frequently asked questions
Section 10: Common Problems with Articles
Why is my Author Name Invalid?
The Author name listed in your by-line must match the name listed in the Resource Box of your article exactly. Please keep in mind the following guidelines when choosing your Author Name:
Your AUTHOR NAME must have a First name and a Last name.
We do not allow two initials for your AUTHOR NAME.
Your First and Last name must begin with a Capital Letter.
We do not allow company names to be your AUTHOR NAME.
We do not allow email addresses to be your AUTHOR NAME.
We do not allow adjectives or nouns or any other descriptive words to be part of your AUTHOR NAME.
You may NOT include your title after your AUTHOR NAME unless you hold a doctorate-level degree (Dr., MD, DDS, PhD, etc.)
We do not allow religious titles before or after your name.
A Common Mishap: Author name flip-flop. For example: Brandon MacGregor vs MacGregor Brandon. This is not an acceptable practice. If your author name is in use, try adding your middle initial or using alternate variations.
Why is my Author Photo or Gallery Photo Invalid?
Photos must adhere to the following guidelines:
Photos must be of the author or have the author in the photo
We will accept renderings, drawings or non-photo images if they are of the author.
We will not accept company and/or personal logos, symbols, crests, avatar images, violent, sexually-explicit or offensive material, or copyrighted images as author photos.
Photo must be .jpg or .jpeg file.
File size must be less than 100k.
Why Can't I Promote Myself in the Body of my Article?
The article body is where you share your expertise about a given subject. Provide tips, techniques, commentary and/or other useful information to the reader. This is where you "GIVE" to the reader. The reader will be more willing to go to your link if you offer them good quality content that is valuable to them.
The Resource Box is the appropriate place to "TAKE" from the reader. This can include mentioning yourself or your business, promoting a product or program, and a "call to action."
Do You Accept PLR Articles?
No. We DO NOT accept any Private Label Right Articles or re-written PLR articles. We also do not accept any articles providing information on PLR articles or re-writing PLR articles for article marketing or article submissions. We ask that you do not waste our time or yours with submitting these article types. We will reject these articles and suspend or delete your account.
You must own 100% exclusive rights to your articles. You will never own 100% exclusive rights to PLR articles.
I Purchased These Articles and Have Permission to Attach my Name to Them - Why Won't You Accept Them?
We define "exclusive" as the fact that you and only you have the sole rights of publication of the article. If you purchased these articles, chances are many others have as well and are also using these articles. As a rule of thumb, you will always be safe with articles you write yourself. If you've hired a ghostwriter to write articles for you, don't trust that they have your best interests. VERIFY and ensure they are writing to your standards and spot check their work by completing advanced web searches on the content.
If you find they have violated your trust, even once, fire them. Your credibility as an expert in your niche matters. Take it seriously.
Your Submit Form Rejects my Article for Prohibited HTML and I Don't See It
This frequently happens with articles that are written in an outside document program (like Microsoft Word) and then copy/paste into the submission interface. We recommend that you use a plain text editor to copy and paste from. These hidden characters do not exist in plain text editors.
To resolve the problem, remove your article from the submission form and paste it in a plain text editor. Copy and paste again in the submission form. This will remove any hidden code.
If you prefer using Microsoft Word, use the WYSIWYG ("What You See Is What You Get") editor tool and select the "Paste from Word" icon above the article body box. Please remember to disable Microsoft Word Smart-tags before you copy and paste as they are not compatible with the WYSIWYG editor.
What Are Excessive Self-Serving Links?
A self-serving link is a link in which you have a vested interest. A non-self-serving link is a link that you add to your article that emphasizes your point or offers clarity.
You are permitted to add up to 4 links in your article = 2 self-serving + 2 non-self-serving. Any more than that and your article may appear spammy. Reserve your self-serving links to your resource box. If you include any links in your article body, keep them near the bottom of the article so they appear to naturally flow to your resource box language.
We do not knowingly allow any URLs in your articles that are banned by Google. If your website engages in questionable SEO practices, it will be rejected.
What is a Localized Niche Article?
