Sunday, December 30, 2012

Make Plans for Your Writing in the New Year

Make plans for  your writing in the New Year?

You may be asking why you should make plans for your writing. You write for fun? Or do you write for income?

Either way you should be looking for which online publisher is serving you best. What methods of driving traffic to your work has worked in the last year and what has failed.

If you plan to examine your strategies every quarter and set goals for each quarter then you can adjust how you work and work smarter, not harder.

In your plan set limits on time. You need to work on writing but not all the time you have.  Set time for family and set time for marketing.

You need to have family time and creating a marketing plan will help you drive traffic to your pages, if those pages are monetized then that means more potential customers.

Breaking down the year into quarters is easy and you soon find yourself thinking in those little thirteen week blocks. Maybe even consider using the seasonal titles, Winter, Spring, Summer and Autumn ( Fall).

Set small goals for each quarter, write X amount of words/pages. Spend X hours on marketing. Spend a weekend away. Set research time.  Anything that sets a goal is ok. As many goals as you can possibly achieve. Not so many that you fail.

Having a quarterly plan and checking goals against actual results also helps you see seasonal changes. Do your readers go away over holidays? Do you see increases in traffic  during the Summer? This is knowledge that businesses need to be able to thrive and you should be aware of trends and potential wasting of your time.

So as a New Years resolution, set the goal of making a quarterly plan for your work in 2013..

May you all have a Happy and Prosperous New Year.

Monday, December 24, 2012

Fall in Views over The Holidays?

Are you seeing a fall in viewing figures over the Holidays and New Year period?

Are you concerned about this?

Well first thing DON'T Panic.

I have seen all this before.. Remember that most people actually look at the internet and World Wide Web at their workplace, they take a break at work and low and behold they go onto the web.

Since they are not at work for the next week or so then you can expect some fall off of traffic.

Also bear in mind those people who may be viewing from home at normal periods may be away visiting relatives and friends or may be having friends and relatives visit them.

So in short don't worry. The decline in views is perfectly naromal and your viewing figures will come back in mid January.

It is not some fiendish plot by Google or search engines to steal money from you.

Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year to you all!

Sunday, December 23, 2012

Think about for Long Term Residual Cash

If you have a blog and are looking to monetize it by means other than Google AdSense maybe you should consider becoming a zazzle associate.

In order to receive income from you do not need to create goods for sale. You can create an advertisement in the form of a Flash Panel selling goods related to your blog and placing the ready-made HTML on your blog.

Be sure to create an account with first then create an associate account, very simple.

Then go to "Create a Flash Panel" in the associate menu. You can gather several designers items by using a keyword search or download a panel from your favorite designers goods.

When someone clicks on the panel and buys an item from any zazzle store on that visit you receive both a referral payment and also as the number of your referrals rises you also get an increasing sales bonus which starts as low as just $100 of sales.

You can receive a payment when your associate payments reach $50, payment is then paid to your PayPal account or you may receive a check or bank direct payment with a minimum payment of $100.

If you do not receive the minimum amount in time for payment that cash is carried forward until a minimum balance is held in your account.

You also need to wait three months for a pending sale  payment to become confirmed. This is to allow for any item to be returned by the purchaser.

Only confirmed sales are elligable for bonuses and payments. But as your account grows then times between payments grows less as goods are constantly moving from pending to confirmed.

It is just the initial period where one needs to wait three months that seems to take a long time.

A good reason for taking this option is that you do not really have to work hard at designing. You can always design goods if you like, but if you are selling other peoples goods they create the design and you receive a cut of the sales you generate for them.

Give this system a try. I have found it quite worthwhile generating some useful cash income in recent months.

It costs only a few minutes of your time to set up and once set up you can have as many flash frame store fronts on any blog of your choice  as you want.

Tie in the choice of product with your blog closely and it can pay you well over the long term.

Saturday, December 22, 2012

Ancient Greek Inspiration for a Bumper Sticker

So looking around for inspiration for a topic for a slogan I turned to ancient Greece. I have recently read a history of the Battle of Thermopylae, so the first thing that came to my mind was the message inscribed on the monument erected in the 19th Century near the battle site.

"Go tell the Spartans" the message goes on to tell of the heroic stand of the 300 Spartans who stood with King Leonidas and a few Corinthian Hoplites against the massed Persian army.

