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I Went Undercover at Ghostbloggers.net as a Buyer and Writer

Hi everyone! I’m very excited about a particular site that is NEW and deserving of our viral love. It’s called Ghostbloggers.net and I heard about it on some news site and went and checked it out from a writer and buyer’s perspective and so far, I adore it! Here’s how it works:

Content is written by Ghostwriters and put on the site where short snippets are viewable by buyers. If they buy, they own copyright to it and the ghostwriter gets paid – can’t sell it elsewhere. It”s UNIQUE content available to the buyer, not PLR.

So let me tell you a little about my experience in written and video formats for your convenience. Here’s the video and then below are my thoughts in text:

First, I signed up as a writer.

The sign up was easy. I was shocked at the level of pay. Get this – their STANDARD pay for writers is $3.50 per 100 words! Cheers! Hooray! I want to give a big hug to whoever built this site with ethics intact – not some “under $2″ platform which is equivalent to a sweat shop.

And if $3.50 is too high for you as a writer, well don’t worry – you can enter whatever amount you prefer. But I’m just saying they have your back and I likey.

As a writer, keep in mind that the site is NEW so the job requests aren’t as heavy as they are elsewhere but I plan to be part of what helps that issue personally – and I think you should, too.

The site has requests in there but you also just write your own topics and upload them. Now what sucks is, once it’s there, you have to keep it there. I hope we can urge them to allow us to take our content down after so many days. They’re open to feedback and suggestions so this is something I’ll be sharing with them on their Facebook fan page.

Nathan, one of my blog readers, mentioned some of the most popular topics that have had articles purchased there – including diets, marketing, and so on.

I have a suggestion for you writers, too! How about this: You put an article on there like one about Internet marketing. Okay cool. You submit it and wait for it to be approved out of the queue. Once it’s live, you promote it!

You’re not at the mercy of whoever happens to land on their site, hoping they find your content! Promote it like a true marketer. How can you do that?

  • Promote it on your blog – in individual posts AND in the sidebar! Have a list of unique content available for purchase with a link to your Ghostbloggers.net profile!
  • Tweet it whenever you have a new article available for purchase.
  • Google Plus it.
  • FaceBook it.
  • Put it in a sig file.

All the things you would normally do to promote your stuff, do it for this! So let’s say you do that Internet marketing article. I would go to my Google free keyword tool and type in “Internet marketing writer” (without quotes). Then what I would do is see what has low competition and highest searches. Internet marketing writer has 210 searches per month.

Not extremely high but that’s 210 people per month wanting someone who knows how to write about Internet marketing – and maybe they’ll buy your article as a test to see what they want to request from you.

This is the kind of site where you’ll want to really study what article titles appeal most to people, because marketers usually know these types and they’ll be looking for them. IE: “5 Ways to Trim Fat From Your Thighs” (or whatever).

And guess what ELSE I love about this site for writers? THEY DON’T PICK POCKET YOU! That’s right – whereas some other sites charge $2 per article to the client and give you a whipping $1.62 (grrr), THIS site lets you pick your rate and then they tack on what they’re going to get on TOP of your pay. LOVE IT!

Again, people if you want this thing to take hold, take a stand against low pay sites and ONLY work for higher paying ones whenever possible. The more content people find there, the more buyers it will attract, right? My article just got approved! Here it is: WordPress article.

So I am a little confused though. I charged the standard rate of $3.50 per 100 words. It’s an 812 word article. So that should be $28.42 plus they tack on 30% for their fee on top of that, which is $8.53 which would be $36.95 total. No? Am I not a math whiz today? but it’s listed at $40.60. Hmm not sure why.

Next I signed up as a buyer.

Again, sign up was easy. I was able to sort through with easy navigation to find articles in my category. I LOVE that I can see a snippet of the article to see the level of quality and stuffiness versus casual writing. I like the star rating system. I like that they show me more articles by that author (if you find a favorite). I like that it also gives me more suggestions in that category I might like.

