Constructive feedback requested

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  1. ShyeAnne profile image84
    ShyeAnneposted 10 years ago

    I joined Hubpages approximately 3 years ago.  I have 25 - 30 hubs. All of my published hubs are featured hubs. In 2012 I made a little over $50 revenue on my hubpages hubs. Altogether since I began writing on Hubpages I have reached almost 30,000 views.  While perusing the forums I see numbers that I could only hope for in my wildest dreams, 50,000 hits and way more on individual hubs!  I am getting approximately 500 hits a week on all my hubs combined.  The numbers are creeping up , but not quickly. Could I ask for people to take a look at my hubpages, take a look around and tell me what I can change, alter, add, to increase readership and ultimately revenue?  I had Amazon ads in my hubs since the beginning but recently canceled the account as I have not made any money off of those ads.  I am probably not using Amazon correctly. I appreciate any and all feedback. Thank you

    1. Phyllis Doyle profile image92
      Phyllis Doyleposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Hi ShyeAnne. I liked your medicine bag instructions so much that I chose that hub to give you some feedback, as you requested. I must apologize up front if I seem too harsh in my suggestions, for I am seriously interested in helping you out. You are a good writer and very creative -- so, I want to offer my help in your writing journeys.

      I learned a lot about writing for the internet from a very internet savvy lady who was often downright brutal in her teachings and critiques of my articles when I first began writing for the internet about 9 years ago. Although she was quite brutal, she helped me immensely. So, please do not be upset if I, too, seem "brutal" in my critique.

      I chose your hub "How to Make a Native American - First Nations, Medicine Bag or Pouch to Wear Around Your Neck" because I love all things related to Native American crafts, tradition, history and culture.

      Ok, so, here goes:

      Title advice:
      Be specific on the title and make sure it relates to your article. Your title is specific but has unnecessary words. My suggestion is:

      How To Make a Native American Medicine Bag
      ('How to' articles are very good for traffic, BTW)

      Try to leave out characters in your title. Commas, etc. connected at the end of a word hinders the search process. Google does not recognize the word (Nations,) because of the comma being attached to it. 'Nations,' -- the comma is seen as part of the word and therefore not recognized in search. The dash between American - First is correctly used, for it is not attached to a word. Use of the - is very good to make a specific title without using extra words. I use this method quite often. If your title is a question, separate the last word and the ? mark with a space.

      If you really want First Nations in your title then I suggest:
      How To Make A Native American Or First Nations Medicine Bag

      I would explain that the term Native Americans refers to tribes in North America and First Nations refers to tribes in Canada, for, not everyone knows this and may misunderstand your first sentence.

      It is not necessary to put "or Pouch" in your title, for, that can be explained in your hub in your first paragraph. Such as:

      "Today I want to share with you how to make a Native American Medicine Bag -- sometimes referred to as a Medicine Pouch."

      It is not necessary to put in the title "to Wear Around Your Neck", for this, too, can be explained in the hub in the first capsule. Example:
      "The bag, or pouch, is always worn around the neck so that it is close to your heart."

      The title of your article should be repeated within the first 60 words of your first paragraph in order for search engines to spot your article fast and pick it fast -- therefore it will be one of the top, if not the first, articles to be in the search. So, with that in mind, your second paragraph, really should have been your first paragraph.

      That brings me to the sub title of your first capsule: Spirituality was not in your title and you jump right into it, which takes away from the search engine efforts for Medicine Bag.

      Spirituality is very much a part of everything Native Americans and First Nations people make. Yet, this topic can be used in a capsule further on in the hub, with a sub title such as:
      'Spirituality of making your own medicine bag' -- then explain in the capsule how a medicine bag is connected to spirituality, such as: "Native Americans see a spirituality in the making of items. A medicine bag is a very spiritual item for the one who will wear it. etc......" (that is just an example for you).

      Now, at the end of your first capsule, you wrote: "But first, beneath, you will find a brief description of the Sweat Lodge and ceremony." Were did that come from? It is not in your title, nor did you discuss it in connection to a medicine bag. A Sweat Lodge ceremony and how to conduct one would be an excellent article on its own.

      In regards to your poll: it has nothing to do with a medicine bag. Well, it does if you somehow connect it to the medicine bag in another capsule. I would have chosen questions about the medicine bag in the poll.

