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23% of ProBlogger Readers Have Written Paid Posts [POLL RESULTS]

Posted By Darren Rowse 22nd of June 2009 Reader Questions 0 Comments

Have you written a paid review on your blog was the question in our last reader poll here at ProBlogger. 1771 people responded and the result was fairly clear – over three quarters of you have never done a paid review.


77% have never done one and a further 7% don’t currently do one which leaves 16% who either do them regularly or occasionally.

What interests me most about these results is the change in them from last time we asked the question back in 2007.

In that poll we only gave the option for a ‘yes’ and ‘no’ answer but there has been a swing away from paid posts in that time. The shift has not been massive but is noticeable. Here’s how it went last time.


Perhaps this reflects a change in the audience here at ProBlogger but I suspect it also shows a change in bloggers attitudes to paid posts also.

Back in 2007 they were a much hotter topic (there was a heap of debate on the topic) and many bloggers were keen to experiment with paid posts as a potential income stream.

About Darren Rowse

Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.

  • I’ts interesting to see how different bloggers feel about this. So what are the pros and cons of writing paid reviews? Do they reduce your credibility?

  • I guess it depends. Sometimes I do paid reviews or I was sponsored a product to do a review.

    If you look at my reviews. I usually point out both good and bad points that can be improved. I normally looked at the service/product first before I accepted the review. If it’s a bad one, I rejected it.

    But I guess every blogger is different

  • Probably because paid posting is a reliable income stream than other long term income stream. It is also active income stream and does not require much effort from a prolific blogger. That is a good analysis..

  • Michael >> Thanks for the uber quick feedback on my question. I think it’s good that you refuse to do reviews for subjects that you believe to be bad. And I suppose that I will look into it in the future, but I just think that it could quickly taint your reputation as someone whose opinion can be purchased. But then again, I guess that is all that advertising is.

    Maybe Rush Limbaugh doesn’t actually love Zicam and is actually talking about how great they are only because they bought him. I don’t know. I’m still learning and working things out.

  • Do bloggers typically disclose that a review is a paid review? That would be an interesting follow-up poll.

  • The trend will always change, it depends on the how hot and how desperate the audiences are and also on the situation currently, whether is now a good time to do paid review or not, does not matter.

  • I think this also depends of the nature of the post.

    If you have the opportunity to test drive the product or service you have to write a paid review about it and you get to the honest opinion that this product or service can be valuable than I don’t see any issue to write a good reviews about it.

    It depends from the blogger,

    A. If he or she like to write their opinion or
    B. If he or she only writes what’s required and favoured by the sponsor.

    I think with the with the first one (A:) you can build it!

    B. Demages not only the credibility of the said blogger. It more demages the credibility of all bloggers out there and would make blogging worthless on the long therm.

    The consumer would not truste the blogsphere anymore.

  • If done, paid posts may be better if they are agreed upon in advance by both parties, similar to a sponsorship or advertising opportunity for blogs. It’s also better if there is some form of disclosure lettibng readers know that it was a sponsored post. This is the only way that I would support the whole market of paid posts. Otherwise, it does not benefit the growth of a blog in my opinion. Those third-party paid to post companies are not beneficial if you consider their long term disadvantages so I would recommend bloggers to stay away from these programs.

  • I guess the ‘low’ percentage is because of credibility of blogs. 23 % as the numbers state compromise of developed blogs and therefore have done paid posting ! Rest of the blogs which dont have a good reader base fail to attract advertisers for the same !

  • 23% of you’re readers only have the right number of readers for a paid post.

  • My blog is too new for me to have had to deal with this personally yet, but my gut reaction is that it would taint my credibility to do paid reviews. It certainly would be a breach of trust if I didn’t disclose that the review was paid. (At least I would feel that way.)

    I like the idea of only doing a paid review of something that I actually believe in or value. Since my blog is largely opinion anyway, readers can take it or leave it.

    This is an interesting poll and interesting question. Worth some thought.

  • I agree with you all who said it’s based on the readership. I didn’t vote in this poll but I will say that I have never done a paid review. I don’t consider myself a bad blogger at all but my blog is very new. There’s no reason for anyone to pay me for a review!

    As time goes on, I’ll slowly creep up to “I do them regularly.”

