Free Online Writing Sites

by pkmcr

Are You considering one of the Free Online Writing Sites to make some extra income? Which one should you choose? HubPages and Wizzley both have something to offer you!

In today's economic climate, many people are looking for ways to supplement their income, and one of the most appealing methods for earning money is through the use of free online writing sites.

These types of sites are commonly referred to as "Web 2.0" sites, because they specialize in offering what's known as "user-generated content", which means that they provide a platform for people to publish their own articles.

The advantage of these types of sites is that they usually rank well in the search engines, providing contributors with a wide range of exposure for their work, as well as income-earning potential based on the amount of traffic and advertising revenue that each article receives.

The two most popular and established free online writing sites are HubPages and Wizzley. These sites have become veritable giants in the online world, with each of them offering hundreds of thousands of pages covering an extensive variety of topics.
Both of these sites allow writers to earn money off the content they create by way of various revenue-sharing programs including Google AdSense, eBay Partner Network and the Amazon Associates Program.

The finer details will vary based on which site you choose, but the basic premise is that contributors earn a certain percentage of the advertising revenue generated by each page of content they create. This advertising revenue is largely based on the amount of page impressions that a given article receives, so if an author can develop the skill of driving targeted traffic to their articles, they can earn a substantial income through using any one of these four platforms.

So which site is the best one to use? Each one of them have their merits and strong points, and many people choose to utilize all three platforms to maximize their earning potential. Let's take a look at the two sites in a little more detail.

If You Currently Write On Any Of The Online Writing Sites Take My Poll!

Which Of The Online Writing Sites Do You Most Frequently Create Content On?
  Display results
Thanks For Taking Our Poll :-)


HubPages has an arguably larger online presence than Squidoo, although it started in 2006, about one year after Squidoo launched. According to QuantCast, HubPages has been listed as one of the 50 most visited websites on the Internet, boasting over 1 million pages (a.k.a. "hubs").

As far as the actual mechanics of publishing a hub, it doesn't differ too much from Squidoo in concept, but the interface is a little smoother and more streamlined. You build hubs using the "modules" system as well, and their drag-and-drop interface makes building hubs very easy.

One of the main differences between HubPages and Squidoo to date has been the URL structure of your published pages. HubPages gives you your own subdomain based on your user ID--for example, if your user ID is "Whovian", your HubPages URL would be "". Squidoo, on the other hand, doesn't include your user ID in their URL structure, but makes the title of your lens a subdirectory of their main domain.

For example, if you published a lens entitled "Doctor Who Day", the Squidoo URL would be "". For search engine optimization purposes, one may not be better than the other, but some experts argue that subdomains give you more authority in the search engines than subdirectories.

In this case, the HubPages URL structure could possibly afford you a greater advantage in the search engines. Although Squidoo (as of June 2013) are also experimenting with this approach as part of their response to their recent loss of favor with the search engines.

Earning Money On HubPages

As stated earlier, HubPages offers you the ability to connect your various affiliate ID's to their online platform through what's known as the HubPages Earnings Program.

Basically, as advertisements are displayed on your hubs, the ad code will alternate between HubPages' own code and your affiliate code in a 60:40 ratio, meaning that your ad code will show 60% of the time and HubPages' code will show 40% of the time.

This forms the basis of their 60/40 revenue sharing program, which can earn a substantial income if you learn how to drive large amounts of traffic to your hubs.

The HubPages Community

The HubPages community is also very tight-knit, and it is not uncommon for members to answer each others' questions and offer advice on improving their hub-making skills through their online member forum.

HubPages has also recently cracked down on spammers, deactivating hundreds of hubs related to common "spam-magnet" topics such as payday loans and diet pills. As long as you provide quality, engaging content, you should have no problems from the HubPages moderating team.

Take a look at the Hubpages Online Writing Site


Wizzley is somewhat of the "new kid on the block" in the world of Web 2.0 sites, but it has gained a significant amount of traction since its 2011 launch. I know that I really like it! 

I started here soon after they created the site and have recently returned to creating content because I really like the way they operate and that they have basic quality management approaches built into the site from the start.  They may be smaller but in many ways I like that.  One of the challenges for Wizzley is to maintain that approach as the site continues to grow and attract content creators.

As far as the user interface is concerned, it is more similar to HubPages than to Squidoo in its use of modules to build pages. The site carries an overall ease of use, offering a more clean and minimalist look. Wizzley prides itself on being an online community for writers, and they seem to maintain a true "grass roots" feel overall. A couple of the co-founders are active authors on Wizzley, which adds to the more tight-knit feel of the Wizzley community.

