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Very bad two days
Anyone else noticing a decline in earnings and poor targeting?
max_mm




msg:1402093
 7:40 am on Feb 3, 2005 (gmt 0)

AdWords Related thread: [webmasterworld.com...]


Just wondering if Anyone else noticing a sharp decline in overhaul Adsense performance.

Jan was my record month with earnings well into three figures per day.
I am notice a sharp decline on all fronts since the beginning of Feb.

Page impressions are right on daily average target (+-5%) while CTR is down by approx 1.2% and “effective CPM” is down by almost 40%.

I have a network of sites (7 sites) on a wide range of topics. The traffic on the sites hasn’t changed much since the begining of Feb +- same number of daily viewers across the network , while earnings continue to slide daily (adsense alone, other aff products i have linked continue to sell well).

I did notice very poor ad targeting on a few pages recently. Pages which used to display very good targeted ads and this may explain the bad CTR and “effective CPM”.

Is there any major adsense update going on?….anyone else noticing this happening since the start of Feb?

P.S.
I did not update any of my content recently to warrent such update.

 

europeforvisitors




msg:1402453
 4:01 am on Feb 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

EFV, where did you get the data to backup your statement that scaper sites "convert poorly"

From AdWords advertisers who have complained of poor conversion rates from junk directory sites.

and are "likely in violation of the TOS"?

See the Program Policies clause about made-for-AdSense sites.

yosemite




msg:1402454
 10:56 am on Feb 18, 2005 (gmt 0)

I'm coming very late to this discussion. Forgive me but of course I am out of the loop!

My earnings are down, but not so down that I am alarmed. The first part of Feb. wasn't bad--even had a really good day. The last week or so has been . . . bad. But it's been that bad before. Yesterday (Thursday) was pretty good, though.

My sites are about travel and hobbies.

skunker




msg:1402455
 3:50 pm on Feb 19, 2005 (gmt 0)

Yes! My Adsense earnings are returning back to normal with...get this...even less pageviews and CTR.

rfung




msg:1402456
 5:52 pm on Feb 19, 2005 (gmt 0)

my earnings were 70% down for 4 days, went back up to being only 40% down.... now if only they'd go back to the old numbers..

IanCP




msg:1402457
 9:24 am on Feb 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

Originally I had no intention of posting to this thread.

I of course have also been affected.

This month has been progressively woeful for me. Day by day, for all my sites have daily net results deteriorating for no logical reason, Adsense-wise.

My impressions for AdSense have steadily climbed to previous unprecedented levels. The most page views I have ever experienced over the last 7 years have occurred in the last 12 months and, these sites are on average "page rated" 6+ out of 10.

Impressions are now continuing at record levels... Not just a few a day, many 10,000's+

OK, THEY'RE TOP RATED CONTENT SITES.

Never made for AdSense, never made for SE's and not modified since around 2001 [well before AdSense}

CTR variations, overall, have been for months, very miniscule. It regularly varies around +/- 0.1% daily.

EPC [for my top content sites] have now, in recent weeks, plunged 60% over the last few weeks, it was never "nickel and dime" sites to start with, was always serious money since day one, this is not a few dollars BTW.

[I'm constricted by TOS but multiply your EPC expectations X 10]

CPM has now at least been halved. Net Earnings are now down 60% and we're talking serious $$$$... Monthly, around a few years + income for most of the posters here.

Why? Top rated content sites have suddenly become, after 7+ years....

IRRELEVANT?

I don't think so. In a few days?

Google might well be protecting the advertiser's [correctly] interests, but I've been abused enough.

Again and, again since 2000 [whenever the internet bubble/crash happened], I've been through this BS to say that I don't need it any more.

No, this is not $10's, not $100's but significant $1,000's...

PER MONTH

Yes, there are alternatives to Adsense for me.

To answer the obvious, I'll now explore them again...

