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You too can make $5.35/hour with AdSense?
Let's Look at Some Numbers

 3:36 am on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

I fear for all the newbies who may get skewed expectations (OK, even worsely skewed than they walked in with) by reading this forum. People everywhere seem to be making thousands of dollars a month, Markus makes millions per year, and... so you must be an utter dolt if you're sitting there staring at your $105 check for last month.

Maybe not.

Like most web distributions of everything, there's a power law effect for people going after AdSense income. In other words, a few people (and you can bet they post to let us know who they are!) are going to make the lion's share of the money, some larger number of people are going to make OK money, and a whole lot of us are going to make, well, not really very good money at all.

Of course, the whole lynchpin of the winner-take-all society is the way that our insane belief that we'll be one of the lucky few helps us keep plugging away for a pittance. The large number of ghetto kids who are certain they're going to be NBA stars have a lot in common with AdSense slave-workers who are convinced they're going to be the next Markus-like Millionaire.

But let's run some numbers anyway, even though everyone who thinks the numbers couldn't apply to them will keep thinking that way. It won't change anyone's behavior, but maybe seeing some numbers that actually match your own experience (as opposed to making you ashamed of your own experience) might be a pleasant change.


There's a million ways to skin the AdSense cat, but certainly the straight-shooter, white-hat, Build Good Content and Good Advertisers Will Come approach is used by a whole lot of new AdSensers. Practically speaking, if you're just now embarking on a black-hat, get-rich-quick scheme, then you're so far behind the old-timers (and Google) that the odds against you are even crueller anyway.

So here's the scenario: You're going to make your AdSense gold by building good content and getting ads, and over time the dollars will just keep mounting up.

Assigning Numbers

Of course, AdSense income varies very widely by topic and by what SmartPricing thinks of you this week. But still, I think it's possible to arrive at some plausible guesses for some average income.

One oft-quoted guesstimate claims that people in the AdSense content business make roughly $10/page per year. But I'm going to say a more realistic estimate is $5/page per year. That's probably better than you're going to make off a joke-of-the-day type of content, but probably plausible for anyone who does a modest amount of investigation about where likely good income topics lie.

I know, if you're a newbie you're thinking "oh, I'm pretty sure I can beat $10/page per year". I know, you're special, but remember that this set of numbers is aimed at what's going to happen to most newbie AdSensers, not really smart people like you, to whom the odds do not apply.

Also keep in mind that a number of things conspire against the new AdSenser. If you got few pages, it's harder to get natural inbound links. It's harder to get PR and harder to rank highly for popular terms. Think of AdSense like one of those online games where you have to spend the first part of the game being a toady and doing a grunt work to get enough gold/skills/whatever to actually have any fun (and to avoid being wiped out by the first opponent you look at funny).

So yes, however improbably low you think it, let's go with $5/page per year.

Next, of course, is how fast can you write pages? As always, there's a trade-off here. Two sentences per page is going to let you crank a lot out quickly -- but lower the odds that they'll actually do you any good. And, if you just write crap, you greatly lower the odds you'll get any of those "natural", one-way, inbound links from authority sites.

Google is not magic, but if you think they have not managed to achieve at least a rough correlation between rankings and actual website quality/usefulness, then why are you investing time in this business anyway?

Also, you ain't gonna live off the income from your initial 10-page AdSense site, so you've probably got to spend some time elsewhere making a living. You probably can't work 10-hour days on nothing but creating content. And, many people have actual families or other frivolous pursuits that keep them from working 7-day weeks. And remember, we're looking for numbers that describe what's going to happen to most newbie AdSensers who embark on this expedition.

I want to go with a number of 2 hours per page, and 4 hours per day. And I'll assume you work on this project 5 days per week, and 50 weeks per year.


Now comes the fun part. You plug away at this AdSense thing for a year, and where do you think you (the imaginary "average" AdSenser) will be?

Well, after a year, you've got 50 weeks * 5 days/week * 2 pages/day = 500 pages. Wow! Let's hope you picked a topic that you could actually write that much about! (What was the most number of pages you ever wrote for a term paper? Hmmmmmm...)