      Your instructions are well written and helpful. However, so many words in bold is very distracting to the flow of your article and makes it hard to read. Only the subtitles should be in bold.
      Adding the '......................continued...............................> is also distracting and not necessary, for the subtitle of your next capsule is clearly a continuation.

      The **To add fringe to your Medicine Bag** is also distracting. If you drop the **s it would flow better, or drop the whole thing, for, your subtitle clearly states that this capsule is how to add fringe.

      All images should have credits and a description. You do not have to supply a link. Check out some of my hubs as to how to show credits and descriptions. Also, I never put a caption (title) on my images, for, it comes out in bold and is not aligned properly to the image, which is distracting and hinders the flow of your article.

      Good grief !!!! This critique could have been a hub. Best wishes to you for a wonderful career in writing.
      PS: I just recently decided to drop Amazon and eBay ads, for I rarely earn anything from them.

  2. WryLilt profile image87
    WryLiltposted 10 years ago

    Great job getting to 30,000!

    I think it may be worth reading some of the hubs in my slider - especially the ones on SEO for newbies and how to use MFP (made for pinterest) images to drive traffic.

    I also have a hub in there on writing for Amazon sales. Although it is getting harder to do so smile

  3. ShyeAnne profile image84
    ShyeAnneposted 10 years ago

    Hi there Wrylilt, I was just reading some of your hubs.  I will definitely be returning to them for more instruction.  I am much more aware of how and why to use Pinterest now. I am going to go edit each one of my hubs to match the format of text left pictures right, and also change some headings, picture captions, add some teasers, wow, I learned lots from you !! Thank you again.

    1. PegCole17 profile image93
      PegCole17posted 10 years agoin reply to this

      WryLilt has the knowledge to help you, ShyeAnne. Cute name, BTW. It will take more than 25 hubs to really see the income, but you are doing quite a bit right if you're already at 30,000. Way to go and best of luck.

      1. ShyeAnne profile image84
        ShyeAnneposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        Thanks PegCole17 ,   Yes WryLilt has some great informational hubs.  I am going to significantly increase the amount of hubs I have.  Thank you for your encouragement and tips.

        1. WryLilt profile image87
          WryLiltposted 10 years agoin reply to this

          Glad I could help smile

  4. graveyard-rose profile image73
    graveyard-roseposted 10 years ago

    Dont feel bad... I lost hope on hubpages. I think I have made a little over 8.00 in THREE YEARS. I see some posts saying that they made a good amount but at the same time, are they saying that to get traffic???????

    1. ShyeAnne profile image84
      ShyeAnneposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Hi there graveyard-rose, I don't feel bad about the amount of traffic I have had.  I feel darn good about it.  I am simply wanting instruction on how to make Hubpages a more lucrative endeavor. I have received some really good constructive feedback in the questions and the forums on how to improve my hub views and earnings.  Good luck to you.  If you love writing don't give up !!

      1. graveyard-rose profile image73
        graveyard-roseposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        Thats great!... yeah, i think that some times.. just i really dont think i have the time required to make my blog "great"

    2. WryLilt profile image87
      WryLiltposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      I am about to hit 3,000,000 views on this account. 98% of that traffic is from places where I had absolutely nothing to do with it. Google, Yahoo, Bing, Facebook, Pinterest, mostly.

      You'd only get minimal traffic from promoting yourself, not worth the time to post.

      I think the fact that your topics are in VERY broad areas is your main issue. Why would someone read your "Blogging for beginners" when there are thousands or millions of websites from AUTHORITY and EXPERIENCED bloggers who've been around a lot longer.

      You need to write on topics where you don't have a lot of competition.

  5. ShyeAnne profile image84
    ShyeAnneposted 10 years ago

    Hi again WryLilt, yes, I am beginning to understand the concept of niche writing and sticking to topics that are not widely covered by mass media unless I write strictly opinion pieces that likely wouldn't get a big readership.  I appreciate your feedback anf I have begun to edit all of my hubs to reflect the layout, picture choice, advertising etc.  Also I am revising my capsule titles and fine tuning the advertising. Thank you for taking the time to respond. I appreciate all feedback you are willing to give.

  6. Matthew Ryczko profile image80
    Matthew Ryczkoposted 10 years ago

    I'm no expert, but I have gotten almost 50,000 hits on single hubs over the last year. In my honest opinion, I think there are three things you could do.

    First of all, definitely write a lot more hubs.

