| 1:07 pm on Jan 1, 2006 (gmt 0)|
Roger, I suggest you dont give up this project. But if you want to make money from Adsense, try other mini projects. Like look for a High Paying Keyword and make a page based on it, and use Adwords to place it in other similar keywords. Like, if you set the page fro teh kwyword 'Apple'(assume it to be a top paying one), adword it for 'Apple Europe'..you pay 2 cents and earn $1 for a click.
But keep building you site, since you may put your traffic to better use in future if you can find something more worthy.
| 3:16 pm on Jan 1, 2006 (gmt 0)|
Since forums tend to not generate many clicks and have a little harder time getting high positions in the SEs, have you thought about placing these guides in their own section on your site? Then try blending an ad in with the text.
| 6:57 pm on Jan 1, 2006 (gmt 0)|
It sounds like you have more instructional content on how to dance...
Why not add some content for your readers about where to buy stuff about dancing, or popular clubs. And maybe affiliate marketing will work better.
| 7:07 pm on Jan 1, 2006 (gmt 0)|
What you need to do is look at your audience and figure out what they'd buy, what they'd be willing to buy online, what they'd be willing to buy online right now.
That will tell you where you should be looking, then you can skew your content slightly (or a lot) towards those areas.
Note that here may not be a lot of advertisers in AdSense for hiphop clothing or rugburn lotions or whatever. You can also look at affiliate programs and even selling advertising/sponsorships directly.
| 7:01 am on Jan 2, 2006 (gmt 0)|
Thanks for the tips guys. I signed up for the Amazon affiliate program as I'm guessing that's the best one out there. How much do you guys make from affiliate programs on average though?
Also, as I've stated earlier, I can't optimize my site to target higher-paying keywords because my site mainly focuses on breakdancing. The ads in the breakdancing category pay very little and if I just made it "dance" in general, then it would likely yield a low CTR (not to mention I can't even find the price for "dance" on any of the keyword search engines).
My average CTR (does NOT include my forum CTR) is 0.8%. My average earnings per day (including ads from my forums) is about 50 cents. Not much to brag about.
Another problem is the low ad inventory. I'm getting the same 4-5 ads everytime. Which is another reason I'm considering giving up AdSense.
I'm really out of ideas and considering giving up. I've read Joel Comm's eBook on optimizing AdSense, I've browsed many forums and applied many techniques all to no avail.
If anyone has any ideas, I would really appreciate it if you share it. Right now my server expenses are above my ad revenue so I've been facing a net loss for a couple months now.
| 7:10 am on Jan 2, 2006 (gmt 0)|
If the ad invetory is low on your site topic, there's really nothing you could do to significantly increase your earning.
| 8:39 am on Jan 2, 2006 (gmt 0)|
you can target keywords for breakdancing cds and instructional dvds, dance clubs, apparel, mobile disco equipment for rent, even cd and mp3 players. im sure you are very knowledgeable with those.
| 8:52 am on Jan 2, 2006 (gmt 0)|
One thing you can try is give links to all other possible things that the visitor may proceed from thereon.Let it just be links and not particularly affiliate links. Observe the trend for a month; and then you may decide about the profitable affiliates that can get you income. Signing up directly with Amazon would get you income, but can you be sure if you would?
| 9:35 am on Jan 2, 2006 (gmt 0)|
I am running a few forums but I will not put Adsense on these forums.
Last month there were around 250,000 searches on the keyword "dance" at Yahoo! and 47,000 searches on "break dance." If your site is ranked well by Yahoo and Google, I think it is possible for you to make around US$300 per month (assuming your site is ranked no.1 for those 2 keywords and received 300,000 page impressions per month).
I think you should try to convert some of your contents in the forum into html format. Dancing might be your stength but if after 1 year your site is still not receiving traffic, I think you should try to move on to other topic. I did that and I am surprised to discover that most of my traffic is coming from the few pages (on certain topic that is not my strength) that ranked well in major search engines. I am happy that my earning now increased from few cents per day to a few dollars per day.
