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|June 2006: Start of the Traditional Summer Slump|
Will Your AdSense Income Drop by up to 50%?
Will your site suffer a drastic income drop?
I was researching through past threads relevant to Summer and it seemed there are numerous instances of webmasters complaining of a Summer Slump. While it doesn't affect publishers across the board, it appears that there is a Summer Slump phenomenom. Should you be prepared? Let's discuss what you might be doing today to protect your revenue tomorrow.
Those who forget the past are doomed...
Here are just few threads from past summers. There are many more, but these are representative of similar posts from years past.
Will your revenues drop by up to 50%?
Some digging around through past threads revealed many posts by suffering from the dreaded Summer Slump. Will your site suffer up to a 50% drop in revenue due to the dreaded Summer Slump?
A Doomed Site Checklist
I am interested in your opinions. What are the characteristics of the sites doomed to have their revenues slashed to the bone?
Let's hear your opinion. If we were to put together a checklist, what would you add to it?
- What are the characteristics of a site likely to suffer a Summer Slump?
- What can be done to rescue a site destined to have their income slashed to pennies?
- Are some sites doomed and there's nothing that can save them?
- What is your proactive strategy for fighting back against the Summer Slump?
Lost 15% of my traffic, adsense is actually up 25% but my YPN took the 15% hit, go figure.
I have a free download and people always want something free. I have a teacher page and it is up, which as an indicator means that lesser traffic is clicking more (more time) I am in good shape.
First year for adsense, thinking of building a site for next summer (maybe the kitty will spot me and kick me out by then)
Now travel to beautiful sunny and hot Scottsdale, AZ average temp Days 113 nights 105
Bring your mate (sorry AU, mate as like siginificant other)and stay in 5 star first class resorts reg $350+ per night now only $89
Into golf? Hundredes of courses green fees 80% discounts. Great romantic restaurants all have 2 for 1s and it happy hour 24/7.
So come out and melt (and party) with us.
(And fill it full of local ads and Madsense)
I could also call it <snip>
[edited by: Khensu at 4:05 pm (utc) on June 5, 2006]
[edited by: engine at 4:47 pm (utc) on June 5, 2006]
[edit reason] TOS [/edit]
My European travel site doesn't have a summer slump, but traffic and revenues always take a dip from late fall until the beginning of the new year. I've seen that pattern every year since 1997.
|Anyway, since most people go work all summer, I doubt if the traffic falls that much anyway. |
Maybe you've been working from home too long, hehe? ;)
My memory of those far ago years when I worked in an office is that people took their vacations in the summer. I also recall there were many people missing from the office at a time. Some families go on two and three week holidays. Multiply that across the United States and that's a lot of people not at work clicking on AdSense ads.
So in that context, EFV's experience makes a lot of sense:
|My European travel site doesn't have a summer slump... |
off topic: Europeforvisitors, good to see you. Haven't seen you around for a long time.
on topic: I'm having a slight summer slump since June 2nd. I'm not sure, whether it's really a consistent trend or just a statistical flickering. Today seems all right so far. Last weekend was terrible, though.
I'll wait it out. This is my first summer with AdSense. That's why I don't have any data to compare my current situation to.
I agree with previous posters: The best way to fight any seasonally related slumps is to diversify topic-wise as much as possible. That's what big companies do as well.
There are two things in effect.
One AdSense CPM being down, the other the usual slump in summer. Lot of work ahead.
I try to make my declines seem less over time with more content and ideas. So each time a slump comes, I'm still ahead of the good times the previous year. Multiplying and diversifying are my goals but it has only worked the last two years and not the four years before that (before Adsense)
My traffic always drops soon as school is out because I get a lot of web design students looking for articles/tutorials/tips, etc that I provide a lot of. In fact most of my site is free information and that's where I have my adsense ads. During the rest of the year I'm so busy (because people read my fee info and ask for help) that I turn down at least 1 job a day. During the summer it's not so hectic and I can relax more.
So my recommendation is provide info that others need and you will reap the benefit in other ways.
I always get less traffic in the summer but stranger is that I get lower epc in the summer.
Right not my CTR is good and might almost make up for the less traffic if it weren't for the epc.
The only think I can think of is that advertisers in my field are not bidding as high right now.
I've taken off extra ads and taken ads clear off of poorly preforming pages and have been blocking MFAs. I really can't think of anything else I could do.
I guess it's just a good time to add content.
It is too early to tell if things are going south, for U.S target visitors.
We had Memorial Weekend, a typical low period, which was in the last week of the month, an Adsense typical low period, when ad budgets are exhausted for the month. Then, we had the first week of the month, which is typically slow for sites that target the 30 plus adult crowd. That is because we have the 1st to the 3rd government paydays, and the 30th military paydays, with everybody out shopping.
If it still slow for that market on the 8th, we can say that the summer slow down has begun. But, we should begin to see the Adwords bidding increase, to offset some traffic loss, around the 7th. Savy advertisers know when to hold back ad budgets, and when to display their promos actively. Hence the big push before U.S. Memorial Day.
We began last year not only moving new adservers into our line up, but also creating more websites, with some targeted winter topics, for the post holiday boom, and others targeting summer topics. Diversification in adservers as well as topics is the key to maintaining revenue levels throughout the year.
Now, here is the important thing. You don't wait until summer to launch a summer site, you do it the fall before. If you wait until summer, you have a year to go to reap the rewards. We launched four new sites last fall, and they are helping us out now. I have two more launching this next week, and another launching before the official kick off summer. It is ongoing development that will pay off in time.
Uur Adsense revenue is running 50% of what it was in the fall. That is partially because we have added five new adservers, and partially because of traffic decline to our higher cpc sites. While traffic to some of the newer sites is increasing, they have a lower cpc.