In the end they bought time for the Athenian navy to defeat the Persian navy at Salamis and thereby it could be said that the stand of the 300 Spartans saved the Western world as we know it today.

A fitting motto for a bumper sticker I think.

Go Tell... Bumper Sticker Click HERE

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Broaden Your Horizons

The world of internet publishing is a fickle friend. What with search engine tweaks and constantly rising and falling viewing figures.

The world of community pages such as HubPages is always a dangerous one. At any moment the owners of the community site can throw a spanner into the works and blow all your hard work away.

One tweak of their algorhytm and you are history in search engine parlance.

So for this reason I would say keep as many irons in the fire as you possibly can.  Don't throw away HubPages but spread out to other sites. Blog for yourself, maybe move into online retailing opening up affilate links to sites such as, and

Affilliate sites pay some good referal bonuses and with sites like zazzle and cafepress you don't even need to produce designs yourself these days you link to a certain keyword product list and bang you can start earning cash without having to make anything.

If you need to write, try too or List my they are both different from HubPages but they offer you an outlet and a chance of marketing your work if any one of the sites you use botches their search engine standing.

Friday, December 7, 2012

Loss of the HubPages RSS Capsule

If you are like me and have more than one blog you may be looking at the loss of the HubPages RSS capsule with some nervousness.

The Capsule is set to be retired in the first week of February 2013.

My blogs generally get about 50% of their traffic from HubPages and the RSS feeds on various hubs account for a lot of that extra traffic.

Since I heard the news I have modified some of my links to try to help some traffic.

First I set my HubPages profile to show my largest blog as my website.

Secondly I began setting RSS links to my other blogs on my main blog.

This will enable visitors to my main blog to see the latest posts on several of my blogs thereby allowing the blogs to maintain visibility and hopefully traffic volumes.

I estimate a drop off in traffic anyway due to the loss of high traffic hub RSS feeds but hopefully the steps I have taken will mitigate any serious losses.

Time will tell. All the best for Christmas.

Wednesday, December 5, 2012

Jump in Views over 10,000 views. An Internet Myth?

When I began writing online, just about four years ago now, not many people had seen large viewing figures.

At that time what seemed an internet myth began to grow.

"Get 10,000 views and you'll see your traffic rise dramatically."

Of course 10,000 views is easy to get. Well it took me two years to get 10,000 views on HubPages, less time on Yahoo and even less time on List my 5.

But there is truth in that old internet myth.

Having reached 10,000 views in July 2011 I reached 15,000 views on HubPages just five months later. Now I am well on the way to 21.000 views my goal was 20,000 views by the end of 2012.

This is in part due to luck, one of my hubs about making a cold drink called 'Shandy' was a big hit this last summer. All that thirst and a fifty or sixty view per day hub was not bad.

But all in all most of my hubs are generally evergreen. History or disabled issues, people look for links to disabilities like blindness for hints and tips on resources everyday.

So if you are a struggling writer looking at your viewwing figures creep slowly up towards 10,000 hold on. Relief is coming.

Pass that and my general experience from more than one site is once passed that magical figure, your traffic will jump and hopefully for you so will revenues.

All the best

Tuesday, December 4, 2012

HubPages to End RSS Feed Capsule

At the begining of February, 2013, HubPages will be retiring the RSS feed capsule in our hubs.

Personally I will be upset to see this. Much of my traffic here on Blogger comes from those RSS feeds through my hubs.

Since I don't get much traffic flow from HubPages where I have not included RSS feeds then I can see a future drop off in traffic to my blogs.

I guess it had to come. We all have to move with the times and things do change. It will be sad to see the RSS feed go though, they did carry information for several posts and it meant the spread of other blogs and past posts was available to a wider audience.

Anyway there are about eight weeks to prepare and I am looking at possible reductions of my blogging and focusing on other things in the coming year anyway.

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Cashing In on Cyber Retail

When looking for online cash streams don't forget online retailers such as and

Both these companies allow you to design products and then print them on demand for your customers as they order.

You have no outlay for stock and processing of orders and your sales commissions are automatic.  You can create a store for a product line and leave it alone  to fend for itself or you can maintain it for the long term and drive customers to your store via blogs and other websites.

Commission is generally paid thirty days after a purchase. This allows a customer to return an item that they don't like, for any reason, to zazzle or cafepress.

