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I 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 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, Yaz.com.au, 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…
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.