Tag Archives: passive income

HubPages AdSense Revenue Increasing May Be Worthwhile Yet

As most of you know, I have from time to time thrown a bit of effort into a writers profile of sorts at HubPages as Hub Llama. For the most part, this experiment has served just three purposes. The first, is to determine what if any leverage can be achieved by using HubPages to build backlinks to my other online projects. The second, is to have a sort of catch-all place where I can write quick, unpolished, articles that do not fit into one of my other websites or online businesses. The third, is to experiment with keywords, because HubPages pulls a bit of traffic and ranking on its own, so one can sometimes get a quicker feel for what variations of a key phrase or set of keywords might be the most profitable.

As nothing more than a potential side benefit, I have also followed the possibility that Hubs published on HubPages produce passive income online by themselves, though I have not made this any sort of focus in my endeavors over there.

In order to monitor profits from HubPages and determine whether there is any value in pursuing attempting to make money writing online at HubPages, I have, of course, installed my Google AdSense number on HubPages and linked the HubPages AdSense to Google Analytics. So far, the results haven’t been all that inspiring. It isn’t that Hubs don’t get traffic, they do. The problem is that the ads on HubPages don’t just draw from your Hub’s content, but also, seemingly, from Hubs around them, or from the overall HubPages domain itself.

What that means, when it comes right down to actual AdSense data for HubPages is that most clicks pay very low amounts, even for Hubs that are about topics and similar in content to webpages elsewhere that earn much higher CPC. For example, I often see something like $0.07 for a single click on a newer hub which make analyzing how much each click pays easier. A similar webpage on a related topic on a different site, or on one of my more carefully crafted sites, will pull down something like $0.35 to $1.00 for the same kind of clicks. Add in the fact that HubPages displays your ads 60% of the time, and you have a recipe for some low earnings.

However, today, I happened to notice a single click take down well over $2.00 on a topic where that would be considered a good amount anywhere. Now, that is just the one time, but it does raise the question. If the right topics were written about, and enough of the low-paying CPC advertisers could be filtered out in the AdSense competitive ad filter, could HubPages be a bigger source of monthly income?

We’ll find out soon enough. I’m going to launch my 100 Hubs in 10 Days Challenge soon, and I’m going to hit several “juicy” topics along the way. Between the extra linking, the HubRank pushed inevitably toward 95+, and my own backlinking and promo-ing, there just might be enough sizzle to see some real dollars earned on HubPages.

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Earn Money With HubPages Tips

Back when I first became a professional freelance writer, I spent a lot of time reading about how to make money online. I read pretty much every big make money online blogger out there and a lot of the smaller ones too. In fact, one of the reasons I started Make Money Writing Online was that almost all of those blogs, websites, and experts were focused on making money on the web with tricks, secrets, link building, SEO, article spinning, and so on. Very few, if any of them took the angle of how could a talented writer use their skills to earn money with writing online.

That does not mean that none of those sites about earning money online had nothing to offer. In fact, quite the opposite. Many of the search engine optimization tips, the keyword tricks, and the explanations about what makes money, what doesn’t make money, and how to get started earning money online, were very useful to helping me get my freelance writing business started. In addition, those same tips gave me some insight into how to build my own websites and online properties in a way that could generate passive income for me in order to compliment how much I earn as a freelance writer.

To Make Money With HubPages Do All The Steps

One of the more intriguing writers I used to read went relatively quiet not long after I found them and read through their massive archive of writing information and web income strategies. More accurately, they created a for-pay service called the Keyword Academy which based on what I have heard is relatively successful. And, while I certainly do not begrudge anyone who finds a way to earn money from their talents, I do miss having more frequent updates from them, primarily because I learned that what is said on that website tends to be true, whether it is popular or not.

Court (who I go back and forth about whether male or female, so forgive the pronouns if I get them wrong) turned me onto HubPages last year with the idea that writing a critical mass of good Hubs could:

  • a) Provide useful backlinks to other webpages and properties in order to increase their value and visibility in search engine results pages, or SERPs;
  • b) Actually provide their own revenue stream via the AdSense sharing program that HubPages uses to allow authors to monetize their earnings.

Apparently Court has gotten some criticism / complaints / whiners about whether or not HubPage is a good way to earn money online. In response, she posted an article titled How to Improve Your HubPages Earnings. Her primary contention in the article is that too many people do not do “all of the steps” required to generate profits from HubPages.

The best part is the analogy used of driving around the block. Basically, if you drive out of your driveway and turn right, you have drive to the next turn and then turn right again four more times before returning home. You cannot stop after fewer turns and expect to have accomplished your goal. If you stop too soon, your only real hope is to try and use hot girls to get more HubPages traffic.

Many writers trying to make money online by writing, whether on HubPages or elsewhere, Court says, stop before doing everything required in order to earn money with writing. It’s an interesting read, and if you are having trouble making money with HubPages, probably a good start.

However, like many make money online articles, it makes a lot of assumptions, and leaves out a lot of details. Not that is in any way insufficient. There is simply too much to cover in a single article of a reasonable length. Just covering the barest of basics about HubPages SEO Tips could take a handful of posts.

However, I thought I would help address one point and that is the issue of building links to promote your hubs. Don’t over think this. You aren’t trying to get your Hubs to rank #1 on Google for a hugely profitable keyword. (You should be doing that on your own websites instead of splitting the money with HubPages.) Remember that the whole point of using HubPages or eZine Articles or Squidoo or Associated Content and the like is to stand on the shoulders of their PageRank, so to speak. HubPages traffic volume gets hubs indexed fast without the writer having to do anything.

