Is Wizzley Doomed to Join HubPages on the Search Engine Scrapheap?

Welcome to another new year and a rare update to my personal space on the Interwebs in this here blog with my real name on it. Time to put back on my Internet Marketer’s hat for a wild stab at yet another potential money making idea that is soon to be en expired money making flop. I’m talking about the new Hubpages clone, Wizzley.

I’m hearing a lot of good things about Wizzley and how it seems to have taken over from where Hubpages have left a gaping hole in the SERPs thanks to being unceremoniously shat upon by the Google machine that doesn’t much care for “content farms”. To a point, I actually agree with Google that such pages should not be cluttering up the top pages of their search results especially when the bulk of them are written by people like, well, me who may or may not know very much about the Hub page I created.

In my own defence, I actually did do a lot of research when compiling each Hub page, so the information on them was sound and factual. But what were they, really? How useful were they to people searching out information on a particular topic? In truth, they were just a collection of unrelated pages on a bunch of different topics that I discovered I could make money from by either cashing in on Adsense or grabbing some affiliate commissions from Amazon.

There were and still are many good writers that are still putting out sterling Hubs for no monetary gain whatsoever, but instead are using it as a platform to voice their opinions or show off their skills as writers. It has a great social side and should attract better recognition for that, but unfortunately Internet Marketers out to grab a fast buck did a lot of damage by pumping out pages and pages of little better than drivel to cash in on.

But that is the past. Hubpages were stomped on by Google for being a content farm and despite some panic-fuelled measures by the management of Hubpages to get back into Google’s good graces, the site has lost its authority and you cannot expect Hubs to rank as easily as they used to do.

So that brings us to the alternatives for people on a budget that maybe can’t afford to create and host their own websites, but want to make some money by putting out pages of content using some keyword research in the hope of hitting a lucrative vein of gold. The current buzz name is Wizzley.

Wizzley is another content farm similar to Hubpages. Whatever anyone might say to disagree and paint the site in a totally different light, you can be sure that as far as Google are concerned, its another medium for Internet Marketers to write pages of keyword researched, optimised, barely better than drivel content to make money with. Its a content farm and what does Google think of content farms?

You know the answer to that.

But there are plenty of “expert” marketers out there that think this is something new, different, better than Hubpages or Squidoo or any of the other many free repositories of people’s manic keyword optimised effluence. Those experts believe Wizzley will weather the storm and not be affected by algo changes or Panda updates or whatever search index altering shenanigans Google decide to implement next. People are writing pages of content for Wizzley and yes, some of those avid advocates of “keyword research” are even making some money from it. How long that will last for is anybody’s guess.

It’s my guess that it won’t be very long. Especially as some of the, erm, shall I say prominent or high profile Internet Marketers who are extolling the virtues of this latest money sharing dumping ground for keyword optimized content are being rather vocal about it. I wonder who might be listening other than the hoards of newbies (and some seasoned marketers at that) looking for a way to make some easy Internet bucks? Mmm.

So is Wizzley really doomed to join HubPages on the search engine scrapheap?

Put it this way. If I were the guy at Google responsible for taking a dump on Hubpages and I was hearing all these good things about Wizzley and how people who made all that money with Hubs are now switching to Wizzley to make great money, wanna know what I would do?

I think you know what that would be… 😉

Ouch!

Terry Didcott

Buying Domains: The Way Forward

As an Internet Marketer, it is important to me to make sure that I keep increasing the right kind of traffic to my commercial websites so that I continue to make sales from which I make my living online. Times change fast online and what were easy ways to make money a couple of years ago are now not viable. But one thing that has always remained a constant is investing in domains. This is why it will continue to be the way forward for anyone who is serious about earning money online.

Free Blogs and their Problems

There are more free blog platforms than ever these days, but that doesn’t make them the right way to build a long term business. They are fine when you are just starting out on a low budget, but their stability is questionable. You can put ads on blogger blogs, but they are harder to rank in the search engines and this is where you need to get your traffic from. You can use WordPress free blogs, but you can’t place ads (unless you abuse the system and do it anyway and hope that you don’t get found by the WordPress social police like the blog I highlighted in my last post WordPress Do Not Allow Ads on Their Free Blogs.

