WebAnswers is My Cash Cow
So, it has occurred to me that what I suspected when I signed up for HubPages was correct. Unless I have a ton of time to dedicate to my writing, HubPages is essentially my BLOG space and not an income earner. Fortunately, I found someplace that is just as easy to use and DOES earn money. But, I still love HubPages for certain things. Like, I love it because it is very simple and easy to use for even the least tech savvy person. I would consider myself of beginner level tech skills, not an idiot but far from an expert. With HubPages, they give you a lovely format that is easy-peasy and looks polished when you are finished. I LOVE that! My time is precious and when I want to write about something, I do not want to spend hours formatting it. Plus, the fellow hubbers are great at providing help when needed. All of that is awesome! But, if you are looking to make a little spending cash on the side, HubPages is not for you. Perhaps if you can really dedicate your time to writing and then marketing your work all over, you can earn something. But, for your average Joe or (ahem) Jane, like me – it is not going to happen.
So when I stumbled upon WebAnswers – I thought – what the heck, let me give it a go. And I have been VERY pleased by the results. Again, you are not going to “get rich” with this but the average person will earn FAR MORE with WebAnswers than they EVER will with HubPages. And good news, if you have a Google Ad Sense account already set up, you can just link it to WebAnswers once you have gone through their initial vetting process. (More on that later.) First a quick look on some real income numbers – which is the only information you are allowed to share regarding income, etc. Just an FYI for you beginners.
I have had my HubPages account since May of 2012 and I have written 20 hubs to date (this will be #21). In that time I have earned $20.65 as of this writing. Not enough for the $50 payout. Some months I was very active in my writing and certainly I have not been very inactive lately on HubPages which accounts for some of the lack of earnings. But even when I was very active, my highest earning month was $4.98. So, again that is just under $21 in about 9 months for HubPages.
To compare, I started WebAnswers around the second week of November 2012 and I have earned $69.13 to date! Again, this is not enough for a payout – their payout is $100. But I am getting close. I was very active my first two months and barely active this past month. So you might think, well okay, she probably didn’t earn that much this past month. I suppose that is true, but even so, I earned very close to my all time earnings on HubPages - $14.37. So, in one month’s time when I was very inactive, I was $6.28 less than what I earned in 9 months on HubPages. Well, that’s not bad at all! And again, that is just shy of $70 in 3 months as a comparison. WOW!!
In case you want to sign up RIGHT NOW…. Here’s a link.
Create an Account Now
But do come back and read some of my tips and tricks to help you out!
Your First 50 Questions
The one key thing to know that I also mention in my other article →
is that before you link your Google AdSense account and earn any income with WebAnswers you must first prove that you can provide quality content in the form of answers for the users of the WebAnswers platform. To do this, you must create a unique account and submit 50 answers. This is to prove that you are capable of providing valuable content to the site and to vet the quality providers of content from the rest. You will either continue with the process or become dismayed and give up. These initial 50 answers can be to any open question but it is in your best interest to provide thoughtful, well written answers that err on the side of longer rather than shorter. When possible, try to check your spelling and catch typos. Answers you submit cannot be edited until you “earn” the privilege. And any errors affect your overall Quality Score. While you will not know what your Quality Score is, you want to keep it as high as possible to maximize your earnings.
Quality Scores & Awards
What is a Quality Score?
Your Quality Score is determined by an algorithm based on the answers you provide. It takes into consideration how long or short your answers are, spelling mistakes, grammar and punctuation. You must answer the question completely. Sometimes an asker will have 2 or more components to a question. Be sure to answer them all. Ensure your content is completely unique and written by you alone. You can certainly look up information for accuracy or reference but you absolutely may NOT copy any content from another source. Because my brain often goes at a rate faster than my fingers can type, I will often type my answers in another word processing program and then copy them into the answer window and submit. This is so I can run spell check and look for errors before I submit my answer. When I am typing remotely, and thus directly in the “Answer Window”, I find myself making mistakes at a much higher rate. Copying and pasting in an example such as this, where you are the author and the content is unpublished and unique for that answer, is acceptable. When you do this, you must also check a box which declares the answer you are giving is “original content for this answer”. If they review your answer and find that you copied it, you will be banned. So do not plagiarize!
Why is a Quality Score Important?
Your Quality Score is what determines how many times your account will show up and get credit for any ads clicked or even hovered over (called impressions) for a given question. Since not all questions are awarded, having a high Quality Score will drive a great deal of your account revenue. The higher your score and the more questions you have answered, the more frequently your account will show up in the rotation for ads. This is why I was able to earn a decent amount of revenue even for a month that I was not very active. My Quality Score is high and I have answered a fairly decent amount of questions to date so my revenue was still pretty decent. However, I am going to have to go back in and add some more content to keep it high.
Earning an Award
There is no guaranteed way to earn an award on WebAnswers. But there are several things that I have learned over time but looking at what answers seem to be awarded. One is to avoid the recycled “Bot Questions” unless they really intrigue me. I avoid them because they will never be awarded. You can still earn revenue by having a good Quality Score answer on rotation from them but especially if you are new and are trying to get to your first 5 Awarded Answers so you can get your “Edit” button, I would avoid them. (Note: Once you have been awarded 5 Answers, you will be able to edit your answers after you submit them. This is really handy!) You can spot a bot question by looking at the Name of the Poster and when it says it was posted. A Bot will always have a name that is a Word followed by 3 digits, like Bunny234 or Larry567. Then it will have a question posted and list the person as “New User” but just below where it says “Question” in bold black text it will say in tiny print something like “Submitted 530 days ago...”. A person cannot BOTH be a NewUser and have submitted a Question xxx days ago. This is a recycled Bot question. If you want to answer that is fine, just know you will not ever get awarded for it.
I have also noticed that those people who earn awards frequently are those that make some sort of personal connection with the person asking the question. Remember, these people are your customers so treat them as people and provide them with good customer service. How do you make a personal connection in an electronic world? Try doing things you would do if you were meeting them in a brick and mortar environment. Perhaps you can incorporate greeting them by their name, of course, this would be their username since you are online. Thank them for their time or thoughtful question. Or, if their question strikes a chord with your own life, share that connection if it is relevant. But don’t dwell on yourself. Generally only share if it adds to the information you are giving and can somehow provide some helpful assistance or encouragement. Be encouraging! A lot of questions asked on WebAnswers are for difficult and often emotional issues. Be an encouragement but do not overstep your area of expertise (especially in matters regarding medical attention). Develop your own style that is genuine and you should soon be earning awards and building revenue!
So, should I just quit writing on HubPages?
No way! To start, you never know when a site will vanish so it good not to have all your eggs in one basket. And who knows, perhaps the algorithm used by HubPages and Google will one day be in magical symbiosis once again the pages will easily be found. Until that day, HubPages remains an excellent way to write on any topic your heart desires and provide a very polished end product. And some people DO earn on HubPages, so if you have the time to dedicate to that – fabulous! I for one will stick to writing pieces that are meaningful to me and not worry about the earnings. And in the small amount of free time I have in shopping lines and wrangling kids, I’ll answer questions and pick up some pocket change on WebAnswers. I highly suggest you do the same.
Let me know if you have any questions, I’d be happy to help a fellow hubber out!