    Second, try speaking to a larger audience with everyday, relatable experiences to hook people that might not be as engaged by the subject. Make them feel like you really understand them and you're speaking directly to them and your Hub answers some question they already have.

    And lastly, at a glance, your hubs seem on the short side, and some of the supporting elements (photos, polls, etc.) seem a little 'tacked on'. I think you could develop some of the side topics in your hubs more. For example, I'd find it really interesting if the one on making a Native American medicine bag had more information about the history and meaning. (And telling me why I want to make a medicine bag to solve some problem that I have, would be part of hooking a larger audience too.) For one thing, more ads show when you have the space for them to show, and the longer you keep someone on the page, the more likely they are to click something.

    You are a fantastic writer, and the value of your written word is great- I just don't think that HubPages is, in my opinion, a platform where you can stand entirely on that and make much money. But don't get stuck on formulas and aiming for hits, that's how you end up with things that look 'tacked on'. I really hope that doesn't come across wrong, but how many times are you adding a picture or a poll because of the little checklist in the Hub tool and not because it fits perfectly into your Hub? (I know I've done it too!)

    Like I said, I am no expert, but hopefully there's something there that helps you smile

    1. ShyeAnne profile image84
      ShyeAnneposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Hi Mathew Ryczko, I love writing and this is exactly the kind of feedback I am looking for.  I am learning how to expand my ability and improve my writing talents in order to capture the audience and increase readership and therefore dollars made from advertising.  I am going to follow you and read your hubs paying attention to your format and content.  I began today to edit all of my hubs to rearrange the capsules, better titles etc.  I have received some excellent feedback in this forum. I look forward to being able to present better polished and hopefully therefore more informative, lucrative hubs. eBay too hey?  I just started with eBay.  I cancelled the Amazon account and I am now deleting their ads off of my hubs as I come across them

      1. Matthew Ryczko profile image80
        Matthew Ryczkoposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        I've definitely been through a learning process myself too. Many of my Hubs are not good examples, but most of my Spotlight ones are. My latest, 'Top 5 Easy Ways to Lose Weight' is toying with a new technique, that you may or may not want to play with yourself. I'm using bolding in particularly long Hubs, in a way that you can actually read the whole Hub, and make some sense of it, by just reading the bold. The idea is that less people bounce, and more people skim first and then go back and read the whole thing (making your time on page even longer). That's the first time that I've used it, so we'll see if it works the way it's supposed to or not.

        Another thing I thought of- it's really nice that 'We, the Hubbers,' form this nice, supportive community and all, but you can't make money promoting to the converted. You definitely need to be out there on other forums talking about your articles in a natural and not spammy way. Actually get involved in other communities, don't just hop on there to promote yourself. Try looking at the Alexa Top Sites by Category tool here:
        See if there are any top sites that you can get involved in, that have to do with your niche, and start building reputation there and talk about your hubs there.

      2. lovebuglena profile image85
        lovebuglenaposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        I don't think that you should have deleted your amazon associates account. You are passing on the opportunity to get some sales. You never know when they may happen. I don't make much on there yet (yet to cashout) yet I still keep it going because from time to time I do get sales.

  7. Matthew Ryczko profile image80
    Matthew Ryczkoposted 10 years ago

    Oh, PS- I gave up on eBay and Amazon modules a long time ago. They have never been significant to me. I'm sure some people use them expertly, but they've never worked for me.

  8. Suzanne Day profile image93
    Suzanne Dayposted 10 years ago

    To add to the conversation, I don't use Ebay or Amazon either as they just turn off visitors being too spammy. People tend to go straight to Amazon if they want to buy anyway. I made $20 from Amazon and $10 from Ebay in a year with a LOT of spammy looking product advertising in my hubs, which I have since removed.

    You need to choose the right program for the job. Adsense by itself pays OK if you write lots of geared advertising copy (to attract the right ads in your hub that get an audience interested) or if you write long hubs where people click the ad to get away from you. I have had some luck writing elsewhere about certain careers where the ads alongside featured courses for people to click onto.

    My preferred program is the Hubpages program, where you paid for impressions. This means, after your hubs reach over 100 views in traffic, they have the ads placed on them. You get paid even if people don't click, as long as they view.

    All this means is that the more hubs you write which are "featured" (ie have more than 100 traffic views), the more traffic you get and the more money you make with the impressions based advertising.

    As a general idea, you get around $5 per 1000 impressions, which seems about right to me.