Now how much yearly income will your website make you at that point? Well, 500 pages * 5 dollars/page/year = $2500/year = $208/month.

Is it Worth It?

Let's suppose after that year of work, your website will produce as estimated for a while. Of course, you don't really make that $2500 in year 1, because your page count was slowly growing from zero during the first year. And some people are going to find that their website earnings on a "frozen" site go up, while many will find them going down sooner or later, due to competition or algorithm changes.

But to make the math easy, let's assume (conservatively I think), that your total earnings (even in the face of Google algorithm changes) from this website will be at least 3 * $2500 = $7500 -- even if you do no other work on it after the end of year one. One of the paybacks for doing true-blue, white-hat, decent content development should be that you're less likely to get "wiped out" completely by a Google algorithm change, though I would not expect the website to earn it's peak forever with no changes.

So, you made $7500 and all you invested was 50 * 7 * 4 = 1400 hours. That's right, you made $5.35/hour.

Sorry, you grossed $5.35/hour. You'll probably need to be paying taxes (and some Social Security in the U.S.) on that. But still, you had the pleasure of being your own boss, eh?


Disagree with my assumptions? Of course you do! But if you're an AdSense newbie, you should at least look at the numbers and then see whether your own estimates are panning out as you go.

After a couple of months of AdSense work, do you have more or less than the 80 pages of content I'm assuming the average AdSenser will have?

After a couple of months of AdSense work, are you making more or less than the $.14/page per day I've assumed here?

After a couple of months of AdSense work, do you have more or less than the 160 hours of invested time I guesstimated for this model?

Am I anywhere close in my estimation of what will happen to the average AdSenser? I don't know, but I suspect this flimsy model is a lot closer to reality than you'll get by reading posts by people who are on the sweet end of the power-law curve. People at the much more heavily populated end of the curve (that's the part that looks an awful lot like a flat line) rarely post their earnings experience.

Sometimes I wonder if those unrealistic expectations don't lead to more cases of outright fraud, as people decide that must be what "everyone else" is doing, since "everyone else" seems to be striking it rich with AdSense.

Am I telling people not to try to make AdSense? No. But I'm telling people to not do AdSense instead of getting an education, to not quit their job to do AdSense, to not forego relationships to work more on AdSense. And if you're here to tell me that you did all those things and you're now the NBA star equivalent of AdSense, well, just remember that one bad injury can take you out of the game forever.



 3:37 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

The purpose of this thread is what?

To discourage publishers from using Adsense because it's too much work for too little return?

We've had a spate of similar threads lately, Markus tells us how he makes 1,000,000 in three months, incredibil thinks $6,000.00 a month is a more reasonable amount, and now Ronburk tells us we get can $5.35 per hour, if we're lucky.

I suppose the next thread will be suggesting how much much we will lose by putting Adsense on our sites.


 3:37 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

I don't necessarily disagree with the concept of good quality content but could someone explain exactly why having good content will get people to click on the ads.

OK, let's use a hypothetical comparison:

1) John Doe is interested in a luxury cruise aboard the S.S. CROESUS. He reads a review at a respected cruising or travel site, he likes what he sees, and he knows (from reading the review) that the cruise will cost $700 a day per person. When he clicks on a travel agent's ad for Croesus Cruses, he's more likely to be a qualified prospect than a raw lead.

2) Jack Buck is also interested in a luxury cruise aboard the S.S. CROESUS, but instead of going to the review at the cruising or travel site, he goes to a made-for-Adsense page that consists of scraped search listings and three AdSense ad units disguised as editorial content. If he clicks on an AdSense ad, he may be doing so by accident--and even if he clicks on purpose, he's merely a raw, unqualified lead for the travel agent, because he doesn't necessarily know much about Croesus Cruises (such as the fact that a Croesus Cruise has a per diem of $700, which may be more than his monthly rent).