After the thirty days your account is credited with the commission, which you can set yourself or accept a default setting from both companies.

Another way to gain revenue with zazzle is to become an affiliate who sends customers to other peoples stores. You install a link to a store with your personal code incorporated in the HTML any purchase that that prospective customer makes will then give you up to 15% commission. Plus as you send more traffic you can receive additional bonuses up to 17% all this on top of your own agreed mark-up on your products.

So if a customer goes to your store through your link b8ut doesn't buy your product. Instead they go to another retailers store and purchase you will get the bonus plus commission for directing the customer.

While Amazon's affilliate program is more popular.'s affiliate program does give you much higher returns percentage wise and also gives you two extra and well paying ways of earning cash.

I would say try out and see what you think.

Sunday, October 28, 2012

HubPages Going Downhill?

Is HubPages going downhill?

I have to say no. It has changed a lot over the last three years since I first joined.

Some changes have been for the better. The layout of the new designs of hub look far cleaner than the hubs of the old days. Some things are less good. I personally don't like the new profile page layout.

Change happens though and often the reaction of people is to claim that the old thing was better and the new will result in the death of the old readership.

My readership is holding pretty solid. I had a big spike in readership this year as a couple of my mature hubs went through the roof.

My How to make an English Shandy Cold Drink hub added 10,000 readers to my views in just a few weeks. Possibly thanks to a long hot summer.

Don't  write off HubPages just yet. Along with the report of another San Francisco resident Mark Twain, "News of it's demise is greatly exagerated."

Friday, September 21, 2012

Freshen Up Your Hubs

In recent months, I admit to not keeping up with regular hub releases or even blogging. The Web is very much guided by the latest content, like in showbiz you are only as good as your last show and if you drop out of sight because you do not post content or refresh your content by adding new material you drift lower and lower into the realms of obscurity.

Death if you are an online writer looking for views to generate income.

HubPages does offer us an answer to this problem. A Link to the RSS feed of any Blog out there.

A few days ago, bored with sitting around, I tweaked a couple of my Blogs back imto life. My hub views had fallen from over 155 per day to just 32 per day in recent weeks. Pretty poor you'll admit.

Most of my Blogs are linked by RSS Feeds to my various hubs, so for instance this is linked to my Hubs based on HubPages activities, another Blog on my favorite books is linked to Hubs of book reviews.

Well I posted some new Blog posts over the 19th and 20th  September and the feeds kicked in pretty quickly. Thus feeding new content to several hubs at once.

Today, 21st September the hub gviews on my statistics page are rising, A few minutes ago the views for the last 24 hours stood at 69 that is an approximate 120% increase in a few hours.

To the Search Engines the hubs have new content and so worthy of a look. Most of those new views may be search engine spiders but at least the hubs are being viewed and so will possibly climb in the search engine library rankings and appear on results pages.

Building a Blog and linking it back to your Hub by an RSS feed is a simple and effective way of updating several HubPages at one time without incurring a penalty of having duplicate content.

Try it just create a or account then consider putting your Blog into database for a wider audience.

Then watch your readership grow!

Monday, June 11, 2012

Yahoo Article How I Became a US Citizen

I became a US Citizen in December 2010.  My path to US Citizenship was quite straightforward.

I have heard of the experience taking several years and taking tens of thousands of dollars.

I spent less than $2,000 on my citizenship application and it was completed in less than four months, just fourteen weeks from initial downloading of the paperwork to attending a swearing in ceremony.

To read how I did this My Path to US Citizenship CLICK HERE

Yahoo! Voices Getting Better

Last December, Yahoo! Contributor Network (YCN) changed its name to Yahoo! Voices and instigated a new level of editorial control. Writers could no longer post articles directly but had to submit their work to be examined by a team of editors
Last week I submitted two articles. One on my experience becoming a US citizen the other a summertime poem.

I submitted them both on Sunday June 3, and within 48 hours I was offered a cash payment for my US citizenship article and it was published. The Summertime poem took just 24 hours longer to publish, that on a display payment basis.

Yahoo! Voices seems to be getting its act together. Times for reviewing have been getting faster particularly in the last month. Whether this is due to increased numbers of reviewers or dropping numbers of submitted articles I don't know.

I do know however that it is good news for writers and a vast improvement over the situation six months ago.

