I'm seeing dozens of threads from people stressing about losing traffic. Asking if this is the end of Hubpages. Asking if it's pointless writing here anymore. Asking if there is even a point to writing online.
I saw my traffic drop by more than 50% in 2011 - when the original Panda swept through. And I've seen how the staff work and have a vague sense of how Google works (well, not really, but I kinda get it on some convoluted level - the secret is that anyone who claims "to get it" usually doesn't, haha!)
1. Traffic goes up and down with seasons, holidays, age of content, news events. And algorithm changes.
2. Hubpages is a business. With staff. Staff they have to pay. They will do anything they can to make sure traffic stays up and keeps rising, as they're out of a job if they don't. It may take a bit of experimentation and a lot of hard work, and they make a few mistakes along the way, but they know how to do it - and unlike the majority of people on this site, they spend all day doing it. Hubpages has gotten past previous Google traffic losses, just like other big content sites. They'll do it again.
3. It's fine to have a whinge about traffic. To share war stories. To track the latest updates. But don't assume that you can figure out from a couple of scary posts what Google has in mind for your content. Hell, even the people who track SEO for a living often take calculated guesses based on mass experimentation. In fact, experimentation is one of the most common ways people figure out what works with Google - so even then it can be wrong.
4. If you're JUST relying on Google for traffic, this is probably going to be a good learning experience for you. It's time you learnt to drive traffic from other sources.
5. Writing online is about time. It's about building up a good, solid base of content that will continue to bring you money. As it ages, gets organic backlinks from people who found it helpful, gets likes, shares, comments, pins, tweets... traffic will increase. With time.
6. I'm not saying losing traffic and earnings doesn't hurt. As mentioned above, been there, and yes, it hurts! But this too shall pass...
And one final reminder:
Don't keep all your eggs in one basket. - That applies to writing sites, topics, monetisation and traffic sources.
Don't stress yourself out too much. Writing for traffic can be bumpy, but the ups can be as big as the downs.
That's supposed to be plus infinity the arrow pushes 8 down and makes it infinity.
There is no other option but to stay and see....
Lobbobrandon, if I +1 your infinity, does that make it redundant? What comes after infinity?
Nope it doesn't infinity + anything gives you infinity itself It's just that it's a very very large number and any additions won't make a difference. Infinity + Infinity = infinity too So no one can beat me when it comes to praising your post!
Yes, april 2012 to till now huppages continue loose his traffic. here is hubpages traffic status
http://traffic.alexa.com/graph?w=400&am … s.com&
You're better off looking at Quantcast which records Hubpages actual traffic stats. Alexa only guesses.
I earn buttons from Hubpages so it's not worth the hours and effort put in. I gave up trying to make a second income from it long ago.
But having said that I have been making a few more pennies lately and consistently so I guess I haven't suffered from recent problems with traffic.
But now I just write for fun, it's a hobby and a social network which occasionally gives me some cash.
In terms of your last sentence......My presence here, has always been about those things, with "earning a few extra$$," last......as you put it, so well. Thus, I don't feel the crunch or the panic, as others do. I do understand though, why hubbers begin to get down and disillusioned, when they see their $$ drop.
The best 4 words here from Wrylit are, "This too shall pass." She's very very knowledgeable, it seems and always has stellar advice. Sounds to me like it's a matter of riding out the storms. I hope things improve for the money makers, because I hate for us to lose even one hubber!
Good Luck to all......
I agree with all the points you have made here WryLilt. My own traffic and earnings saw a drop of 50% after the 1st Panda. Ever since, I have seen many fluctuations which affected my traffic and earnings. But instead of whining, I chose to look for new ways to earn money. My earning from Google and HubPages combined now only account for less than 15% of my total earnings online. I have now learned not to worry much about Pandas and Penguins because I know that I am not dependent on this income. As WryLilt rightly pointed out I realized long back that it's time I learn to drive traffic from other sources than depend solely on Google. I got certified on Social Media and SEO and now I am on my way to get certified on PR and Media Management as well. If things were fine, I don't think I would have learned anything. So as the saying goes, whatever happens... happens for a reason. I agree that things are not looking good at the moment, but I have full faith in the HubPages Team and Community.
Yes, we all will survive the Pandas, Penguins and whatever animal is next (Porpoise?) for God Google. And, yes, the SEO folks are also trying to figure this out.