  • I had done a few paid reviews on my blog; nothing much fancy and mostly for upcoming bloggers. Most were below 10 bucks; however, as my blog attracts a bigger audience, I will surely explore the world of lucrative paid reviews.

  • I think back when you did the last poll, sites like PayPerPost were still pretty and many new bloggers jumped at the chance to get paid.

    But eventually, people started to see these paid post from a mile away and the blogger would lose an enormous amount of credibility.

    I’m not surprised at all that the numbers have changed like this.

  • How about if you’re paying yourself to write blog articles.

  • I think bloggers are moving away from Paid Posts as it may reflect negatively on their PageRank.

  • Yeah, back in 2007 many bloggers wanted to give it a try and experience the paid posts phenomenon. I was one of them as well and got paid to review a website on one of my blogs.

    Apparently, this method is not hot any more and the percentage of bloggers who’ve never tried it before has increased.

    Many bloggers have turned their blogs into authority communities where they don’t want to lose their readership by reviewing just anything. Some other bloggers prefer to test other methods and find paid post a useless technique.

    However, there are a number of bloggers who do it consistently and find it profitable.

    In my opinion, if a review post contains a high quality content, it could be useful. The readership would take advantage of that review and you would get paid and would not need to worry about generating any clicks, leads or sales. At the end of the day, the Advertiser would become happy too because of the good promotion done for his product or service.

    Thanks Darren for the post.



  • As a very new blogger, I have written paid posts after my blog pagerank increase from 0 to 3. I just earn approximately $50 per month, and I am now very seriously to get money from adsense. Good Polling

  • I try to stay away from paid posts.

  • I think the overall % of bloggers who have done paid post is even lower than those surveyed here. draws those who are interested in making money through blogging, so I suspect the readers here are more likely to try new money-making strategies.

    Just my guess.

  • Hi Darren, I was thinking if paid post really affect your SERPs, If so How and Why? Are you currently doing paid post?

  • wow! this is one nice study of bloggers

  • whatever we do in blogging field, there must have pro an contra. in order to make more income source, paid review is one of the experiment. For me, paid review is more suitable for niche blog, To those who have more than one blog (niche blog) why don’t give try for paid review.

  • I think this is very interesting.

    Personally, I am turned off by paid post reviews unless it is highly relevant and gives me something.

    Otherwise, if the person is just reviewing any old garbage site, then I probably don’t like it.

  • fas

    Thats quite less. No wonder paid per post blogging seems to be dying of late.

  • Paid post surely can be one of your income stream, but you need to build your credibility and a good website to get the higher value, also you need to have some basic knowledge about the niche before you can make a post review. You need to give a honest and fresh content for post review not just another copywriting.

  • I didn’t have a chance to answer on the original: I’ve done it before, and I would be proud to do so again.

  • 23% looks like a high proportion for me. I myself have never been into this.

  • Debra

    >> I suspect it also shows a change in bloggers attitudes to paid posts also. <<

    Or is it possible there are simply more new bloggers unfamiliar with how paid posts work? I’m new and very curious about paid posts and whether they help or hurt your blog.


  • 23% is a lot less than I expected, but I guess that number makes sense. I use to write sponsored posts, but my PR dropped fast forcing me to stop. It’s definitely a good way to make some fast cash if you need it, though.

  • I have never written a paid review, but I have been tempted to…..

    A very interesting poll indeed!

  • I was a bit slow in trying to understand what all the fuss was about in regards to paid blogs.

    Originally I thought someone would just pay you for your opinion/blog skill. Until it hit me that people would use it for advertising. I guess all that fuss would make sense.

    If someone paid me to write a blog, I would have issues if it was a company that didn’t allow me to declare that I had been paid or under what circumstances I was being ‘paid’ (eg. given a product).

    If it was a third party who was just looking for more content, and found that I could provide a service, then I guess you are being paid for that service!


  • that’s really surprising, i have never done that

  • I’m doing paid posts when someone is hiring me, but I don’t accept paid post that requires me to insert any outgoing link because that will be sucking my PR link juice and Google will penalize me as well.


  • It is interesting that so many people have not donee them. I wonder if they are the same people who are dead against doing them in order not to upset Mighty Google?

  • that’s really surprising, i have never done that

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