Sunday, April 22, 2012

More Promotional Hubs?

Is it just me finding them or are there a growing number of product promotional Hubs appearing?

This last week I have found hubs appearing that have been mere promotional tools for various products. By this I don't mean product reviews. I mean here is a link to this medication or this body product.

I am fearful that if HubPages is seen by marketers as a place to merely post product ads, then this will seriously affect HubPages reputation as a online arena for serious writing.

I would advocate that serious users of HubPages flag this sort of content and move to oust these marketers before they destroy our community.

Saturday, March 17, 2012

Who is Spandau Ballet!

This weekend I did a little fun hub.

We can just write so much about making money and pondering the forthcoming Presidential Election.

This Hub was pure fluff, vane of me and meant to show some fun. In my time I have been a "New Romantic", a wild party animal inside with a passion for nice suits and good shoes.

Try a look at this little fun hub.

Spandau Ballet; Bananarama; Rick Astley et al: My Favorite Five Hit Songs of the Eighties

The answer to the shocking question. Spandau Ballet was and is a band from England. Though formed in the late 1970's they were the core band for the "New Rommantic" movement in music.  Famous for their songs 'True' and 'Gold' my choice on the above hub is one of their lesser known song, 'Muscle Bound' but that may be due to the included Video for the song, which is possibly one of the worst song promo videos ever made.

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Get "Expert" Backlinks to Drive Traffic.

One way to drive traffic to your hubs is to create backlinks.

So What are Backlinks?

Backlinks are permanent links from other sites, hubs, blogs, or websites.

A quick form of backlink to your hub would be a link from Twitter or Facebook.  These are ok to a point. You may gain short term traffic while the link is up, but they are only visible to a limited number of people, unleess your friends and followers have a habit of forwarding and re-tweeting.

Those links then soon disappear and you have enjoyed a brief moment of increased viewing.

Better Backlinks:

The best back lins are in the form of permanent links from "Expert" websites. These links are beloved of the search engines, but How would you get an expert website to link to your hubs?

Simple: Create your own expert website, in the form of a blog or website.

Create a blog or website which is very specific to one small niche group of viewers.

Post on this regularly, link to your hubs, also very tightly grouped to the main niche of your blog or website.

As your blog or website matures, after three months at least, the Search Engines see it as maturing and with so many links it becomes "expert".

So here is an example.

You write a hub on trainspotting.

Your hub gets a few views from friends and goes away down the ranks.

So you build a hub on trainspotting.

Here you post lots of information on trains, where a particular engine or train will be.

It is watched by Google and the other Search engines and you get some good views, a few dozen per day.

As you build this blog or website, you post more hubs on trainspotting.

You link your blog to hubs and vice verdsa.

The Search Engines see all this two way traffic and you can now after a month or two add a listing on Technoratti, the blog catalogue.

Traffic continues to build and you will notice as you add each new hub and link back to it from your blog the traffic between the blog and hub maintains a higher level.

This will depend on the topic but as long as you at first maintain a tight niche topic, you will see your "expertise" level keep your SEO rank higher, traffic higher and hopefully revenue higher.

Then as your original niche becomes too narroew, you might need to add supporting ideas, so a train spotter needs his "anorak" what is the best trainspotting anorak? Add a clothing niche. You need somewhere to stay as a trainspotter, add hotel reviews. All the time linking in to your trainspotting niche, your expertise you are building a wider network of connections.

Your traffic will increase and search engines will take notice of you more.

In a real world example, I have a blindness blog alongside this one. I posted a story on that blog about Glaucoma, an easily preventable cause of blindness, within three hours, because of expertise status on the blog, being within the niche and good use of keywords within the niche, the blog post on glaucoma reached number three on Google.  That also caused a spike in traffic on my blindness related hubs on HubPages.

Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Is this a Worthwhile e-book Proposal?

It seems that I am building the idea for a Kindle e-book in my mind.

Well it is 3:30am and my mind is fully awake and has been for over an hour now. Either that or it is a high from the cold medicine I took yesterday afternoon.


Would anyone be interested in a book about the last ten years of my life. It would start around 9/11 2001. That was a big day for me in many ways. It was a day when I think the first blood clot was forming which would take my vision in my right eye within weeks. It was also more famous for the events in New York City, Virginia and Pennsylvania. It was also around that time that the idea to travel the United States by train began to form. A decision that would dramatically change my life. Forever.