Since there is a much stronger emphasis on social sharing (bleck!) with the recent Google updates, it pays to have an active presence somewhere in social media land. As well, HP should not be one's only blogging venue. B.Y.O.B. (Build Your Own Blog).
I'm using HP as a venue for all the content that doesn't fit perfectly on my other two blogs. As well, I'm using it as an experimentation blog for some topics. If HP disappears, I'll have other places to go, other horizons to follow.
Most of us on this site walked away from a 9-to-5 existence. Yet, many are treating it like it's a job and are looking to HP as a substitute employer. We're all in business for ourselves and owning a business is tough business.
Thanks WryLilt, for telling it like it is!
What the hell is a 'whinge' I have never heard of a whinge, please explain?
We (down here in the deep south or 'what the hell' land) don't call Hissy Fits and Complaining, Hissy Fits and Complaining.... Aussies call it Whinging! Kiwis call it Bleating!
There you go.......
Consider your whinge answered!
Oh . . . I call it weak, lame and pathetic but thank you for attempting to explain yourself. We up here above the equator don't have hissy fits . . . we just laugh at your quaint expressions and write it off as weak, lame and pathetic attempts at being clever.
Did you just insult half the world's cultures in one hit? Nicely done...
I tend to think all the negative talk is an anxious distraction.
Set a goal or goals. Focus. Produce. Measure success. Make adjustments accordingly. Repeat.
WryLit, I love your post. It's positive and the truth. My traffic didn't get hit quite as bad as last time, because 2/3 of it is coming from elsewhere. I worked on that last year. Thanks for the uplifting post.
I think Hub Pages knows where it is going and ultimately is a great business idea and a great service and product to writers. They developed the idea of creating a writers community where writers like us can benefit from revenues from ads on our pages. So far that is still proven. And other companies have copied the idea, and sometimes copied more than Hub ideas.
Hub Pages will grow and adapt with the times. We all will. Diversity is good. Sometimes I see hubs here that I would not recommend my friends to read, but then there are others that I do. I'm just being honest.
As long as there is a wide variety of useful, informative and even entertaining reading to be found here, Hubs will never die, Just as good books and magazines never die - as they constantly fill a necessary niche, have a market and serve a large readership.
If more hubbers got the word out and talked up the bench instead of talking down the bench - and showed the positives and useful merits of being a published writer - here or anywhere else - then the word would spread and we would all benefit. The methodology behind Search engine optimization makes the simple system of writing more complicated.
But by streamlining it and owning it more and more - Hub Pages could be the first company online to have a system that could even be used by other companies to create online content. The only way a great writing community could die is if the art and love of writing dies with it. and that will simply never happen. Because we care too much...
Yeah, but I've been here 2 weeks, written 1 hub about my cat and my stats show 10 people have visited and I've checked my adsense earnings every half hour for the last 48 hours ... and it still says I've earnt nothing.....
You won't get Adsense for that cat. It's not attractive enough.
Mark needs to draw a Stick Cat for you.
OMG - I can't believe you dissed my cat!!!
No more vote ups for YOU young man...
You're good! Sure got me in your corner, Earner.
I think I'm off to start a new hub: "Why does Google not find my cat attractive?"
I don't know why Mr. Google doesn't like your cat. I thought he was beautiful.
I'm embarrassed to even post cause it shows my Hub Score (unlike your big 100). Mine has dropped within a couple of days. I may never see 100 again! I'm publishing another Hub today, and I'll betcha the score will drop again!
"If you're JUST relying on Google for traffic, this is probably going to be a good learning experience for you. It's time you learnt to drive traffic from other sources" -- INDEED!
I also found this statement very much insightful. My problem, however, is I don't know where to get traffic from aside from Google. I guess that's the challenging part.
A content site needs to rank well on Google. If it doesn't the main solution is to go and post somewhere that does rank well on Google. Other traffic sources are the icing, not the cake.
Love the cat, and the picture tells a story. Perfect for a hub.
I thought about stealing it ..... he'd never know, he doesn't read my hubs
You read that one thread with the graphs and all the words... and that thing was like War and Peace. (You even followed the op, but Im not bitter.)
I guess it will be increasing soon. From time to time, traffic fluctuates and I must think that it will go up higher soon.
