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This 48 message thread spans 2 pages: 48 ( [1] 2 > >     
Is AdSense a valid business model for publishers?
Real publishing, not the MFA/splog/scraper spam
roitracker




msg:1377873
 7:58 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

I've been reading a lot of posts about people giving up their job for adsense & legacy publishers relying on adsense for an increasingly large portion of their ad revenue. And sensible advice has always been to diversify your income sources (regardless of the business you're in), particularly when Google was the only real player in town.

But what with Yahoo, & MSN in the near future, both entering the contextual ad market, is online publishing that relies on contextual advertising now a truly valid & sustainable business model?

[edited by: roitracker at 8:16 pm (utc) on Nov. 22, 2005]

 

mzanzig




msg:1377874
 8:08 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

Yes, I think so. The online advertising market is just picking up, thanks to contextual advertising. And if you have serious quality traffic, you can think about monetizing your site(s). Competition between ad services is also picking up - and very beneficial for publishers. So the outlook is quite good IMO.

jomaxx




msg:1377875
 8:17 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

This sounds like mostly a question of semantics.

Is it "valid"? I'd love to see a reason why not. Is it "sustainable"? It's all in how you define the term and what timeframe you choose. IMO it's just as sustainable as any other online venture.

[edited by: jomaxx at 8:24 pm (utc) on Nov. 22, 2005]

Zygoot




msg:1377876
 8:24 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

I think AdSense is a valid business model but it's not a good one. You still need to diversify to spread the risk.

It's difficult but if you have one website which gets 75% of its traffic from Google and if you're solely relying on AdSense for your income then you are taking a big risk. A search engine update, or even worse, getting banned from AdSense could take away a huge chunk of your income.

It's better to diversify. You need multiple income streams from multiple sources to spread the risk.

By the way, my income is still not as diversified as I want it to be. But I'm working on it by getting another income stream (mainly PPC, but unforunately I haven't cracked that nut yet).

jomaxx




msg:1377877
 8:26 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

Yeah but businesss is risk. Most businesses fail.

DavidDeprice




msg:1377878
 8:30 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

Are newspapers, mags and television (all supported by ad money) a viable business?

mrSEman




msg:1377879
 8:35 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

is online publishing that relies on contextual advertising now a truly valid & sustainable business model?

Interesting... What is a truly valid & sustainable business model?

Could you submit a business plan and get investment or loan as a startup? I doubt it.

Then again, many people make a decent living with it as their only (or main) revenue stream, and this would suggest that it is.

janethuggard




msg:1377880
 8:39 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

Is it "sustainable"?

That would depend on your ability. If you refuse to fail, then it is a sustainable business model. The options are only increasing, giving more options to those like us, who simply refuse to fail. Diversification is always the correct safety net to use.

We may switch oars in the middle of the row, and we have many times, but we never sink the boat.

jetteroheller




msg:1377881
 8:44 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

Our sourcing is today an wide spreaded business term.

The fate of every print publisher is determined by his ad selling department. A print publisher has with the best content no chance, if he has a weak ad seller.

But in online publishing, there is out sourcing possible. Why should I bother to sell my ad space? I am a very bad ad seller. There is so much more interesting in the wolrd, than to sell ads.

So my business model is, I am a publishing house, my ad selling department is complete out sourced and named Google AdSense.

BTW, I and my wife have now both press cards.

hunderdown




msg:1377882
 8:51 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

It's better than what I had been relying on in the past (affiliate programs).

But I don't want to rely on contextual ads only. A stool with three legs--contextual ads, affiliate reviews, and direct advertising--seems to me to be pretty stable.

jetteroheller




msg:1377883
 8:52 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

Could you submit a business plan and get investment or loan as a startup? I doubt it.

Could you submit a business plan and get investment or loan for a new print publication? I doubt it!

There is only one big difference.
You can start online publishing with
$700 notebook
$500 digital camera
$30 a month for internet connection, domain name and server

Writing my fist book 1993 was much more complicate
$3000 for my ATARI TT
$1000 for DTP software
$2000 for lightning the book
$3500 for printing 2000 copies
Much effort to find a publisher

jchampliaud




msg:1377884
 9:00 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

is online publishing that relies on contextual advertising now a truly valid & sustainable business model?

I believe it is. But as others have said you need to diversify.

roitracker




msg:1377885
 9:00 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

What is a truly valid & sustainable business model?

Valid = Legitimate (in the sense that it is a "proper" business, as opposed to jumping on whatever the latest "get-rich-quick" fad is).

Sustainable = Reliable, long-term (>3 years) income source.

Note: I appreciate the fact that you should diversify income streams. This question is not about that (there are plenty of discussions on diversification already). Also, while Google was the only provider, the possibility of an adsense ban would be a huge risk to any business model that relied on contextual ads -- however, now that there are other providers, this risk is somewhat mitigated (hence the question).

My question is specifically related to contextual advertising as a business model -- is relying on contextual advertising a valid & sustainable business model for legitimate publishers?

