AdSense Does Work

Chasing the dollar onlineI created a bit of a buzz in the blogosphere when I posted my article – No More AdSense – promoting the fact that I decided to strip all the AdSense ads from this blog and lamenting, in a perhaps overtly emotional way, the evils of chasing the dollar with AdSense. It’s easy to say no to AdSense when you make next to nothing from it of course, but I made a pretty good case for my stance and I definitely still think it applies to this blog, perhaps only at this point in time while I haven’t tested fully other monetization methods. I’m keeping the door open on AdSense for Entrepreneur’s Journey, but testing other ways to earn income first.

I Recommend AdSense

I want to be 100% sure people realize that I am not against AdSense as a way to monetize a site. I wrote my article to raise issue with how AdSense was impacting me, my blog and how I believe it also effects other bloggers, especially those aspiring “probloggers” trying to earn a full time income from blogging. Recently I tasted what I’m sure many niche content website marketers have enjoyed, the thrill of “easy” money from AdSense and the potential for more.

One of the websites I ceased working on earlier in the year,, which I intended to turn into a buzzing Aussie student community forum but lost interest in, was sitting online getting a few visitors from search traffic. Back when that website was in focus I did some search engine optimization work and some offline marketing for it, and it seems to have paid off, bringing in a steady trickle of visitors. I’m talking pathetic traffic – maybe 20 visitors a day – but it keeps coming no matter what I do now, which is absolutely nothing.

About a month ago I decided to slap some AdSense all over Yaz! to see if that trickle of visitors could equate to some “bus fare” change and play with the AdSense channels feature. I was experimenting for fun and it only took a few minutes to get the ads up. It made the site look ugly, but I didn’t really care so much, it was either monetize it, sell it or don’t renew the domain. With no income and little traffic it wasn’t likely to sell and in the case of monetizing you don’t know until you try so I went the AdSense root and gave it a shot.

Yaz! made $7 last month.

Okay, that’s nothing huge but there are some important statistics behind that number. First, that $7 equates to roughly the same amount of cash I earned from Entrepreneur’s Journey during the same period of time from AdSense and it came from 10% of the equivalent traffic. The click through rate at Yaz! was therefore a lot better and the money generated per click was also slightly better. Yaz! displayed AdSense campaigns on online dating, real estate sites or second hand textbooks, which match the topic areas of Yaz! and perform better than “Internet business” and the like that you would find displayed on this blog.

The real motivator though is the potential and I can see how some of my colleagues, Darren Rowse and Dane Carlson, went on to reap fantastic returns from AdSense. When you get a taste for the money and you see growth each month in AdSense earnings you imagine what you could do with five, ten or twenty times the current traffic going to a site. Potentially, if I turned Yaz! from a 20 visitors per day to a 2000 visitors per day community site it may bring in $700 per month or more from AdSense. That would be something and certainly not unrealistic if I devoted time to it.

That’s motivating. That’s exciting. That also reminds me of my comments about “greed” being the driving force behind chasing AdSense cash. I’d like to earn that much from Yaz!, but would I be building the site because I cared about it, or because I wanted more income. I’d like to say creating a fantastic resource and community would be the driving force and the AdSense would be a beneficial side effect as a result of my passion, but I’m not sure that would be true. Anyway, I digress, I’m writing this article in support of AdSense, so let’s get back on topic…

The Potential Is Mind Blogging…err…Boggling

AdSense is an amazing tool for webmasters and bloggers. It provides unlimited potential for site owners that command traffic. Traffic in today’s Internet business world equates to cash, and AdSense is possibly the best way to perform that conversion, especially for the small business online marketer. If you are following your passions and building a website that people love to visit then it’s your right, if you so choose, to be financially rewarded for it. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise, but always remember why you built your site in the first place – to enhance other people’s lives and as a result, your own.

Yaro Starak
AdSense Earner

About Yaro Starak

Yaro Starak is the author of the Blog Profits Blueprint, a report you can download instantly to learn how to make $10,000 a month, from only blogging 2 hours per day. You can find Yaro on Facebook, Twitter and .

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  • I did sign up for Adsense on my virtual assistant site but quickly dropped it. Why? Because it advertised my competitors. I hadn’t understood fully what Adsense was about.

