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How To Write a Good Article For HubPages

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I've been writing on the HubPages platform for over 10 years. It's been a journey.

You want to write an article for HubPages? Yet painfully, after spending hours crafting the perfect piece, it’s been rejected. Or perhaps you edited an old article only to find it kicked right back at you?

I’ve spend a lot of time over the last year or so reviewing articles at HubPages. Many have fallen at the first fence - their hubs have failed the Quality Assessment Process (QAP). Often the reason is straightforward, yet sometimes it is difficult for a writer to be objective enough to see what the problem is.

This guide is for you. It’s not about the technical aspect of using HubPages as a writing platform - there are plenty of resources to help you do that. It’s about how to create a useful, informative article which will be accepted by QAP, attract traffic and satisfy your readers. It might even help you to earn some money.

how-to-write-a-good-article-for-hubpages

The Title of Your Article

The title of your article is important. It’s what shows up in the search engine results. It’s what catches the eye. There’s no point writing a cute and clever title if it doesn’t tell the reader what the hub is about. Catchy titles are fine for print magazines, but not for online articles.

It should also be written in title case - that is, all words should begin with a capital/upper case letter, except for ‘a’, ‘an’, ‘the’ ‘or’. There are other exceptions. Of course, if the title starts with any of those, it should be capitalized.

I highly recommend you study successful writers on many platforms to see how their titles catch the reader's interest. Formats like 'how to's and lists work really well.

Article Introduction

I see many hubs lacking a proper introduction. Mine is up above - at the top of the page (where else would it be?). You can read it again if you like.

The importance of a good introduction cannot be over-emphasized. It’s your one chance, after the title, to grab and keep your reader’s attention. An introduction explains what the article is about, why it had to be written, and why the reader should keep on reading - not necessarily in that order.

  • The intro above tells the reader what the premise of the article is - writers having their work rejected at HubPages.
  • It tells you why I’ve written the article - I’ve reviewed lots of articles and noticed how writers are sometimes unable to see the problems themselves.
  • It keeps them reading by promising help.

You may find it hard to write an introduction. I recommend leaving it until the main body of the article is finished. It’s surprising how easy it is to compose a good introduction once you are looking at the fully-formed piece.

Good English Grammar

Sorry to have to tell you this, but unless you are fluent in English, and have a reasonable knowledge of grammar, punctuation and sentence structure, your article will be rejected.

HubPages is aimed at an English speaking readership, therefore your article must display a good working knowledge of the language.

There are two online applications that can help you, although they won’t be able to correct every mistake. The first is Grammarly. Grammarly will identify spelling and punctuation errors. Grammarly is free to use on Chrome, Firefox and Safari. You can install it as a browser extension, paste in your text and it will point out the most obvious errors.

The second is Hemingway. Hemingway helps with sentence structure. It highlights passive and run-on sentences, over-use of adjectives and awkward phrasing. I like it so much I bought the desktop version.

The Hub Topic

The topic and content of your article is all-important. It must be interesting, useful, informative, helpful or entertaining.

I see lots of people thinking they can recycle other articles from the web. Now, it’s fine to research and amalgamate information - we all do that. However, ask yourself if the world needs yet another article on how to cure acne? Unless you can add something new and interesting, find another topic to write about.

I’m sure I don’t have to say it, but I will anyway… never, ever copy and paste writing from the internet or from any other source and try to pass it off as your own. It’s stealing and it's illegal.

Writing To the Title

This is where many writers come unstuck. You have a title for your article, now every sentence has to relate to it. You can’t go off on tangents and rambles - at least not often. Stick to the subject.

The easiest way to keep on track is to create an outline before starting to write. The outline for this article is self-evident in the sub-titles. Your outline is your road map. Like a journey, it has a beginning, middle and ending. One technique that helps me generate outlines is mind-mapping. A brilliant resource to help you get started is "Mind Mapping: Improve Memory, Concentration, Communication, Organization, Creativity, and Time Management (Mental Performance)" by Kam Knight.

how-to-write-a-good-article-for-hubpages

Where to Get Ideas for Articles

They’re all out there. You’ll find that the more you write, the easier and faster the ideas come. It helps if you have a niche interest or passion. For instance I have a few areas which I tend to focus on: tarot cards, arts and crafts and, strangely, stalkers (put it down to my love of psychological thrillers and the fact that I have a pet stalker of my own).