<edit>Removed "solely" from above paragraph</edit>

[edited by: roitracker at 9:07 pm (utc) on Nov. 22, 2005]

hunderdown




msg:1377886
 9:04 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

My question is specifically related to relying solely only on contextual advertising as a business model -- is relying on contextual advertising a valid & sustainable business model for legitimate publishers?

Probably, but why would you? That's why you got some of the responses you did--people here don't just answer questions. They tell the questioner they think that the wrong question is being asked!

europeforvisitors




msg:1377887
 9:05 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

My question is specifically related to relying solely only on contextual advertising as a business model -- is relying on contextual advertising a valid & sustainable business model for legitimate publishers?

That depends on the publisher's traffic, niche, and costs of producing and maintaining content.

roitracker




msg:1377888
 9:17 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

Perhaps my question was worded confusingly... :)

I was ideally looking for a discussion on the longevity & validity of relying on contextual ads (from a publisher perspective) as the primary source of income -- the provider could be google, yahoo, or MSN (it doesn't really matter). Let's assume I have no interest in diversifying my income source. :)

[edited by: roitracker at 9:25 pm (utc) on Nov. 22, 2005]

ronburk




msg:1377889
 9:24 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

Let's assume I have no interest in diversifying my income source

Would you start a magazine knowing that all your advertisers are buying through a single ad agency? Most publishers would not.

So your question really boils down to wondering how great life will be if you put all your eggs in one basket and do no risk management whatsoever. Could be just fine, but also could be a complete disaster. Answer holds for all situations where you start a business and aren't interested in managing risk.

jetteroheller




msg:1377890
 9:26 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

I have no better business model for me.

I can visit interesting new projects and fairs and I receive money for it.

I can think and plan about the future and I receive money for it.

I can go with my family on vacation and I receive money for it.

I ask producers of interesting widgets for test exemplars and sometimes, I have luck and get it just for testing it.

roitracker




msg:1377891
 9:27 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

if you put all your eggs in one basket and do no risk management whatsoever

But now that Yahoo (& soon MSN) offer a contextual ad programme, in addition to Google, is it really putting all your eggs in one basket?

jetteroheller, sounds great! :)

mrSEman




msg:1377892
 9:34 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

is online publishing that relies on contextual advertising now a truly valid & sustainable business model?

Clear answer: Yes it is.

Explanation: Anything can be a valid sustainable if you have the right skill set, the right marketting, and enough funds to reach profitability.

If you build it they will come. If you build it really good many will come. If you build alot of them, even more will come.

So YES you can have a "truly valid & sustainable business model?" just using contextual advertising IF you can eat while you build it until it reaches a level that, even with market fluctuations, you can reach profitability.

BTW: Isn't this exactly what most of us are trying to achieve?

jomaxx




msg:1377893
 10:05 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

Valid = Legitimate (in the sense that it is a "proper" business, as opposed to jumping on whatever the latest "get-rich-quick" fad is).
This is not a good definition of "valid" anyway. "Proper" implies some kind of moral judgment which hasn't been relevant for decades, if not centuries. And what wrong with fads? Businesses ride them every day.

Real publishing, not the MFA/splog/scraper spam
Again this is loaded with moral judgment. "Real" or not, creating scraper sites can be a business too.

You seem to have some very specific ideas about where this thread should go, but I really don't see what you're trying to learn. Isn't it self-evident that it's a real business that has certain risks? And that the business is sustainable for the forseeable future, but that on the Web that only means about 3-5 years out?

alwaysthinking




msg:1377894
 10:09 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

Newsprint Manufacturers' stock prices are falling too... Online Publishing & Advertising not only is VIABLE business... it is NECESSARY for the survival for traditional mediums like newsapapers...

And if you have not noticed - MOST web neswspaper sites utilize contextual advertsement - many Google AdSense. If major newspapers & other "traditional" publishers are embracing contectual ads, I think it will also be a good revenue generator for many small website publishers too.

Also, with the increased adoption of Broadband Connectivity, the same scenario will play ot for Radio, Music, Movies and TV (actually it is already affecting these mediums too)

[internetnews.com...]

November 9, 2005
'Net Effect: Shrinking Newsprint
By Tim Gray

The average weekday U.S. newspaper circulation has taken another hit, falling 2.6 percent in the past six-month period, signaling continued pressure from the Internet, according to an industry group.

The falling numbers marked a 14-year low compared to any other six-month period since 1991, according to an analysis of the data by the Newspaper Association of America (NAA).

Sunday circulation also fell 3.1 percent at newspapers reporting to the Audit Bureau of Circulations, according to the NAA's analysis.

Although the bureau reported drops in daily circulation at 789 newspapers, as well as declines in Sunday circulation, the NAA has said newspaper Web sites continue to draw in record numbers.

More than 47 million people visited newspaper Web sites in September 2005, the NAA said. That number reflects nearly one-third of all Internet users and is the highest number recorded since the association began tracking online usage in January 2004.