    Now I know that if I had a portal site or a site dedicated to a subject, but not one which resulted in the competition advertising on my site, then it would be worth using. For example if I had a site dedicated to a passion, such as Cats, then having Adsense on that site where people who provide services and products for Cats were advertisted that would be fine.

    I did discuss with the Adsense people the possibility of having only complementary services show up on the adverts but that just didn’t happen – at least, not whilst I was with the program.

  • I find myself creating sites strictly for money all too often lately. This results in less passionate content and ultimately less traffic. Great article.

  • I have made four figures with adsense on my site but took them down because I found that I was too focused on tweaking the site and checking the stats, maximizing click throughs etc.

    You make a good point about easy money. But for me the easy money became a distraction not an opportunity. Plus I found that blog participation wnet up after removing the ads. Plus my average page views per session have increased 60% and growing daily. Some if that is changes I made in navigation etc. Bottom line adsense is not for me.

  • Adsense definately works well for sites that have been built with Adsense in mind – CTR can easily be as high as 40% on such sites.

    For Blogs, I think that Adsense is not the best way to go – CTR is generally very _very_ low. I’ve found that it’s more worthwhile to promote individual products that your readership might find worthwhile.

    Adsense = good tool, but not always the best solution (taking into account; design of site, demographics of visitors, content, lack of content and so on).

  • Those are some interesting stats. Great news too. I was one who removed all but a few ads from my blog. However, I’ve kept working on other sites and I am going to use some of those sites with Adsense and see how the results come out.

    The sites are mainly content based and one just went up yesterday so this encouragment was always needed. Also if you need more check out steve pavlina’s blog, he makes crazy amounts.

    Anyway, great post, seems like the direction you’re taking and is a good one. Keep us posted.


  • Interesting article. I think it is interesting to note that although Adsense is an great tool….well not great but more of a SIMPLE tool to implement…the real beauty of what you are writting about is the idea of creating RESIDUAL INCOME. I think it is worth letting your readers know that besides online marketing…there is also some other ways to generate that same WOW money. these are the two types I have used to make my money.

    1. building a MLM business
    2. eliminating all debts…and making interest of money saved.
    3. online marketing as well…

    oh all three the two that are very much predictable and secure…ar the fist two — I could not work for 6 months and still have +- the same income.

  • I haven’t been blogging for long and don’t intend to make a living out of it, but I believe AdSense ads tend to cheepen a site. Perhaps there is a minimalist, more stylish way of using them than what I’ve seen to date.

  • Blog Success Awards for 2005

    It has been an amazing year in the Blog-O-Sphere. Many blogs have come and gone. Stories about every imaginable subject have been written. Technology has improved and starting a blog is now easier than ever. This little blog had it’s humble begi…

  • This is a very good debate. With the topic of greed. There would be no businesses making money if someone wasn’t “greedy”. Greed can lead to greater efficiency in business as well. Anyways, certain sites are much better for adsense. I feel my site would be negatively impacted content wise without the google ads. I feel if your Google ads are getting only a 1% clickthrough or less then obviously your visitors do not feel they are worthwhile but if you are getting 5% ctr or more then your visitors must like them.

    There are also Google image ads as well and many other forms of advertsing.

  • […] I guess what I’m trying to say with all this is don’t go believing you are going to sell your blog network for $28 million dollars. Unless you are building a cult following such as Steve Pavlina, Darren Rose, and newcomer Yaro Starak of course. I’m sure they could sell the ad rights for their blogs for a pretty penny. I am sure most of you AISers out there will continue to make a nice chunk of change from the thousands of sites you are creating. Hell, I’m even trying to jump on the band-wagon. All I’m writing this for is to simply offer an opinion of where I think the next swing in online dollars will come from. […]

  • As far as I’m concerned, the best way to make money with Adsense is to develop a website or blog on a niche topic that should also be something you are interested in. Hobby-related sites have the best chances of keeping you, as their webmaster, happy and involved, and this will soon show in the number of visitors and the amounts of money you make.