Meanwhile if you are stuck, think of something you are interested in and use Google Suggest. Let’s say you have a passion for cheese. Type the word ‘cheese’ into the Google search box, don’t press enter. Some suggestions will present themselves. I can see:

  • Cheese sauce
  • Cheese scones
  • Cheese board
  • Cheese jokes

I could write up any of those into a hub. Now press enter. Ignore the results. Instead scroll to the bottom of the page. You will see ‘Searches related to cheese’. There are some more ideas right there. I like the look of ‘cheese benefits’.

Again, this is where mind mapping can help you thrash out a whole bunch of possibilities. Write 'cheese' in the center of a piece of paper and mind map everything that comes to mind about cheese.

Use the Available Formatting

As mentioned, I’m not going to write about the technical aspects of hub creation, however, it is important you use formatting to break up your text. Using several text capsules allows for sub-headings. These are good opportunities to add additional keywords to your article. Keywords are what Google bases its results on, so your main keyword should form all, or part, of your title. But don’t, whatever you do ‘stuff’ the article with keywords. It looks horrible and will negatively affect your Google traffic.

Remember your readers will very likely be reading on their mobile device - phone or tablet - so your article needs to look good, both on a mobile as well as in a desktop browser. This requires some ‘white space’ to help their eyes move down the page. Therefore, break up big, chunky paragraphs into shorter ones. Note: one idea or point equals one paragraph.

Use numbering and bullet points for lists. They are perfect for highlighting points that don’t require detailed explanation and they also help draw the eye down the page.

Your Writing Style

It will take a while before you discover your own style; your ‘unique writing voice’. The more you write, the faster you’ll find it. In this article, I’m writing in a very informal style. That’s because I’m addressing you as if you are sitting with me. It’s also a bit of a relief for me to write like this because I have to write a lot of formal articles where the writer’s presence shouldn’t be obvious.

If you are writing academic-style articles, your writing should be formal. There should be no ‘I’s or ‘you’s in it.

Technical articles should be clear and crisp. There is no room for error or misunderstanding. Same goes for ‘How To’s, although there is more room for maneuver if the topic is informal.

how-to-write-a-good-article-for-hubpages

Images

The Learning Center has lots of advice about using images, so I’m not going into massive detail here. Images are useful for breaking up text, adding interest and demonstrating the topic. It is preferable that you use your own photos and images. If this is not possible, there are several websites that offer free legal-to-use photos. Try Pexels and Pixabay.

I used to advise not to put your first image at the beginning of your article. However, things have changed and a brilliant image can encourage a reader to scroll down. Make images full page width and don’t bunch them together unless they are part of a step-by-step ‘how-to’ hub.

Videos, Polls, Call-out Capsules

Personally, I don’t often use the extra capsules. I like my articles to look clean and for them to be able to stand alone without extras. But, hey, you use what fits in with your work.

how-to-write-a-good-article-for-hubpages

Links and Promotion

Linking to external sites can be done but must be used with care. Sending readers off to external websites for more information is not a good idea. Your article should be able to stand alone in all its glory without relying on information from elsewhere. In any case, readers are quite capable of using Google to look for related articles.

You can’t use HubPages to promote your business website. However, you can use HubPages to create a niche or collection of articles which promotes your expertise in a certain area. You are permitted to add your website to your profile page, although not to your bio.

If you want to add products to your article by using the Amazon capsule, you must ensure that the product relates directly to the content. It helps if you can recommend an item which you have personal experience of using.

Should your hub be rejected by QA, the first thing to do is check for ‘illegal’ links and too many, or irrelevant, Amazon capsules.