So I have to say, I went searching through stuff I’d like and I didn’t find a SINGLE crappy quality article! Not ONE. I DID find one lady who just used words that were too snooty – not at all my style – but quality-wise, she knew her stuff.

I wound up wanting to buy an article to see how it would be in full as far as the experience goes. It asked me to fund my PayPal account so I entered $20 (since the article was $19.97 for 837 words. That’s almost 2 pages, about $10 per page! Pretty good for a newer writer – certainly not some $1.62 crap. This person must have entered a lower than standard rate because 837 words would be $28 plus some change.

I did NOT like the fact that I had to fund my account with $50 minimum. Ghostbloggers needs to change that because if I’m NEW and have been burned endless times by freelancers and freelance sites, I’m not going to want to lose $50 not knowing if I like the site. A $20 minimum entry would be perfect – or let them enter the specific amount of the article – what’s wrong with that?

Anyhoo I did it. I bought the article and it was sitting in my dashboard waiting for me. I was able to copy and paste it into copyscape and it passed with flying colors. LOVE it. It was well written, too. Now on my own blog, I like to have my own Tiff personality, so what I would normally do is Frankentiff it to have my flair.

But if I was using it on a web 2.0 entity or article ezine, I’d leave it as is. Read it here if you want to see the quality of what I bought for about $10 per page: Using the Search Function on Social Media Sites – Content Creation Cornucopia.

I left that article exactly verbatim how s/he wrote it – but the only thing I did was put more spacing in the paragraphs because she wrote long paragraphs (most people are taught this in school). Otherwise, I didn’t touch a single word. Nice, huh?

Now what do I mean by Frankentiffing it? I love her title – so I wouldn’t change a thing there. I like the depiction of a cornucopia – fruits of our labor tumbling out.

But the paragraph that starts with: “An often overlooked resource” (up top), I would probably rewrite quickly like this:

Most people ignore the poor search button on social media sites. They go there to interact, not look for information. But it’s the perfect place to find ideas because real people – not news organizations and mainstream media – are supplying the fodder you need for your blog posts! And it’s a never-ending supply of ideas that you don’t have to pay for.

You see, I embrace the dangling participle. I just want it a tad bit more conversational. But I gave her/him five full stars because I think the content kicked a little ass. It was a great concept – something FREE for my readers to learn and implement – and something most people DO ignore. Bravo, writer – Bravo!

As a buyer, you can bet your sweet butt I’ll be bookmarking and stopping by here often. If I don’t have anything for a blog post, if I need some article marketing or whatever – this is where I would go.

Why – if it’s more expensive?

First off, the QUALITY amazed me.

Secondly, It was priced well! Some people had outrageous pricing – that’s okay. They’re free to do that if they want. I think as more WRITERS go on there, beefing up content, with a variety of wages (please don’t start putting $5 crap up), then it’ll attract many, many more buyers.

So let’s spread the word, people! As soon as my article is up – it’s about WordPress and pretty good newbie tips – then I’ll link to it. I did standard rate just to stick with the basic requirements but I might put some on lower, too.

Enjoy! And bookmark this, G+1 it, Tweet it, etc. Let’s get ethics spreading like wildfire and drown out the low budget, low quality flea markets (they don’t deserve to be called “marketplaces.”

Tiff ;)

57 Responses to “I Went Undercover at Ghostbloggers.net as a Buyer and Writer”

  • Hey Tiff,

    Great find, but is there a particular reason you prefer this site over Constant Content, where the rates appear to be quite a bit higher?

    The first article I sold there was 420 words and sold for $45. Articles can go for much more – over $100 in some cases. (We’re talking actual sales, not asking price).

    Constant content takes 35%, but there editing is first rate. (I can only clear about half of my stuff without revision, because I am not particularly good at proofreading).

    I am not plugging them, just curious.

