and the estimated number of "global" persons using that keyword - discard all keywords with low search volumes and low cost per click.
- You need to put each keyword into Google now to see what sites rank for that particular keyword
- In the meantime you need to install a free bit of software from SEOBOOK that adds something to your Firefox browser (it must be Firefox)
- Now when Google returns the top ten sites for the keyword - you can click and see what the page rank number is. If the top 3 or 4 sites have page rank numbers of 0,1,2 or 3 they are pretty lowly ranked - any higher and they become very difficult to compete with.
- Its a bit of a slog but if you put each of your keywords into Google and accept them or reject them based on the page ranks of the top few sites that come up - you will end up with a list of keywords that are quite valuable and potentially easy to compete for
- I will drop in a bit of a plug for the service that I use to automate this whole procedure - to make the job of searching for a 100 valuable keywords a 10 minute job! This is the Keyword Academy who will let you try their tools (and a lot more than just the keyword tool) for only $1 for a month - I can guarantee that you will want to take up the subscription proper after that first month!
So I selected 100 keywords and began to write Hubs that had titles containing these keywords.
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Fine Tuning Your Hubs
There is a lot of advice within HubPages itself about how to write good Hubs that people enjoy. However, this is something that you do get a feel for as you write more. Of course it is not for me to comment on the quality of my own Hubs, but in principle I know what I ought to be doing:
- Write about a subject I know something about and be prepared to do some research.
- Try to answer a question that people might be asking.
- Add photographs (make sure they are yours or you have permission to use them - there are many free sources on the Internet and many that only charge a little for using archived clips) and other items such as video clips from Utube, releveant Amazon adds and other capsules that are available. However, try to keep the overall effect smooth, glossy but not cluttered.
Once the Hub has been published there is more work to be done. Keep going back and linking it to other new Hubs that you are writing - so long as they are relevant.
Return to a Hub and add another text capsule with some new information or an update. When you start getting comments make sure that you add a well thought out and helpful reply - it goes down really well.
A trip to New York would be nice!
What Can You Realistically Expect From Your Hubs?
My goal has changed from a couple of years ago when it was to earn $1000 per month. This was too tall an order even if I know some people that are doing this with 250 plus Hubs published. My target now is to publish 250 Hubs myself - and make them all of high quality and interesting to read. I know that I will enjoy that and find the achievement very satisfying. I am hoping that it will cultivate a writing career for me - where I also publish elsewhere for actual remuneration.
If I do this, then I am sure that by also paying heed to much of what I learned when trying to earn directly from the Internet, a satisfying and useful residual income will automatically follow.
"You have to have something to sell" whether it is from the Internet or from a bookshop!