DisplacedGuy.Com – Actual Google Adsense website statistics and ugly secrets of making money online series – Part 3.
Google Adsense – Actual Blogging Statistics
April, 2010 v.s. July, 2010 – Stats – What do they tell us?
First of all, why am I sharing these?
I started this website back around the middle of March, 2010 and much about it was a learning experience to me. I had very little experience with WordPress, running a blog, monetizing a blog, writing articles or analyzing stats with Google Analytics. My initial intention was to share technical information, expand my network of friends, learn as much as possible, and make some money blogging.
I just finished an eight year PowerBuilder contract and was burned out, so used this opportunity to expand my horizons and try new things. I was disappointed at the lack of information available about starting a blog, in particular information about making money online which I needed because my contract had just ended. For example, was it possible to make money online, what things work and what things don’t work, how long does it take? You can find links to the first two parts to this series at the end of the article.
I’ll tell you everything for $4.99 plus shipping and handling! Just kidding… please stick with me…
I always used to say that you could find the answer to anything on the web if you look hard enough, but in this case, it wasn’t true. I found tons of answers but most of them were not believable because the writer demanded money in return for the “technique” or “secret” to making money online. It was quite disappointing. I figured that if I agreed up-front to share all my information that I could gain some readers who could appreciate someone with values and integrity and I needed all the help I could get because I knew that my writing was not going to win me any awards.
You know those web pages where you are reading, and they sound exciting, and they are filled with BOLD text, bright colors popping out at you with motivational words? The farther you read into the article the more you realize you are being lured in… if you make it to the end there is usually a huge button, or something warning you that you need to click it NOW, or the opportunity will vanish. This is the point where they either get you… hook, line and sinker, or you move on to another page never return. This concept is called a “Squeeze Page”, and they are generally quite profitable. The sleazier you make them the more profitable they usually are. I’ve seen some pretty good squeeze pages with logos of companies that would cringe if they knew. Many of the Squeeze pages go up and move. I haven’t figured out how they funnel massive amounts of traffic to them.
Summary of DisplacedGuy.Com Experiences to date
I’ve learned a lot, and the entire process has been rewarding in many ways. I’ve made new friends from all over the world, made new business contacts, have been introduced to new technologies, learned the basics of blogging and monetizing websites and hopefully I’ve helped a few others with the same thing. I’ve also learned writing quality articles is much more time consuming than I ever imagined and it takes a serious amount of discipline to keep writing at a steady pace.
Here is a link to my first post of DisplacedGuy.Com actual statistics
Fact #1 – Web Traffic and Visitors is increasing at a significant rate. This is good!
I remember the first months being very disappointed of the low traffic and very occasional number of comments. Just a few short months later and I am to the point that I can’t keep up with comments quite honestly they are out of control and I’ve got a WordPress widget that helps identify and delete the obvious spam comments. If you leave a comment on any site and it takes a long time to get approved, don’t feel bad the website owner is probably dealing with hundreds of spam comments per day.
My Tip #1 for improving Web Traffic – Be active in your community & share the love where it is deserved
I don’t advertise or spend any significant amount of time sharing my site. Most of the traffic growth has come from my normal activities on technical sites such as dzone.com, asp.net, wavemaker.com. For example, I’ve got accounts on those sites and I read articles, comment on them and post technical questions on forums and answer questions on forums. Sounds easy, and it is.
You’ll read about posting your URL on tons of directory sites and raising the Google page rank, but honestly I haven’t done that and am happy with the traffic growth. So skip that stuff, focus on adding fresh content (I was weak at this) and staying active in your technical community. Find good articles and comment on them, let the author know if they did a good job and you’ll likely find that author on your site returning the favor. It has to be real, sincerity is one of the most difficult things to fake so why bother trying.
If you are starting a technical blog and looking for traffic, the simple act of “being yourself” and networking will gain you a lot of traffic. Make sure to list your site in your profile. You don’t need to pimp your site, it’s better to be patient and let the traffic come naturally.
Fact #2 – Traffic and Revenue do go hand-in-hand, but the ratio depends heavily on your blog category and type readers it will attract
Some of you may notice the format of this page is different than the actual on Google Analytics. It’s because I reformatted it to take less space, but the data is actual.
The bottom line here is that monetization of DisplacedGuy.com is almost a complete failure. I’ve followed tips learned such as making the advertisements blend in nicely, by not putting too many ads ( I reduced to one ad per article ) but the truth of the matter is that highly technical readers are the worst you can get as far as achieving a good click through rate. I’ve said this before, if your primary intention is making money online then blog about something non-technical where your readers are not as adept at (or don’t care) identifying what is an advertisement and what is content. I’ve monetized a few of my other sites and can prove this theory.
Is making money online is a simple numbers game?
With these numbers you should be able to determine how much traffic you need to generate any particular amount of money, but consider the principle of Occams Razor!
- How much do you earn per ad click? ( AdSense Revenue / AdSense Ads Clicked )
- How many adsense unit impressions need to be shown before someone clicks an ad? ( AdSense CTR)
- How many ads does an average visitor click? This is just another way of wording #2 ( AdSense Ads Clicked / Visit )
- How much ad revenue does your site make per 1000 visits? ( AdSense Revenue / 1000 visits )
DisplacedGuy.Com actuals for two month period Jun 14, 2010 to Aug 14, 2010:
- The average revenue earned per ad click is $0.25 ( $1.78 / 7 = $0.25 )
- One ad is clicked for every 241 ad impressions made. ( 1,685 / 7 = 241 ) — A Click through Rate of 0.67% (Embarrassingly Low)
- Each visitor clicks .01 ads ( 7 / 835 = .01 ) – (Embarrassingly Low)
- This site makes about $2.14 per 1000 visits
- Question: How many visits per day needed to earn $50K per year?
- Answer: 66,376 visitors per day !
Fact #3 – Perceived quality decreased
Notice the bounce rate increased slightly, this would imply that readers are not sticking around to read multiple articles. It’s generally a bad sign, and makes sense considering that I don’t keep up with lots of new content.
Also notice number of pages viewed per visitor is down, also one of the negative statistics.
I’ve shown you some of the basics of Adsense and Google Analytics. We’ve learned that trying to make money online via a technical blog, or make money online themed blog is probably one of the most difficult and that focusing on niches that attract the less technical savvy reader offer you a much better chance. I’ve given you an ugly hint that “Squeeze” pages are effective money making strategy, however they aren’t for everyone (including me).
As promised I shared my actual statistics and I’ll continue to do so. I can only hope that the advertisement click through rates improve, but I won’t hold my breath but don’t expect a flurry of high quality articles either. This site will continue to be my hobby, a source to meet new people, learn new things and help others. I hope you enjoyed. I love real comments, they are great reward for effort in creating articles.
I need feedback…
As a side-job, I created a new version of a website for a friend. She is a fashion designer and wanted a site that was easier to navigate, larger, didn’t have such hard edges, and did a better job showing the photo galleries. Would you be so kind as to look at both versions, and offer any suggestions or feedback to me? Also if you like the website and want one made, I can make you a site of similar complexity for a very reasonable cost. Web design (in the art form) isn’t my area of expertise but I enjoy learning it, plus it will help me in the business site development area.
Old – Existing Site
New Proposed Site