This is not a rhetorical question. Would YOU be interested in the story? Would you want to know a story of How I went blind? How I found my way through the red tape of the US Immigration System to become first a permanent resident then a citizen?How I fought blindness to gain a degree? How I met a wonderful group of people, and how one was so special that I had to fall in love with her and marry her? She has stood by me through many of the last ten years, sometimes praising me on to higher things, sometimes delivering the ultimatums that I need to pull me from the pity parties.

So be honest is there a book in here somewhere?

Friday, March 9, 2012

Thinking of a New Business Idea

I am looking at new forms of income at the moment.  While I am fully employed as a Graduate Student and working part-time, my part-time job is looking uncertain.

I work for a local government body and in California that is a dangerous place to be. With budget cuts and the like, being an at-will employee is never a secure option.

So, looking around what can I do?

  • It needs to allow me time to work on my MA degree.
  • It needs to be a low cost start-up
  • It needs to provide residual income
  • It needs to allow me to use present skills.
  • It needs to be something I can do as a blindman, no long distance trucking.

One of the most attractive possibilities is looking to publish e-books on the Kindle via

Yes, I know that will be putting more eggs in the basket. Something I have said is not a good idea.  This however could be a real option.

I can write part-time even now. I do so with my blogs.

I have equipment such as Dragon Naturally Speaking with which I can write faster than I type. I am up to about 1,000 words per hour these days.

As to what I would write I am not too sure just yet. 

But I have bought some books on the subject.

If you want to try publishing e-books through I would recommend this book:


Buy It Today!

Thursday, March 8, 2012

How to Increase Your Hubscore: Keep Posting

So you have posted a few Hubs and your hubscore, that number on the bottom right of your  photo is rising and falling daily.

What do you need to do now?

The simple answer is to join in the community. Click on the Hubs tab, checkout the latest and best hubs there. Post comments to the hubs which add value to the hub. Put in real comments, not just "Good Hub" tell the author what you thought, any anecdotes which support or argue against a hub point of view. Yes it is ok to argue against a hubber, but make the argument honest and backed by facts, it is not a reason to FLAME a hubber.

Also go to answers, look for questions that interest you. Answer them, honestly. Show some humor if it warrants that. Hubbers see your comments and answers and they then may begin to follow you.

Writing to hybs or answers should be done for two to four hours per day.  That may seem a lot, it is if you then add several hours to produce a hub, but the best, most successful hubbers work at their success.  Time is money and if you want views and clicks, YOU need to work at your hubscore.

Don't worry about the daily ups and downs of your hubscore. Small moves do not mean too much. You need to stay above about seventy-five to gain additional traffioc from search engines.  You may in time reach one hundred, but to do so you must be active in all sectors of HubPages.

Tuesday, March 6, 2012

Placing Links in Comments. Should we?

A few days ago a question was asked, "Should you post a link in someone elses comment capsule?

It seemed to get a resounding yes from many of those who answered.

Personally I say, NO! You should not assume that the author of a hub will automatically accept your comment which is merely a possible plug for your own hub or website.  To do such a thing is plainly spamming the Hubber.

By all means you can mention that you have a similarly themed hub, a hubber may ask you to provide a link or may go to your hub and link to it themselves. If they do, be fair and reciprocate.

Do not though post a hub link into a comment capsule. HubPages doesn't allow it and it is not really proper etiquette for the site.

Monday, March 5, 2012

Internet Earnings: Internet Sites That Can Earn You Cash

I would like to draw your attention to a wonderful Hub by my fellow Hubber, kannanwrites.
Kannanwrites has looked at over 50 internet based services and article posting sites. There is a good list of some very good sites from which to earn a stream of cash.
Not all sites require writing skills, some require you to have knowledge to share with prospective customers.
If you are serious about earning money online, you should look through this list and select any that look promising to you.
Bear in mind not all services are available around the world and so you may be limited in your choices.
Also before giving up personal information, not all sites are vetted for the possibility that there may be a scam involved.
Keep a critical eye on any prospective income source online. If they ask for money upfront, it may be a scam. If their promises seem too good to be true they are possibly a scam.
Internet Earnings : 50+ Sites to Make Money Online For Free

Saturday, February 25, 2012

What is a Widget? How Do I Add a Widget?

