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Squidoo vs HubPages

October 3, 2009 Leave a comment

I’ve been messing around with Squidoo and HubPages in my spare time (HAH!) The idea behind both websites is that you can post your writings on them and they provide a “big stage” for your content. Beyond that, they are pretty different.

I first tried writing some lenses to showcase some of the investing advice and trading guides that I edited, as well as one on performing stock market technical analysis.

(Yes, those were gratuitous links to give Squidoo one last chance.)

Squidoo is all about its “modules” which are basically canned widgets where you fill in a form and then it does the rest to create something that looks decent and has some relevant content in it. Basically, these are little forms that make it so a grandmother without any computer knowledge can write a lens. She could probably handle a hub too, but she wouldn’t get any whiz-bang, gee-wiz, type stuff that probably seems pretty amazing to someone with no computer knowledge.

The catch is, as a writer, these modules can feel pretty constraining. Not only that, but they are VERY time consuming to add, sort, and basically get setup so that what you have when you publish it is something you wouldn’t be embarrassed for other people to see.

That’s the idea anyway.

As a writer, you want to write your words and make that the focus of your page. That is why on blogs like WordPress it is important to choose the best themes for writers. But, on Squidoo, it seems like they think that the content, or the writing is a very small part of publishing a quality lens.

Sure, you can use the text module and write as much as you want. You can even put in your own HTML. But, then, it almost taunts you into adding more modules, and quite frankly most of them are junk, advertising, or just flat out dumb. In fact, the default template has like 8 modules open every time you try and write a new lens. It can take 3 or 4 minutes just to clean up all the garbage so that you can WRITE.

In the end, it might all be worth it if Squidoo provided any traffic, but it doesn’t. I have lenses that are a few months old that I threw a bone with links from some of my websites that are well ranked and have some decent authority and PageRank behind them. The result? Zilch.

Other than the initial wave of hits that I sent there are been zero traffic to those lenses. I’m on my own apparently to generate any traffic at all.

On one hand, that’s no big deal, but on the other hand, what am I giving away part of my advertising revenue for if Squidoo isn’t giving me anything?

  • The outgoing links appear to be pretty much worthless (probably a function of being a low ranked lens)
  • Squidoo provided traffic in the form of cross linking or other community generated traffic is zero
  • It is actually HARDER to write a Squidoo lens than a WordPress page

So what is my motivation?

HubPages

Contrast that to HubPages which in just a few weeks has gotten all of my Hubs indexed into Google, has provided backlinks that actually appear to have value, and has generated a small (but still some) amount of traffic from just being on HubPages.

In other words, HubPages is delivering what I thought Squidoo was promising. Don’t get me wrong, HubPages is not some amazing traffic and money generating machine, but at least after four or five weeks of minimal effort punching out a few Hubs, I can see some modest results.

Over at Squidoo, I think I STILL don’t understand everything. I just recently figured out how to even put anything on a lensroll.

In the end, Squidoo seems to provide nothing, while HubPages seems to have at least a few things going for it.

I’ll be abandoning Squidoo soon, or at least relegating it to my low interest stuff, and going back to HubPages and the article marketing sites. With my schedule and business plan, I can’t afford to be wasting time on a site clearly designed with people who have no understanding of computers, the Internet, or websites in mind.

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Squidoo Lenses Social Media Experiment

Squidoo-logoI’ve been building a couple of Squidoo lenses as part of an experiment to use social media more effectively for marketing and other promotion.  So far, I haven’t had the time to put much effort into them, but I think they are pretty nice anyway.

My most complete is the Investing Guides and Information one.

The more recent one is about Smart Retirement Planning and it looks pretty good too.

Of course, there is still a lot I can do with these lenses I have created.  The Squidoo online training website is called Squidoo University or SquidU although I’m not positive that it is actually affiliated with the company that runs the Squidoo website.

This one on self-directed IRA investing has more stuff like books and what not, but not any more information than mine.  Still, it looks a lot better, so I’ll have to keep working on it.