Author Options:

A qustion about "FEATURED" articles. Answered

I am here from 6 months, I love how instructables works, very friendly community :)
I read some articles about "how to make a good articles?" and I follow the rules, to improve my articles, but that's doesn't work !

I noticed three things:
  • some articles will have over 10,000 view in one day, while others can't have this number with a year, and it's not about the subject or how good was that article!
  • I was reading about contest rules, I think it's not fair to feature some articles and let others suffer without viewers. right?!
  • Last thing, some people have 90% featured articles, and sometimes over 100 articles, & it's not clear enough to be featured.

I think there is something tricky here :P


I wrote up a guide to help with titles and keywords if you're interested! Doing those two things right definitely help bring in the views. :)


P.S. Don't get discouraged when it comes to featuring and views! It's always hit and miss around here. I have loads of projects with really low views, even though I've got 46 million views overall. Sometimes projects just don't take off and that's okay! Maybe the next project will. :)

Jessy, I have seen your guide before and gone through it now also... you are a genious..

That is always disappointing, but at least you spent the time doing something you enjoy. :)

it is about the subject as well how good the article is... My first instructable "Mini Bio-gas plant using food waste, Decomposable organic material and kitchen waste" which was posted on Sep 26, 2012, still gets almost 1000 views per day and more than 1200 comments on it. One of my instructable which was not even featured has 170,729 views as on today (30 July 2015). you can see the instructable here...


That just shows that the staff here missed the value of your Ible ;)
But also that some are well linked in the search engines and on othr websites.
Sometimes it is enough to have the link posted in a good forum with lots of visitors or a blog to get attention.
In any case a job well done!

There's nothing tricky to it, sure there's a formula, starts with great photos and documentation, clear instructions and personally, I think keeping it entertaining tends to help.

It's not fair to feature contest entries? I had to delve in to my old instructables, 2008 - I won a contest with an unfeatured instructable. It can be done.

The viewership, especially a lasting viewership depends a lot more on outside sources pointing to your instructable (not from a web ranking or otherwise way, in fact a lot of instructables appear in the first few google results) which helps but more importantly, whether people are actively looking for something like it, which incidentally is why people will be linking to it.

Some things will permanently give good views, if you're the man with the best answer to a common question. Others are short lived, when everyone got excited over this guys photos of facebook albums I reversed engineered the technique and Petapixel republished it, between the two articles the viewership was big but short lived because people and blogs move on to the next cool thing pretty fast.

Aside from how good the project is, getting something featured depends on the day, time of day, and the community manager

If you want good tags for the search engines try the way of the DUP (dumbest user possible):

Think of your project and what terms could be used to find it in a search engine.

For example a melting furnace for aluminium.
Type these into the search bar and check the results for usable context.
Now refine the search terms, like "furnace melting aluminium foundry home"

or "furnace melting aliminuim home cheap make", if you want to go fancy add "instructables" or better still " site:www.instructables.com" to the search terms.
The last will try to reduce the results to content from Instructables only (or those that list Instructables as a mirror or similar).

If the above already shows a bunch of featured ibles in the result and you main goal is being featured and not just to post an ible you might want a different topic altogether.
Nothing good showing up usually means there could be a need for a good Instructable with high chance of being featured, given it is well made.
You use the same search terms as tags for your ible when publishing ;)
On top of that most search engines also check the content of at least the first page and collect additional infos.
You can increase the chance of being found by highlighting important terms in bold.
These words will be prefered by the search engine and referenced additionally.
So when explaining something on the first page you could write it like this:
"In this ible we will MAKE our own metal melting foundry to melt aluminium scrap for casting projects.
The insulation is made from...."
Maybe not all in one sentence though as it looks a bit weird to the user, but you get the picture.
Just make sure even your blind grandmother could use the ible to do it and add good pics and maybe a short video.
Make sure to use a good and meaningful pic for the intro and you have maxed your chances of being featured - the rest is up to the good guys making the decisions here ;)

The articles that get thousands of views per day are usually those that have been mentioned in the regular newsletter.

They can also get lots of views by being very search engine friendly and being posted or reposted on popular blogs.

Featuring doesn't always mean thousands of views. My last 5 instructables were featured and they all have less than 600 views. My lace vest has been on the homepage for over 24 hours and only has 350 views. Even your unfeatured ibles have way more than that. Views are about appealing to a large audience and not just about whether they were featured.

Having something featured definately bumps the view counts.
Getting featured IMHO only depends on good loks and who is reading it as I found quite a few featured Ibles where I have to wonder how it happened.
But as a general tip it does help to fill out the tags / keywords properly.
Users within Instructables won't benefit too much from it but search engines use them as references.
So if your tags match what a user would type into a search engine over time there will be more people looking at it - given there is enough interest for it.
Also noticed that some people promote their Ibles through Youtube and other sides by maikng an interesting video about the Ible that get's lot of hits.
As a fake example, a 3D printed quadcopter:
Post some nice flight videos on youtube, link them together and also add a video on how to make it.
With a link back to the Ible in question people will sooner or later follow it.

But I think a featured article or Ible does not have to be better in any way than other Ibles, it just gets more attention this way.
IMHO the best Ibles are those with a lot of user comments that keep coming and coming ;)


3 years ago

Nice article! If all of these six reasons apply to you, you have a nice challenge ahead of you. I'm sure you can do it though!


3 years ago

I don't think there are tricks to it. I've had food Instructables
featured but also other kinds. I know of no other tricks than clear
steps, good pictures, an interesting subject and a little bit of luck
with regards to timing.

I have certainly seen plenty of technology related Instructables featured. But if you think it's easier to get featured with food, then why not post some nice recipes?


3 years ago

"some articles will have over 10,000 view in one day, while others can't
have this number with a year, and it's not about the subject or how good
was that article!"

Then what do you think it's about?

"I was reading about contest rules, I think it's not fair to feature some
articles and let others suffer without viewers. right?!"

Sorry, is this about contests or about getting featured? These are very different things.

Featured or not featured is not a matter of fairness, it's a matter of making the channels interesting and varied. Editors will choose to feature Instructables that do that, are clear and easy to follow, and have original material (not stock photos).