I read about PLR -- Private Label Rights sites -- where you subscribe and get content that you can use as your own. The one, InfoGoRound.com appealed to me since instead of paying to subscribe you could earn your subscription fee by contributing an article. And they had a 30 day trial offer or maybe it was a 30 days and money-back offer.
I liked the content of the articles alright. A lot of it was pretty basic, common-sense observations -- not the sort of information that was really going to change anyone's life. And some topics had very little written on them. Given recommendations I've heard that content only really helps your site rankings if it's unique content, I figured I would have to modify articles anyway, so what does it matter if the original writing was pretty ho-hum.
I chose 3 or 4 articles based on a theme that Yahoo had had as a frequently searched on topic (I was shocked at the number of searches). I rewrote the articles and put together a small website, optimized for search engines and planted a few links to it and then purchased a small amount of Google Adwords traffic to it to get a feel for whether someone who came to the site would stick around at all.
I was planning to write my own article to contribute to InfoGoRound for my membership, but thought I really wanted to wait and see how such a content website did. I thought I would cancel the InfoGoRound membership since I was still in the trial time period and now that I understood how the service worked, if my website had potential, then I'd join 3 - 6 months from now and build another one.
I sent in my request to cancel and got some bonus offers to continue. I hate that -- I hate when you have to work to cancel a membership. But I perservered and cancelled. BUT... here's the GOTCHA. I got a notification from them that they knew I had downloaded content AND that you can only use the content WHILE you are a member. Now, a former member can pay a one-time fee of something like $67 to retain rights to that content. But geez, then I'm paying over $15 an article for articles that I really only used the framework. GOTCHA!!! Ouch.
So I'm stuck either rejoining and writing for a few months while I evaluate the usefulness and profitability of the articles, OR paying OR ditching the whole idea which would mean that I wasted the time I put in rewriting the articles, researching the keywords and putting the site together.
I'm still deciding what I want to do, but I thought I'd warn anyone else going down that path.
Also, let me know if you use any PLR services and how useful you find them. I do like the idea of getting a starter set of content on a topic. This new website I created is actually the only one I've ever put together that is successful in terms of generating Adsense clicks. Something about the topic attracts Ad clickers. I have no idea what.
So that's my latest misadventure in "making money" online.