When I first starting playing around with web design and creating websites, I utilized free article sites like Ezine Articles and Article Database for content. At first I wrote 100% of my content. Then I started adding free articles so the ratio switched to 50-50.
Over time, I think the ratio changed a bit more to 60% free articles to 40% original stuff. It’s probably at 75% free articles and 25% original now.
I’ve mentioned many times here that Google doesn’t like my Tidbits site and I’ve learned to live with the fact of not getting Google traffic to it. I believe my mistake was using so many articles from free directories. I’ve learned my lesson and have not done that on any other website or blog (although I still add free articles to the Tidbits site since the damage is already done).
The Profitable Mistake
The other day I was looking at a few of the channels in my Google AdSense account. From time to time I’ll track particular URLs to see how well they’re performing. Over the past couple of years one of my Ezine articles has brought in close to $600 and continues to earn. Other free articles earn at varying rates. Unfortunately, with over 400 pages I haven’t tracked each individual URL.
It’s been my experience that if you carefully go through some of the free article databases and select well written informative articles that are in line with the website topic, it can be worth while financially.
Tidbits has become my catch all website. I’ve used it to get writing assignments and it’s always there for me to post articles that weren’t accepted elsewhere. When I want to experiment with new code, ads or affiliates, I test it out there. There is a sense of freedom because the site is already in the Google sandbox, so I don’t have the fear of losing income or ranking. The interesting thing is that my Tidbits site is my one revenue source that continually brings in AdSense and affiliate income month after month.
I you find that you have a break in your writing assignments, I highly recommend creating a catch all website.