Other factors come into play, too, such as credibility, trust, and demographics. Let's say you're a vendor of digital cameras. Would you rather have clicks from an established digital-camera review site (something like d*review or S****'s Digicams) or from daves-dmoz-clone-directory.com?

There's nothing new about advertisers paying more for quality. It happens offline all the time, whether you're talking about magazines or direct-mail lists. And there's no reason to assume that the basic rules of advertising and marketing change when an ad is displayed on a computer screen instead of a TV screen or a sheet of paper.


 4:06 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

By the way, I'd like to compliment Ronburk on his thoughtful (and, as always, dead-on) post.

Being an AdSense publisher is like self-publishing a book, writing a spec screenplay, or recording an album: It may be the road to riches for a few, but for most publishers, it's likely to be a source of supplemental income--and not necessarily good income, at that. There's nothing wrong with having big goals--or in trying to achieve those goals--but don't assume that you're going to get rich, and don't let dreams of AdSense wealth dictate how you live your life.


 4:06 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

I don't necessarily disagree with the concept of good quality content but could someone explain exactly why having good content will get people to click on the ads.

Good content doesn't necessarily get people to click on the ads, but it means your site will get lots of natural links, which in turn (at least for now) means higher search engine rankings. It also means people will bookmark your site, stay on your site longer, read twenty pages instead of one, post your url in forums, put it in places like furl and stumbleupon, tell their friends about it, etc.

Looking to the future, I think links will most likely diminish in importance as a ranking measure. So if Google starts using factors like user behavior data to rank sites, and you don't have useful content, then your sites may not rank well no matter how many links they have pointing to them.


 4:43 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

The purpose of this thread is what?

To discourage publishers from using Adsense because it's too much work for too little return?

I saw it as more of discouraging publishers from thinking that they could slap up a page, put Adsense on it, and a week later, be an instant millionaire. The tone of the post seemed to be saying, "you've seen Markus' million dollar story, here is another side of things."

I didn't see it as discouraging in general.



 4:59 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

The purpose of this thread is what?

Time for a re-read of the thread's start:

I fear for all the newbies who may get skewed expectations (OK, even worsely skewed than they walked in with) by reading this forum.

I think this quite answers your question.

A much needed sanity check IMHO


 5:11 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

* for someone with an existing, and respected, content site, those numbers are too low

* probably way too low a figure

* I guess that my site(s) bring in around $60 or $70 per page per year

* $72 per page per year for me after costs.

I'm making $7/page/year on a 2-year-old website, one that I think has decent content (always subjective, I know), with a topic that I spent some time choosing specifically to be a good balance between decent per-click payouts and not so hyper-competitive that I would never be able to rank for anything worthwhile within 2 years.

Do I think I can do better? Yes. But this thread is about taking a hard look at reality, not about dreams. I'm telling myself that I've got to do something seriously different this year than I did the previous two, or else I'm wasting my time. I hope it's a message someone else might find useful as well.

I'll stand by my guess that the vast majority of AdSense publishers are making less than $10/page/year. (But I would be happy to be proved wrong if somebody's got some data we can use to make a better educated guess.)

I think the OP is missing the recurring earnings factor

I tend to agree with you longevity can be longer than I estimated. The reason I chose three years of earnings was because I don't see/hear many people talking about how they are working really hard so they can get modest earnings over the next 10 years. I think many of the people going into AdSense would not do so if they thought it was going to take 10 years of waiting to extract the full value from their first year of hard work. Indeed, I sympathize with the viewpoint that it's possible this whole CPC model may not really survive another 10 years.

what do you think about my little "gold-rush" reminder:

Well, we've certainly got our share of folks selling picks and shovels. So many, in fact, that I would still rather take my chances with AdSense than compete in areas like SEO tools and ebooks on how to get rich with AdSense :-).

The purpose of this thread is what?

I do think it has a purpose; it certainly was not intended to just be rant.