    Another vital thing to consider is ad style and placement. I prefer to use a similar structure for all my websites – one that was proven to work. I will share this with you as I believe in reciprocal help through free advice – I also learned A LOT from browsing blogs such as this and other webmaster resources on Adsense. Ok, so getting back to ad placement: I love the idea of placing a 120×90 or 160×90 adlink box on the left side menu of my sites, in the top left corner, just below the banner. Have a look at my website, and look at the area below the graphic saying “Online money” – it will house a nice 160×90 adlinks box soon after my site receives enough traffic.

    The second good spot to place a 250×250 or 300×250 ad box is in the article text. Loose the border and make the background of the ads the same as your web background (same is true for the adlink placement mentioned above. The final touch comes with a final ad placed at the end of each araticle. Consider the article a path that leads to the final conclusion – exactly where the ads are. You can also place a small graphic image to the left of the ads, so that they are more attractive from a visual point of view.

    By using such an ad placement most of my sites get CTRs of 10%-15% all the time

    Give it a try and let me know if this sort of ad placement worked in your particular cases – I am also doing a study on this which I will eventually publish on

    Best regards,


  • I am curious, all the discussion i read around adsense concerns how to make money off having the ads.

    What is the effectiveness of advertising that way? I cannot imagine a more worthless exercize than paying Google (and by extension, blog owners) money to have people that made a mistake or just want to make money for the site owner come to my site.

    Also, my understanding is that this is where almost all of the click fraud comes from. Search engine advertising is policed much more easily because the engines controll content.

    This is all just my opinion, however. I would be interested in empirical evidence. Is anyone aware of some studies on the subject. Or at least some intelligent discussions on the subject?

  • I agree with Mihai above, if you write about a niche that you are truly interested in you might do well with Adsense. You’ll also escape the algorithm changes that Google makes to wipe out the adsense thieves. And you won’t mind writing about your topic b/c you ACTUALLY ENJOY WHAT YOU ARE DOING.

  • David

    It seems Google are running an event in Melbourne on the 7th of March all about making the most out of AdSense… here is the listing

  • hi…just found this thread whilst investing maybe too much energy in how to best tweak my adsense ads etc. and monetize my site!
    i think the bottom line for me has to be that all my sites are about topics that really do interest me and therefore have interesting content which i’m happy to update and keep fresh etc. i’ve seen a steady increase over the last few months with my Living in Italy site although there are inexplicable dips too from time to time.
    what i’m trying NOT to do is keep checking my adsense stats although it’s hard not to do this when there are so many people out there claiming they make a living from this!
    thanks for all the design pointers in the other comments!

  • At last some reasoned debate on AdSense. I put AdSense on my blog while learning how to blog. I am not sure if it is a good thing for my blog, as it can make the blog look ugly and detract from its content. For me the jury is still out on this one. For Google, the combination of AdWords and AdSense must make for really great profits? Does it? Does anyone have information on this? I would love to see their annual AdWords Revenue number vs total annual AdSense payouts. What Ratio does Google like to keep between the two numbers?

  • Hi Yaro,

    I also agree with you, Adsense will work if the ads generated by Google have a relevance with the topic of the blog. My Blog, Gamelidz is a mobile games blog, but i’ve never seen the relevant ads with my topic, it’s only showing an ads about online pc games. So, i dont think people are interesting to click the ads. Although, i realise that, my blog only gather around 30 visitors per day. What a shame..

    Daniel Likin P

  • Interesting discussion. I have been attempting to optimise my adsense on a site that gets over 1700 UV’s per day with less than average results. It doesn’t matter where I put them, there is a very low click through rate and low cpm.
    Another website of ours that has only 70-100 UV’s per day makes the same amount – maybe $5.00 per day. The ctr is about the same but the cpm is much higher because of the content. I think this makes a big difference in how much you’re going to make. I, like you Yaro, will be concentrating on other monetizing methods on the bigger site.
    I am also passionate about my website topic and I think think adsense doesn’t necessarily take away from the look of a site unless you have it plastered everywhere. It can be fairly discreet, especially compared to some of the glittery, flash ads and popups that you find on a lot of site.
    Thanks for the discussion Jaro,

  • Ah, just noticed this is an old blog post. What are your thoughts now days on adsense?

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