"Not only is the overall audience growing for newspaper Web sites, but NAA studies have shown that they are often the leading local news sites in their markets. It's clear that newspapers' longstanding position of trust as part of the communities they serve has only strengthened, not weakened, in the Internet era," NAA President and CEO John F. Sturm said in a statement.

"Newspapers are continuing to attract readers, whether they're reading the traditional printed newspaper, a newspaper Web site, a free daily paper or another newspaper niche product," Sturm stated.

Newspapers have continued to look online to offset competition from alternative news sources, primarily on the Internet. In the past year, several big-name organizations have made moves to solidify their online presences.

In March, newspaper publishing powerhouses Gannett, Knight Ridder and Tribune Company jointly acquired a 75 percent interest in Topix.net, an online news aggregator that launched a little more than a year ago.

[edited by: alwaysthinking at 10:25 pm (utc) on Nov. 22, 2005]

elguapo




msg:1377895
 10:17 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

Valid, yes. Sustainable, still hangs in the air.

You have less control of the variables. If you have a Main Street store selling widgets, your income will be affected mostly by the price you set, your competition, your sales volume -- which you can basically control (except maybe for the weather conditions). With contextual publishing, there are a lot of things you don't control: smart pricing, intensity (or lack thereof) of bidding for your keywords, etc. One day, you are enjoying eCPMs of $35, only to see it plummet to $13 the next - and lose income in the process.

Income is also more erratic. Even assuming you have constant traffic, your income one day can be 10x than the next day because either your CPM went down or your CTR went down. Even if you did not touch anything on your website. There is less rhyme or reason on depending on contextual advertising alone.

And of course, there's the traffic question. You may be serving 20,000 ad impressions per day, only to see it plummet to 2,000 per day because you were hit by a Google update. It's like your store being hit by a tornado or massive hurricane -- it takes months to rebuild the traffic again. It's hard to immediately gain back the 18,000 traffic you lost in a day, or week. And unfortunately for online entrepreneurs, there's a greater likelihood of losing traffic from being dropped in the SERPs by the search engines than getting hit by a Katrina like hurricane.

europeforvisitors




msg:1377896
 10:27 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

Real publishing, not the MFA/splog/scraper spam


...."Real" or not, creating scraper sites can be a business too.

Maybe, but that's irrelevant to this thread, which is about the question of whether AdSense is a valid business model for content publishers.

andrea99




msg:1377897
 10:39 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

Of course it is valid.

My "problem" is that AdSense just works better than anything else I try. Sure I continue to diversify but sometimes think that if I just put that energy into developing more AdSense revenue I'd be banking more money against the day that AdSense may falter.

Being in business is a constant stream of choices about scarce resourses; time being the most scarce resourse of all. Building upon something that is working well often makes more sense than trying something new and risky.

jomaxx




msg:1377898
 10:39 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

Maybe, but that's irrelevant to this thread, which is about the question of whether AdSense is a valid business model for content publishers.

Content publishing, to the extent that that phrase has any meaning at all, is not a distinction the OP made, but maybe that's what he secretly meant by "real" publishing. Anyway, essentially the same issues all apply whether you want to exclude them or not.

[edited by: jomaxx at 10:44 pm (utc) on Nov. 22, 2005]

aeiouy




msg:1377899
 10:42 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

I think more than any other business model we have seen the internet is made for advertising driven content. Television and radio have thrived on it for a long time. As you can see with cable and satellite though, those mediums can be aggregated and packaged in such a way to have a fee-based system.

The internet is simply too vast and varied to be able to package the content in any sort of way to make it appealing to many people. Nickle and diming for memberships to support each individual site would never fly.. So advertising has to work. It allows users to seamlessly move from site-to-site and keeps things moving.

I think when history looks back on things, people will realize advertising was made for the internet, it just took a long time for the internet to show up and capitalize on it.

As for a viable business.. I am sure it is. Lots of different approaches and no sure things. Also doesn't make sense to rely on just adsense. Adsense is not the best way to monetize every single page of most sites. So you need to spread yourself off a variety of means to monetize your sites.

I think web publishing is a viable business model, supported by advertising. I think like any other business it takes a lot of work and some luck to be succesful. I think unlike many other businesses, though, there are a lot of amateurs dabbling in it who do not treat it like a serious business. So you need to be careful when reviewing information. As how and why people are doing things can have a big impact on their results.

petra




msg:1377900
 10:55 pm on Nov 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

I think contextual advertising is a viable business model but only if you are able to control the source of your traffic and not rely on the SE's organic results. If you are able to master the adwords et al programs and generate cheap niche targeted traffic that you can make profit on, then and only then will it be sustainable.

janethuggard




msg:1377901
 1:11 am on Nov 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

"Writing my fist book 1993 was much more complicate"

I would like to buy a FIST book. It sounds interesting ;) I could use it slap my spouse, and say I never laid a fist on him. (just a fist book)

Chrisweg




msg:1377902
 1:27 am on Nov 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

Must be Jane Thuggard, not Janet Huggard : ).
Found that kinda funny. Made me smile.

This 48 message thread spans 2 pages: 48 ( [1] 2 > >
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