Although marginalized by some expert bloggers, advertising on a blog can bring in a handsome profit, with the advantage that the latter is almost entirely passive. In other words, you don’t have to work as much to make money when advertising on a blog than when selling your own product or service. Of course, it also means that you are likely to make less money in the long run, but if you’re comfortable with the sum, then blog advertising might just be the best way to monetize your website.
One of the essential things you have to understand when you resort to blog advertising is that the profits you will make rely heavily on the traffic of your blog. If no one is on your page, then no one will see or click the ads you’re displaying, regardless of how attractive they look. Keeping this in mind, here are a few other elements to consider when advertising on a blog.
Positioning ads effectively
The principle behind this section is the fact that the more people see your ads, the more are likely to click on it, convert and result in profit for you. One of the best ways to ensure that readers do see your ads is by positioning them effectively across your blog. According to seasoned bloggers, there are a few typical positions that seem to increase the number of visiting users.
First of all, it is commonly believed that ads placed above the fold are more effective. The fold refers to the imaginary line drawn at the point where a reader must scroll down on the page in order to see the rest of the content. Ads placed on top of it are obviously more likely to be seen by visitors.
Moreover, you may effectively place your ads before content, in content or between posts. Of these types of positioning, the best in terms of Click Through Rate are the ads placed within the content itself, followed by the ads placed between posts. Ads positioned before content are also effective, but they might lead to little content above the fold and therefore to user dissatisfaction.
Another important factor to consider when advertising on a blog is the design of your ads. This can refer to colors and fonts used in an ad, as well as to its size. From this point of view, there are two conflicting opinions among bloggers. Some believe that ads should blend in with the rest of the website, while others believe that ads are more effective if they pop out through their design. As a blogger, you too will have to choose between these options, but you should bear in mind that annoying your readers is not going to convince them to click on an add, nor is it going to make you popular.
With this in mind, we believe that it’s best to give your ads a blended look. To do so, match their background and border color with the background color of your blog, as well as their hypertext and text color with those used on your website. To avoid the ad blindness that might occur in loyal readers, you can shift the colors slightly in time.
Finally, when it comes to the size of your ads, it’s up to you to experiment with different measurements so as to fit the spaces on your blog as best as possible. It is believed that rectangle ads work are the most effective, while some of the best sizes include 300×250 and 468×60 pixels.
Keeping ads relevant
When advertising on a blog, one of the most important things to consider is the fact that you are only going to get paid if your ads are effective or, in other words, if they determine users to click on a certain link. It is a fact supported by the majority of expert bloggers that readers are much more likely to click on an ad that is relevant to their interest and to the topic of the blog itself. Otherwise, readers are more annoyed than tempted and you stand to gain no profit.
That being said, it is a skill of its own to get relevant ads to appear on your blog when using programs such as AdSense from Google. As the latter are designed to automatically inject ads into your blog, you’ll have to help them out in picking the most relevant. One way to do this is by tweaking the keywords that appear in a given post. If some words are denser in your text than others, then AdSense will tend to find ads relevant to those words. The same works for keywords in titles and in metatags. In addition, you should keep your posts restricted to only one topic, as well as make sure that the keyword density in your sidebars, header, footer and menus does not influence the choice of ads by AdSense.
If you’ve tried all of these things, but you still can’t get the right ads on your blog, get in touch with the support team of the program you’re using. As you may initially receive automatic responses, be persistent.
Types of ads and your income
Blog advertising is generally split into three categories – CPC ads, CPM ads and time related ads. CPC refers to “cost per click” and therefore implies that you get paid a certain sum when a reader from you blog clicks on an ad you’re displaying. CPM refers to “cost per impression” (the M stands for the Roman numeral for one thousand) and means that you are paid for one thousand impressions at a time. Finally, some programs allow you to choose your own rates, calculated in relation to a given time period; these are time related ads.
While CPM ads are rather difficult to control, CPC and time related ads are the most profitable. In the case of the latter, however, you must also be able to guess or estimate the amount of money an owner is willing to pay for your ads. Naturally, there are some niches that pay better than others, since someone that sells insurance might be willing to spend more money on advertisements than someone who sells pencils.
Nevertheless, regardless of the type of ads you choose, the most important factors remain the way you position and design them and the relevancy they have for your content. Otherwise, you could feature some of the most expensive ads on your website, and no one would ever click them.