I hope by the end of this year I could make at least US$1000 from these pages that I never expect to be ranked so well by the search engine.
| 1:33 pm on Jan 2, 2006 (gmt 0)|
|I signed up for the Amazon affiliate program as I'm guessing that's the best one out there. How much do you guys make from affiliate programs on average though? |
amazon? around $2 (two dollars) a year, i guess. seriously, adsense payouts outperform by a factor of about 1000. amazon is for fooling newbies.
| 6:03 pm on Jan 2, 2006 (gmt 0)|
$2 per year? What topic is your site on?
I'm actually quite surprised I haven't thought of using affiliate links earlier. Thanks for that suggestion everyone. I haven't even had the Amazon affiliate links up for 24 hrs yet and I've already received 18 clicks. That's double what I receive from AdSense on a good day. No one has actually bought anything yet, but I'm optimistic about this Amazon affiliate program.
Also, I've been trying to rank well on Google. I have only 2-3 major competitors - all of which are forums/dance instructions. Not really sure how to beat them since they don't really do link exchanges.
| 6:12 pm on Jan 2, 2006 (gmt 0)|
Amazon can convert. It takes a lot of tweaking and experimenting to get it just right for your site. Don't just focus on books, but also on other higher paying products suitable for your site niche.
| 6:18 pm on Jan 2, 2006 (gmt 0)|
Yeah, I only have one book actually. The rest is breakdancing gear such as helmets, DVD's of big events and breakdancing movies, etc.
My forum users (get this) INCLUDING my regular visitors have been posting positive responses to my affiliate links because of its relevancy. So I'm quite happy with how the affiliate links have turned out so far for the 12 hours or so that they've been up.
Anyhow, away from affiliate marketing. I'm still trying to make the most out of AdSense so if anyone has any recommendations for the problems I listed above, it would be greatly appreciated.
| 6:44 pm on Jan 2, 2006 (gmt 0)|
Roger - breakdancing came about in the late 80's, and is over 20 years old, and dead in the water. The music industry changes at such a rate that I can't see anything staying about for long enough to turn it into a web business - I think chucking adsense on a hip hop site is a bad idea. Maybe I'm wrong in my thinking, but the public do change their minds about 'who's in, and who's out'.
Todays chart favourite is tommorrow's 'has been'.
| 6:53 pm on Jan 2, 2006 (gmt 0)|
Event_king, I beg to differ. My major competitors have about ~60,000 forum members and breakdancing is far from dead and continues to evolve.
| 6:59 pm on Jan 2, 2006 (gmt 0)|
I agree with Event_King, breakdancing is about 20 years too late. Not saying that it could be back in style by the end of 2006. But as for now, look for a "hot topic" of interest of today, not only to you, but also the surfing public.
| 7:03 pm on Jan 2, 2006 (gmt 0)|
It's not like he's complaining about his traffic - for all we know, he can be getting thousands of visitors a day. He just needs his visitors to convert better, and if they're already on the site, then they obviously have a thing for breakdancing.
| 7:05 pm on Jan 2, 2006 (gmt 0)|
Just to continue with staying relatively off-topic, breakdancing is definitely not dead, especially amongst the 15-25 year olds - you guys have obviously never hung out in subways or at Union Square Park in NYC. ;) Stick with the topic.
| 7:17 pm on Jan 2, 2006 (gmt 0)|
I get about 700-1,000 unique page views per day, and I get a total of 5,000 daily page views. So as others have suggested, I'm not complaining about traffic.
| 7:54 pm on Jan 2, 2006 (gmt 0)|
The CTR can be improved.All you have to do is find the layout/position that converts better. This means a lot of trial and error efforts.
| 8:21 pm on Jan 2, 2006 (gmt 0)|
Just a note about those page-views. Depending on what software you use to get the report, the numbers could be extremely inflated by bots. I've seen as high as 60% of traffic being rogue bots on some sites, and bots don't click on ads.
| 8:23 pm on Jan 2, 2006 (gmt 0)|
The software I use comes with my hosting. My host is <sorry, no specfics>
[edited by: tedster at 8:27 pm (utc) on Jan. 2, 2006]
| 8:33 pm on Jan 2, 2006 (gmt 0)|
My best guess is that your number are too high. I've yet to see a hosting package that was vigilant about screening data from bots. Even running your own package over the raw logs takes some intense work to get a realistic number.