    Dan

  • Jen says:

    Hey Tiff,

    I just checked this out and it looks great! I submitted an article to see what happens. The only thing I didn’t like is that it didn’t give me a word count of my article. Hmm..maybe they can add that in.

  • Donna White says:

    This really sounds great. A lot easier than hiring an individual on elance or odesk or the like.

    Thanks for spying for us. LOL

    Donna

  • Hello Tiff,

    I signed up today as a writer, but haven’t had time to do an article yet!

    Looks a good find though. Thanks for finding it.

    Angel cuddles,

    Sarah

  • Eileen says:

    Great share as usual Tiffany. I tried to wrap my head around that $1.62 site and even make some suggestions but the long and short of it is you can make more if you have a number of high ratings. And the rating system is totally arbitrary (though I have noticed projects languishing from buyers who had high rejection rates.

    But even that is not fair to the buyers because they don’t see a snippet up front and they may have good reason to reject the articles. No matter what they pay for the articles they have the right to expect non-spun halfway decent grammar.

    Danny McConnell above is correct that there is Constant Content and there are a number of other sites that work the same way. But they seem somewhat saturated at this point. And a lot of them seem to favor the writer with a strong specialization and profile. Generalists are not taken as seriously so you almost have to create multiple identities to generate enough work.

    I love this new site you sourced for us. And with so many of my usual distractions blacked out today, it is a perfect day to get started there.

    • Tiffany says:

      Even elite was $11.62 or something for 1000 words though Eileen! Better to promote and support better platforms.

      • Eileen says:

        Yep, I totally agree. It’s nice to get in on the ground floor though and be an early participant. I tried to sign up at one site a while ago and they said you could sign up but you would get limited assignments as they felt they had to protect their earlier supporters.

        I suppose there is a market for the $1.62 sites. If you are ever bored and want a good laugh, read some of the requests on there. Oh yeah, let me put on my Dickens hat for you. May I have a bit more gruel sir? To the workhouse with you!

  • Isobel says:

    Tiff, it seems that they charge to the next 100 words .. so 812 words would be charged as 900 (9*3.5 = $31.50), but if they charge 30% on that, it should be $40.95 not $40.60.

  • Bob says:

    Hi Tiff

    It says that you can only sell an article once. How can they police that. For instance, you could take the article you wrote and include it in a PLR pack.
    No one to stop you. Or if someone is a ghost writer they could sell the article there first and then turn around and start selling it to customers who might want that particular subject.
    It seems like a guarantee they can’t enforce.

    • Tiffany says:

      They have a TOS that writers agree to hand over copyright to the buyer. The content COULD be taken by the writer and resold but hats the same as if you approached me personally to write for you – I could write, deliver and then sell it again. But I could also be sued by you because YOU bought the copyright.

  • hugh says:

    Hi Tiff

    just to let you know, I joined the site and purchased one financial article for which i left a negative review and they refunded the fee!

    Good ethics, I was pleasantly surprised!

    • Tiffany says:

      Awesome Hugh! What was wrong with the article out of curiosity (since they have a human editor)

      • hugh says:

        Overseas writer with bad grammar, very poor english which i should have spotted in the article excerpt and nothing interesting in the report just rehashed junk!

        But they agreed with me and refunded which was a pleasent surprise so i will use them again.

        I wish they would just price each article individualy and include the tax. Saves faffing about calculating if you have enough in the account to cover the article and the tax etc.

  • I might give this one a try. Since I can’t seem to produce sufficient articles for my PLR site (I just can’t write all that fast…), I have been looking for a reasonable, easy place to post the occasional article (I was not at all impressed with constant content).

    I have really shifted focus into developing a marketing graphics pack (i’m a programmer and graphic designer by trade), which still has a loooooooong way to go!

  • 3bagsfull says:

    thanks for turning us on to this. I have signed up. I just need to write an article :)

  • Patty says:

    Hey Tiffany,

    The website is super pretty – if you endorse it, I’ll definitely take a closer look at it.

