Thursday, May 13, 2010

What is a Content Publishing Website?

If you are reading this, you are on my blog. But usually my articles appear on websites published by an online content provider.

What does that mean?

Let me break it down for you.

I'm a writer. I go to one of these content publishing websites and there I write an article. Then the websites' editors or computers (some of these websites are automated) go over my article to make sure it meets their standards. If the article does meet their standards, then the article is published online.

I can make money doing this. And it doesn't cost me a thing to sign up for these content publishing sites. Many sites also publish images, video and audio. Some sites even accept fiction and poetry for publishing.

It's relatively easy. Just about anyone can do it. So why aren't more people utilizing such sites?

Because they don't pay a lot of money.

Plenty of people do try to use these content providers, but most don't hang around very long once they realize they're not making much money.

So why do I use these sites? Well, I need the money, for one thing. For another thing, I used to be a newspaper journalist, which is a career that's nearly dead right up there with the buggy salesman.

But still, if there's not a lot of money to be made, why do I use these sites? I'm an experienced writer, editor and publisher, so I've got the background. It's what I know how to do. But more importantly, right now I've got the time, the time to write and publish. So, even though there's not a lot of money to be made initially, there is money to be made in the long run.

How much money? I don't know. Probably not millions. Maybe, just maybe, enough for me to live on and to provide for my family.

It's a lot of work. At the sites I utilize, I get paid by the number of viewers who see my articles. Other sites work differently, but I prefer not to use them because I feel there is better long-term potential for me with the sites I like. But it's not easy getting people to see and read your articles. That's where the real work begins. The writing is the easy part.

So how do you get those viewers? Truth to tell, some viewers come directly from the original content publishing sites. I'm not the only writer on these sites, and we tend to look at each others' work at least some of the time. More importantly, at least for me, there are tons of networking and socializing sites out there which if utilized properly can bring viewers to one's articles.

Facebook is one. Twitter is another. You've probably heard of those. But there are also plenty of other sites. StumbleUpon, Digg, Reddit and SheToldMe are just a few. If used correctly, without spamming, these sites can bring hundreds and sometimes thousands of viewers to one's writings. It also doesn't hurt to have a blog, which you can also use to drive online traffic to your articles, and vice versa. And since there are more than just a few of these content publishing sites, you can use your articles from one site to link to your articles at another site, and then keep this going back and forth.

Theoretically, the potential for earnings is endless. The reality is it's a lot of work without a lot of money, at least not in the beginning.

I've been using these content publishers for about a year now, and it seems every day I'm learning something new. Also, each month my earnings have been going up and up. I have to keep at it every day, because when I slack off my earnings do too, but when I'm writing and publishing and linking every day, my earnings keep going up and up.

Another stream of revenue is through using online advertising. Basically, you place ads on pages where your content appears, then you make so much money from the original advertiser. Online advertising isn't allowed on every publishing site, but it is on enough of them. I use Google's AdSense for most of my online advertising, but other services are available, such as Chitika.

Yet another way to make money from publishing with content providers is through referrals. Referrals are where you get friends and others to sign up on one of these publishing sites and when they make money, you make money. And don't worry. These sites don't take money from your friends to pay you.

Between what I make from the advertising, referrals and what the original content publishing sites pay, I'm beginning to make fairly decent money. It's not enough to live on, but it helps pay the bills. I'm hoping in the long run it'll pay more than that.

But that's all about me. What about you?

These content publishing sites can do several things for you. Yes, they can provide you potentially interesting reading and viewing material. Also, if you are interested in writing, these sites are great for beginners. And yes, you can make a little money, just remember to be realistic about your expectations. A dollar or two a month is actually doing pretty good for someone just beginning to use online content providers.

Where do you go from here? Well, there are numerous content publishers out there, but here is a list of the ones I use (or you can check out the list to the left of this article). In an effort at full disclosure, I'll admit that those links will act as referrals for me, so if you sign up for any of these sites after clicking the links below, I'll make a little money once you start making money. Also, each site has their own rules, so make sure to look them over before you sign up. As for the quality of each of these publishers, that's for another article. Good luck!

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