Does anyone make any money there?
I’ve read a few stories about how Vocal.media isn’t the best platform for writing, but I decided to give it a go anyway. After just a few days, I am giving up.
You’ll probably think I haven’t given it enough time, but I just don’t like the platform at all.
First up I added two articles that I’d already published on Medium. It was a small test to see how many reads they’d get. Even if they didn’t get many, I thought I might still be able to make a little money this month.
I read that they pay $5 once you’ve read 15 articles, another $5 once you’ve published 5 articles, and similar small bonuses. But there’s a catch. You can’t withdraw any money you earn until you have $35 in your wallet. This can be lowered to $20 if you sign up for Vocal+. That costs $9.99 a month, although special offers of $49 for a year are available. You also get a $10 bonus if you sign up for that.
So, what happened?
I added two articles. The Vocal.media help page claimed that all articles would be reviewed within 24 hours. It took my two articles over 50 hours to be reviewed. Not a great start.
Three days later they have a grand total of two reads. One article has two reads and the other doesn’t have any. Strangely, the article without any reads has one like. The article with two reads doesn’t have any.
I earned $0.01. I won’t be getting rich from writing there any time soon.
While I was waiting for the articles to be reviewed, I decided to read 15 articles to get the $5 bonus. I managed to read four before I gave up. I enjoy reading articles on Medium, but the ones on Vocal seem to be very dry and boring.
The Top Articles are the worst. Who the hell picks them? The headlines are awful as well. Quite often, you can’t tell what the article will be about.
I spotted a few writers from Medium that had written a few articles there. Typically, there were 5–10 articles from a few months ago and then nothing. It seems like they gave it a go and then gave up.
Also while I was waiting for my articles to be reviewed, I decided to research how many visitors a month the site had. This is something I should have done before joining.
Medium vs. Vocal.Media traffic
I first checked the October stats for Medium on similarweb. It showed that Medium had 144.5 million visits in October.
The Vocal.media visits for October show as 2 million.
If these figures are correct, that means that Vocal.media is getting under 1.4% of the traffic that Medium gets. If you’re not earning much money on Medium, what hope do you have of earning any on Vocal.media?
The final insult
And here’s the final insult. I decided to delete my account. I submitted the request and was told it would take 5–7 days. Why the hell can’t it be done right away?
But wait, there’s more
There are other things I didn’t like about the platform. One was that the stories you’re shown hardly change at all. It looks like the home page is only updated once every day or two. It’s more like a static blog that a dynamic site like Medium.