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A HubPages Question and Answer Session
Twenty-two months and counting. That’s how long I have been writing for HubPages, and that is how long I have had to observe and learn as I stumbled my way through the dark halls of that site. Why dark halls you ask? Simply because when a writer is just starting out at HP, it can be a rather confusing and lonely site. There are so many instructions; there are so many good writers; and there are so many nagging questions.
How do you make money? Is it even possible to make money? How do I find keywords? How do I play this SEO game? Who can I ask for help? Will anyone ever read my articles? Why are my views so low in number? And finally, the ultimate question: am I wasting my time?
I am going to attempt to lift the fog a bit for some of you. I will give you my perspective of HP based on my experience only. It is an interesting perspective in that I never joined this site to make money. I just wanted to become a part of a writer’s community. I wanted a platform from which I could grow as a writer. Making money was never my goal nor is it today. I do not write the HubPages way. I know that. They know that. We all know that. I do not use keywords. I have no clue what the statistics mean, I have never won a Hub of the Day and I have no Editor’s Choice Hubs.
And yet I do make money and I have gained a certain amount of recognition, so I’m going to tell you what I have observed and you can take it or leave it.
Does the Hubpages System Work?
Do bears poop in the woods? Most definitely the HP system works. I know quite a few writers who write excellent evergreen hubs and make a fine passive income from those hubs. I am the poster child for doing things the wrong way at HP and even I get a payout monthly. If it can happen to me then anyone with a semblance of talent and the ability to choose keywords carefully can make money.
The Learning Center is there to teach writers how to write evergreen hubs that will do well on the internet. Read what they have to tell you and then follow the instructions. 1250 words minimum, three pictures, keywords, additional capsules and you are on your way. Don’t do it the HP way and it is a crap shoot at best.
Does the HubPages system work for poets? No way, no how! Does it work for essayists and short story writers? No way, no how! They even tell you that in the Learning Center, so it should come as no surprise if you have 200 poems and you aren’t making any money. God bless the poets of this world. God bless the essayists and short story writers. Those people write for the pure love and passion of writing, and you will always be my kindred spirits. Just don’t expect to make any money at HP.
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How Long Does It Take to Make Money?
This question has been asked ad nauseum and there is no easy answer. My experience is that it takes a good six months to a year for your evergreen hubs to circulate around the internet and start generating considerable views.
I received my first $50 payout after four months, and I went a year receiving a payout every two months after that. Then, suddenly, the internet gods decided to smile upon me. My views on older hubs began to increase as did my earnings. Since I really hadn’t changed my writing style one bit, and since I still was not using keywords, the only thing I can attribute that increase to is the simple fact that it takes time for an article to generate views and become established in the netherworld of online writing.
As I stated earlier, there are a good many writers who earn a good deal of money monthly. Usually if you write craft articles, or travel articles, or money articles, your chances increase. Usually if you choose a niche and establish yourself as an expert in that niche your chances increase. Too often I see writers bouncing around between ten different topics, and I think that slows down your chances of a quick payout. Choose an area you are passionate about, an area that many people are passionate about, and start pounding that topic for all you are worth….and then wait and be patient. Don’t quit a niche because views are low after two months. That is not enough time to make a judgment call. Stay with a niche over a year and then you’ll have some idea if it is working or not.
If you write one article per week and the article is poor quality, then you might be waiting a long time for a payout. In fact, the Second Coming could happen before that first payment arrives in your PayPal account. Put in the effort, follow the guidelines and before you know it you just might be able to take your significant other out for dinner….at McDonalds. LOL
My buddy Mike from HubPages
I avoided this like the plague. I simply had too many hubs and the last thing I wanted to do was go back and spruce them up so that they would be closer to evergreen….but…finally, about two months ago, I did exactly that. I took four days and I brought my old hubs up to HP standards and guess what? My views increased 32% within a week and they have continued to increase ever since.
It turns out I was wrong in my stubbornness and HP was right, and you have no idea how much it pains me to admit that. LOL
The HP Learning Center
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All you'll ever need to know about making a Hub and being successful on HubPages
But I Don’t Get Any Comments!
Well, if you are just starting out, you won’t get comments until other Hubbers get to know you, and that only happens if you comment on their hubs and become an active part in the community. I don’t care how good a writer you are; when you are first starting out on HP nobody knows you. You could have received rave reviews from your family and friends, but on HP you are just another newbie who has to make the effort to become a part of this community.
I especially love the newcomers who friend 100 Hubbers on their first day at HP. Gee, do you think we are idiots? Show up at my site, read my hubs, make some comments and then we’ll chat about being friends. I had to do the same thing and so did all the other established writers on this site.
If you want it then earn it!
Answer this poll please
Do you make any money from HubPages?
But I Heard That Earnings Fluctuate on HP
Yes they do; you heard correctly. Every once in awhile Google will do their Google thing, or something called a Panda will drop by for a visit, and earnings will take a nosedive. I don’t know why and I don’t care. All I know is that eventually earnings go back up and the market stabilizes….or it doesn’t. J Life is a gamble on the best of days and so is HubPages.
If you are relying on HP to be your sole source of income then God bless you because you are going to need it. If money is important to you then I strongly suggest you diversify as so many writers do; that way if HP has a dip in earnings you will have other earnings to help balance it all out. If I had the time I would write for HP and Bubblews, but I don’t have the time. I have too many other projects, and since HP is where my heart is then HP is where I will concentrate my online writing efforts.
We all love that bottom line, don’t we? Okay, here it is.
Can you make thousands of dollars per month on HP? Not likely! Can you make hundreds of dollars per month on HP? Most definitely, but you will have to be a good writer, be diligent, work hard and be patient.
And as an added bonus, let me just say that I adore the community of HP, and by that I mean the members, the writers, the ones who toil away daily trying to bring a bit more beauty, information and reason into this world. You have my highest respect, and I am very, very grateful for the support you have given me over these past twenty-two months. This place rocks and it is because of the writers….not the HP staff….not the HP diagram of success…..but because of the writers!
If you are a new writer and you want what I have, then work for it.
If you are an experienced writer but struggling, and you want what I have, then work for it.
Pretty simple, huh?
2013 William D. Holland (aka billybuc)
“Helping writers to spread their wings and fly.”