Latest posts by Jay Dillon (see all)
- Which Social Media Platform Is Best For Your Business? (FB, Twitter, IG?) - February 8, 2016
- The Role of Social Media Manager in 2016 - February 1, 2016
- Why Placing Ads In Blogs Can Be A Negative - January 4, 2016
The idea of creating a blog and living off advertising is tempting. Many have tried it. But unfortunately when you decide to gain capital by inserting those first ads and announcements, things aren’t that simple. Money does not usually flow as one hopefully predicts, especially for small businesses. Bloggers end up getting discouraged and questioning whether this strategy is worth it – and rightfully so. We’ll explain here why placing ads in your blog might not be the best approach to take.
Advertising is one of the most common elements of a marketing strategy – or at least it’s one of the faster lanes to take when marketers think of how to monetise their content. But it’s not the most suitable plan in many cases. If your blog is not getting the results you want, don’t assume that blogging just isn’t your thing – instead consider that the wrong approach has been taken.
Before you decide to go down the path of ads and announcements within your blog, think about the following.
Monetising solely via ads/ announcements is one of the slowest ROI ways to generate capital
If you have a blog with a few hundred daily readers and you think that it’s time to make the leap, first calculate. For example, let’s say a relatively new blog in Australia has 1,000 visits a day, with a click through rate of 0.1% and each click earns you 0.1 AUD, that means you would earn exactly this: 0.1 AUD a day = 3 AUD per month = 36 AUD per year. This is for all the marketing efforts and costs it takes to maintain a traffic of 30,000 monthly visitors.
Ads essentially compete for the attention of your reader
Stop thinking of the cents you’ll generate for a minute and focus on the attention grabber effect an ad may have. When you insert an ad you’re also inserting an element that is competing for the attention of your readers. Every time you write a post or produce a video you invest valuable time to create quality content. You aim to capture a few minutes of your readers’ time or at least spike enough interest to get them to come back to it (or even better, share it).
The point here is that the ads you are trying to make money off are also aiming to do just that – thus becoming a competitor within your blog. It’s important to ask yourself if the ads you decide to insert may actually eclipse your own content. This can even result in a loss of constant traffic, which is ironic, because traffic is what you need to gain any capital from ads.
Ads may negatively affect conversions within your blog
Every element in your blog that invites readers to take action is part of your strategy to better assess, analyse and guide your next steps in the world of content marketing. Maybe you want your readers to read a post and share it via social media, or simply to subscribe to your newsletter. Each of these carries it’s own call-to-action. The problem with ads is that they also compete for these clicks. If clicks increase for the ads you place, then they will most likely lower for the rest of your page, which ultimately affects the retention and conversion rate of your visitors.
Ads can interfere with the objective of your blog
As a blogger, one of the main objectives is to avoid bounce rates and have readers stay on the page to read interesting, relevant content. This connection with users can be broken if ads become nuisances that the reader isn’t even searching for, leading to page abandonment with little possibility of a re-visit.
Ads require time investment and can jeopardise your reputation
The reality is, ads require some time investment on your part, because in order to gain any worthy capital from them you need to manage software, analyse results, optimise and analyse again. This takes away from the time you could be investing in creating original, innovative and engaging content for your followers. Also, the display of ads on your page might not coincide with what your readers are looking for. Merely placing these ads on your page can pose a risk to your image and reputation, especially if they’re not aligned with the products and services you’re directly recommending or using. This one might not be that big of a deal, but it is definitely a factor to consider before deciding on which ads to opt in for.
Ads can slow down your site
One of the leading causes for visitor abandonment even before the site fully displays is its loading speed. Obviously there are several factors that slow down a site, such as programming styles, complex themes, images, storage, cache…and yes, ads. If you decide to place several ads, always check the loading speed of your site after they have been placed.
Readers may come to feel like a cheap commodity
On the one hand you’re trying to make your readers feel important – but on the other, you want to monetise and sell their attention and clicks for cents to Google or other affiliated platforms? We’re all followers and readers of blogs that interest us, so as a blogger it’s always a good strategy to put yourself in the shoes of the reader. This is especially vital if you’re a blogger who has made quality the main point of difference. Beware, because cheap advertising can lower the bar.
So consider the complete picture, not just the money
The above points are there to remind you that there is more to ads than just the money. This is not to say that placing ads in your blog is a bad idea. If it was, we wouldn’t see them so often in so many blogs and news sites. This article is here to simply make the statement that ads with no real relevance or quality (just there for the cent gain) may not always be such a good idea. This is especially true for new blogs with little traffic. The goods news is that there are many other ways to monetise that can be more effective than ads. For example:
- Offering service that mobilises your readers (coaching services, consulting…).
- Creating products that your audience is looking for or commenting on (e-books, online courses, webinars, etc.)
- If you don’t have time to create your own product or service then be sure to promote one that you truly identify with and let your readers know this.
- Focus on your best skills. Maybe you’re a designer, writer, furniture aficionado or cooking expert? Why not use your blog as a platform to showcase and shed light on your own experiences and talents?
After reading the above, feel free to leave a comment to let us know how you’ve been monetising off your blog and what suggestions and advice you have for bloggers who are just starting out.