The Image above is my HubPages Widget. As you can see it contains my latest hub posts, also a drop down menu that allows you to see my hot hubs and my best liked hubs.   A widget like this placed on your blog can be used to backlink to your own hubs.

Adding a widget to your blog or webpage is quite simple.

1, Go to your HubPage Profile page.

2. Click on Add {Your Name} Widget to my Website.

3. HubPages will then provide you with the HTML code.

4. Highlight the code and copy onto your clipboard.

5Open the Layout page on Blogger or your web page.

6. Paste the HTML Code in an HTML/Java capsule on the sidebar if using Blogger or into the code which controls the area where you want to display your Link.

8. Save Settings and your Blog or Webpage should now display the Widget  for you.

9. Go and write your hubs. The Widget will update as you work.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Some Practical Advice to Help You Make the Best Use of Online Writing Sites

There are a lot of things which only experience can teach you.
One of those things is how to write online. But in order to save you some time, I posted a Hub to HubPages in order to point you in the right direction.
You may take the advice and use it as you wish. You can completely ignore any or all of it and maybe learn for yourself.
These though are some pointers to help you make the best of HubPages and hopefully make money in the process.
Two Years On: What I have Learned on HubPages

Saturday, February 4, 2012

View Numbers: What do they Really Tell You?

When you look for your latest hub on your statistics page. Do you immediately look for the daily viewing figure?

I would bet money that you do. Why? Because I do just that too.

We all like to have good viewing figures. Often you will see Hubbers post a milestone of so many thousand.  Which is good. 
But what exactly do the HubPages viewing statistics actually tell you?
Not much really.

The HubPages figure will only tell you the number of people who clicked on your link to a certain hub. They may then may or probably not actually read your hub. If they don't read your hub and you are concentrating on numbers it may look like a good hub but you will only be working on a false premise if you think that the hub arose interest and you then keep working on similar material.

I suggest linking your HubPages account to Google Analytics.


It's Free.

It tells you the most viewed hubs now almost in real time.

You can see at a glance how many of those views credited by HubPages are readers. You should not be disappointed if you see only 30% of views are people who remain on your hub or website for more than 1 second.

One second! Yes you will find most people will not give you even that. The control bar may hardly have loaded before they click away to someone else. That is just the way of the internet, I'm afraid.

Then have you noticed views before you have actually published a hub?

Those are "Spiders" web robots checking you out.  Their visits also count with HubPage views, but you can easily filter them out using Google Analytics.

Here are some good books of advice on using Google Analytics:

Monday, January 30, 2012

Yahoo! Voices Changes in Publication

Late last year Yahoo! Voices (formerly Yahoo! Contributor Network, YCN), changed their publication process.

Their old policy of allowing writers to post directly any item which received display only payments ceased.

Now material which is to be published on Yahoo! Voices must be submitted for approval.

This is ok if it improves the standard of writing, any material published in a magazine or book in the world normally has to be submitted for editorial review.

The problem is now there is no way to comment on matters as they happen. I do not know how many reviewers Yahoo! has but it isn't enough. Prior to the change items submitted for upfront payments took about thirteen days to process.  I have now had work submitted for sixteen days and counting.

By the time one researches a posting and writes and submits it,the news is old and it is only fit for history books. Now we are lagging way behind with little sign of things getting any better.The only way to beat this new system is to write about subjects other than the news. So with Valentine's Day coming up my Assignment desk is full of write something about Valentine's Day. I would be willing to bet money though, that writing such a piece would not make any money until 2013, because it won't be posted until past February 14th.

For me it would be nice if Yahoo! created a special contribution arena for news stories and once again allowed items to be placed in on a display only payment scheme. That way the public become the ultimate editorial group. If they don't like what we write, they won't read what we produce.

Sunday, January 29, 2012

Making Money with Affiliate Program

The capsules with HubPages are pretty poor sources of income. They do provide some clicks but not many and very few sales.

You can use the HubPages Capsules to show your readers what is available to them on but I would not claim to make a great deal of money from the links that the capsules provide.

To take advantage of's amazing sales power one needs to have a website or blog(s).

It is on your website or blog where you can, to use a motoring metaphor, open up the throttle and power on down the road.