Not that you should put lots of time into it -- just know that all those numbers do not all represent real people when you are analyzing your site's perfomance. Adsense reported impressions makes a lot more reliable a number to look at.
| 8:39 pm on Jan 2, 2006 (gmt 0)|
I average only about 1,000-2,000 daily impressions on AdSense with about a 0.3%-0.5% CTR. I make below a dollar a day (even though I've read many AdSense optimization tips such as banner placement, banner types, etc.). I'm aware that pop-up blockers even block AdSense ads now so that's still an inaccurate representation of my hits.
| 8:52 pm on Jan 2, 2006 (gmt 0)|
You seem to enjoy the topic of your site.
Have you thought of selling something made by yourself?
Travel around the dance festivals, shoot some movies, interview some dancers, etc; add your comments, explain what is good and bad, make comparisons, etc; then, produce a DVD and sell it online.
If you keep your site good, you may have traffic for years. That means plenty of potential customers to your product.
| 12:32 am on Jan 3, 2006 (gmt 0)|
|I haven't even had the Amazon affiliate links up for 24 hrs yet and I've already received 18 clicks. That's double what I receive from AdSense on a good day. No one has actually bought anything yet, but I'm optimistic about this Amazon affiliate program. |
roger, with respect, you are comparing apples with oranges. amazon is a pps (pay per sale) program, whereas adsense is ppc (pay per click). so if you are happy with your 18 clicks from amazon today, you get nothing. you might be surprised how long you have to wait to earn a few cents with that.. good luck.
| 12:56 am on Jan 3, 2006 (gmt 0)|
I wasn't knocking your topic RogerZF.
I wish you the best of luck with your website in 2006.
| 1:29 am on Jan 3, 2006 (gmt 0)|
Not to throw any poison into the pot- but I recently decided to alternate Adsense with Yahoo ads, and found Y to be converting just as little for a forum- but the payout is much higher.
Relevancy is spot on for Google ads, which is a great thing...but my niche is like yours and pays only pennies.
So here is the question of the day-
How is it that G pays pennies for the clicks, while Y (which has a poor relevancy system) pays ten times more per click...in the same niche?
| 1:30 am on Jan 3, 2006 (gmt 0)|
Roger, stick with your topic. You are passionate about it. The last thing this world needs is another disinterested webmaster opening up sites on asbestos cancer or whatever the high-paying buzzword of the day is.
You have decent traffic. You just need to guide them towards decision centers. Many are probably regulars so that's going to be tough as it is. It is why forums have ridiculously low CTRs.
Content is the key. New content areas is the better set of keys. That way a newer audience will find you and either click on your ads or grow your community. It's a win-win.
I didn't get to see the site URL before it was edited out so my apologies if this is redundant but since you claim that forums is your biggest traffic center, turn your forum into content. Feature a "Post of the Day" or "Post of the Week" and serve it up as a standalone page.
Set up a contest for the 10 best songs in 2005 to break dance to. That will give you current artist content and new AdSense ads served up. Invite some of the more active community members, those that seem to perform regularly, into blogging about their break dancing lives.
If you can profile the major cities' break dance clubs you will also open up new AdSense ads -- higher paying travel-related ones.
You mentioned that you link to break dance performers on MySpace. You know what I call that? A good first start. I'm guessing these guys have a lot of traffic on their social networking pages. Perfect. Contact them. Do an email interview. At the very least, do a short bio on some of them. It will give you content and may find them linking over to your site. You may even find some hip hop bands anxious for the promo.
Grow your content. Optimize your pages. Grow your traffic. It's a three-step process and becomes even cooler as you explore each of those and think outside of the box.
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