A localized niche article targets a location. Example: "Florida Homeowners: 10 Tips to Roof Care." When using locations in your title, you must take special care to deliver on that location in the article body. If your article fails to deliver specifics on Florida we will reject your article. Ask yourself a series of questions before adding the location to the article and determine its relevancy. If it's only there for SEO purposes, remove it. If it provides value specific to Florida home owners, then keep it.
You must ask yourself what about Florida is relevant to the article. If you replaced 'Florida' with another location would the article still make sense? If yes, chances are it's not needed in your article.
What is Bait and Switch?
Bait and Switch or false designation of origin is using another company's good name (brand) and earned reputation to attract visitors to an article and then offering the reader an alternate product via your website. Content flipping is a bait and switch tactic and is risky. Most brand owners will file a Cease and Desist asking you to stop.
It is unfair to draw your audience in using another company's brand for traffic leverage. These article types will not be accepted.
Can I Submit Articles in a Series?
Yes. These are better referred to as article sets because article sets share similar topics/niches. Keep in mind that every article must stand alone. This means that one article does not require another for the reader to receive your intended message. It also means that your articles will be distribution friendly. Publishers are less likely to re-publish your article if they need to search for or publish more than one of them.
Can my Resource Box be Too Large?
If a disproportionate amount of the total article content appears in the Resource Box, it's too large. Your Resource Box should not exceed 15% of your article body vertical line count.
Calculating Resource Box Size - A 400-word article can have a 60-word Resource Box. To calculate this, multiply the word or line count by 0.15 (15%). The result of this equation is the appropriate size for the article's Resource Box (400 words x 0.15 = 60 words).
Word Count and Line Count - The 15% rule applies to both word count and vertical line count. If the 400-word article is 30 lines of text, the Resource Box can be 5 lines long (30 lines x 0.15 = 4.5 lines). Take both of these constraints into account when deciding what to include in your Resource Box.
Does my Landing Page Contain Enough Quality Content?
There are three questions you must ask when answering this question.
Is my landing page relevant?
Is my landing page transparent?
Is my landing page easy to navigate?
Your landing page content must be related to your article content. If you fail to tie in the relevancy you'll leave your reader frustrated. Transparent refers to intended point. Does your reader know why they are here and who you are? If they have to dig for this, you'll lose trust. Don't hide the small print and give them what you told them you would. If you offer a free PDF if they 'click here', be sure to offer them the free PDF.
Your site must not be a MFA (Made for AdSense) site and must provide a positive user-experience. One paragraph of content does not constitute quality content. Very rarely will you fail on your landing page quality if you look to deliver a positive user-experience.
Your landing page content must also be in line with our Editorial Guidelines. Any violation of these guidelines will result in an article rejection or account suspension.
How Can I Avoid Keyword Abuse?
You can avoid keyword or keyphrase abuse by writing naturally. Your readers want to hear what you have to say. Stuffing your article with keywords in an effort to gain more traffic will be transparent. You stand to lose your readers' trust and it diminishes your credibility as an expert. If your reader doesn't feel that you have their best interest in mind, they'll go elsewhere.
Here is a real life example of an article that is keyword stuffed:
This 325 word article had the following stats in just the article body:
Keyphrase: debt settlements occurs 9 times (2.7%)
Keyword: debt occurs 17 times (5.2%)
Keyphrase: debt settlements occurs 14 times (4.3%)
Keyword: debt occurs 35 times (10.8%)
The images shown here are of the actual article used for this example as viewed by our keyphrase (left image) and keyword (right image) highlighter tools.
We recommend that you do not add more than one keyword/keyphrase for every 100 words.
What Are Other Common Editorial Problem Areas?
Cash Gifting - We do not accept articles or sites linked in articles that promote or provide information on cash gifting.
Direct Download Websites - We do not accept articles that discuss or link to any website offering movie, television, music, and game downloads or streaming content with unknown legal status in regards to copyright.
Excessive Academic-style Citations - We require that all submissions be 100% unique and original content of which you are the primary source. Please ensure your submissions are based on your own unique expertise, and contain no more than 5 lines of quoted/sourced material.
Unlocked Cell Phones - We do not accept any articles or links which promote or provide information on "how to unlock" cell phones.
Unsavory Search Engine Optimization Practices - We do not allow any promotion of programs or software that may create a poor internet user experience, e.g., article spinning software or spamming programs.