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Thursday, April 16, 2009

Bloggers Guide to Google Adsense Myths

I get a lot of interest in my articles about Google Adsense on Blogger Blogspot blogs. In this article I discuss 6 common myths about Google Adsense that will help you get real about placing Adsense on your Blogger blog.

Google Adsense Myths Every Blogspot Bloggers Needs to Know
There are a number of myths about Google Adsense which can lead new bloggers in particular into believing that they need only slap a few Google Ad units on their blog and they will become instant millionaires. The reality can be a lot different especially when you consider that 95% of all blogs receive less than 100 visitors per day. Adding Google Adsense to your blog can generate some income but there is a need to be realistic. Here are 6 myths about Google Adsense that every blogger needs to know:

Myth 1. Google Adsense is a Get Rich Quick SchemeGoogle Adsense is Not a Get Rich Quick Scheme
False. Only a small percentage of bloggers actually make a living from their blog. It is definitely possible to make some money from Google Adsense Ad units but bear in mind that making money from your blog is commensurate with many factors such as types of advertising, placement of advertising, quality of your content, regular posting, number of articles, SEO, backlinks to your site, number of visitors to your blog to name just a few. The more articles you write, the more posts indexed in search engines like Google and Yahoo which may lead to increased traffic but not necessarily. The bottom line is that for your ads to be effective your blog needs to receive traffic so concentrate your efforts in this area and make sure that your blog is worth visiting once your visitors get there.

Do Your Sums
As Google Adsense itself says it is difficult to predict earnings however there are some general pointers to guide you. For instance if your blog receives 100 visits per day your likely revenue from Google is probably about 10 cents per day assuming that 1 in 100 people click on some form of Google advertising on your site and the page CTR is about 0.20%. Over a year that equates to about $36.50. Not a fortune in anyone's book. Likewise if your blog is fortunate enough to receive 1000 visitors per day you are looking at an annual income from Google Adsense of $365.00.

100 Visitors per day = Earnings $36.50 per year

1000 Visitors per day = Earnings $365.00 per year

5000 Visitors per day = Earnings $1825.00 per year

10000 Visitors per day = Earnings $3650.00 per year

The above figures are an optimistic view. I have not allowed for the fact that many of your visitors will be repeats so the likelihood of a repeat visitor clicking on an ad unit is less than for that of a new visitor. On this basis your earnings could be much less.

Google Adsense and Affiliate Marketing
About 95% of Bloggers would have less than 100 visitors to their blog a day. If your blog is in this category then Google Adsense alone will not allow you to quit your job and become a full-time blogger. You will need to display other forms of advertising on your blog as well before your blog will start to pay. Check out my article on other forms of advertising that may be suitable for your Blogger blog including displaying Affiliate Marketing banners.

Affiliate marketing banners can work as a form of advertising. Consider that if 1 site visitor in 100 actually buys something worth $50.00 you will immediately earn $5.00 assuming you receive 10% of the sale as a commission. Even if only one in 500 clicks through to the merchant and buys something you will still be ahead of the revenue earned from Google ads for the same number of visitors. $5.00 from Affiliate Marketing versus 50 cents from Google Adsense. In many ways Affiliate Marketing is a more profitable marketing strategy than having heaps of Google ads on your blog. However, in my experience a good mix of both is the way to go

Myth 2. Displaying More Ads on My Blog Will Earn More Money
False. Some bloggers mistakenly believe that placing more Google Adsense units on their blog will yield higher earnings. Sadly this isn't the case at all. By putting more Ad units on your blog you may actually reduce your earnings. There is a risk that the highest performing Ad units will shift to positions that are less frequently clicked on. For instance while the top right hand corner is a prime place for an advertising banner because it gets viewed by the most eyeballs it is also a spot that tends to get disregarded by savvy visitors who recognise it as an advertising zone and avoid it. At the same time a 336x280 Ad unit with a higher CTR is likely to display Google Ad units which pay less because the highest CTR has been transferred to the 468x60 Ad unit.

Myth 3. More Traffic Equates to Higher Google Adsense Earnings
Not necessarily. Depending on your blog's content it might not always be possible to drive a lot of new visitors to your blog and you rely more heavily on your repeat traffic. However, due to the familiarity of the ad placement on your blog repeat visitors are less likely to click on your Ad units than new visitors. While you can expect more clicks on your ad units as traffic increases there is no guarantee that Google Adsense on your blog will deliver the kind of earnings you might expect.

Myth 4. The Ad Format of Google Adsense Ads is Not Important
False. The ad format you display on your blog is very important. You can earn more from some ad formats than others. For instance it is generally considered that the wide Google Adsense ads (336x280, 300x250 or 250x250) perform best. I like to position one of these directly above my first post.

Link units can be profitable too if strategically placed. One of the best locations for link units is in or just below your blog header as many people are used to looking there for a navigation menu. A 728x15 linked ad unit just below your horizontal navigation menu will very likely yield good results.

Myth 5. Placement of Google Adsense Ad Units Doesn't Matter
On the contrary where you place Google Adsense can be critical to earning revenue from your blog. One of the best places to position Adsense is above what's known as the fold. The fold is the top area of your blog visible to your visitors without them having to scroll down. A 336x280 ad unit in this space works well because on arrival at your blog the visitor sees what they are looking for and clicks on it. For instance if your blog is about mountain biking then Google Adsense will very likely serve up ads about cycling equipment, cycling tours etc. For the visitor seeing exactly what they are interested in on arrival is a definite bonus which may lead them to click on your Ad unit.

Myth 6. To Make Money from My Blog I Need to Add Google Adsense
False. While Google Adsense is by far the most popular Advertising Network it is not the only advertising option. There are some good alternatives like AdBrite and Chitika. Let the type of blog you have govern your decisions around which advertising mix you employ rather than just going for Google Adsense because its the easiest.

In this article I have explored 6 common myths about Google Adsense that every Blogger Blogspot blogger needs to be aware of when placing Google Adsense on their blog. This article will hopefully help you do a reality check and help you recognise that while you may be one of the 5% of bloggers sitting on a goldmine Google Adsense won't transform you into a millionaire overnight.

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Make Money - Add Affiliate Banners Ads to Blogger
Google Adsense Tips for Blogger Blogs

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Blogging to the Bank 3.0 - The Best Blogging EBook on the Net!

Learn How To Make Money Blogging - Blog Mastermind Led By Yaro Starak

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Unknown said...

What a great reality check for people who think they can make a fortune with Adsense. Looking at your figures you have nailed it for me and as you say they are likely to be even lower than that.
I have a number of blogs on blogger and some perform better than others. As you have pointed out there are a ton of variables, traffic, the blog type, ad placement, and it is almost impossible to predict which will work.

I have tried many different subjects and now stick with those that have a high CPC. No way do you get as much traffic or as many clicks but the value of the click more than makes up for that.
Just another idea for those considering Adsense but as you rightly have informed people, it sure is no get rich quick scheme, but the only real cost is a bit of learning and your time.

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