HubPages Online Business

HubPages is NOT a Waste of Time!

I occasionally get the comment that I shouldn’t publish all my better content on sites I don’t own or control. The comment came up again on HubPages where I was told again that I was basically wasting my time publishing there.

Well its true at one level: the actual direct income I make from Adsense/Kontera/eBay/Amazon revenue sharing pays for my hosting: but that’s about it!. No the effect of Hubpages is more subtle than that. I have readers who actually read what I post there.

That said my best ever hub in terms of views by hubpages readers is this one high-lighting some sexy pictures of Nicole Kidman. I have a theory on this. As an exclusively English language site HubPages has a quite a number of Indian authors. India still has tight censorship laws which probably block most of the X-rated sites which are prevelent across the internet. HubPages bans “adult” hubs but their interpretation is the same as Adsense’s that is the odd American view of sex which bans (female) nipples but wet transparent clothing is fine. I don’t know for sure but I know that I have had over 200 views a day for weeks at a time, and then the views drop to a tenth of that: probably because the hub is no longer featured on the front page of “hot” hubs! So I am guessing that I will get quite good PR on that hub on the next update. BTW people looking for pictures do NOT buy anything!

My other success recently on Hubpages has been a serious of hubs I have done around the “make money online” niche.

Consistently the most commented and popular pieces are the ones which either relate to Internet Marketing, HubPages and personal experience in those areas. People seem to love to read about people’s success’s or otherwise with making money on-line. My all time comment record is the HubPages for Internet Marketing 251 approved comments: that’s not counting the comments I have spammed; anything with “marketing” in the title seems to get a lot of spam!

Affiliate Marketing

RevResponse – A different Type fo Affiliate

I have a confession – I am not very good as an affiliate marketer. For one I won’t promote anything I don’t actually use myself – and for two most of the stuff I use is free – so no commission – like Q10 Retro Text Editor.

So its taken me a while to check out RevResponse – and I only really have because I saw a write up from people like Terry’s – Make MoneyOnline and Grizz’s Make Money Blogging In fact when I clicked through I realised that I recognised the site – I had used it before as a consumer so it must be good!

So what’s RevResponse and why do I like it? Well is different, its useful – and its FREE! How good is that? Here’s how it works – RevResponse has a wide range of business and professional magazines on offer – for FREE – yes no catch. You do have to fill in all the contact information and for some offers you have to reside in the right country, but if you are eligible you receive the magazines free.

For you greenies: no trees dies – these are e-magazines – so they are delivered straight to your inbox in pdf format. And the range of topics is impressive not just finance and business but utilities, food and beverage, packaging, to transportation and travel. They really do have a full-range of options.

For those of you not resident in the US check towards the bottom of the main pages on the left for “International Eligible” to avoid frustration.

And yes: if you do click through and sign up I do get a small commission – but you’re not paying it so its all good!

Making Money Online Online Business

Google Smart Pricing

One of the things that is worth knowing about Adsense is smart pricing. When I first got an Adsense account I slapped Google ads on every site I had and got excited when someone clicked and gave me a few cents!

What bloggers forget though is that unlike say an affiliate program such as eBay:

Originally uploaded by keso

where the advertiser only pays the blogger if they actually get a a sale: Adsense you get paid even if someone clicks and then clicks away: your readers random clicks on ads can actually cost the advertiser real money and they won’t be happy unless they are seeing a business return!

So Google will “smart price” your ads if your customers aren’t buying from the advertisers they click. Google will smart price all of your websites/hubpages/blogs that you use Adsense on too: not just the site that has the problem.

How to Avoid Smart Pricing

  • Don’t add Adsense to your personal blog: its too general to bring either well-paying ads or targeted traffic to your advertisers;
  • Read up about ensuring that your Adsense ads are picking up the right keywords from you titles and other SEO tricks: Check out Grizz’s blog on this;
  • Don’t add Adsense to a brand new blog or site: let the site mature a bit and get some traffic before you attempt to monetize with Adsense.

How do you know if you are smart-priced? You’ll notice that clicks that used to get you 25c a click now get you 1c or 5c. Although that’s not definite because clicks value does change depending on the readers location, time of day, time of month and lots of other things that Google doesn’t tell us about.

Also be wary of actually discussing the details of your Adsense online or elsewhere in public, from Adense’s Terms of Service:

[you may not disclose] click-through rates or other statistics relating to Property performance in the Program provided to You by Google; However, You may accurately disclose the amount of Google’s gross payments to You pursuant to the Program.

