How to Choose a Hub Topic
This hub is one part in a series on how to make money on HubPages, designed specifically to address one of the most frequently-asked questions in our forums: How do I find the right topic for hub that will make me money?
Picking a Topic for a Money-Making Hub
Internet marketers are constantly trying to discover which niches--and more specifically, keywords-- are the most profitable in internet publishing. There are discussions on this very subject on virtually every webmaster forum in existance, and countless ebooks claiming to have the ultimate list of super-secret money-making keywords. That's exactly the problem; those topics are like the town bicycle. Everyone and their mother is having a ride.
In my experience, there are a few important criteria in choosing a topic for your hub:
- Is it interesting to me?
- Is it interesting to people who don't know me?
Will it continue to be interesting for a long time to come?
Is it interesting to me?
Others might argue, but I think whether or not a subject interests you should be one of the determining factors in whether or not you write about it. Not only does this make your job as a hubber easier and more enjoyable, and consequently increase the likelihood that you'll stick with it, it also shows in your writing itself. Readers can tell the difference between a dry recitation of the facts and a passionate imparting of knowledge, and they're much more likely to respond favorably to the latter. Think back to your school days. Did you take any classes you thought were going to be awesome, only to find that the teacher succeeded in sucking all life out of the subject? Remember that required course you were dreading, that the professor somehow managed to make exciting through his or her own enthusiasm for the subject? If either of those scenarios ring a bell, you'll understand why it's key to pick a hub topic that in some way engages your own interest.
- Example: My hub on wu-yi tea, which has, on occasion, earned me close to $200 in a single day, was born out of the frustration I felt seeing advertisements for a diet product I could clearly see was a scam.
Is it interesting to other people?
On the other hand, if the subject is interesting to you and only you, that doesn't help you much either. Once you've hit upon an idea you might like to pursue, think about whether or not people who don't know you from a hole in the wall would be interested in the topic--and more importantly, whether or not it is a topic that other people will proactively search out. While some things might hold someone's attention if he or she happened to stumble upon it, not all of these things are worth hubbing about, unless you are doing so for your own enjoyment. For the purposes of making money, choose a subject that's searchable.
- Example: I have a passion for eating disorder awareness. Instead of writing a personal rant about how misunderstood the disease is in popular culture, I wrote a hub about eating disorder myths, finding a way to make the topic more general,
Will it continue to be interesting?
This is a point all of us HubPages staff are constantly harping on in the forums. Our CEO Paul Edmondson even wrote a hub on the concept of evergreen content--content that will continue to be relevant (and actively searched!) for months and years to come. While I sometimes use Google trends to rustle up ideas, I pass over the news-related phrases and hit on keywords I believe will have a longer shelf life.
- Example: My 199th hub on tapeworms was taken from a recent Google trends list. It started earning right away, but more importantly, I anticipate it will continue making me money in the long term.
If You're Stuck for Ideas...
If, when evaluating an idea for a new hub topic, you answer "yes" to all three questions, you're well on your way to writing a money-making hub.
However, getting an idea to evaluate in the first place can be a struggle for some people. If you ever run out of inspiration, check out Google Trends (linked above) and the Hub Requests section (feed at right). Just remember to check those topics against the questions above before you dig in!
Also, two types of hubs that almost always do well are how to guides and product reviews, and these are easy enough to write about because 1) I'm pretty darn sure all of you do something every day that could use explaining, and 2) I'm absolutely sure you use products every day, be they electronics, cosmetics, food, or clothing. And guess what? So does everyone else.