Using contextual advertising on a blog can be a great way to earn revenue on a blog, but it can affect the return of your user traffic on your blog depending on the location/placement of the advertisements in addition to the relevancy of the advertisements. The fluctuation of your user/reader traffic can be very significant because readers can come to the conclusion that your blog is terrible and flooded with ads unless you really plan out where you will place/target your advertisements.
For example if you own a blog which talks about space travel and you put a single adsense advertisement up, it will probably be anything but relevant due to the fact that Space travel is not a very popular niche in various contextual advertising portals. You can earn a nice income off your blogs without plastering your blog with advertisements. I plan to teach you some in’s and out’s to doing this by explaining in depth and showing you examples.
If your blog displays irrelevant advertisements your readers will probably come to the conclusion that your a money hungry blogger who is in it for the wrong reason. But if your blog is about mobile phones and displays t-mobile and cingular advertisements I believe that your users will think differently.
Before I go into details about which methods work well and which methods don’t work well when it comes to using contextual advertising on a blog, I’d like to compare two of the biggest options you have as a blogger when it comes to picking an advertising network: Google’s Adsense and the Yahoo’s Publisher Network
Google Adsense (commonly known as adsense)
- Age: Founded sometime in the early 2000’s
- Size of network: unknown, but probably in the hundreds of thousands
- Eligibility: I believe that adsense is open to most all webmasters and countries. When you apply to adsense they will review your website but after that it is bread and butter.
- Ad Performance: Significantly lower payments than other networks but extremely relevant advertisements which will increase your CTR. Although adsense displays relevant advertisements don’t expect to receive high paying clicks.
- Ad Targeting: As I stated above adsense provides great targeting but does not pay out to well.
- Thoughts: Adsense is what I commonly refer to as “The Anybody network” thousands of people apply to adsense displaying content crawler websites and are accepted without question. Adsense does not really care about the quality of websites which cause payouts to be very low when actually envolving a legitimate publisher. Your best bet is going to be adsense because you will keep your readers due to the fact that your advertisements are relevant.
Yahoo Publisher Network (commonly known as YPN)
- Age: Been around for almost 2 years
- Size Of Network: I asked a YPN support rep on the phone one day and she said under 20,000 publishers.
- Eligibility: Closed Beta Program to USA citizens only.
- Ad Performance: YPN has a lower CTR but a higher paying click. You will most likely end up earning more on YPN than other networks.
- Ad Targeting: YPN’s targeting is bound to show you irrelevant advertisements (which obviously lower the CTR).
- Thoughts: If blogging about a specific niche and you have YPN I recommend you don’t put YPN on your blog due to the fact that the advertisements will turn users off due to there total irrelevance. I would recommend YPN if your going to be opening 500 blogs and only attempting to pay your hosting bill.
Other Advertising Networks? There are others such as searchfeed, clicksor, adbrite, however, I do not want to review them because these are networks which I do not recommend due to their small inventory of advertisers they have available to them. If you would like me to talk about a specific ad network just ask in a comment!
Since the topic of using contextual advertising is such a large topic I will be splitting this vast topic into 3-4 posts. In the next post I will be giving pointers on where to place advertisements depending on the niche of the blog (some pointers of where to put them/depending on the users statistics.) I will also talk about why not to use contextual advertising on a blog due to simple factors which you will read about soon!
Harrison Gevirtz blogs at Cpashare.com