    1. Matthew Ryczko profile image80
      Matthew Ryczkoposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Hmm, learn something new every day. I did not know any of that about the Hubpages program. I thought it was essentially the same as the Adsense program. I don't get much at all from Adsense. Nearly all of my earnings are from the Hubpages program. And you're right- that works out to about $5 per 1,000 hits.

      However, I think some other things here are off. I have several "Featured" hubs that don't have 100 views yet, and they do show ads. The answer I've always found, was that the HubScore determines if you're featured or not, and then if your engagement, or time on page, drops below a certain threshold, it may no longer be featured. Some of my very first articles, actually, have remained Featured. They don't get traffic, but the people who do view them, read them entirely.

      Also, there are numerous studies about blog article length (not just on HubPages). The statistically "magic number" is about 2,000-2,500 words. It's not because people want to "get away" from the blog. (Well, maybe if it's bad in the first place.) These studies aren't even done around advertising. They're measuring whether or not someone reads the entire article, and that's the length where more people read every word you write. They're also more likely to share it. But quality trumps everything. If it has no business being that long, you're going to put people to sleep and get no benefit.

    2. lovebuglena profile image85
      lovebuglenaposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      I've noticed on some occasions that even if we don't have amazon capsules in our hubs amazon capsules still show up to the side.

  9. ShyeAnne profile image84
    ShyeAnneposted 10 years ago

    Very good information Suzanne Day, thank you.  I am pleased at the response I am getting to my request for constructive criticism, help and tips.  I am using all of this information to improve my presentation, content, etc,.  I now understand that ebay and amazon are essentially wasted space and do nothing to enhance the hub at all.  I am already noticing a slight increase in readership and impressions by applying some of the concepts I am learning here. I appreciate all feedback.

  10. dwelburn profile image91
    dwelburnposted 10 years ago

    That's really interesting Matthew, though I find it surprising. I find a 2000 word article hard to read no matter how interesting it is. It's just too much in one go for me.

    1. lovebuglena profile image85
      lovebuglenaposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      If the 2000 word article is split up into sections and has page dividers separating it it is much easier to read and digest.

    2. Matthew Ryczko profile image80
      Matthew Ryczkoposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      That's what I always thought, too. Most of my earlier articles are closer to 700. It definitely gets more challenging to put something together that's that long and still has high enough quality to hold a reader's attention, because that's what really matters. If you're not writing something that's engaging, it doesn't matter how long it is. There's another interesting method I've read about, that takes that into account. Take your average time on page from Google Analytics and multiply by 180 (average words per minute that people read), and that's how long you personally are engaging your readers. Then you write to put the best value into posts around that length until the average comes up and you can put more content into your posts. But no matter what, content doesn't equal value- you have to do what's the best value to your reader.

      1. Matthew Ryczko profile image80
        Matthew Ryczkoposted 10 years agoin reply to this

        And to bring that back around to where this started- if you're leaving value out, like where I suggested to ShyeAnne to expand on the history and meaning of the medicine bags, then you're leaving out value for your reader, which could mean the difference between engagement and bounce.

  11. SmartAndFun profile image95
    SmartAndFunposted 10 years ago

    If there is a product out there in the world that you love, have had great results with and the product has really solved a problem for you, if you write an article about your experience with it, you can get some sales from Amazon (if Amazon sells that product, that is).

    When someone is a product user and writes a review from their personal experience, it really comes across in the review and allows people trust the writer's recommendation.

    Place an Amazon ad withing the text of the article (not at the bottom) and you will probably get some sales, especially if the problem this item solves is a fairly common one that lots of people are looking for an answer to.

    You may sell the odd item or two off of other types of articles, but product reviews written by an actual user and fan of the product are really what works best for Amazon sales, in my experience.

    1. ShyeAnne profile image84
      ShyeAnneposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Thank you Smartandfun, for your tips on using Amazon ...

  12. Hamshi profile image67
    Hamshiposted 10 years ago

    Hmm I'm seriously wondering why you don't have any seasonal hubs? I don't think anyone should miss out on the seasonal articles profit, especially for the major ones like Christmas. Do publish some gift ideas hubs if you can. A good mix of evergreen+seasonal content is the way to go.

    1. ShyeAnne profile image84
      ShyeAnneposted 10 years agoin reply to this

      Thank you Hamshi, I will do that.  good tip!


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