  • to counterbalance the many avidly read posts about people who are making big bucks, so that newbies realize that those are the NBA stars -- they are not even close to the typical AdSense experience.
  • to encourage people struggling with AdSense to get out a calculator, look at where they're at now, and see where they will be in a year if they do nothing differently -- something many people in all kinds of businesses fail to ever do.
  • to point out to people embarking on AdSense what frox outlined so well above -- if you don't want to end up like most AdSense sites, you better figure out what you're going to do differently (higher traffic? better-paying keywords? lots of content in little time? etc.) What area are you going to be able to beat the averages in?

Nobody sets out to be a $5.35/hour entrepreneur. But if you don't devote some conscious thought to how you're going to avoid that fate and take some measurements along the way to see if you're succeeding, you may be setting yourself up for failure.


 5:13 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

Great post for giving a touch of realism. I'd like to see traffic level and availability of matching ads added to the formula.

A new site would not only be low on traffic but it may suffer from the sandbox effect for a while.

In my case I put adsense on a site that has been around for 10 years so it had collected a lot of links and good search engine rankings. That is my plus side.

On the negative it takes several hours to do the research and then write an article. Good for getting quality links but I'm not earning that much per hour. Add to that time spent on updating the site (adding css, usability features and so on)

If adsense or similar programs continue to do well over the next few years I will come out ahead but right now ronburk's estimate on pay per hour is only too true.


 5:22 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

ronburk, I absolutely agree. I posted my example earlier in the thread not to argue that your numbers are wrong but to make the point that there are even more possibilities.

And there are on the other side as well. I'd be willing to bet that for every site that has reached the level you laid out, there are dozens that never get off the ground at all....

Thanks again for your post. We should all bookmark it and post a link to it whenever someone asks about high-paying keywords!


 5:39 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

and now Ronburk tells us we get can $5.35 per hour, if we're lucky.

$5,35 per hour is
$128,40 per day or
$3852 per month
$46866 per year

I think this is a good income.


 5:46 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

Ehm, jetteroheller, what he meant was $5 per working hour...


 6:04 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

I am operating above these levels, but not through writing content, but I'm certainly not striking it rich at this stage.
where there is money, there is always going to be growing competion. I seem to be adding several new competitors a week to my filter :(
As such whether you are doing content, or whatever, you are going to need some flair, luck or maybe simply sheer hard work to do well.
adsense is not something that is a simple key to making a fortune.


 6:14 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

This whole topic seems based on the premise that a web site with AdSense is MFA, it exists only for the sole purpose of monetization via AdSense. For those who are considering this business model, this thread makes a lot of sense.

Personally, I have no idea what my AdSense income per page per year is, and I'm not that interested in finding out. My first site is a labor of love, and new pages added every week are done to provide information. AdSense code is in include files, so as each page that follows the template goes up, AdSense is added. Any time spent on the site is done without AdSense in mind, so total expense for AdSense is $0. Anything AdSense pulls in is a bonus. There are a lot of hobby and general interest sites in the same boat.

I have other sites which do brisk business as affiliates for e-commerce sites. Affiliate income far outearns AdSense, but AdSense brings in a hefty four figures a year on top of that. I occasionally scan through the AdSense ads and add some URLs to my filter, and that's about it for thinking about AdSense. New product pages are added, but the impetus is to provide information and increase affiliate revenue. AdSense is just gravy.


 6:19 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

" The purpose of this thread is what?

To discourage publishers from using Adsense because it's too much work for too little return? "

I am trying to figure out this one. The way it is written it discourages any other lines of thought other than conformity to what is written.

You can tell who has the mindset despite these so-called "odds" that were presented. Those who wish to create a fortune from adsense defy all odds and learn to leverage their abilities. - What is funny is that the same people who do NOT make much money who are after the alot of money are the same ones who agree with what is written.(MFA?) They don't think outside the box. They think in only the possibilities but never any NEW actions on transforming the possibilities into reality in ways that truely contribute to others.


Even against the so called odds given above...how could Markus makes millions per year by sitting on the sidelines? How can you find the gold sitting on your butt and not contribute anything? Sure you may loose and you may not. Just like an NBA finals game there is only one winner. But - How many sit and watch the game while these players do what they love and enjoy? How many sit and complain for weeks afterwards about a bad play but never once experienced what it was like just being in the game.

