InfoBarrel Review for Writers
Read a review of InfoBarrel.com for writers wanting to make money writing online. If you write articles for money, read this review before writing on InfoBarrel.
Can You Write Articles for Money on InfoBarrel?
Writers who want to make money on the Internet often look for content sites where they can write articles for money. Of the many options available, InfoBarrel was a popular choice before the Google Panda Algorithm killed much of the traffic in 2011.
I was recently contracted to write an extensive InfoBarrel review to analyze how the site is faring in 2014. What I discovered will shock you if you are writing content for this site. For the benefit of fellow content creators, I'll cut to the chase in this short review and tell you just one obvious reason why your articles will not get traffic from search engines if you publish them on InfoBarrel:
Search engines are no longer indexing content on InfoBarrel.com.
How do I know this? View for yourself:
The image above is a screen shot of the cache showing what the Bing search engine indexes on the homepage of InfoBarrel.com. It is a blank page. In other words, nothing on the site's homepage is indexed by Bing. Bing is the search engine which also delivers the results for searches people make through Yahoo.com.
Google's cache of the homepage shows the same results, with a list of broken parameter strings to boot.
Here is the Google cache of an article on InfoBarrel which was written sometime in October and featured on the site's homepage on November 5, 2014:
Again, Google shows nothing but a blank page in its index for this writer's article.
There Is No Search Engine Traffic to InfoBarrel
Why is there no search engine traffic to InfoBarrel? If there is no content stored in the indexes of search engines, no results from the website will be delivered as an answer to a query on a search engine results page. The obvious reason is that a blank page does not answer a user's query. I have yet to find a single article on the site which has its content indexed by Google or Bing.
But, you are probably wondering, since there really is content on the homepage of the site and on individual articles pages, why can't search engines index the information? The simple answer is that the webmaster of the site hasn't allowed recent indexing by search engines.
Until just a few hours ago today on November 5, 2014 – in the programming code on the site and on every article – was the directive notifying search engines that they were forbidden from indexing any content on the website. This was implemented by use of a 'robots.txt' file. Viewing the source code of a page, I found this:
Search engines will not index any content which has this coding. Of course, this doesn't prevent hackers and others from bypassing this protocol, but it does stop the software used by most search engines.
How did this happen? It was done deliberately and I can think of three possibilities as to why this happened.
The first possibility is that the site was hacked. In another matter, someone posted on the InfoBarrel forum that the site might have malware installed. Co-founder Ryan McKenzie gave this response on November 2, 2014:
"We haven't been hacked. A switch blew at our server facility. Things should be fine now."
A second possibility is that it was a programming mistake. Sometimes a programmer will block access to a site while changes are being made and then forget to turn the access back on. However, that is a mistake only amateurs make. The site boasts that co-founder Kevin Hinton has "over 10 years experience developing software for the web."
It is inexplicable to me that the site owners would not have noticed for months that search engine traffic had dried up and that they would not have looked for a reason.
There is a third possibility and that is that the webmasters did not want search engines to index the site's content. Why would that be? Here, I can only guess.
In January, 2014, McKenzie and Hinton joined with two other men to create a company called My Passion Media. This new entity now owns the InfoBarrel site, publishes print magazines and five new websites:
The websites cover the travel industry, pets and the environment. It might be no coincidence that these three topics are the same that InfoBarrel is asking writers to concentrate on now for featuring on the homepage in December. Perhaps indexing content on InfoBarrel conflicts with the present goals of ownership. I find it interesting to note that all five of the new websites are fully indexed by Google.
Can You Make Money on the Internet Writing for InfoBarrel?
The website offers to pay writers 75% of its income from ads on the site. However, that doesn't mean much if the site has no traffic. Without organic traffic from search engines, you have to somehow generate your own traffic to your articles through social media or links from other sites.
If you have to generate your own traffic, you would do much better to promote traffic to your own websites instead of to single articles you publish on InfoBarrel. There aren't many writers who have the time to market individual articles on Facebook, blogs or forums. Without traffic from search engines, the revenue-sharing split to the writer is insignificant.
I don't have content published on the site but, if I did, I would remove it immediately until the indexing situation is resolved.
To learn more about the mindset behind this site and have a better understanding of its development, watch this video by Ryan McKenzie from 2010:
Share – Don't Copy.