Friday, September 16, 2011

HubPages: Make money writing online

Hubpages is one of the easiest and most enjoyable ways to make money writing online in my experience.  Unlike many other writing online opportunities, you are free to write about any topic you choose and there are minimal restrictions in terms of style, length, and tone.  Sounds good, doesn’t it?  Well, yes it is, but you will have to have good English language skills, write engaging material, cover topics that people are looking for online, and be prepared to promote yourself, if you want to do well on Hubpages.

The money doesn’t come to you quickly either.  It can take months before you really begin to see the fruits of your efforts on HubPages.  But the big earners on HubPages can make hundreds of dollars each month.  (I only make a fraction of that, but still find it worthwhile).

Friendly community and helpful staff

Of course, there will probably be some people who disagree with me, but my experiences have on the whole being very positive at HubPages.  The community there is generally friendly and there are people who will go out of their way to help you sometimes.  The staff are good at engaging with the HubPage users, known as ‘hubbers’ and the company has a good record when it comes to innovation and problem solving.

Where does the money you earn come from?

Revenue is raised through online advertising with HubPages taking a 40% cut and you getting 60% of the revenue generated by your hubs.  Originally, Google Adsense was the main advertising company used, but in recent times, HubPages have introduced their own advertising system, known as ‘Hub Ads’.  You can also make money by selling Amazon and Ebay products on HubPages.

Is it really that easy to make money with HubPages?

Well, yes and no.  Of course, you can sign up with HubPages and just write about the topics that interest you and you will make some money, but probably only 20 cents a day.  The people who make serious amounts of money with HubPages (dollars rather than cents) choose their topics and titles of their hubs very carefully, spend time researching and writing their hubs, and they do everything they can to promote their hubs and also to get them to appear high up in search engine results.  They do this using a collection of techniques known as SEO, which stands for Search Engine Optimization.  SEO can influence every aspect of their writing, from picking the topic and title of your hub, to the keywords that they include in their work.

So what does SEO involve?

In short, the most important elements of SEO as far as hubs are concerned, are probably picking hubs that are likely to engage the online community, using keywords effectively in your titles and text, and getting backlinks for your hub.

So how do I sign up?

You can sign up to Hubpages here.  It is free to join.  (My advice is don't join if you want to earn money quickly!  Don't join if your English skills aren't very good!  Do join if you enjoy writing and want to make some extra money and don't mind if your earnings are low for the first few months!)

Wednesday, September 7, 2011

More Microworkers Payment Problems

Some time ago I wrote a blog post about the Microworkers payment problems that I experienced when I first applied to get my online earnings from my Microworkers account paid into my PayPal.  It took a long time before I received my PIN number from them.  When the PIN number did eventually arrive however, after over two weeks, it obvious why - I live in the US and the letter had been sent from Slovenia

Anyway, after I posted about my experience, I received a comment from a reader called Simona who said that she was having problems getting paid as Microworkers had just withdrawn the PayPal option for payment.  Sure enough, she was right when I checked.  PayPal was the standard way for many of us to get our Microworkers earnings in the past, but now Microworkers are saying that workers have to open an account with Moneybookers, or Alertpay.

Ideally, I would prefer my money to be paid straight to my bank account, but I appreciate that can't always happen and PayPal is generally a reliable money site to use and one of the most common methods used to pay out online earnings by websites.  I don’t really relish the idea of setting up another account with a new website just to pay myself the $9 or $10 that I earn intermittently on Microworkers.  The Microworkers Support page states that more payment options (including presumably Microworkers?) would be available soon, but I have waited around for ages in the hope that PayPal would return as an option with no joy and there is still no sign of it happening at the time of writing.

I like earning money online with Microworkers - they are a smaller operation than MTurk but that is okay, I accept that they don’t have as many jobs and I don’t expect to build up my online earnings quickly - but sometimes they can be frustrating.  I emailed Microworkers a few days ago to ask them what is happening but haven’t heard anything back, as yet.  I will post their answer when they reply.