Brings me to a favorite quote that has been slightly modified over time:

"The galleries are full of critics. They play no ball. They fight no fights. The make no mistakes, because they attempt nothing. Down in the arena are the doers. They make mistakes because they attempt many things. The person who makes no mistakes lacks boldness and the spirit of adventure. He is the one who never, never tries anything new. He is the brake on the wheel of progress. The very fact that he tries nothing, creates nothing, gives nothing is, perhaps, the biggest possible error in a lifetime."

The article assumes that the VAST majority of adsense publishers are those looking to make a huge living. I am willing to bet the majority use it to support a hobby site/blog. Adsense being just a way to monitize what they love to do but not seeking a replacement income - or - just add it to their site just because it is easy to do. Most likely these people will fill the bottom of the pyramid skewing any line of thinking and so called "facts".

Those who are new to the Adsense publishing game who do want to create a business should read my previous post on leverage. Only through leverage can you gain exponential growth. If you don't you will continue the game as with any other job and that is you will continuously "WORK" for your money rather than accumulate wealth. Markus leveraged and guess what?

One thing I do agree on with what has been said is that there are many people after the pot of gold. The article seems to suggest that going after the gold tends to be a loosing game. A loosing mindselt. BUT this is not any different than any other business person after their pot of gold. Even sucessful business people. Even at that the gold carries differet meanting for different people. A burger flipper may find their pot of gold in $7.00 per hour being their own boss. Others it is the opportunity to help others while supporting that cause.

To me taking action toward something you wish in your life isn't loosing AT ALL. Sure you many not make more than $5.00 per hour or reach your goal completely but so what!? There are many other rewards during this time of experience. Hell you may even shoot beyond your goal and find a richer experience in life. But...how would you know if you let the article discourage you from thinking like a entrepreneur and at least making an attempt?


 6:23 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

The point I was trying to get across in my last post wasn't that a person couldn't make money today and now using adsense, I believe this is quite possible. Whether it be through sleazy, illegal methods or hard work, it is possible. The problem is the illusion of endless profits from adsense.

I was trying to explain diminishing returns which is a concept that some people can't seem to grasp. Sure, you might be able to achieve $10/page today, but that does not guarantee that you will be making $10/page in two years. You might even make so little that it is no longer even worth it. The following is a real world example and a true story,

While in highschool I took a job at a Dominos pizza. The owner was very rich, I once delivered a pizza to his wife at their house/mansion. I learned that he came from California where he had worked as a manager at this new restaurant chain called Dominos. He came to my town and opened up 2 stores. He was making so much money at first, having no competition besides a local pizza place that didn't deliver, that all he did was show up at his store once per week to pick up the books.

A few years later a Pizza Hut came to town and started delivering. He had to start working at his smaller store as the manager. The new Pizza Hut cut a decent slice into his profits. A few years later a Godfathers came to town and started delivering. This forced him to start working as manager at his larger store, he took mondays and tuesdays off. Next came Papa Murphy's, this forced him to work 7 days/week and close his other store. The final straw was Papa Johns coming to town. He no longer owns his store. I saw him last year. He works as a manager at Walmart.

His mistake, he assumed that the money he was making at first would last forever. He created a lifestyle around that money that became harder and harder to hold onto. He figured that if he just kept working and harder and harder that he could somehow hold on to his dominance in the town. That somehow he cornered the market and nobody else could possibly compete.

The above holds true for all markets. So many years back a guy built a espresso stand in my town and people heard he was making a decent profit selling mochas for $3 each. Now my small town has over 50 espresso stands.

The idea that if you keep pumping out pages and slapping ads on them means that you are only going to continually get richer and richer is absurd. A point will inevatably come where this is no longer possible. If you do believe that this is possible then I simply ask that you keep the checkout line moving because I hate waiting in line at walmart.


