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Can You Make Money Online without Compromising Quality?

Updated on May 29, 2017

Sad But True

A published hard copy author, who had some talent, wrote a short piece and
posted it on one of the on line writing sites.

He got very few hits.

He was told about Networking, and as a 'learning experience' spent a day
'self-spamming' [as it is called when one promotes their own work] on
various sites.

He got very few hits despite this effort.

Frustrated, he took a look at the most 'popular' items.
They were poorly written, empty, meaningless.
They were all in the same voice, with the same words. and he wondered
if these items had been written by a computer.

After two weeks of ignominy, he deleted his item from the online site and sent
it along to a mainstream magazine where it was accepted and paid for, and
appeared in print a few months later.

It was very well received, quoted, he got many letters from readers saying
how much they enjoyed his work.

Wetware vs Software

Computer programs operate in a limited parameter of yes/no, 1/0. A few have some fuzzy logic so that they can see that Eastonia might be an error and the seeker meant Estonia. But a program that searches for information can't go too far beyond the narrow parameters.

Titling an article; "The Least Religious Place in the World." which attracts human eyes, will not attract A.I. A.I. will sooner push an item; "A study of Estonia focusing on the lack of religion." which sounds extremely boring

On the Front Page of writing sites will be items which have "Estonia" in the title.

They may be badly written, they may have very little information, but the Search Engine will rate them higher than an interesting piece which is entertaining and educational but has the kind of title that would catch a human eye.

Making $1000 a Month!!!

You take a look at something written by one of those persons who makes that kind of money and as a writer you see nothing in it that is not ordinary. The sentence structure, the words, the trite terms.

You check and find that almost every sentence is built around 'key words' and SEO terms, and when you finish you have learned absolutely nothing your haven't read before.

This is because you have read it before, a thousand times before, only then the article was about jogging, not olive oil or bicycles. But it is the same article.

"Many people have taken up jogging for health."
"Many people are switching to Olive Oil for their heath."
"Many people are riding bicycles for health."

The formula is one known and loved by Search Engines.
The writer knows this.
Hence every article is going to be more of a "Find & Replace" then original prose.

Money is the purpose, not creativity, not self-expression.

You'll Never Get Rich

If you want to write online because you want to write, and each article is crafted by you to express how you feel, with those clever metaphors that you create, and a unique manner of presentation, the only hits you will get will be accidental.

Those brilliant Titles will do nothing to 'sell' your work and those intricately crafted sentences will be incomprehensible to the Search Engine.

To demonstrate, "Gone With The Wind" wouldn't get a handful of hits, but "Romance during Civil War of the United States of America," would attract those searching for "Civil War".

So you have to readjust your mind to writing for a computer, not a human being.

How To/Lists/Hot Topic

Many of the top ranking articles are 'How Tos'. Others are Lists of the Top this or the Worst That. Hot Topics are this moment's interest, often with a short but active shelf life.

Not much for the writer to developed a passion for.

Quality articles are rarely found in the money makers. The majority of people turn on the computer, enter a search term and look at the front page. They get the info they want and move on.

They don't know who wrote it, might not even glance at where it was posted. They don't care about the writing. They care about the information. They may go to Wikipedia, then look at other sites.

Hence the online writer has to set their prose to fit the Search.

Yes, You have to Compromise Quality

Years ago there was a site called Helium where you were unable to Write about
what you wanted but had to write what The Admin wanted.

You would see a topic and have to write on that Topic.
What you write will be subject to peer review,

One thing you have to get clear, if you wrote for Helium you had to review a
whole heap of other writer's work to be allowed to survive.

Many of their topics are extremely narrow, boring, and you will have to search for
something you are not even slightly interested in.

This is because Helium selects the most esoteric items and locks them in, so that
anyone who is searching for; "Places to Eat in Podunk" will come to Helium.

It is called 'Crowd Sourcing'.

And that kind of dreck is popular. It is not writing as you may think of it, but it sells.


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    • qeyler profile image

      qeyler 6 years ago

      It sounds silly, but it is true. The best writers would have no hits because search engines wouldn't find it, and if finding rate very lowly.

    • kschimmel profile image

      Kimberly Schimmel 6 years ago from North Carolina, USA

      Sad, but true! Shakespeare, Austen, and Faulkner would probably not fare well with the search engines.

    • qeyler profile image

      qeyler 6 years ago

      I am glad I was helpful.

    • crystolite profile image

      Emma 6 years ago from Houston TX

      online Money making isn't easy.Thanks for publishing this hub.I so much love this article.

    • qeyler profile image

      qeyler 6 years ago

      It is depressing to think that the beautifully crafted original work is rated low and the crap is Front Page, but right now, with the limitations of search engines, that is what we have to recognise. Many times when you write and search for a photo to go with it, your searches are fruitless because until you 'think like a computer' the 'computer' won't understand what it is you are asking.

    • Trish_M profile image

      Tricia Mason 6 years ago from The English Midlands

      Hi QEYLER :)

      Very interesting! :)

      And rather depressing! :(

    • qeyler profile image

      qeyler 6 years ago

      When you read the 'top earners' or 'top writers' of any online site, they are the guys who flunk out of Creative writing. We have to adjust that writing online is not writing. It is like paint by numbers. Sure you can do a beautiful copy of the Mona Lisa and hang it on your wall, but it is what it is, a Paint By Numbers.

    • Paulipopo profile image

      Paulipopo 6 years ago from Abuja, Nigeria

      Very reflective piece. I too hate the unfair manner search engines rate webpages it would have been nice if true quality could easily be recognised by SEs.

    • profile image

      jamessteadman 6 years ago

      I love this article. It rings so true. It's also very odd but I just wrote an article that very much ties in with your own.

      I especially hate how all these articles end up sounding like they've been written by the same person (or perhaps computer...)