So you’re surfing the web and stumble upon this “Helium” thing. And it looks pretty cool. Lots of people are writing on it, making money and having fun. So you join. And you get a bunch of links to new user guides, and writing areas, and it’s all a little overwhelming. So you sit there and ask… what now?

Well I’m here to help.

For the most part, people join Helium because they want to write – after all everything else like rating and making money all require that first off you write. But where do you start? How do you find some title to write on? Well, the title finder is a good place to start:

title-finder

Here you can search through all our titles for what interests you. But man, that’s a lot of options… what are they all for? Well, first you need to pick the terms you’re going to search for:

title-finder-search-termsYou have 3 options. You can search that the title has all of certain words, for an exact phrase, or with at least one of a subset of words. You can do some pretty advanced stuff with them, which Tracy explains here.

Then, there’s the “sort by”:

title-finder-relevancyWhat does this do? It allows you to sort the results you’re going to get anyway you want. Maybe you want to see the titles with the most views (and likely the highest earners). Perhaps you want to find a newer title or one with fewer articles – so you can get your view in early. Or maybe you just want to sort by what is most relevant to your search terms. Just pick the one that applies to you.

You can also narrow your search. Maybe you want to write only about stuff that’s in the Web Design or Business channel? Well, you can do that by using the channel selector:

title-finder-channel-selectHere you can go from broad – like anything in “Computers & Technology” – to narrow – like anything in “Internet” or even just “Web Design.” Depending on your title you may want to narrow your focus. Like if you want to write about iPods – do you want to write about picking the right one, how they work, or the difference between models? Narrowing by channel can focus the results you get back.

Ok, now you’ve narrowed your search, selected how you want to search, put in the terms you want to search for at the top and have clicked “Search”, now, if you’ve done it right, you should see a results page looking something like this:

title-finder-resultsHere it lists all the titles that matched, highlighting the terms you searched for. If you got a lot of results, you can also resort them based upon the criteria mentioned before.

So now you look through and find one you like, click on it and see something like this:

write-nowThat little red arrow denotes our “write now” icon. All over the site you can find these icons denoting places where you can immediately write on a title you find interesting. Once you click that, you’ll be taken to our write form which looks like this:

write-form-step-1We don’t currently have an auto-save feature, so ideally you should write your article in an outside editor like Word or Notepad, and then copy and paste that in here – that way you have a local copy saved just in case. Not sure about the rules and standards for Helium are, or anything else you need to know? Just hover your mouse over that little “tips” box in the top right and you’ll see some… well… tips:

write-form-step-1-tipsOk, so you’ve written your article in Notepad, saved it and copied it and pasted into the form. Now you scroll down and you see this:

write-form-step-2… search phrase? What is that? Well, we have some text there and you can even get some more tips by hovering over the box there:

write-form-step-2-tips1Ah, well that helps. Basically these are terms you think users searching the web might use to find your article. For example if you’re writing about “Bringing home a new puppy” you might put “puppy, puppy chow, dog toys, crate training.” You wouldn’t put “britney spears, monkeys, chuck norris.” Get it?

Whew, that’s done, now you scroll down and… wait, there’s more?:

write-form-step-3Don’t panic. That’s just our publish box. Here you can donate your article to a charity if you’re feeling charitable. You also must agree to the writer’s agreement – basically that it’s your own work and not offensive. Then you click publish.

Wow, you got your first article done! Sweet! Now it directs you to this:

rateWhoa.. what.. is.. that?  Again – don’t panic.  It’s just rating.  Remember back when you were reading articles you saw things like “3 of 24” or “1 of 394”?  Rating is how we get those rankings.  Users just like yourself provide input which we then use to calculate ratings.  Titles come up for rating based upon recent changes to the title, what channels you’ve written to and any marketplace or contests that may be coming due.

You earn based upon having at least one rating star and earn bonuses based upon how many writing stars you have – among other things.  Well, how can you tell how many stars you have or how close you are to getting more?  Simple, just check your “My Helium” page and you should see something like this in the top right:

writing-scoreAs you can see, while this user is a good writer – with 2 stars including a bonus star for having a writing score that’s 85% or better – they are very bad and have not been rating.  Rating helps the whole community, which is why it’s required to have 1 rating star to earn.

Well that’s pretty much it.  Wait, didn’t I say something about marketplace and contests?  I bet you’re curious about those huh?  Ok – marketplace.  Marketplace is where publishers post titles they’re willing to buy content on.  Each has a purchase price and certain guidelines to follow:

marketplaceFrom here you can see what titles are currently posted, how many days are left before the title closes, how many people have written to the title, the payment the publisher is offering and you can sort by channel if you want to only wrote on titles in certain areas.  You can click the little “show assignment guidelines” to see what criteria the publisher is looking for:

marketplace-guidelinesAwesome!  Now, what are contests?  Contests are things Helium does – basically we find titles that we may want more content on and offer bonus money to you to write in those.  They are highly competitive but many users have a lot of fun competing to see how can finish first:

contest-mainHere you see we’re offering 5 contests.  If you click on one of the contests, you’re taken to the contest page where you can see the current standings and what titles you can write to – as well as any specific rules for the contest:

single-contestI think that’s finally it.  Start writing, start rating, and, most importantly, start having some fun!