 6:29 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

"The idea that if you keep pumping out pages and slapping ads on them means that you are only going to continually get richer and richer is absurd. A point will inevatably come where this is no longer possible. If you do believe that this is possible then I simply ask that you keep the checkout line moving because I hate waiting in line at walmart. "

While this is true for most businesses and life in general...UP UNTIL the point of diminishing returns is where the PROFIT LIES! Just because there may be a point of diminishing returns that does not mean changes cannot be made to seek new returns elswere and repeat the process. Entreprenuers know this fact. This is why most entreprenuers tend to start a business and work it until it hits the tail end of the exponential grown cycle and sell it off or a huge percentage - leaving other to manage it while they seek new businesses and branches.


 7:05 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

The premise of this thread runs a parallel with business in general. It's not just confined to AdSense.

If Joe Average quit his job tomorrow and attempted to start his own business, if you averaged out his earnings versus his time in the first year, I'd be surprised if he made more than $5.35 per hour. This is why ordinary people join together and go into companies, because they're not business people and don't want to focus on that.

Some people trying out AdSense need to realize that running a Web site, and attempting to make money with it, is just like running a business! And if you're not interested in running a business, or have no skill for it, then making big bucks with AdSense is extremely unlikely.


 7:09 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

They make mistakes because they attempt many things.

I think making mistakes and learning from them is the key to getting good at almost anything. Some people in the Adsense forum make one site on one topic and then complain that it doesn't make much money.

The difference between my best site average earnings per page per day and my worst performing site is almost ten fold. If I'd only made one site I'd never have known what was possible with other topics. Some times the weirdest, most off beat topics make a lot of money.


 7:15 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)


I am glad I never read some of these posts (which would have just been predictions then) before I tried adsense, I may not have thought it worth it to jump on it as soon as it became available.

I think with a little effort and trial be error you can place your adsense code and text correctly and make a much higher ctr. Our site went awol from google February 2005 but even without google we make way more than what the original post predicted per page. But those are just side notes.

Many people that are using adsense already had the site so it is a bonus. If they were making more with another revenue stream then change it. Simple. Plus websites run 24 hours a day so you should be making income all the time. Yes some hours are better than others but the potential is there.

Then lets not forget the advantages of working from home, flexible hours, more time with kids, no daycare costs, casual wardrobe, etc.

The only way I see the real relevance of this post is for people that don't have a website or knowledge of websites to not want to attempt this venture because it might not pay off. Because it does take work to get a high ctr, traffic, etc. But if you already have websites or want to build one for other reasons besides adsense go for it. It doesn't take much effort to put on the adsense code to see if it works for you.

If it is not working out for you making enough money from adsense than find another revenue stream. It is not like adsense is the only way to make revenue. Why were there content sites on the web before adsense if there was no way to make money off of them.

I think most people that work hard at it will find a happy medium between this example and marcus's. (Probably closer to this one than marcus's though) If you are doing it as a business, it takes time to make a business payoff whether it is a website or a brick and mortar establishment.

If you are doing this for a hobby and enjoying it that is great. Most hobbies COST money, you may actually make money on this one.

Don't get me wrong adsense is not a get rich quick venture (in most cases), you are going to have to put some time and effort into it.

I guess each individual had to decide if the risk (lots of hours of hard work) is worth the potential return.

For me it is, I am a single mom, I worked a full-time job for two years while we were also establishing our main website. I didn't get much sleep and made very little money at first but it was all worth it. I call my self a stay-at-home mom and my own boss now. I can go to every practice, program, game, take her to school, pick her up from school, etc. Then of course there is the pride factor, you are making your income from something you built and you did.

Now there are drawbacks, anything can happen and you are relying on yourself not some corporation or boss. It is all on you, my net income dropped drastically last Feb, but I have still been able to hold it together. That is self-employment for you though, some people love it and others don't.


 7:17 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

Ehm, jetteroheller, what he meant was $5 per working hour...

The calculation is not good.

Why should a page only work 3 years?

Even the review of a mobile phone should work 5 years.

I make also money by translating a book what I wrote 1992 into web pages.

So why this strange idea with 3 years?

Assuming 30 years, the same calculation is $50 per hour.