Earning Money On Wizzley

As far as earnings potential goes, Wizzley has a monetization model similar to that of HubPages, with the main difference being that Wizzley's revenue sharing program operates on a tiered level ranging anywhere from 50% to 60% of page impressions being shared with their authors. They also offer a slightly wider variety of advertising partners, including AllPosters, Zazzle, Chitika and VigLink in addition to the "usual suspects" (Google AdSense and Amazon).

Quality Control On Wizzley

Some people have commented that the content moderators are too strict on Wizzley, claiming that they are over-zealous in their vigilance against overly-promotional pages. Personally I think that is one of the real plus points of the site. 

Clearly it's a very subjective view and based on each individual's experience, however, so the best step to take would be to ensure that the content you offer is engaging, informative and beneficial. Wizzley is still getting its "sea legs", and may well go through a few more growing pains before it becomes as well-established as Squidoo and HubPages. But I have every confidence that it will and is here for the long term. Just look at where I have chosen to put this page!

Join The Free Online Writing Site Wizzley

How To Get The Best From Wizzley

An Excellent Book By A Renowned Wizzley Content Creator - Jo Harrington
A Writer's Guide to Wizzley: Learn ho...

Squidoo - Closed 15th August 2014

The Grandfather Of Free Online Writing Sites

This section of the page is now an archive as Squidoo announced it was closing on 15th August 2014 and all the featured content was to be moved to HubPages.

Squidoo was considered by many to be the "grandfather" of Web 2.0 sites, and has been hailed by many as the pioneer platform for user-generated content. Founded in 2005 by eccentric entrepreneur and author Seth Godin, Squidoo's famous by-line is "Everyone's an expert", meaning that all of us possess some type of specialized body of knowledge in some field of endeavor.

Squidoo's platform allowed you to create pages (known as "lenses") that highlighted a topic of your choosing. Their platform was equipped with widgets known as "modules" that allowed you to add rich content such as videos, polls, images, comments, etc. to your page (lens) in order to increase its overall appeal and add versatility to the user experience.

Squidoo offered authors (known as. "lensmasters") the ability to add advertising modules (Amazon, eBay and Google AdSense) to their lenses as well, and they split all advertising revenue 50/50 with their lensmasters, based on the amount of revenue that each individual lens generated.

Squidoo had what at times can be a slightly confusing online dashboard that you could use to track the earnings that your lenses had generated, as well as other useful information such as traffic stats and rewards earned in their "SquidTrophies" system (basically an experience points system).

Until recently Squidoo lenses were generally considered to be search-engine-friendly overall, which means that if you chose to use Squidoo as your publishing platform, you would be more likely to get some decent search engine traffic, and even more so if you employed basic search engine optimization techniques in your writing.


Having Read My Reviews.....

Which Of The Online Writing Sites Are You Going To Try?
  Display results
Thanks for Taking My Poll! :-)

More Make Extra Income Advice

Wizzley is the new kid on the online block for Writers. One of the questions I am frequently asked is how does it compare with Squidoo? Let's take a look!
If you are writing for the web then you need to focus on writing content that real people want to read. Quality material that provides what the reader wants is key to success!
What is niche marketing and why do so many people encourage us to focus on niche markets and to create niche marketing strategies? Let's take a look at why Niche Marketing works!
Marketing has changed! Charity Online Marketing offers a great and often free way for charities to connect with supporters and donors and spread the message about their work.
Updated: 10/05/2014, pkmcr
Thank you! Would you like to post a comment now?

Which Is Your Favorite Free Online Writing Site?

CruiseReady on 05/08/2015

I am not sure I have a favorite any more... I have published articles on two other sites that closed down, so am reluctant to get emotionally 'attached' to yet another one. In spite of that, I am beginning to develop more optimism about Wizzley with each new article published. I sure do like the quality control here!

LindaSmith1 on 12/18/2014

I have been with Hub Pages for 3 years, and deleting hubs. Right now, I get a lot more traffic at Wizzley than I do at Hub pages. The only thing I like better at HP is the HP ads earnings program. We earn from HP and separately from Adsense. Wizzley does not have this program. The revenue sharing is from sales only. I will lose some income, but I am seeing HP getting worse instead of getting better. I wlll give Wizzley a chance for awhile, it can't be any worse than at HP right now. I also like the fact that Wizzley provides keyword information, module information when it comes to clicks on products, and which article is getting them. HP does not do this.

