As you are probably aware there are hundreds, if not thousands of websites that you can submit your quality articles to. However, you will also find that quite a few of those sites are simply time wasters. They either do not receive a lot of traffic, do not pay well, or do not rank very highly in search engines.
Below are 5 of the best sites that I have found that will not only pay you for your submissions, but will also get your articles ranked fairly high in the search engines.
Associated Content is one of the better known websites to submit articles for payment. It doesn't pay a huge amount per article - I found the average is between $2.00 and $4.00 per article when you originally submit it and retain the rights to it however there are people who make between $6.00 and $8.00 per article as their rank grows higher and depending on content. The money can add up however in the ongoing residuals program that they have.
For every 1000 views your article receives, you receive $1.50. Because their articles place fairly high on Google, this is not a difficult goal to reach at all. For example, one of the first articles I submitted titled Unique and Funny Halloween Costume Ideas got over 2300 hits in under three weeks time. An additional bonus is that Associated Content does not take the article down, so next Halloween (and even the months in between) the same article will get even more hits, thereby earning me even more money, without having to do more work.
The trick obviously is to submit as many quality articles on popular subjects as often as possible. You can get paid per each article at submission (as long as you meet their quality standards - which are pretty fair and reasonable) and you can watch your income grow month after month as the amount of articles you have listed increases.
They give you three different options to choose when submitting:
1) You can write exclusively for them which will pay you slightly higher when you submit the article and will give you better placement
2) You can submit your article to them first which will entitle you to an upfront payment, but then you can also retain the rights to your work to place on others sites at a later date or;
3) You can submit your article for performance views only where you do not get paid at submission, but you do get paid as your article gets read.
Personally I have used all three options at different times. For example, if I write an article on a current event happening today, I will use option number three because I want it up on the system as quickly as possible. (For upfront payments it takes a few days for Associated to review and approve it.) But current event articles get a lot of clicks within the first few days so it performs well. I have also found to my surprise that these articles will still bring in money even months later from people simply searching under the subject matter. So even though it may be considered "old news" it can still bring in plenty of clicks and money down the road.
While they do not pay as well as Associated Content and there are few more hoops to jump through, this is a fairly decent submission site as well.
Until recently, Helium only paid for performance views. They are now starting to pay upfront at submission but at a lower price and there are some categories that do not qualify for upfront payment at all.
But they do get a fair amount of traffic, so again the more quality articles you have, the more you get paid as the months go by.
They are also different in the fact that they already have "title categories" to submit your articles under. Sometimes this can be difficult if an article you write doesn't actually "fit" into one of their pre-existing categories, so you might have to submit a "title recommendation" that takes a day or two for them to approve. The good news however, is that if you are the first person to write under the new title you automatically receive a dollar into your account.
There is also a rating system that you are required to perform. Which means that you need to go in and rank other people's articles a certain amount of times per month in order to qualify for any payments at all. The good thing about this though is that you get an opportunity to see what others are writing about and you get better at judging what constitutes a good or bad article, which can help improve your own writing in the long run. Also the higher an article gets ranked the more views it gets and the more the writer gets paid. So you learn to appreciate the ranking system, not to mention that it is usually pretty good feedback for you when you see where your article ranks in comparison to others in the category.
Gather.com is a fun site as well. Instead of earning money you earn Gather points. The more you participate in the site in general, the more points that you earn. This includes submitting articles, pictures, video, leaving comments for others, etc. You have the ability to "cash" these points in after you have reached different levels. For example, when your account reaches points in the 600 range you can cash them in for $10 gift certificates to places such as Starbucks, Macy's, Borders, CVS, and quite a few others. When you reach 1563 points you can exchange them for a $25.00 payment directly to your Paypal account.
Gather is a fun site and rather casual. You can leave comments, join groups, make friends, develop a following for your articles, and the points can be made in a fairly short amount of time the more you participate.
This is a site where you get to pick the price you want to sell your articles for. Similar to Associated Content you also get to choose if you want to sell exclusive rights to the piece (which can earn you a lot more) or if you want to retain the rights to reprint it elsewhere. Instead of receiving an outright payment however, you will only get paid if the article is purchased by a customer. The good news however, is if it is purchased you can make a lot more than from the sites listed above.
It is a pretty easy site to use and it is absolutely free to sign up. It is a good way to start out if you already have some completed articles ready to be published. As long as you only offer them with partial rights, you have nothing to lose by putting them up and seeing what happens.
From what I understand there have been mixed reviews regarding Triond. Triond.com works differently than the other sites listed above. Instead of getting paid per article you get paid 50% of the commission made from the ads that appear with your article.
Also from what I understand the article has to be exclusive content that you cannot publish elsewhere. According to reviews I have read, some people swear by it and other swear completely off it, but because it is one of the more popular sites I chose to list it here so you can do your own research and decide for yourself.