What Not to Do on eHow.com

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Adapted from my original article How to Avoid Useless eHow Habits.

There’s a lot of really backwards group think on eHow – I like to call it “eHow voodoo”. It’s totally understandable; much of way eHow works is shrouded in mystery. While I’ve written a lot of articles about increasing your eHow earnings, I’ve never really written about what NOT to do on eHow. I spend a lot of time talking to top earners, doing research and conducting my own experiments, so I’d like to add my own thoughts to the mix. It’s time to dispel some of the most common eHow myths.

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People love ratings on their articles. This is generally a good feature, but unfortunately at the time of this writing nothing has been done with it. Search results aren’t listed in order of ratings. Higher ratings have no impact on how much money you make. The ratings aren’t even necessarily valid – friends come over and rate with the hope of having the favor returned. Jealous writers give an article one star in some misguided power play. The whole thing is really silly.

Commenting is the main time waster on this site. Unlike the other habits, this one can actually be detrimental to the entire site. There are so many article that sound like robots wrote the comments. I’m sure even this article will see “This is a great article on how to avoid useless eHow Habits!” What this person is attempting to do is help you out by increasing your keyword frequency – although it’s been proven over and over that comments don’t help pagerank at all. Not even a little. All these people are doing is filling the site with robocomments, thusly decreasing the reputation of it’s members. If you’re going to comment, let’s have a human conversation!

Watch out for the forums. Look, I’m not saying the forums are a waste of time . . . just don’t head over there with the hopes of getting rich somehow. I love the forums – they’re the last surviving hope for human contact on this increasingly spam ridden wasteland. I even post in the daily article threads. Given that I’m seemingly the only one on this site who works at night, I end up making most of those threads! I think it’s my final attempt at a real human being seeing an article and give me some feedback. Some people post there hoping to get mindless 5 star ratings and comments as if they’ll suddenly get paid more. Not happening.

The Inbox is the most unfortunate black hole on eHow. As I write this, I receive an average of thirty to forty message a day. What makes this spamland even more depressing is the fact it could be used for good. I have to delete these messages because they’re all clamoring for me to read their articles…that or messages about someone named Jesus and how he’s going to save me from my sins. Precious. I’m sure there’s a message or two in there that’s actually written to me specifically, but unfortunately I’ll never know. If I spent all my time reading spam, I’d never write any articles.

Speaking of spam, write some quality articles. If you write ten 2-sentence-per-step articles a day you still won’t out-earn an individual halfway decent article. Decent equates pageviews. Pageviews garner earnings.

The number of friends you add won’t make you more money. There was a point on eHow where I only approved people I actually talked to as my friend. Eventually the requests piled up and I caved in. Now I have a billion friends, and let me tell you the result of that experiment – my earnings are identical. Sure, there’s no harm in having the friends. You just have to remember what this article is about . . . useless habits. if you waste even five minutes adding every person you find as a friend, that’s five minutes you could have spent taking a nice photo for your article. Having a bunch of friends is fine, but so it playing with dolls . . . just don’t think sticking pins in them will have implications in physical reality.

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