When I would have a little more time, I would even use 30 year old photos from me to make some pages out of it.


 7:18 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

"The difference between my best site average earnings per page per day and my worst performing site is almost ten fold. If I'd only made one site I'd never have known what was possible with other topics. Some times the weirdest, most off beat topics make a lot of money. "

So correct. Same with my experiences. But you can someway leverage (even automate that leverage - great thing about the internet) so that the worst perfoming sits can increase earning potential without much initial work.


 7:28 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

Ehm, jetteroheller, what he meant was $5 per working hour...

Ehm, I thought per hour. I will start with my house building plany as soon as I make $8,50 per hour.


 7:52 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

Anther thing here. Let's crunch some bette numbers.

Ok here we go.

$5 per page per year at 500 pages 4 hours work per day 5 day per week for 50 week per year.

Let's say after 3 years income/site traffic does not stop alltogether (very very rarely it does so why should you stop it after 3 years)

Let's say after year 1 you make $2500

After the initial 500 pages you creat another 500 again in year two three and so on. Building on exiting sites or new site.

So after year two you make an additional $2500 for another 1000 hours of work (2000) total.

But your traffic should increase on initial first year pages due to links and such. But we will leave that out right not.

So you now have made $2500 after the first year and $5000 in the second year for a total of $7500 for 2000 hours of work.

The third year you will make another 500 pages. So now that year you make $7500 for the 1500 pages. You have now made $15000 total.

But let's say (since this is more apt to being true) that after 3 years income pages start to decrease in earning by half. And you stop production.

so in year four you have full earning power of the second and third year so you make $5000 plus $1250 for the first year cut in half. So for that year you made $6250 and now your total for 3000 hours of work you made $21500. Ok now cut the first year in half again and cut the second year in half but you still have the 3rd year still full earning potential.

so on the 5th year you make $2500 full third year + $1250 2nd year cut in half and $625 1st year cut in half.

so that year you made $4375 - mind you no extra work so 3000 hours total and $25875. Now you are up to 8.65 per hour. This continues to diminish into nothing just because you CUT growth.

MIND you this is not counting growth due to the sheer amount of quality content. This growth can easily exponentially increase these numbers.

So let's say your site traffic double on 500 pages after the first year of creation.

So in the first year you made $2500 and the second year you make $5000 on the first 500 and $2500 on the second. so you made $7500 on the third year you make again $5000 for the first years worth of pages and now $5000 on the second years pages and $2500 for the third years pages. so now you made a total of $20000. So on the fourth year you make 5000 on the third years pages - 2500 (cut in half) for the first year pages and 5000 on the second year pages. So now you have made a total of $32500. On the fith year you make 5000 for doubling the third year page traffic. 2500 for the second year's pages and 1250 for the first. you now made $41250 now for 3000 hours of work you made 13.75 per hour. But now go into the 6th year (and we will stop). 2500 for the third... 1250 for the second and 625 for the first. Now you made $45625.

But let's now assume that you created the 1500 but spend an extra hour per page promoting the page. So you work 4500 total hours but increase your traffic and double your income for initial pages after the 3rd year.

So now you make 2500 for the first and 5000 for the second and the third you make 10000 and fourth 5000 and fith 2500 and sixth 1250. For the second year page you make 2500 on the second year 5000 for the third and 10000 for the fourth and 5th you make 5000 and sixth you make 2500 for that group. The third group you make 2500 for the year 3 and 5000 for year 4 and 10000 for year five and 2500 for year six.

Sooo for 4500 hours of work...you made a total of 71250 or 15.8333 per hour.

now this is at a very weak $5 per page per year! Imagine doing the larger numbers per page per year. How about $7 per page per year? What about $10 per page per year. On the last example you would make double your money or about and about $30 per hour. How about 37.50 per page per year?

leverage other people's time and double it again...

See you can create a scenerio that can prove a point. The thing is...get out there and CREATE YOUR OWN scenerio!


 7:57 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

what he meant was $5 per working hour

I would be suicidal if every page only earned $5/year.