Amazon has a good affilliate program. It is free to join and easy to maintain.  You receive a commission on any sales your advertisements provide customers for. 

Customers come to your site or blog, read your article and maybe click on an advertisement which takes them to an item on If they buy and the sale completes, the item is not cancelled before it ships you receive a commission.

Commission rates vary on types of sale, your commission level at the time (levels increase as you sell more beginning at about 0.4% ($4 per $100 of sales) Commission rates rise rapidly though.

Commission can be received in a check (minimum of $100, but has a check writing fee to be paid), you can also have a payment made by direct deposit to your bank account or deposit made to your account as credit for purchases, these have a payout level of just $10 and no fees are attached.

When you register with affilliates program you receive an account and you can add several sub accounts to this in order to maintain an idea which of your sub accounts is doing best I would suggest you create sub-accounts with names that tell you what they represent.

Amazon's method is to just add a series of numbers to your original account which soon becomes confusing when you want to know which account is producing revenue.

You can open up to 100 sub accounts uin the form of aStores on one main account.

Amazon give you lots of bells and whistles when it comes to links, from stand alone individual item advertisements to complex omakase ads. Omakase ads take information from a customers computer cookies and account to put individualized ads, aimed directly at them so you benefit greatly from this individual approach to advertising.

Making ads is easy. Amazon produce the ad to your desired product and specifications, you click to highlight the HTML already created with your link code and account details. You then click and paste this into an HTML gadget in Blogger or add the HTML Code to your post and you are ready for a customer to click through.

You can then use resources on your amazon affilliate account to see what ads are working best for you. You can track a particular sub-account, daily, weekly, monthly or by quarter year. You can also see how all your sub-accounts are doing with a full main account analysis. These allow you to see what type of ad is working best on your site or blog so you have optimal control at all times.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Amazon Affilliate?

It has been about four months now since Amazon returned to California.

I am now pleased to report my first sale since I re-opened my account. Yes one sale in four months.

Why just one?

Well I did place some Amazon ads on my HubPages hubs again, and I have just begun adding them to my blogs. It was actually a blog Amazon ad which gained the sale.

At just 40  cents it is a start. I won't sneer at it. Sadly I cannot frame those exact four dimes, or a quarter, dime and nickel. But I wish that I could. Like the businessmen of old who kept their first dollar just to remind them where they started.

So my first tip to success with Amazon is have patience.

Again patience is the key with all things online. A year ago I was selling several items a day on Amazon, it was almost steady income, until the day the account was closed in retaliation at California law.  When the law went away Amazon came back but the customers didn't. Now Maybe :) Just maybe :)

Another tip when applying Amazon affiliate adverttising to your hubs or blogs is to try something out. Don't let your page become set in stone. If an ad doesn't work after a few months change the style, Amazon have lots of links and widgets available, learn to use as many as you can. See what they do. Some of the cloud ones do slow down load times quite a bit so beware if your analysis program tells you a lot of your readers are using old operating systems or are in low bandwidth regions. They may click away before your page loads on their screen.

Another famous tip is to use the area at the top right below your header to place your main ad. This is an old idea and has been around since the first banner ads, and D'ya know what? It has been around for that long because it works.  Bear that in mind next time your eyes wander over a webpage.

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Should You Monetize?

Whether to monetize any blog or page is always a difficult question to answer.

It depends on what you want to do.

For instance if you see your page as a personal diary then there are possibly few reasons to monetize.

Plus you don't want to go crazy and post so many ads that your readers cannot find the content. I am sure you have come across those sites which blind you with ads. Acck a turn-off if ever there was one.

If you produce a site to share information, then there seems no harm in adding a few links to trusted advertisers.

Since the return of Amazon to California, I have re-opened my associate account and offer items from their catalog.

I would suggest keeping only two or three blocks of ads on a page.

ALWAYS make your content the major portion. Readers come for your content NOT the advertisements, unless they are the paying advertisers looking up where their ads are.

Use reputable sources for you ad providers, Google, Amazon and EBay for example.  They will not go out of business tomorrow and even if they set their limits high, Google payout at over $100 you will get paid, eventually.

Follow the rules, don't cheat on ads, don't click, use someone else to click on them, it is just not worth trying to push things. They will catch you and you will be blocked for life for cheating, and it can mean your family is blocked too. Google will apply the rule of guilty until proved innocent, and innocence is nigh on impossible to prove in Google's court.

