E-Commerce, Web Businesses/Selling Articles Online

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QUESTION: Some people say that "selling articles online" isn't a profitable business. It is an old business and no longer a profitable business. On the other hand, people always say, "Content is very important. Therefore, bloggers and website owners are looking for a well researched content and they are always looking for a good content for their website or blog". I don't know which view is correct but I have some well researched articles and I am selling them at a price of $2.5 per 400 to 500 word article. I don't know whether blog or website owners will buy them as everything is "free" but I think that many blog or website owners need some content for their website and they might buy content. So is "selling articles online" a profitable business if I send sales letter to bloggers and website owners?

ANSWER: Hi Den,

I think you need to separate two different things here

content free  - for the reader
content creation - for the business owner / website owner.

so the readers are getting more and more "used to" free content - but the website owner / business owner still has to spend time (aka money) to make this content. They invest in free content so that "free" readers find their website and then hopefully click an advertisement, signup for their email newsletter, or buy their product / service.

So you are selling this content to the business owner who then can charge people for it (not likely) or give it away for free (marketing)

I feel your price of $2.50usd is too low - or is this content going to be resold over and over - who "owns" this content after it is purchased? The buyer has an exclusive, or only the right to read it - can they post it on their website as their own content?

Hope this is helpful.

Mike

---------- FOLLOW-UP ----------

QUESTION: Salam Michael,

Thanks a lot for your comprehensive answer. However, I would like to clear some more doubts about this topic. I can understand that website owners and blog owners need original content for their website. Many websites offer work and pay their writers. I believe that writers SHOULD BE paid for their time and effort. Many websites pay writers. Some of them are:

Textbrokers

Associated Content

BKA Content

and many more.

On the other hand, there are many websites that are offering "free" content for people to download and use them on their website. I mean can you believe it? For example, this is the site that is offering "free" articles for website owners. We can just google search them and find a bunch of these websites. Let me list one of them:

Articlecity.com

Now I have several questions that have confused me.

1) On one hand, there are many websites that pay handsome amount of money to their writers. As I said that I believe that writers should be paid for their hard work. Indeed, there are sites that pay writers. On the other hand, what about these websites that claim to provide these "free" articles to people?
I know that a well researched and well written article is not "free". But what about these websites that claim to give away these "free" article?

2) If everything is really "free," then why are people buying content? Why will someone buy from me or anyone else?


3) If these "free" article website don't pay their writers, then why are writers wasting their time on these websites? Is there something shady about these so-called "free" articles?

Thanks.

Answer
Hi Den,

Yes, this does sound "Shady" to me too - but there is this old saying that you get what you pay for. I have used odesk / elance in the past to pay writers to write for me.

I'm not sure how these writers agree to do it for free

Maybe it isn't original content?

Maybe it has advertisements or links or spam inside of it?

Maybe it is stolen.

I think you should focus on quality - and in the information age - there will always be scammers and people who give everything away for free

you need to treat your clients well and provide a good service.

So go out there and try it - maybe before you make a website post on Facebook groups and see ifp eople would buy it

hope this helps
Mike

E-Commerce, Web Businesses

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Michael Michelini

Expertise

selling on ebay, selling on your own website via ecommerce, listing on google adwords, landing pages,

Experience

Since 2003 I have been doing marketing and sales for technology companies. In 2004 I started my own online ebay and ecommerce shop. I have fun and good (and bad!) experiences with ebay, amazon, google adwords. In late 2007 I opened a company in China, where I source products for ecommerce as well as build and promote my US and China online shops.

Organizations
Shadstone Limited - helping American companies build their Chinese Social Media Startup Weekend, Shenzhen, China organizer hero meets hero Chinese Foreign Trade federation

Education/Credentials
Google adwords certified professional, masters in Tech management, bachelors in engineering management

Awards and Honors
Google Adwords Certification eBay powerseller

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