Since I began writing for Info Barrel in August of 2009, I have accumulated almost 350 articles and have made some really great friends along the way. For several years now, I have watched various Web 2.0 revenue sharing websites emerge, and evolve their own business models in terms of what works best for them (as a company) and, of course, their userbase. I think it is important to pay close attention to many of the trends that are occuring in this industry because I truly believe that new opportunities are being birthed for online writers each day.
While some have come to accept many of the earliest websites as being infallible, not only have I been excited about Info Barrel, but I have also been a strong proponent of what their business model offers writers in terms of offerings, incentivization, monetization, transparency and customer service. Instead of detailing the areas where similar websites fall short of Info Barrel's business model, I would like to use this article to explain what I expect for the future of Info Barrel. Because I'm not privvy to any 'insider information', outside of what I have read in the forum and have read on Info Barrel owner, Ryan McKenzie's blog, much of what I write about won't necessarily be 'new' to the Info Barrel writer faithfuls who frequent this website everyday. Instead, I will simply be pointing out exciting things that I see and attempting to interpret them and what they mean for the future of writers on Info Barrel.
Greater Daily Earnings
Since this is essentially the single reason why people are so driven to contribute online, it is important that I mention how, I believe, Info Barrel v.2.0 will affect writers earnings. With a new platform interface available for view at Ryan McKenzie's blog (link available in previous paragraph), I do think that the new sleek design is both simple and inviting. Because web designers frequently use the hexidecimal coding necessary to make the blue font that many have become accustomed to seeing on Google Adsense ads, I do think that these ads will blend in quite well into the new interface: generating earnings for writers through "clicks" and not necessarily becoming an annoying to readers who may find their respective articles in the search engines.
Above the Fold
In comparison to the current (i.e. soon to be 'old') Info Barrel platform interface, it 'appears' like the entire header has been made smaller. I don't believe that this is a coincidence. By doing this, I believe that Ryan and Kevin will be able push Google Adsense further up "above-the-fold", where they could very well catch the attention of, and be clicked on by, readers who are genuinly interested in those particular advertisements. While I do love the current interface, I do believe that earnings (article ad CTR) could be and will be at least a little more higher when these changes go into affect. I do also really interpret these changes as Info Barrel ownership taking great strides to both build a great company and take care of their most precious resource: their writers.
Increased Web PageRank and Authority
While it has displayed nothing short of tremendous exponential growth, InfoBarrel is still a young company and website. With time, however, InfoBarrel is beginning to make a serious name for itself in this industry. They are beginning to show up on the radars of many people worldwide, and their content is beginning to be seen as a quality authoritative source that Google will rank high with time. When Google ranks a website high, this means that your opportunities to earn and your general earnings potential will continue to increase. Had you written 100 articles, and left to stagnate, those articles could very well, over time, begin to outrank (current) authority website's similar content.
Things that Will Stay the Same
I apologize beforehand if I am making an assumption that the following things will remain the same. In all honesty, I HOPE they will stay the same.
One of the things I love about Info Barrel the most is its transparency when it comes to just about all facets of its operation as a writing website platform and business. With little controls in this industry, I have observed and researched much higher ranking websites that don't even share with writers how much they are earning on their earnings. This may not be a big deal to you. It is to me. Knowing full well that Google Adsense includes nothing in its Terms of Service (TOS) that states that a content host aggregator company (like Info Barrel) can't or shouldn't reveal how much revenue is shared with its writers. I really appreciate the fact that Info Barrel does share, in simple terms, just how their revenue share arrangement with writers works. There are no secrets, hidden agendas, or secret algorithims.
In the past, I have heard new writers for Info Barrel speak out about how they wish more revenue was shared with writers. Whether they wanted a higher Google Adsense revenue share, or a share of the Kontera revenue, I personally believe that what Info Barrel gives writers is absolutely great. In my honest opinion, based on research, these revenue sharing offerings and the system arrangements governing them, is among the best arrangement available for writers online. The best revenue sharing arrangement can be found at the crossroads of high PR and authority and revenue share. A website may offer a 100% revenue share, however, they may not have nearly the authority in Google where their writers content will even earn anything significant. On other side of the fence, a website may have a high authority but may only give writers pennies..or....worse yet....they may not even share with writers how much they earn.
3) Customer Service and Support
On a Web 2.0 property like Info Barrel, effective customer service and support is absolutely essential. My personal experience with Info Barrel has been great, as many of my questions and concerns were addressed in a timely manner of typically no more than 24-48 hours. With Info Barrel's current staffing to user ratio, I could make an assumption that they receive quite a bit of email from users daily. I think they work with upmost skill and professionalism, and it is quite clear that they are attempting to really do right by writers.
I am very excited about Info Barrel because they appear to be constructing a perfect storm of a business model that will help to generate a great passive income for many writers for years to come. What are your thoughts on the current Info Barrel, and what do expect to happen with the NEW InfoBarrel?