WryLit, Excellent advice. It really is important to diversify, in where you write and in terms of traffic.
Hub Pages does pay. I got a payment from Adsense recently. It is not as mad high money as previous times, but then i don't publish as often as I used to here. Diversifying is good for us all.
Remember that referrals also earn you some payments and they do add up, folks! If you do the math and eventually earn some income from Hub Pages, the more you publish the more you potentially earn from it! Don't burn your bridges.
But then cover your eyes when you read about Penguin 2.0! Holy crap! LOL!
WryLilt, thanks for posting this! I have noticed that most of these "Hubpages is dead" threads are posted by people that only have the 1000 accolade--usually the SEO experts!!!
I'm sure that there are quite a few of us who remember the true sound of traffic as being something other than a flat "Kabomp... Kabomp"
I could cry some days.... it seems I have to write more and more just to tread water. And I do try to find ways/places to link back, but as mine's not a niche of any sort it's tricky to do that well, or at all.
Traffic is down by half what it was 18 months ago, even though I've now probably got 50% more content.
I know I should do more..... but I've had 6 visitors in 24 hours.
That's highly embarrassing...... highly.
Don't feel embarrassed - that's more visitors than some grumpy people get in a lifetime!
It's quite a hard task having to make cups of tea for total strangers who are only interested in poking their noses into your domain, reading your stuff and then leaving!
Other options for traffic could be facebook, twitter and other social blogs i hope..
I think one of the biggest problem hubbers have is lack of patience. As with other things in life, everybody wants results RIGHT NOW! When they don't get them, it's all doom and gloom and blaming everything on HP. Perseverance and good old fashioned hard work will get the job done, not moaning and pointing fingers.
Nice one! I think anyone who types the words 'traffic down...' into a Hubpages forum should automatically be prevented from completing their post and be redirected here haha
Well the fact is a lot websites HP-like are closing (Google is a killer) or not paying: RedGage, Mylot, Gather, etc. That is what I can see and reading around.
Those sites are completely different from Hubpages - they mostly revolve around short comments and link sharing. They have no minimum quality requirements, either. Mylot has also recently transitioned to a non-earning website model.
Back in 2011 the same thing was discussed - content farms dying. Hubpages has made a lot of good changes to stop that happening.
I think also people might be forgetting that there are some really amazing social networks on the internet. You are 100% right that traffic goes up and down and this will be the case ad infintum. But I think we can utilize social networks such as Twitter, LinkedIn, Facebook and Pinterest. I know that when I blog it takes time for some of my blog posts to get indexed in Google, but because I am very active on Twitter, I get a lot of visitors to my blog posts from Twitter. I do not pay attention to Panda or Penguin. I just continue to focus on writing content for my readers and engaging with my target audience. It is that simple. So no Hub Pages having a page rank of 7-8 I do not see dying at all.
Ok I have to agree that it's not dying. But I don't see how you've come to this conclusion. You're talking about social media traffic, what does it have to do with PR? Btw the PR is 6 when last checked. Didn't check after the last update, I guess it's still the same
Google cannot treat people so badly and expect to get away with it. It thinks it is all powerful and is abusing its power, but it has forgotten than it depends on the goodwill of the people for its survival. We just have to wait while Google destroys itself.
Social media traffic, what does it have to do with PR? That is a very good question lobobrandon. I think at the end of the day we are all seeking people to read our content. I think it is a mistake to rely on people discovering your content just through search engines. People can discover content also via social networks. Hence this is the reason why you see the social network sharing icons nearly everywhere on the internet. Did you know that keyword ranking is influenced by how many people have shared your content on Facebook, Twitter and Goggle Plus? Social media is deeply entangled with keyword ranking and has an impact on how much traffic you receive to your content. I love Google and I am not in the slightest bit bothered by the changes in their algorithm as I know that if you do not place all your eggs in one basket, you will still continue to get traffic. Guest posting on popular blogs is another great way to drive traffic to your content organically.
Social links don't have that great an importance when it comes to ranking on google as of now. Yahoo yes a big deal. Bing I'm not too sure never conducted any kind of research there. Other search engines I've not actually bothered as it's not a massive chunk of traffic.
Would it be clearer to say that social media has not worked for you? I would be interested to know what you have tried using social media.