Conclusion

Because you need a conclusion. A conclusion prevents your article from ending too abruptly. It rounds up the advice given in the main article and sometimes expresses a call to action, such as “Do leave a question or comment below.”

In conclusion then… I hope this piece has been useful to you and helps you to write an article for HubPages which will be just as useful to your readers. Remember: always write to the title and “Happy Hubbing".

© 2017 Bev G

Comments

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on October 10, 2020:

You are welcome, Eric. I am very impressed by how hard you work on your articles :)

Eric Caunca from Philippines on October 09, 2020:

Thank you Bev for helping me always.

In addition to Grammarly, I use Proofreader: Grammar, Style and Spell Checker app.

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on October 09, 2020:

Thank you, for your kinds words, Justine. Good luck on your HubPages journey.

Justine Forelli from Lafayette, CA on October 08, 2020:

This is a great article and it is inspiring me to write another one. I especially like the advice about keeping the article clean and not using the extra capsules Thank you.

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on August 20, 2020:

And a very good article it is too, Abby. I just read it and left a comment.x

Abby Slutsky from America on August 19, 2020:

I enjoyed this article, and I especially liked your conclusion on this one. I have been looking at your articles today, and you are actually mentioned in one I just published. (praise worthy)

Habiba Ahmed from Gleem ,Alexandria, Egypt on August 13, 2020:

Thank you so much for your advice i really got so many problems solved because iam new here. Also if anyone knows any sites for ideas to make articles? I will be very gratefull

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on July 22, 2020:

Laeeque, click on 'Write', top right.

Laeeque on July 22, 2020:

Hello! How I can start my writing

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on July 18, 2020:

Hi Waleed, all my tips are in the article above. If you follow them, you'll be fine.

ma45frost from USA on July 14, 2020:

Great information. Thank you.

Manuela from Portugal on July 02, 2020:

Thank you so much for this article, I am new here and so far I have written articles with the same format. This is a great help for me.

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on June 24, 2020:

Hi Waleed, all my tips are in the article above. If you put them into practice your articles will pass QAP.

Good luck.

Waleed Hassan from Jehlum,Pakistan on June 23, 2020:

Thanks mam I just want to start writing articles but don't have an idea you gave me such helpfull idea and I try it soon .. (Thankyou) .Can you give me plzz a few tips for my articles

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on June 21, 2020:

You are welcome, Anupam. Good luck with your writing.

Anupam Mitu from MUMBAI on June 21, 2020:

Thank you so much Bev G for such a help

Lots of love

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on June 16, 2020:

Thank you for your kind words, Jess.

JESS FIELDS on June 16, 2020:

I enjoyed your article. Very helpful, specially the point regarding writing style. very helpful.

Thanks

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on June 12, 2020:

Glad to help, Farooq.

FoxtrotAlfaRomeo on June 12, 2020:

Thank You mam, as a beginner. It is fruitful for me.

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on June 11, 2020:

You are welcome, Shawindi. Good luck with your writing.

Shawindi Silva from Sri lanka on June 11, 2020:

Thank you a lot!!!!!

I love your article.

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on June 11, 2020:

You are welcome, ukaigwe paschal. Good luck with your writing.

ukaigwe paschal from nigeria on June 11, 2020:

Thanks for tips and all you says are encouraging words to me and i wish that it will help me out to be a good writer

Tabassum Jalalvi on April 14, 2020:

This is really helpful .one can get good guidelines for good hubbing.

Victoria Hannah from Sydney, Australia on January 31, 2020:

Thanks for those very supportive words of encouragement Bev, it is hugely helpful.

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on January 31, 2020:

Oh thank you, Victoria. How lovely to have such great feedback.

Do keep writing - it's the lifeblood of HubPages and you can go on to earn a decent amount eventually.

Victoria Hannah from Sydney, Australia on January 31, 2020:

Hi Bev,

Thank you for such an informative article, I learned so much from your informal way of writing it. I love grammar and sentence structure, we had it drummed into us at school in Auckland but I still struggle with it and do find quite differing styles between countries when I read online content.