Why do we need this recurring turmoil? I need this BS as much as I need a hole in the head...

jetteroheller




msg:1402458
 10:28 am on Feb 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

The good part of all the problems:

Several optimizations done since starting February.

With normal EPC, I would not have looked on all the problems lowering my earnings.

3 different major actions done on my sites to improve.

rfung




msg:1402459
 10:38 am on Feb 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

True. My daily revenue was coming down mid January and that forced me to redesign the site - it quadrupled my CTR. Then February came along and halved that. So I guess I can't really complain since I'm still up by a few good percent points from my original starting position... still! Google, give me my 100% increase back!...

europeforvisitors




msg:1402460
 6:58 pm on Feb 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

EPC [for my top content sites] have now, in recent weeks, plunged 60% over the last few weeks, it was never "nickel and dime" sites to start with, was always serious money since day one, this is not a few dollars BTW.

[I'm constricted by TOS but multiply your EPC expectations X 10]

An adjustment in "smart pricing" discounts to advertisers, maybe? A more rigid definition of what constitutes a "valid click" for advertiser billing purposes?

IanCP




msg:1402461
 8:31 pm on Feb 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

An adjustment in "smart pricing" discounts to advertisers, maybe?

More than likely.

A more rigid definition of what constitutes a "valid click" for advertiser billing purposes?

No, impressions are up but CTR is fairly static. The only thing down is EPC and of course as a consequence EPM is now halved.

Slight improvement to EPC on Saturday, maybe I should winge some more.

jonstark




msg:1402462
 8:32 pm on Feb 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

Could I step in and ask for a definition? What is a 'scraper' site? Sorry for the dumb question, but I'm unfamiliar with the term.

jetteroheller




msg:1402463
 8:38 pm on Feb 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

[
Could I step in and ask for a definition? What is a 'scraper' site? Sorry for the dumb question, but I'm unfamiliar with the term. ]

A page with the bigest avaiable ads and the highest allowed number of ads.

Sky scraper is the 120x600 and 160x600 ad format called.

In difference to the horizontal banners,
the vertical banners had been named sky skrapers,
because looking like this sort of building.

But a scraper site could also be with other formats.
The term means a page without content only created to make revenues with ads

hyperkik




msg:1402464
 9:23 pm on Feb 20, 2005 (gmt 0)

"Scraper site" is a term usually used to describe a site which has "content" derived from other sites - usually snippets of keyword-rich content. Think of it as a SERPs page masquerading as a content page.

jonstark




msg:1402465
 6:31 am on Feb 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

Thanks. I thought it must have meant something like that, but didn't get where the 'scraper' came from. Seems to me though that under the original definition, a content site with prominently displayed ads in skyscraper formation, there wouldn't be anything wrong with conversions. Actually, neither definition bothers me much, and I spend thousands daily on Adwords. I do watch content very carefully, have it turned off on some campaigns and on very low bid for others because conversion is so generally poor from content, but I don't believe it's due to scraper sites, rather more due to fraud. I can't see why a scraper site under either definition would convert that poorly, but maybe there's something obvious I'm missing.

MarkHutch




msg:1402466
 6:37 am on Feb 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

We have turned off "content" sites until this all gets worked out. Our conversions have been terrible the past couple of months on content sites. Not sure why, but when you're spending real $$$ it pays to stick with Google and AOL/ASK for now until Google figures out what's happening.

europeforvisitors




msg:1402467
 6:42 am on Feb 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

I can't see why a scraper site under either definition would convert that poorly, but maybe there's something obvious I'm missing.

It's because, having looked for information and failed to find it, the user may click an ad just to get away from the page--especially if (as isn't unusual) the owner of the scraper site has placed the ads at the top of the page and made them blend into the background so they appear to be search results. (Scrapers and owners of other "made for AdSense" sites have also been known to disguise ads as navigation bars or even to disable the browser's back button in the hope of encouraging "Just get me out of here" clicks.)

snoremaster




msg:1402468
 3:17 pm on Feb 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

A discussion like this seems anecdotal and at times alarmist; in fact I have been lurking a long time and only started to post as a result of seeing my ctr drop and so I just added to the sense of alarm.