    - Patty

  • Britt Malka says:

    I’m glad you discovered this place.

    The only thing I don’t like about it – and about a site like Constant Content – is that you might write an article and not sell it.

    Hm, on second thought that’s what can happen on our PLR Store as well, LOL.

    Okay, Britt, no further excuses to procrastinate ;)

    • That’s funny – I have sold exactly 1 PLR pack since I started my site! I don’t have much up there, and I don’t put a lot of effort into it (mostly because I just can’t write that fast), so if it sits a while, no problem!

  • Sheryl says:

    I came across this site a few months back and submitted an article. It was quite a long one so was at a price of over $60 for the buyer, I didn’t think it would sell at that price.

    To my surprise it did sell and I was pretty pleased with that receiving a nice price for my article. I have since submitted a couple more and sold one more.

    The only problem with the site is it is fairly new and article take a while to sell. It’s a great idea and works really well so I really hope it becomes more popular.

  • Jeannie says:

    Tiffany,

    This is such a nice find! I am like many others here – I’ve written some PLR packs but don’t post them consistently to sell very many. I’ll definitely give this a go, and I’d love to also explore Constant Content, that Danny (above) mentioned.

  • Rach72 says:

    Three words – yay! yay! yay!

    Ethical sites, promoting quality professionals attracting professional, ethical webmasters.

    Hoo freakin’ Ray!
    (does a happy dance)

    Rach :)

  • Aaaha! If you don’t have time to write an article, get a ghostwriter to write a 500 word article for about $8.00. Sell it on Ghostbloggers and triple your profit!

  • Davy says:

    Hi Tiffany

    Thank you for this review. It put a smile on our face! :)

    Kind regards and have a great day!

    Davy
    GhostBloggers™
    http://www.ghostbloggers.net

  • Rhonda says:

    I joined there a few months ago, and really like like how things are set up, but you’re right…they need more exposure…as a business owner, I want sufficient content to use…so more writers and buyers will be a win-win situation for all concerned. Never thought about promoting them more for this purpose…thanks for that idea.

    As for the $50, Yes!!! They need to change this, it’s going to create an obstacle for many bloggers who might not want to risk that initial investment of buying content there.

  • Sydney says:

    Great lead, Tiff. Thanks! I’ve never heard of this site and since it’s new we can get in on the ‘ground floor’ which is always nice.

  • Jim says:

    Seems like you signed up with your real name and picture. How is that undercover?

    • Tiffany says:

      As the buyer my username is Marketer with no picture. As the writer, they don’t allow your name to show in full, and it prevents you from using your last name in your username. But I did put my pic. I didn’t announce it, in other words – none of you knew I was heading over there. Don’t nitpick. lol

  • Sounds like a great place, Tiff. I like the idea of the writer being paid what he/she is worth. You are right, that article was well written and it is our place to put our personality into any article we use.

  • Amanda says:

    Site looks really interesting! I’ve been curious and now you’ve inspired me to try it out.

    In fact, I’ve got a bunch of half done PLR packs that I just decided not to finish… maybe those could be first candidates! It would be nice to make some money off of them instead of letting them sit there in case I decide to finish the pack.

  • Sam says:

    Thanks for the heads up Tiff. It’s nice to see quality articles selling for a decent rate, although I hope that writers don’t start trying to undercut each other on price, leading to a ‘race to the bottom’ kind of situation like you see on other sites. I think Ghostbloggers should set a reasonable minimum rate that writers can’t go below, to prevent this happening.

  • Maryke says:

    Hi there

    I’m so glad I found your blog. I really love it. Great review for a great site!

    PS: Hope I’m not the snooty lady :-)

  • Bob Kleppin says:

    Tiffany, once again I have to disagree with your evaluation of a writers platform. Of all the ones I have worked, or tried to work, on Ghost Blogger is by far the most frustrating.