One thing that utterly appalls me is bad spelling, I do know know why people cannot do a double check before releasing their words to the Universe!

I have only written one article for HP, 17 months after joining but after reading yours and many other articles I am enthused and have more confidence now.

Thank you again Bev.

Anita Hasch from Port Elizabeth on January 06, 2020:

Thanks for your feedback. However I still feel that an example of a completed product related to the article would complement the content. Will follow your advice on how to link the content with the comforter.

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on January 06, 2020:

Hi Anita,

What I do in my hubs is to include a reference to the item in a text capsule. So I would say something like,

"I couldn't be without my own goose down comforter. I've had it a while now and it is my absolute favorite. It's so warm, yet lovely and cool in summer. Bedtime wouldn't be the same without it. It's this one: **name of comforter**"

Then I would add my Amazon link to the name. And, of course, you can write a lot more than that if you want to.

However, here's the problem: your title is about how comforters are made, therefore you might have trouble getting a link in because writing about your own comforter is not compatible with a 'how they are made' type of article. Do you see what I mean?

Another example might be, "How a Laptop Computer is Built" and then the writer trying to add a link for a laptop - it doesn't really work. It looks spammy.

It might be better if you wrote another article detailing the TYPES of comforter and then adding in your link. There's a subtle difference: the 'how they are made' article is educational while the 'types of comforter' one helps people who are shopping for a comforter.

Hope that helps. xx

Anita Hasch from Port Elizabeth on January 06, 2020:

Hi Beverly. Your articles are always so interesting and helpful.

You mention in this article that when including Amazon products, the products have to relate to the content.

One of my hubs. How Are Goose Down Comforters Made, advertised a Amazon product of a goose down comforter. Surely a comforter relates to this hub. It was removed. Why?

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on January 03, 2020:

Good luck with your writing, Zara xx

Zara on January 03, 2020:

Wow! This is really awesome. I had alot of troubles and confusions going on and this literally solved them all.

Thank you!

Luis G Asuncion from City of San Jose Del Monte, Bulacan, Philippines on November 25, 2019:

Hi Bev, thanks for sharing it. I am slightly new here. Although my account was already here for 4 years already, however, my reactivated account is about a month ago. This is a big help for me. Again, thanks.

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on November 17, 2019:

Hi Kameliya, welcome to Hubpages :)

Kameliya Genova from Bulgaria on November 17, 2019:

Hello! Thank you for having the article and you had published it because I wouldn't know how to write an article. I hope that I'll succeed and get better at writing. Greetings! ^^

Telsesa Greene from New York on October 18, 2019:

Ahhh...That's Awesome. I will keep these things in my kind.

Thanks

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on October 18, 2019:

Hi Telsesa, welcome to HubPages.

My inspiration comes from my own life and my interests. Things that I am enthusiastic about generally make the best articles.

Sometimes an accidental topic works too. Keep your eyes open for related searches in Google. Or book titles, or articles in magazines that spark an idea.

Good luck.

Telsesa Greene from New York on October 18, 2019:

Hi Bev

I have read 2-3 articles of yours and they all are very interesting. What is your inspiration for writing? As I have just started using HubPages so I need your suggestions.

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on September 18, 2019:

LOL! It's a deal!

Kenneth Avery from Hamilton, Alabama on September 18, 2019:

Hi, Bev,

I understand completely.

Hi, Beverley. I love your name.

Now about dinner. I will keep your idea in mind. But MY idea about taking you to a 4-star restaurant still goes. Me? I have never entered one. I had a boss one time, he was the first publisher who gave me a job in the newspaper business and his brother, another manager in Maysville, KY, a newspaper there, took him to dinner before my boss came to Alabama and long story short--my boss was so impressed at the 4-star restaurant in Maysville service was so beyond excellent that he almost wept.

Example: if you drink coffee, the waiters never lets your coffee get down in your cup below the halfway point, then they take the cup and give you a brand-new cup of fresh coffee. There are more examples, but due to time constraints, I have given you one.