When you say that social links don't have that great an importance when it comes to ranking on Google, I would be very curious to how you have arrived at this conclusion and where have you found information to support this claim.
This is how Social Media has helpe others with content marketing:
* Social media can help search engines find and index your content faster
Likes, shares, retweets, etc. indicates to search engine that content is new and interesting, often leading to a temporary increase in rankings
*Your content will increase in search results for people connected to you
Increases domain authority and the number of inbound links to your website.
The rules of search have changed. In fact, they change on a daily basis. But never so dramatically has rank been uprooted since the explosion of social media. Social media sites, especially the power houses of Facebook, Twitter, and LinkedIn, have become backlink central for affecting organic search results.
Social media's influence on driving business via the web is expected to surpass search engine optimization (SEO) in 2013, according to eMarketer. Web marketers and PR professionals must pay attention to how social media affects search, and ultimately how it can change the rules of online visibility and (online) brand engagement.
Prior to Facebook's takeover of the online universe (800 million active users today), online visibility in natural search was a sum of several measurable components: SEO site compliance on site structure and meta tags/content, directory link submissions, and qualified and relevant site/blog-linking. In 2010 the game officially changed, with Google's support of social media - author reputation, bookmarking, commenting, as well as a number of other social factors (likes, tweets, retweets, shares, etc.) - as a major factor in how it ranks websites and blogs in its algorithm. Real-time search in Google meant that search was only as valuable as the latest blog post, social share, and comment.
Today, the line is blurring. And this causes some confusion for web marketers. Should they focus on optimizing and driving traffic to their social pages? To their website? Where does their online brand live? How do they communicate their brand value proposition, whether their personal or corporate brand? The good news is that technology has advanced so that web marketers can manage their content and sites through the use of simple and effective blogging tools. Further, those blog tool properties, such as WordPress, support integration of social plug-ins and necessary content for social sharing including video, effective product/service literature, and tagged imagery. And so, marketers can use social and manage their web presence to support online brand consistency.
My rank and my traffic are doing a whole lot better than a few months ago. I got a Twitter account and use it as a major marketing tool. I think people should just work harder on their own marketing tactics if they're that scared about dropping traffic.
I cringed opening up to see your reply - was expecting comments like "Don't call us whingers coz..."
It's getting to the point of where it was post panda Luckily I've learned a lot since then!
I knew when QAP hit all of the old hubs that people would go ballistic, and they have. Writing is very personal. People don't like being told their work isn't "up to snuff." I knew people would let their emotions take over, defend their bad hubs and react poorly. I put all of my hubs through QAP before the QAP process went to old hubs. I was prepared to accept some hubs not making the process, but I was fortunate that they all did. I was prepared to make decisions about keeping or revising any hubs that didn't make it through QAP. People need to just relax and quit taking it so personally.
I cringe when I look back at some of my old hubs. Lol
So do I.
Then I look at mine and think "well at least they're better than Wry's".
Pffffffff your hubs on children's gumboots are so NOT better!
You're right and I am relieved because I thought I had blown the Hubbers code of non-criticism with my little joke. Most of my early stuff went during self-inflicted purges.
There's a code? Oops, I've been telling people they suck for ages. Why did no one warn me!
I'm sure in a year or two, I'll look back on what I'm writing today and blush with embarrassment. I have discovered this on-line writing stuff is a long-term learning process, and it's a fun learning process too!!
And anyone can break the hubbers' code of non-criticism on my part. I WANT to be criticized....at least constructively anyway. But only on my hubs...not my forum posts. I don't edit my forum posts much. I'm not a good poster....
Cringe is the word to use when being nice on ones self Susannah. I still look at some of my older hubs and think to myself. WTF was I thinking when I wrote this.
I am still re-writing some of my ancient hubs to get rid of that cringe factor and stop MYSELF whinging, lol.
I've not been active on HP for a long time now, but the Hubs I have here continue to produce income. Sometimes the income is up, sometimes it's down, but over the last year it's stabilized at over the 50 per month mark.
I continue to exceed the 50 per month mark with the HP ad program. Now I'm kind of wondering about those who have 10 times the amount of Hubs I have. There is income opportunity here as long as HP remains in business.
I think my worst hubs were when I was trying to write a load for a hubpages contest 2 years ago, when it was beneficial to churn out content every day, round one subject .... that was difficult and produced a lot of cr4p.
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