28 Responses to “So I’ve joined Helium…now what?”


  1. Great post. I’m learning lots here!

  2. maryellen Says:

    Thank you so much. I was completely lost. now I actually have a basic idea what to do.

  3. Mitzi Says:

    Thanks. You are so right, and it is a little overwhelming. There are more choices than I ever thought. I think I’m gonna like here!

  4. Naomi Giroux Says:

    Thanks so much. I have been working in the fog!

  5. Mona Says:

    I am exactly the person you describe as having “stumbled” upon this “Helium thing”. This post is invaluable as an overview and has convinced me to join. Thank you.

  6. Barbi Fox Says:

    It would be nice now that I have joined Helium, to have other writers leave comments about my writings and also be able to do more with all that I want to put on the site.
    I have two books I have written. One is a book of Christian Inspirational Writings the other a children’s book.
    Can I get comments on these as well?
    I would just like to communicate more with my peers on this site. Not sure how to do that.
    KingsKnight

  7. Ken Baugh Says:

    Wow! Thank you so much for this post. I could see the potential in Helium right away, and joined the same day I found the site.

    Today, I am cruising around the site, absorbing info and learning what to do and how to do it. Like others, I stumbled upon this blog in my wanderings.

    I really appreciate you providing this as a beginner’s guide. The snapshots are great for me, as I am a visual person. Thanks again.

  8. Yvonne Colclasure Says:

    I was totally overwhelmed and thinking I had made a mistake joining because I didn’t know what to do or how to do it. I am sure I will make several trips to this page in the next few days, even weeks. I too am a visual learner and the snapshots are very useful. Thank you so much for explaining it so well.

  9. joyestela Says:

    Thanks! The good writing in this entry “So I’ve joined Helium!… now what?” speaks charmingly and clearly to those of us still steeped in the vernacular of the clueless on the subject.

  10. Paul Yonga Says:

    This was a great crush course, and i pray that I contribute maximumly to this project.

  11. Ethel M Weldon Says:

    Thank you. Sometimes, I’m too eager
    This article was great allowing me to navigate to learn what I need

  12. ppelayo Says:

    Great step by step. I’m sure it will come in handy once I start down this path of freelance writing….

  13. Dermot Gill Says:

    I am keen to post some poetry for people to sample. I would also like to write articles for English literature and History.Is it possible to talk to someone live.

    Any direction will help

    1. Sarah B. Says:

      Hi Dermot,

      I have sent your email address (we have it here for validation on adding a comment) to one of our Helium New Member Guides. They will be contacting you shortly to help you on your journey to establishing yourself as a writer and sharing your poetry with the world.


  14. Ahhh, the sweet relief of a how-to-Helium article! I was starting to think that there was something fundamentally wrong with me because I was having such trouble figuring the site out. Thanks for this, you’ve made a simple girl feel much smarter!

  15. martinez Says:

    this post supplied plenty of information for newbies. thank you for taking the time to put this information out there.


  16. Great article! What happens to the articles that do not win the contests?

    1. Sarah Bedrick Says:

      Great question, Dianne. The articles that don’t win remain on our site and continue to accrue earnings for the members who wrote them.

  17. BarbaraZ Says:

    This has been a great influence as to my decision to join Helium. I got to see up front how it all happens. Be seeing you soon!

  18. saleem Says:

    i want to write article for Helium but first i want to know how much they are paying for a 300 or 400 words article.? can anybody tell me.

    1. Anne Campbell Says:

      There are a variety number of different ways for articles to earn money on Helium. Check out this page from our help guide to learn more about it http://help.helium.com/earn-money-helium

  19. hammad zakwan Says:

    hello i am new here..so i need help of someone to write articles and where should i post them?

    1. Anne Campbell Says:

      Welcome to Helium. If you need help getting started, please email help@helium.com.

  20. anice harrelson Says:

    thank you for your site I injoy writein it keeps me intertained & now that I just started on here it gives pleasure to write even more I may not have all the answers but at least I try to do the best I can with what articles I come out with I have alot to write about & I love to chat on a lot of subjects as well as you can leave me a message in my inbox if you want I will reply back


  21. thank you so much this is just what i needed.

  22. Jean Bakula Says:

    Hello!
    I’ve been wriitng and familiarizing myself with Helium for about one month now, and it’s getting a bit easier. I am happy that three of my articles have been published. I understand I have signed a contract, and that although I have rights to my material, Helium maintains the right to present my work here. Will I ever get to know who purchased my articles, for what price, and for what publication? Even if it’s after the year is over? I just want to see what they look like (I know publishers are ruthless in that way) but I would eventually want copies of my work in print to add to my portfolio. Is that possible? I’d like to know before I write more. Thank you. Jean Bakula

    1. Anne Campbell Says:

      Hi Jean,
      Welcome to Helium! I’m glad you’re getting more comfortable with the site. If one of your articles is purchased, you will be notified that it was purchased, but the client has the option not to reveal who they are. Once you get paid for the purchase of that article, they have the right to use it how they want. You can read more about how stock content purchases like this work on this Helium help page.

  23. Ajibisan Says:

    I pray to find it lively

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