Another reason our traffic is off is we purged dead links a month ago, and lost traffic to some pages as a result. But, we are fine with that. New pages will be created and things will level out.
If your traffic is sinking now, as summer nears, I would begin burning the midnight oil, and forget the beach and the 18 holes. At least you can recover some of your losses in the fall, if you hunker down now.
Originally posted by Sven. "on topic: I'm having a slight summer slump since June 2nd. I'm not sure, whether it's really a consistent trend or just a statistical flickering. Today seems all right so far. Last weekend was terrible, though".
Same here. I have also seen a slump in earnings since June 2nd. I am hoping things things sort themselves out as the month goes on.
should be more like a summer boom for me! totally depends on your subject, I've just clocked my highest ever traffic yesterday - 33% up on any previous days. also highest ever AdSense day too. bring it on :)
Please let us know if your strategy worked! :)
June has only just started of course.
But my summer related sites are doing slightly better and my 'non-summer' sites are doing a little less.
Result: steady earnings for the first 5 days of june...
Dont Panic seasonal trends in business have been around longer than we have, companies large and small have invariably coped with these trends.
I find the best thing to do is to plan for the autumn, its a bit late to be planning for the summer now. Look at what you are going to do with your sites in three months time, get all the groundwork in place for the autumn season, then you'll be able to plan for next summer during October, November, December while you are living off the good earnings.
I would imagine any sites on Germany, and/or the World Cup will do well, at least better than normal.
I am sure many sites will be affected by millions around the globe watching the biggest sporting event in the world.
Of course unless the US does exceptionally well then this should not impact US viewership on sites too much, but a lot of the world will only have one thing on their minds for around 5 weeks.
And it all starts this Friday.....
Personally it doesn't make all that much difference for me. As long as my earnings don't slump to around 25% of what they currently are per day, It'll still be paying my hosting. And that's all I really want.
I understand things are more important for you high earners through ;)
Thankfully, Americans don't take much interest in the beutiful game. Americans make up about 70% of my visitors and are also the most profitable for me.
|I would imagine any sites on Germany, and/or the World Cup will do well, at least better than normal. |
Interesting comment. My European travel site's Germany channel is showing a higher eCPM than usual, and I'll bet it's because of the World Cup. OTOH, I'm seeing a very slight drop in overall traffic this week, which could be caused (at least in part) by my European readers thinking about football instead of their vacations.
Different sites, different results. Since I don't even monitor my position in the SERPs for my big sites anymore, I can't say for sure whether any changes are because of the summer or because of a change in ranking. Since my top two sites deal with outdoor activities, there certainly is no traffic slump there.
|What is your proactive strategy for fighting back against the Summer Slump? |
Long before there was a World Wide Web, I worked as a contract programmer. I made great money for a while, followed by no money for 3-6 months. I learned the best way to deal with cyclical income.
While you are making good money, live frugally. Take the extra income and invest it until the dividends are able to cover your basic living expenses. Then live off those dividends while you put 100% of your continued income into your investments.
Basically, the idea is to live like you are retired, but with the bonus of increasing your "fixed-income" every time you add another payment to your investment account.
Never buy luxury items with your income stream, only buy them from your dividends.
That way there is no "Summer slump" when it comes to my living income (dividends) only on how much I might be able to increase those dividends.
I've been trying to sort this out since this thread started.
How is a slump different from a normal fluctuation?
[edited by: ken_b at 5:14 pm (utc) on June 6, 2006]
Sort of like a bad porn flick, deeper, harder and not something that you want to be involved in ;~)
|Sort of like a bad ... (etc) |
Ouch! That hurts!
|How is a slump different from a normal fluctuation? |
It isn't. It's just one type of fluctation.
|How is a slump different from a normal fluctuation? |
How is a Kangaroo different from a Marsupial?
Roos are marsupials ;~), just the biggest, come on faster and can pummel you if you get in their way ;~)
I have to correct myself for what I wrote in my previous posts in this thread. After the week started, I now have a better picture about what's going on on my website.
Yesterday (Monday) and today were two of the best consecutive days ever in my AdSense history. And that after a really devastating weekend.
Thus, I want to introduce a new term here: The summer-weekend slump.
It really seems (and I have been observing this since March) that lately my website is more sensitive to weekends in that the earnings go down on Saturdays and/or Sundays.
So I guess I'm not having a real summer slump. Just the weekends seem to get tougher for me during the summer. Makes sense: People are still working and surfing during the week, but on the weekends, when the weather is nice, everyone is out doing something fun.
|People are still working and surfing during the week, but on the weekends, when the weather is nice, everyone is out doing something fun. |
During the outdoor season, there is a very definite trend on my site that deals with outdoor recreation equipment, Mondays are HUGE.
Mondays are my best day on that site year round, but only by feone or two percent. During the Summer it is more like 10%.
I always figure that someone comes back from a trip where they had some sort of a problem with their equipment and they are shopping for a better option. That is only according to traffic, as that site does not (and never will) have ads on it.
|Interesting comment. My European travel site's Germany channel is showing a higher eCPM than usual, and I'll bet it's because of the World Cup. OTOH, I'm seeing a very slight drop in overall traffic this week, which could be caused (at least in part) by my European readers thinking about football instead of their vacations. |
EFV - If I were you (and had your site), a year or two ago I would have visited every World Cup city and reviewed every hotel in each city, plus other things on each city.
|EFV - If I were you (and had your site), a year or two ago I would have visited every World Cup city and reviewed every hotel in each city, plus other things on each city. |
At the expense of other coverage? That wouldn't have made sense, IMHO, especially with the World Cup competition lasting such a short time and so many spectators buying package arrangements.
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