Making Money Online Online Business Rants

Statistics, more Statistics and Depression

Getting Indexed in Google
Are you are a compulsive statistics checker? Do you Google your domain url 15 times a day to see if you are indexed yet? Do you check Adsense on the hour every hour to see if you have made another 6c ? Do you worry if your visitor numbers to your hub or lens drops from 9 to 8? Yes you are obsessed with your statistics. You are not alone: I get out of bed and flick through my domains checking to see if they are in Google’s index yet (Hint: just enter in Google’s search bar will do it). Yes statistics can be very useful: if you can’t measure something you don’t know whether you are getting better or worse.

However until you have got first indexed in Google and second had a reasonable amount of time (that’s months not hours people!) to collect statistics you are seeing nothing but meaningless variations. Unfortunately those meaningless variations cause lots of people to give up before they get started. OK your site isn’t making anything after 3 months: you delete it. Unfortunately maybe the next day Google was finally going to index your site and throw it onto page 1 for your long tail keyword: what a shame!

So When Should you Check your Statistics?

Actual is not normal (a tribute to Edward Tufte)
Originally uploaded by kevindooley

  1. When you new website has been running for 6 months minimum
  2. When your new blog site has been running for 3 months minimum.
  3. When your hubpage has been up for 1 month minimum
  4. When you are testing a new form of promotion.
  5. When you are testing a new advertising campaign
  6. When you need to record what your income was for the month because you made so much money you are going to have to start paying tax on it!

You have Compulsive Statistics Checking Disorder When:

  1. You spend more time checking statistics than writing content, promoting sites or running your business.
  2. You know that you have a new click because you have memorised what the numbers were: for 10 sites!
  3. You are hugely exciting to have calculated that you will reach the Adsense $100 payment threshold in 4 months, 25 days and 13 hours.
  4. You know immediately if the statistics program is running slow and you havent seen a click update for 30 minutes.
Affiliate Marketing Making Money Online Online Business

Keyword Selection for Idiots Like Me. has a great scheme where you can write a “flagship hub” and be paid $25 for it plus another $10 as a traffic bonus. The amongst the requirements for the hub is that it must be 1500 words and have a number of links to authority sites. Hubpages also tells you the topic they want to you write about. I assume that those topics are significant in that they believe that we (HubPages and the author) will make money. So writing content rich websites will get me pad – nope – although HubPages paid me the agree $25 for writing the hub getting significant on-going income has been disappointing. I believe the hub’s themselves aren’t the problem – they have lots of good information: unfortunately if someone types into Google : “India Travel Tips” they find my wonderfully informative hub on Indian Travel:they don’t need to follow the advertisements or the EBay or Amazon offerings: I’ve solved the problem for them! So no in my experience content does not pay well!

BANS a Different Way to Make Money

B o o k s
Originally uploaded by katmere

Vic over at Bloggerunleashed basically talks about making money in almost the exact opposite way that I was. He wasn’t building beautiful content rich sites, don’t get me wrong he wasn’t spamming either, and he was definitely making more money than me!

Einstein defined insanity

as repeating the same behaviour over and over again expecting different results.

Time to change my approach I felt. Vic’s advice to newbies was to use BANS – Build a Niche Store which is a script which allows the non-programmer to quickly develop an EBay store: that is a site which pulls current auctions from EBay – your site passes on the buyer to EBay – you get paid if the buyer wins an auction.

The cost of getting into BANS seemed reasonable $97 for the software plus maybe another $100 for the domain names. My existing hosting would handle the extra sites: at least until I got into profit! Vic’s formula seemed to make sense: keyword selection is difficult so don’t focus on one site: instead build bulk sites, bulk sites, get targeted trickle traffic. so that 10 or 20 unique hits which will convert to $1/day profit – a 100 sites – that’s the start of a nice business as far as I am concerned. Chance suggests that you have to get lucky with 1 or 5 or 10 of the sites as you learn.
Vic’s 100 BANS post

Making Money Online Marketing Online Business Rants

So Why this Blog?

One of the common methods of assessment at university is to get students to keep a “learning journal” – I hated the dammed things – used to write the thing at the end of semester after the fact. It was good idea used inappropriately. I find as I try to learn this bizarre world of Internet marketing that I need to keep a learning journal. Unlike the well structured university environment who tells you at the start of term what you are going to learn and then proceeds to teach you item by item until you have been fed all the learning outcomes, I am not sure where my learning on Internet Marketing is going. I know where I want it to go: I want an online income that will approximate my professional off-line income: say US$4500 /month. How am I going to do it? I don’t know to be honest. I have some ideas, more ideas than I ever had about how to build this business but I don’t have a step by step plan.

No one has given me the leaning plan on this one! I do know that I need a plan though otherwise I risk running around in circles and not being able to measure and adapt my experience to achieve my income goal.

So this is my on-line learning journal: trying to write on what I’ve learnt and trying to record enough that to work out what works for me and what doesn’t.