I want to take you to a place where the dinner will run $4500.00 with tip and this is the CHEAPEST on the menu.

Deal????

Write soon.

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on September 17, 2019:

Hi Ken, no I don't allow readers to contact me directly - if you noticed my main topics, then you'll understand why :D

My first name is Beverley and my surname begins with G. So yes, that is a representation of my real name.

Don't forget, if you are using Amazon on HubPages, your earnings from them will come via your HP payment, not from Amazon.

I look forward to your visit to Wales and would happily cook you dinner :D

The number of articles that you've completed is astounding. Keep writing, Ken, you put me to shame.

Bxx

Kenneth Avery from Hamilton, Alabama on September 17, 2019:

And on Set. 17 @ 9:56 p.m., cdst.

Hello again, raggededge . . .

Well, I have spent time searching for A way that I could send this message to you, but your fan mail does not have a MAIL raggededge so, well, anyway, here I am.

I just wanted to know if Bev G is your real name? If so, cool. If not, cool.

I m a cool person 24/7. Naahhhh. NO one is that cool, not even Donnie Osmond.

At any rate. I read this hub and my mind was blown. Seriously. You re one talented writer.

And if any of these comments offend you, sue me. LOL. I am wishing that Amazon willl begin to send me cash so I can take you ro a fine restaurant, no, a 4-star restaurant . . .the BEST in the area.

Later. Great hub.

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on September 03, 2019:

You're welcome, Audrey. Happy writing x

Audrey Hunt from Idyllwild Ca. on September 02, 2019:

Hi Bev

I always appreciate any information I can get my hands on when it comes to improving my articles. Thanks so much for your help.

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on August 30, 2019:

Thank *you*, Kathy xx

Kathy Henderson from Pa on August 29, 2019:

Bev,

I just came across this Hub article. It was super informative, and I learned quite a bit and thank you for the breakdown in this article. :)

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on July 14, 2019:

Oh, OK, well you can still write about what you love, but you just have to leverage it toward what people are looking for :)

xx

Anita Hasch on July 14, 2019:

Hi, I love writing. However, I also need to supplement my income. As you know I am a widow. So doing something I love with a hope of improving my income seems a good idea.

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on July 14, 2019:

Hi Anita, I suppose it depends what your motivation is :)

Anita Hasch from Port Elizabeth on July 13, 2019:

Thank you. Guess I should write more about what people are searching for and not what I enjoy writing about.

Hira Usama from Lahore on April 23, 2019:

This article was so helpful!

Leonie M from Belgium. on February 17, 2018:

This article is very informative and it helps a lot of the new member. Thank you so much for sharing your good thoughts. Love reading it!

Bridgette Crowe from Morrow on February 15, 2018:

That was great. Thank you.

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on January 23, 2018:

I'm sure you have a beautiful writing voice, Mary. Just keep at it :)

Mary Norton from Ontario, Canada on January 23, 2018:

I have to learn how to use my own voice after years of writing reports and proposals. I am practicing right now how to write better titles as often, my titles are more for formal writing.

L M Reid from Ireland on January 15, 2018:

Interesting information here even for a seasoned writer on Hubpages like myself

Verlie Burroughs from Canada on January 08, 2018:

Bev, this is all really good information, and I like the informal style you use here. Thank you! Verlie

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on January 08, 2018:

Hi Kathy, spend some time at the Learning Center: https://hubpageshelp.com/ and in particular: https://hubpageshelp.com/content/Learning-Center-u...

Welcome to HubPages and good luck with your writing.

Kathy Burton on January 08, 2018:

I am new to HP. While I am currently working on an article, I still don't understand text capsules. I am hopefully once I start to post capsules will become clearer. Thanks for your article, the sections on Images and Links and Promotions were most helpful to me at this stage.