Other free blog platforms may be around today but drop out of existence tomorrow, as in the case of today.com which took a lot of people’s content then disappeared. A free blog platform may allow you to place links in your posts to begin with, but then go ahead and make them all nofollow as happened with wetpaint.com and others. The bottom line is that if you are going to put a lot of work into writing a load of original, well thought out and researched content you might as well put it onto a domain that you own and you call the shots on.

Self Hosted Domains

There are many benefits to hosting websites on your own domains. Aside from the cost of maintaining hosting, which can be had for as little a $5 a month, building your own website(s) is the most solid long term plan you can have. You get to choose what you write about and as long as it is not going to break any laws, you can publish it and no one is going to come along and call you out and get your blog flagged and even deleted as has happened to me on more than one occasion. Not that those blogs were bad, they just focused on weight loss which for some blog platforms is a disliked niche and seen as spammy. I’m sure the 60 million obese American citizens would beg to differ when there is a resource built to help them reduce their weight and get their lives back.

But on my own domains, I can write about weight loss and help people to help themselves and no one is going to tell me I can’t.

Blog or Static?

Now for the big question, do you create blogs or static sites on your domains? There are pros and cons to doing either, but here is my own reasoning and why the vast majority of my websites are actually NOT blogs, but static html sites.

Benefits of Static Sites:

  • Have no database to maintain and therefore do not present such a temptation to hackers to get in and cause mayhem.
  • Use far less server resources and are therefore faster to load and won’t eat up your hosting resources
  • All content is created on your PC and uploaded to the server, so there is always a backup copy of all your files if your server crashes and you have to recreate your site(s)

Benefits of Blogs:

  • Are easy to post articles to and publish
  • Have built-in blog service pinging for immediate recognition across the web
  • Can use widgets for social interaction
  • Posts can easily be commented on by visitors
  • Make it easy to join social groups

For my own peace of mind, going with static sites means less chance I’ll lose my sites because of hackers. The few blogs I still maintain regularly get attacked and I have had one blog have its database wiped by some nice person. That alone was enough for me to backwards engineer that blog to a static site and start doing the same with many smaller blogs. After all, why were many of them even blogs in the first place?

Many of the blogs I created a few years ago, were never meant to be social animals, but to exist as platforms to sell affiliate products and make money. Blogs are not really all that good for that, because of their setup and the difficulty with navigation. Plus for me, there is really no need to have any social interaction on a site that promotes a group of affiliate products from say, Amazon or CJ. All they need to do is present a decent review of the product and get the visitor to click through to buy it if they want it.

Blogs are for writing your thoughts, putting your points of view out there for others to comment on and discuss and for generally being social. Static sites are better for selling stuff. That’s my viewpoint and it may not be the viewpoint of others. Some may disagree and that’s fine, we all have our own preferences and ways of working.

It leads me to the way that search engines and Google in particular are talking about rating the worth of websites. They give the impression that they are going all out to use social recognition metrics as a way of gauging the value of a website.

How can this be if such a large proportion of websites are not blogs or have no database that can interact with the social buttons and widgets that they intend to use to gather these metrics? Does this mean that all static websites will be viewed as of less value than blogs simply because they do not have the mechanics to socially interact?

That is something I have already posted about here. I still maintain that Google cannot use social metrics to gauge the value or worth of a website if so many websites don’t have the gubbins to display social interactive buttons or widgets. So make your own mind up on how that will pan out.

Terry Didcott

The Internet Marketing Dream

Hi all – don’t ever let anyone believe they know what you are going to do next. Surprise them every so often, it’s fun and it’s what makes life interesting. Enjoy:

Ok, I couldn’t resist trying this out for myself. After Splork’s excellent movie “Talking About the Web Sewers” using the same tool on the topic of the proliferation of crap articles spammed across the web, I thought it might make a nice movie to bash the A-listers and their e-books that scam noobs into believing they can make easy money online. Its all a bit of fun, which is what life should be!