How To Link Promote Hubs on HubPages and Websites

In other words, you don’t need to build 900 backlinks to your Hubs in order to get anywhere. Frankly, if the topic isn’t too competitive, a dozen is enough to at least see what the Hub can do for you, or what it cannot do for you. Getting a dozen backlinks is not as hard as it sounds. You should already have a blog or website for your writing business. Throw a post up with some links there. Then add some bookmarks to Delicious or whatever you like, and then link some of your other Hubs to each new Hub and vice versa. Build a Squidoo Lens with links back to your Hubs and you should be well on your way.

At this point, watch your statistics and see which sites are attracting hits. Go out and give those sites another dozen links. Tweak the sites that are not getting any traffic and see if you can get them to build up some numbers. Once you have traffic, start watching your AdSense reports to see which hubs are generating revenue and then build secondary hubs that are related. Make sure to interlink them all.

Now, this won’t make you rich fast, or even earn $1,000 a month with HubPages, but it will give you a taste of what you can do, and that is what will push you to do the rest of those steps. A hub that I punched out with little research and just ten or so links about the best Chicago pizza now generates earnings despite having been all but abandoned months ago.

Once you see a hub generating $7.14 a day in AdSense earnings, it’s actually hard to NOT do more to make it perform better. Success is addictive. Don’t get caught up in an all or nothing mentality. Remember $10 a day in AdSense earnings is $300 a month in free money. Reinvest that money in your online writing business. Buy new domains, pay for better webhosting, get a notebook to write anyplace, anytime, whatever you need to keep going.

Before you know it, you’ll be making the decision about whether to quit your job and become a full-time Internet entrepreneur.

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Google Certified Ad Networks Who Are They?

google-certified-ad-networks-questions-graphicGoogle has allowed certain third-party advertising networks called, very benevolently, “Google Certified Ad Networks” to the Google AdSense program. The official party line is that these additional online advertising networks will provide publishers with higher income allowing them to earn more passive income online from the content they publish on websites. The skeptical party line is that nobody sells ads better, or in greater volume, than Google AdWords, and that the 3rd party ad networks have to earn their money by taking a cut of revenue as well, therefore, these new ad networks will only drive down the amount of money webmasters can earn with AdSense advertising on websites.

Who is right?

Unfortunately, that is a pretty tricky question to answer.

Early on in the launch of the third-party ad networks, many webmaster claimed that they saw their revenues and earnings in the form of cost per click or CPC decline. They further claimed that after disabling all of the third-party ad networks that their ad revenue increased back to “normal” levels. That might have been all she wrote, except for at that point one of many unofficial Google spokesmen turned up on that forum and said that the 3rd party networks were being rolled out very slowly and therefore, whatever those guys were seeing was not the result of lower payments from third-party ads. He went on to say that it would be a “mistake” to follow the disabling course of others. Curiously, no other information has been forthcoming sense.

It is difficult to no how much value to give to various forum posts since users are notorious for inflating their importance and income. Reading many user’s posts leaves one with the considered opinion that the author has never published anything other than a handful of token websites in their life, let alone have any sort of ability to provide a valid analysis.

Testing Google Certified Ad Networks Impact On Earnings

Unfortunately, truly testing the impact of Google certified ad networks would require either directly violating Google’s confidentially terms and conditions or violating the rule against having more than one AdSense account. Since AdSense publishers can only enable or disable third-party certified ad networks on a whole account basis, there is no way to turn them off for one set of sites and leave them on for another and then compare the results. To publicly compare results would violate rules against disclosing cost per click and eCPM metrics.

Thus, Google leaves us with no way of knowing whether or not the new 3rd party certified ad networks are good for us publishers or not. Are the Google Certified Ad Networks hurting earnings, or are the new 3rd party ad networks helping earnings? I guess we’ll just have to go ask Mr. Owl.

Who Are Google Certified Ad Networks

The only thing we can see is who the certified third-party ad networks are. If you were expecting to see the names of numerous advertising powerhouses or other well-respected online vendors, you have a surprise coming. Most of the certified ad networks list reads like that starting lineup for the Cleveland Indians at the start of the movie Major League, “I’ve never heard of most of these guys.”

As always, successful AdSense publishing requires diligence on the part of the publisher and webmasters. Monitor your sites and check in periodically to see what ads are showing up. Find out whose ad is on your webpage and add those served by undeserving advertisers to your competitive ad filter where both Google and 3rd party ads will be blocked.

Determining which, if any of the third-party ad networks to block will be much more difficult. For now, monitor your AdSense income and respond to any substantial across the board drop by blocking all 3rd party ad networks immediately.

Remember, this is the holiday season, when AdSense earnings are at their highest. If you are publishing real, legitimate content and honestly building links and authority to your webpages, your AdSense income should be going up through the end of the year, not going down. So, now is the perfect time to over-react. Next year, you can re-evaluate if necessary. And, the good news is that you will have a baseline of data from your “blocked” period to use as a starting point in evaluating whether or not to continue allowing the Google Certified Ad Networks back onto your websites.

List of Google Certified Ad Networks

Here is a list of third-party ad networks as of 11/28/09:

Invite Media
Specific Media
OwnerIQ, Inc.
Adconion Media Group
AudienceScience Inc.
Dapper Inc.
Dedicated Media
NetSeer Inc.
QuinStreet, Inc.
Teracent Corporation
ValueClick, Inc.
Aggregate Knowledge
Collective Media
CPM Advisors, Inc
Efficient Frontier, Inc.
Quantcast Corporation
Rocket Fuel Inc.
Semantic Sugar, Inc.
Traffic Marketplace
Goodway Group
Ad Marketplace
Epic Advertising
Reply! Inc.
Criteo Europe
Criteo UK

If you have any data to share, or experiences to report, regarding 3rd-party ads on your website, please don’t hesitate to comment or email.

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