So bear in mind what you want from your pages, keep advertising limited compared to content and follow the rules.

Monetization can be thrilling, watching you cash build and then receiving a check or PayPal payment is wonderful.

Sunday, January 22, 2012

Yahoo! Voices - Why Have my CPM Numbers fallen to Zero?

Don't Panic.  Your viewing figures have not really fallen to zero.

When Yahoo! Voices sends your contributor payment to you following your payout, over 1,000 views on the second Tuesday of the month.

Yahoo! then resets the counter to zero for the content which it has already paid you for.

So your all time viewing figures continue to rise per view.

If you have 20 views in All-Time Views on a payout day and 20 contributory views in the next column.

This will read All-time 20 and 0 immediately after apayout.

As new viewers come in, the All-Time views will rise 21, 22, 23 ... etc. and the contribution figure will begin 1, 2, 3, ... and so on.

So this allows you to sort out your really good money making posts and the areas which produce less revenue.

Saturday, January 21, 2012

List My Five Update

Recently my List My Five postings have seen a marked increase in traffic. This may now be due to a growing maturity in the site and my postings.

November proved to be my best month for revenue from the site. Pay Per Click payments reached $1.57.

Not a vast amount of revenue if you want to be a millionaire, but you should bear in mind this was income from just twenty postings.

To gain more revenue, I still think the more postings on a variety of subjects is vital.

My biggest income source for that month was from travel tips for visiting the United States, where to go etc. Many people look for summer holiday vacations in the winter months ( for the Northern hemisphere) so it is reasonable to guess that this was one of the reasons that list proved so popular. Also a good reason to consider making a list in the off season for that subject.

e.g. Write a list of Football supply stores in the off-season, when people come to look for items at the start of the season you will have a site which has matured on a search engine list and you'll leave the post last minute guys way behind in terms of views and possible income.

A Short Story of the Apocolypse

Popalotl is a mason of the highest order. He is commissioned to create five calendars for the High Priest of the Sun. The calendars will take pride of place on the stairway of the great Mayan Temple of the Sun.

That is the plan anyway.

To find out more read Popalotl's story Click HERE

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Google Searches or Links? Which bring You MORE Views?

We have all heard the cry "How do I get top ranking on Google searches?" Maybe you have even asked that very question yourself?

Well I know I used to ask that very question. I bought the books advising on Search Engine Optimization and How to promote your sites.

They were useful in that they talked about building links and creating an RSS Feed etc. But over the last year I have come to realise that Google search engine page location is not all it is made up to be.

I regulary look up my stats on my blog, they show some very interesting figures. Of all views only 3% come from Google searches.

1% come drom other search engines but a massive 96% come from posting links to places such as HubPages and Yahoo! Voices, The largest source at 70% of all traffic comes from HubPages and my RSS feeds there.

So that tells me that people who have read my content on HubPages are clicking through my RSS feed to come here.

OK So I don't get any revenue because I don't advertise on my blog. I don't mind that, this blog is to share information with you.

But in that there is opportunity for you. If you have a monetized blog, link it to your hubpage hubs on related subjects and you will gain traffic from people who already enjoy your style of writing.

Also link back to other hubs to drive traffic back there so you can benefit from your HubPages CPM revenue.

Remember. Google ranking is not the only way to gain traffic. But once you have your reader keep them reading your pages by linking to your own work when you can.

Be patient though. building a network takes time. You won't see a difference overnight, it has taken me one year so far, unless you hit a hot topic. The idea is to plan for the  long term. Then over time you will see a marked improvement in traffic.

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Yahoo! I reach the Millenium!

Well here we are on the first day of the New Year, five months after joining Yahoo! Contributor Network, it has changed it's name now to Yahoo! Voices. I have fifty posts there and I have had 1,003 views.

!,003 views means I actually should get a payout soon, $1.50.

OK not a lot of cash and had to wait five months for it, but it is cash I would not have had and it also beats the amount of interest I gained on a couple of bank accounts by a long way.

What will I do with the payout, well maybe just let it roll on a bit.

It is not the first payout that I have received from Yahoo! I did write an article which got an upfront payment back at the end of July 2011 but this will be my first performance payment.

I don't know which is best, over 1,000 views or the cash!