Assuming I'm a good writer and could sell what I wrote, I'd write articles and freelance to newspapers, magazines, etc. for more money per article if that's all they made per year per page on my web site as that's a waste of time IMO.

May website works 24 hours a day, I think in terms of what my website can earn, not in costs of my time, so I'm with Jettero on this one. $5/hr=$120/day=$43K/year. Which based on a person's 40 hour work week would be $21/hour and change.

That's a nice start for a newbie ;)

Consider your web site a 24 hour display for your wares and you work all day restocking the shelves so that customers will come all day (and night) long and keep clicking.

$5 is only 25 clicks @ $0.20 ea. if you're lucky enough to get the right ads.

You may find, like my wife did, AdSense doesn't do much for her site but affiliate programs are paying out much better. My site is just the opposite in that AdSense outperforms affiliates so limiting to one program over the other is just silly, especially for a n00b.

[edited by: incrediBILL at 7:59 pm (utc) on Mar. 28, 2006]


 7:58 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

If you want to compress all the time periods in the OP's excellent scenario, hire some writers. This assumes, of course, that you're not starting out with zero investment capital, but you don't need that much. You can find good writers for decent content pages for under $10/page. You pay them once, and that page may well earn you 100X (or more) your investment over your lifetime. Outsourcing the most time consuming tasks frees you up to work on other important things, like getting links. If I had $10,000 to invest today, I'd definitely spend it all on this kind of thing. Knowing what I now know about web site publishing and marketing (thanks in large part to what I've learned here at WebmasterWorld), I am certain I could recover my $10,000 investment and be in profit within one year. Easily. It isn't bragging, please don't take it that way. It's just that this is a big goldmine we're all sitting on. Knowledge is the key. Execution is the hard part.


 8:06 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

jetteroheller, the point about long-lasting content (what the book publishers call "evergreen") is a very important point for me.

I always like to say that good contents over-last technologies. I have some content in my sites that dates from 1993 (content originally published on multimedia CD-ROMs)

My next site should be based on contents that are over 30 years old. Not all niches age as quicly as our technological knowhow!


 8:50 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

Great thread. My philosophy has always been to run the numbers on potential income before building an income-generating content site. (Unfortunately, this kills a lot of fun ideas.)

But if you're solely building sites for AdSense, then you're missing out. AdSense is the fastest return on your investment, but if you're spending a zillion hours writing, then spend a few pursuing other opps. Sell links, add some affiliate, upsell some ebooks - whatever.

Spend at least some fraction of your site-building hours on ways to extract other sources of income. This is what makes site building worth the time, income-wise. It's also more fun, because you feel more like a strategist than a typist.


 9:25 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

While 5$/working hour might be low for the US/EU this is quite a good pay for many of the world's countries.
So, if you look at it from a "second, third world country" perspective this is a very good soluiton to live a decent life.
And I think that the 5$/year/page is a low estimate.


 10:02 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

$5 per page per year for 3 years

500 * $5 = $2500

$2500 * 3years = $7500

4 hours work per day 5 days a week 50 weeks a year = 1000 hours worked for the initial 500 pages.

$7500 / 1000 = $7.50 per hour

Even a low $10 per page doubles the figures.

500 * $10 = $5000

$5000 * 3years = $15000

4 hours work per day 5 days a week 50 weeks a year = 1000 hours worked for the initial 500 pages.

$15000 / 1000 = $15 per hour

Hmmm not bad. Now compound it and get some leverage going.


 10:14 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)

I don't wish to be a killjoy ....

but what is the point of this thread?


 10:22 pm on Mar 28, 2006 (gmt 0)


I don't know the intent of the original OP but the article is misleading in some ways. That the business model does work but not in the way the article states.

Giving supposed "facts" for the lower group of adsense is wrong without considering other factors of that group and should be considered.

With misleading figures and positions the article may very well turn off newcomers from even starting and lower earners to even attempt to further their earning potential. So I myself am just offering different points of view and shedding some light into the complexity of the adsense business model.

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