It's been a while since I've talked about Associated Content. I go in and out with how much I post there, but I really think it's worth giving it some attention. If you are unfamiliar with it, it is an online content site, kind of like an article warehouse. Anyone can sign up for an account and post articles there (that they wrote, not that they found somewhere). In many cases, you can get paid $3-$5 up front for these articles, and in all cases you get paid $1.50 or more (depending on your "clout level", which is based on how many articles and page views you have) per 1,000 page views. Up-front payments are made via paypal several times per week, and the performance payments are made once per month.
I currently have 102 articles on the site, which have varying levels of success--I don't concentrate nearly enough on SEO or finding hot topics to write about. My performance payment last month was a little over $9, and this month it'll be just over $10. Whoopee, right? Well, if I worked a little harder at it, I could make some decent money. There are AC "sources" (as the writers are called) who make a full-on living at it. It's not the highest paid living, but they do it.
I know of at least one woman who got her performance payments up to four figures during the holiday season...wow. $1,000 just in residual income! That starts to make the $5 up-front a little easier to bear. My buddy and mentor, Michy, regularly makes over $100 per month in residual income...and the more sites you earn residuals on, the more it adds up. The more articles you have out there, the more you will earn.
Michy did month-long challenges for both Helium and Associated Content. You can read a Q&A with her here on AC's blog, and you can read her whole challenge here. She gives some great advice in the Q&A.
Most important things, IMO, for succeeding on AC:
1. Learn Search Engine Optimization (SEO). This is where you will get most of your traffic, from people searching on search engines. You will get some from promotional efforts as well, but SEO is vital.
2. Pick good topics, ones that a lot of people are interested in. Hot topics, like recent news events, celebrities, and things that are popular with kids, often bring in a lot of page views in a short period of time. Evergreen topics are ones that people search for over and over again. Holiday articles do great around that time of year every single year, then fizzle out the rest of the year.
3. Write a lot. The more articles you get out there, the more you can earn and the more you can draw attention to yourself.
4. There is a ton of information on the AC forums (careful, though, they can get a little snarky there, but they're really good people who mostly want to help. Read as much as you can before you post questions) and on AC sources' blogs.
If I followed my own advice better, I'd be more successful! Ha!