    Customer service, NONE! Response time from article submission to approval, DAYS! Response time from inquiry to reply, DOES NOT EXIST!

    The rate may be Good but what good is it if I cannot get an article approved for sale. At iWriter I only write at the Elite level and my base is $13.00 for a 500 word article. I am able to write about two to three per hour and approval comes in just a matter of a couple of hours, not days.

    I know that they have an affiliate program so perhaps that is why you are so in “like” with them. I don’t know. For me I want a article writing service to be responsive to and for me. Only iWriter has demonstrated that level of response.

    • Tiffany says:

      Bob I’m about to do a follow up so we’re not too far off my friend but iWriter’s not the right option either.

      • Bob Kleppin says:

        So maybe you can tell me what is the r
        “right” option? I have tried iWriter, Freelance, Getbusy writing, Ghostbloggers, Elance,Guru and a few others. All require bidding, joining and paying fees, re-bidding when underbid, only pay a penny or less per word, have limits on the number of projects I can bid on, reserve the right to take a portion of my fees, slow pay, slow approval, have to write on speculation, the list goes on. iWriter may not be the best, but it sure beats the heck out of anything else I have come across.

        I really like being able to just choose a project and write about it. I know my skill set and only take on those that I can handle quickly. No long drawn out bidding process, no waiting for article approval and fast pay. I hate having to provide “samples” of myt work as I have seen those “samples” spun and used elsewhere. I wind up writing for free and that sucks. Not so on iWriter. If I do have an article rejected (and I have had four) I immediately post the article to my blog and claim ownership. That way my work product remains mine.

        Maybe if you see what I am all about you can understand why I like iWriter. They may not be the best, but they are the best that I have found so far and when you establish yourself they do pay better than any of the others. Gots to pays your dues!

        My bio: “One of the top eight internet content providers. Former carpenter, contractor, commercial fisherman, Senior Business Executive. I am now a Prolific writer. Graduated from Arizona State University. Taught Business and Project/Materials Management at Mesa Community College and at Arizona State University. Author of several published articles, not for the internet, in business management, home improvement, fishing and home projects. Have written several books, again not for the internet, on Project Management and other business related topics. Am currently a prolific writer of web based content with hundreds of articles, page content and e-Books published.

        There are those who will underbid me. That’s OK. They know the quality of their work and what their time is worth, as do I. I only provide quality work in a timely manner. If you think my standards and writing level are too high, that’s OK too. You get what you pay for. As an academia I am used to providing the kind of work that had to pass the muster of my peers and that is tough. Hiring me, even if you have to pay a little more, will give you the peace of mind knowing that you will be getting a quality project requiring no editing and free from spelling and grammar errors.

        For the fastest service at the highest quality available make you writer choice and choose me at the top Elite level. You will not be disappointed.”

        • Tiffany says:

          Bob if it’s working for you, go for it! I loved Elance. Yes you have to pay and bid but I made over $60,000 a year there. I dislike many things about iwriter – but my main gripe is how it’s marketed, period. It’s simply wrong to spread the “cheap labor” mentality in my opinion.

          Now I’m not sure if this is your career or something you just started doing to make some side cash. For writers, it’s a big slap in the face. So they’ll usually go elsewhere. I wouldn’t have to jump through hoops and work for a certain timespan making the lowest pay possible with people ripping off my work and rejecting the content if I didn’t want to on Elance. My portfolio and bid for projects on Elance helped me get projects that paid more.

          You said you have to rebid when underbid. No you don’t! I teach people to say NO to cut rate prices all the time. In fact just recently someone emailed me saying they took my advice in GWC when someone said, “Well another bidder undercut your price by X amount. So if you cut yours, I’ll hire you.” I told them to say “thanks but no thanks.” They got the job at THEIR rate! It’s all a mentality of what you’re willing to do for the service.