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on August 31, 2017:

Excellent :), You too, Lori xx

lori811 on August 31, 2017:

Thank you, the raggededge. I always check flickr for the commercial use only. Have a great day. God bless xx

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on August 30, 2017:

Hi Lori, Flickr is the same as anywhere else. You have to check the licence. Use this site to filter the licences: http://compfight.com/ Do a search in the box. Then when you have the results, look at the options on the left-hand side to find the right licence. You can also filter the licence when you are on Flickr itself, as far as I can remember. YouTube is fine.

Happy hunting! Bxx

lori811 on August 30, 2017:

Love all your work, Bev theraggededge:) Noticed your recent work on proper way of using images. Can't seem to find what I need on the recommended sites; hence, I have been using youtube.com for recent images/videos and flickr.com but I include the credit and link attributes. Have a great week/God bless! xx

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on August 25, 2017:

Thanks, Lori. Enjoy your meal! Seriously, have fun writing and writing will be fun for you. I can't think of a better way to earn a living. Have a great day!

lori811 on August 24, 2017:

Hi Bev..... You definitely were a teacher in a past life. Love this article. This is the detailed version of what I call a Menu... Appetizer (intro), Entree (body or main course), Dessert (Conclusion or takeaway) xx

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on August 05, 2017:

Fair enough, Chris. I always used to do that as well. There was a reason why I changed it and, for the life of me, I can't remember what it is :D

Krzysztof Willman from Parlin, New Jersey on August 05, 2017:

Great info, the only thing that I differ on is starting the article with an intro before an image. Perhaps I'm doing it wrong but I always go with the image first before the introduction. I like to capture the audiences attention with a nice visual before giving them information.

Md Nahid Khan from Bangladesh on May 31, 2017:

Quite a help!

Sunil Kumar Kunnoth from Calicut (Kozhikode, South India) on March 30, 2017:

Very informative and helpful. I had an interesting read. Hope you will write more such articles to help the hubbers. Also read some tips to improve traffic to our write ups. Thank you for sharing your ideas. All the best.

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on March 30, 2017:

Thank you, Sunil, I really appreciate it.

Sunil Kumar Kunnoth from Calicut (Kozhikode, South India) on March 30, 2017:

Informative and useful. Hence shared on FB. Keep on writing. All the best.

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on March 23, 2017:

You're very welcome, Vladimir. And creative is good. Always. You can always use those titles somewhere in the article - perhaps as a subheading?

Val Karas from Canada on March 23, 2017:

Bev--After 171 featured hubs I still find in this one a lot of useful information, especially about titles. I notice that sometimes I tend to go "creative" instead of informative in that department, and I am going to try to change it. I may feel sorry for some of those titles, but they will have to go for sake of the traffic.

Thank you for sharing your obviously good knowledge and experience.

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on March 10, 2017:

All the best to you, Ashish. Hope you have many, many featured hubs in your future.

Ashi on March 10, 2017:

@Bev,

Thank you so much for writing such a useful Hub for our community. I loved your ideas and suggestion. I am sure going to follow this for mu future Hubs.

Bless You.

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on March 09, 2017:

Hey Sandy! Love to see Squidoo friends and angels popping up here!

Sandy Mertens from Wisconsin, USA on March 09, 2017:

Thank you for this timely information.

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on March 09, 2017:

Thanks, ShyeAnne :) I am glad you found something useful here.

ShyeAnne on March 09, 2017:

Thank you theraggededge for this well presented and very informative hub . I learned a few really good things that will help me construct my next hub.

Bev G (author) from Wales, UK on March 08, 2017:

Sorry, Siah, I don't understand what you mean by 'input new words'. Check the symbol at the right hand side of your unfeatured hub. That will indicate if the hub has been unfeatured for quality or lack of traffic. If it's quality, it is probably due to grammar issues. Not featured simply means it won't appear in search engine results, but can be seen on your profile. You can still share the link with anyone or on social media.

Siah World on March 08, 2017:

Thank you for this article, it helps a lot specially for the new comers. Can I ask if you like to input new words because you think it fits to the topic as I believe it falls on creative writing, will it affect the quality of what you wrote? Had one article published but not featured and I don't know what went wrong? Are not featured topics bad for your hub?