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The Confusion Of Writing Online Articles

Updated on July 2, 2014
Confused emoticon
Confused emoticon | Source

The Confusion Of Writing Quality Online Articles

Okay, I'm really confused. I'm sure a lot of you are too. I'm not sure what you do when you're confused about something, but I try to get to the bottom of it. Good idea, right?

Not always.

When it comes to online writing, whether it's for revenue sharing sites like Hub Pages, blogs, or content mills that pay up front, how you're supposed to write can get confusing. There's too much information from too many "experts" and too many conflicting ideas.

Oh, and those pleasant Google updates like Panda, too. Heh.

Garbage. It's what a lot of the advice I've been given is.
Garbage. It's what a lot of the advice I've been given is. | Source

What Is A Quality Article?

I'll tell you what a quality article is.

A quality article is one that is engaging, focused, and delivers bite-sized information that readers can easily digest.

Or, wait...

No, a quality article is one that has great SEO terms sprinkled throughout it. Good keywords. Things that aren't oversaturated on Google. Things that Google spiders crawl. Things that match up with the algorithms that maybe 3 people understand. Got it?

Sorry, no...

A quality article is one that is passionate and meaningful. One that demonstrates your wit and vocabulary. One that captivates the readers and makes them think.

Hold on...

A quality article is whatever someone decides it is?

A writing format.
A writing format. | Source

Formatting your articles

Here's where it can get really annoying, sometimes.

Firstly, depending on which site you're writing at, there could be different ideas as to what the perfect format is. Most places call for shorter paragraphs and the use of subheaders, bullet points, and numbered lists. The reason for this is that people, to make a long story short, have no attention spans anymore.

Other places say that your paragraphs shouldn't be too short, and that bolded subheaders look amateurish. They also go on to tell you that too many places are using numbered lists and bullet points, and that eventually Google will get tired of it and murder it all with an update.

On Hubpages they tell you the more you write the better, and to use a lot of pictures and videos--that way, you'll get more traffic to your articles. But is that really true? One of the biggest criticisms I've heard from people re: Hubpages is that the articles are too long and bloated. And that flies right in the face of having small, bite-sized paragraphs and short articles.

The ideal word count is 400 and concise. No, 450. Well, no, actually, it's 500. Wait, no, it has to be over 700 words! To tell you the truth, you should really write over 1,000 words. That way you can really detail everything.

The fact of the matter is that there is no ideal. And if there is, everyone is confused as to what it is. Just write good...whatever that means.

Adsense? Capsules? Niche? Passion? What?

Part of the reason people want to write quality content online is to make money. As a matter of fact, I think that's the biggest reason why people take to the internet to write. Now, I'm not saying you people don't have a love for writing, because you do. As do I. But, really, it's okay to want to make a living doing it.

There is a ton of advice out there as to what style or type of writing will make you the most dough, and which platforms are ideal.

  • Some say ad programs are the key. The more eyeballs the better. Just write passionately about a subject you know and love.
  • Others say to use amazon or ebay affiliate capsules. Promote products. Write reviews. Add the capsules in the right area. Stick to a certain niche, and the money awaits.
  • Some tell you to do a combination of all.
  • Others tell you that not focusing on a sole area is foolish.
  • Then there's evergreen content. How-tos, tutorials and the like.

Each expert swears by the one they think works better. Each expert tells you how and why you should do it and why the others are wrong. Each expert thinks they have it all figured out. The end result? Mass confusion.

The Only Thing I've Seen Work

Don't take my advice as the be all, end all, because it isn't. Ironically, I'm just adding to the confusion right now. And my only advice is for revenue-sharing sites like Hubpages, Squidoo, and Bubblews.

There are some things I see in common for successful writers on revenue-sharing sites.

  • Their grammar is good, and they are very organized in their articles.
  • They do actually use subheaders, bullet points, and lists.
  • They have written a ton of content. Writing is hard work. You have to write a lot to make a lot, and you have to write constantly to hone your craft.
  • They are either active on social media, or they are very active in their respective Hubpages, squidoo, or Bubblews community
  • They write content that is either useful, interesting, or moving.

What has worked for me in writing online is working hard and experimenting. Keep notice of change, and try your best to track what works best.

Good luck to you all in your endeavors. Wish me luck as well. I'm going to need it too.


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    • RonElFran profile image

      Ronald E Franklin 3 years ago from Mechanicsburg, PA

      I think there are niches for different kinds and lengths of content. HP is my platform for the longform articles they like. Until it shut down, Yahoo Contributor Network was perfect for my 400-800 word articles. And sites like Bubblews or Daily Two Cents are good for content in the 100 word range. I think you're right that success depends more on the quality than the quantity of the content.

    • Blake83 profile image

      Blake 3 years ago from Poughkeepsie, NY

      Thanks missirupp.

      I think a lot of people start writing with some sort of hope that there's a shortcut. Similar to the fitness world.

    • profile image

      missirupp 3 years ago

      Yes, I think you got it right, especially, with working hard.