Mira on 10/15/2013

I really believe in Wizzley, so I'll stay here for now. I did find interesting things on Squidoo through Google searches, so I appreciate the work there as well. Hope more of those writers continue to come to Wizzley ;-).
I also like blogging, and it works well to promote stuff from Wizzley and Zazzle.

Raintree on 10/15/2013

I was writing on Squidoo pretty much exclusively for years but I now feel that diversification is important and now I am building on Wizzley and Hubpages too.

pkmcr on 06/09/2013

@cazort I think that's a very reasonable summary of the challenges that Squidoo is currently facing and their users are experiencing. For me I will continue to maintain published material there and look forward to working more and more on other sites.

cazort on 06/09/2013

I personally have a much more positive feeling towards Squidoo than towards HubPages. I tried out both sites, starting with HubPages...that was a long time ago, but my experience with HubPages was very poor. I found Squidoo to have a more positive, encouraging community, and I found the pages there to get more traffic on their own without the need for constant boosts from me (like sharing and resharing on social media).

My experience though is that Squidoo is in a rough period and I don't trust that it's going to stay a usable site. Yes, I still get traffic and earn money there, but I've had to put considerable effort in just to keep my pages getting a similar amount of traffic as 6 months ago...and Alexa shows the traffic for the site as a whole steeply declining.

I've also run up against agonizing automated spam filters, which catch things like keyword density but without telling you what's catching them, so you need to fidget with editing and re-editing until it goes through the filter. All my works are 100% my own original writing so it's frustrating. Yet then I have seen overt, egregious spam pages left up for months on end--after me reporting them multiple times. We're talking, spammy "make money online" things packed with affiliate and referral links to scammy programs. This, and the complete failure of the site admins to ever respond to even ONE of my emails reporting these lenses or expressing frustration that my lenses are being caught in the filters but these aren't being taken down, has made me stop publishing there.

I think Wizzley is a much better site. It may be smaller and I've found the traffic here can be a bit unstable, but I think that in the end, better sites will win out. I have seen Squidoo in a rough, unstable decline for the past 6 months. The team there seems overworked and unable to keep up on their spam problem. They seem to be trying hard but I just don't seem them able to handle the problems they're currently facing.

pkmcr on 06/01/2013

@Tolovaj Thanks for taking the time to comment. Just picking up on your specific comments:

1. What I actually said was "but some experts argue that subdomains give you more authority in the search engines than subdirectories." That authority (as opposed to authorship) is not an instant thing but as your subdomain gains credence over a period of time it can gain authority as an independent entity. A collection of subdirectories will never gain that level of authority.

2. Yes Squidoo does allow one to insert one's own affiliate links and retain all the earnings using such things as SquidTools or even simple text links. I suspect that will be shortlived given the changes occuring there.

pkmcr on 06/01/2013

@selecteddee Absolutely - for me doing nothing is never an option

Tolovaj on 06/01/2013

I am still on Squidoo, it is still my number one, but with all the changes going on I don't rush making new lenses.

I have to add two things:

1.You mentioned subdomains on Hubpages. Subdomain can help your authorship, not authority. Authority is something to be earned and new subdomain don't have any authority. siteDOTcom has it based on age, backlinks etc., subdomainDOTsiteDOTcom can't have it from the beginning (no age, no backlinks etc.) I hope I presented that case clear. Technically every subdomain is new site and SE don't like new sites until they have a reason to trust them (with great content for instance).

2. You and JoHarrington discussed the earnings through Amazon on Squidoo. At the moment affiliate links are still allowed there, so somebody who is able to sell a lot of items can easily get more than 4 percent commission and keep 100 percent of that, what is better than half of 8 percent coming through the Amazon module. So you can choose: 4 percent what is more than beginners get or more.

I hope I helped a bit to clarify these two issues. Anyway - I have seen too many people relying only on one source of income which was never in their control, so splitting is always best solution.

selecteddee on 06/01/2013

While I have been considering Hubpages, and did in fact sign up there quite some time ago, I am discouraged by recent happenings at Squidoo and am therefore reluctant to go through the same thing on another site. Of course, if I do nothing, then although I won't have to go through any more roller coaster rides, I also won't be able to expand.

You might also like

Wizzley For Writers - Writing Online for Profit

Wizzley is the new kid on the online block for Writers. One of the questions ...

Become An Online Tutor

If you want to earn money working from home and working the hours you want to...

Can I Work From Home?

Deciding whether you can work from home is not as easy at it might seem! We ...

Disclosure: This page generates income for authors based on affiliate relationships with our partners, including Amazon, Google and others.
Loading ...