          You were willing to work low wages to get to “Elite” level And elite is $13 per 500 words? No thanks! At Elance I was getting $30 per 420 words. In your last comment you said Ghostbloggers.net has an affiliate program so you insinuated that’s why I was in like with them. Not sure if you recall, but Brad Callen offered me “anything I wanted” to promote his site. Now he has a big list and lots of connections, so please don’t insinuate that I got into bed with Ghostbloggers because of an affiliate program because then you’ll piss me off.

          Even today I commented on Ghostblogger’s FB page that I was disappointed in his response time and lack of action taking, so I’m removing my article from there. So yes, it as a good idea – but hasn’t panned out like I’d hoped. Still, I respect what he was trying to do with the site – maintain fair wages and an atmosphere where buyers don’t get screwed over like they do on iwriter.

          Paying your dues does not apply with a service, sorry. In some ways you might bid a little lower IF you have no experience or portfolio – but it’s quality that matters most in providing services. And paying your dues as a writer would be like $7 per page, not $1 freaking 62 cents! That’s an insult.

          In your second to last paragraph you then say there are those who will underbid you and that’s okay – but you gripe about being underbid on Elance. Which is it? And why are you talking about bidding on a site with no bids?

          Listen, I’m really truly happy that it’s the right fit for you. I really am! I’m always pleased when someone finds a paying gig online that suits their needs perfectly. But I’m not at a point where I’m recommending iWriter to people. I’m just not. I still think it’s promoted all wrong and will just bog writers down in low paying gigs ($13/500 words is not the ELITE tier of writing imo).

          Tiff ;)

  • Dawn says:

    Hi Tiffany,

    A friend of mine had told me about Ghostbloggers and she liked them but was pretty new there yet. I agree with you about iwriter. The worse part there is that if the client asks for something and they didn’t really relay what they wanted good, they can just reject it.

    I have followed a client’s instructions to a T and then they rejected it leaving me a bad review stating it didn’t have xxxx when they specified they didn’t want xxxx in the instructions. I went from Elite to Premium within a few people. Another person posted 3 articles to be written. I did 2 and somebody else did 1. This person accepted and loved one of mine, rejected the other person’s and then turned around and rejected my second one.

    They stated in my 3 star review – I have all I need and thought I cancelled this request. Yes, they rubbed me the wrong way at iwriter too.

    Thank you for sharing your opinion on Ghostbloggers (now that I am done ranting about the other site), I signed up but have not written anything there yet. Will be working on it very shortly, we have had a crazy couple weeks!!

    Hope you have a wonderful week :)

  • Argo says:

    Hi, I read few of your blog posts and I understood that you know a lot about article writing websites. Can you recommend some good websites for article writing (outside US). Currently I write only for iWriter (pay is hmmm, not that good nor bad), I am not a native English speaker so my writing skills are decent at most and I would really appreciate if you could recommend me any websites like iWriter (preferably with slightly better pay).

    • Tiffany says:

      Argo I saw people on Elance and Odesk who weren’t native English speakers making money. Maybe try one of those? Also, you might want to launch your own website and pull in customers.

      • Argo says:

        Yeah, I know that websites, they basically hire lowest bidders, which are in fact Asians (mostly Indians, Pakistanis etc…) who offer their writing services for about $1 per 500 word so they always get the job. That is just ludicrous I it is unacceptable for me to write 1 hour article for lousy $1, at iWriter I earn at least $5 for 500 word article.

        • Tiffany says:

          Well at Elance I was making up to $30 per page ;)

          • Syd says:

            Wow, great info, Tiff. I’m going to have to look at Elance and PLR as I am beginning to think I’m hypergraphic. I can’t remember the author’s name offhand, but The Midnight Disease is a fascinating look at compulsive writing from a doctor who considers herself hypergraphic. I’m going to have to unearth that book and read it again. I believe the author was either a neurosurgeon or psychiatrist, so she was very qualified to write this

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