Suppose there are thousands upon thousands of adsense publishers and only 20 of them have the same serious problem with something; they research it, and they find each other here and start discussing it. It might look as if something is horribly wrong at google. In fact, this very thread has been picked up by some industry websites at the beginning of this month spreading a rumor about something that we can't even quantify.

Webmasterworld could use a poll attached to a forum; I'd be interested in learning the % of publishers affected by the lower ctr trend and also the % that has seen ctr improvements over the last few days. It'd probably not be reliable enought to reach conclusions with but it might at least indicate trends.

walrus




msg:1402469
 5:23 pm on Feb 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

<A discussion like this seems anecdotal and at times alarmist>

Absolutely, which is why i try to temper my suspicions with a degree of uncertainty as with my previous post.

<I have nothing to compare to but last feb, and i am seeing cpm tank like never before.
Very alarming.
Then i remember the advice ive picked up here and figure i'll stick it out and trust it will normalize as it has several times before.>

CPM back to normal as of this morn, hope others are seeing this.

icedowl




msg:1402470
 5:44 pm on Feb 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

CPM back to normal as of this morn, hope others are seeing this.

Nope. Mine is in the tank again at this point in time. I am hoping that stats are simply just running behind. I'm not holding my breath tho as targeting seems sucky today.

HughMungus




msg:1402471
 10:10 pm on Feb 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

From AdWords advertisers who have complained of poor conversion rates from junk directory sites.

That's anecdotal evidence, not factual evidence. Do you have any factual evidence to support your claim?

See the Program Policies clause about made-for-AdSense sites.

Could you define "made for Adsense" for me because it seems no one has ever been able to do that.

europeforvisitors




msg:1402472
 10:27 pm on Feb 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

That's anecdotal evidence, not factual evidence.

It seemed factual to the advertisers whose accounts were being sucked dry. :-)

Could you define "made for Adsense" for me because it seems no one has ever been able to do that.

Read the TOS.

HughMungus




msg:1402473
 10:36 pm on Feb 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

It seemed factual to the advertisers whose accounts were being sucked dry. :-)

They paid for clickthroughs, they got clickthroughs. Where's the problem? I've read the same forums you have and I've seen anecdotal evidence that some adwords advertisers like those types of sites because they narrow the subject focus.

Read the TOS.

Could you post the part of the TOS that defines "made for Adsense" because I don't see it.

Powdork




msg:1402474
 10:57 pm on Feb 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

They paid for clickthroughs, they got clickthroughs.
I'm not paying for clickthroughs. I am paying for qualified leads. The kinds of sites you are defending are the reason content is not checked in my programs. The program that gives me the ability to block the trash you are so in love with is the one that will get more of my money.
leveldisc




msg:1402475
 10:58 pm on Feb 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

I agree.

"Made for Adsense" is ambiguous to say the least.

Does it mean a site/page that has been developed with the sole aim of gaining revenue from adsense?

You could argue every page developed since adsense started has been "made for adsense".

HughMungus




msg:1402476
 11:05 pm on Feb 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

I'm not paying for clickthroughs. I am paying for qualified leads.

Your intent is to get qualified leads but what you're actually paying for is the opportunity to get qualified leads, not qualified leads, themselves. There are companies that generate and sell truly qualified leads. Big difference.

The kinds of sites you are defending are the reason content is not checked in my programs. The program that gives me the ability to block the trash you are so in love with is the one that will get more of my money.

I'm not defending them. I'm asking someone if they have a factual basis for their claim because it's misleading and dangerous to offer anecdotal evidence or opinion as factual evidence. Just because someone can swim, it doesn't make them a witch.

activeco




msg:1402477
 11:40 pm on Feb 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

It's because, having looked for information and failed to find it, the user may click an ad just to get away from the page-...

I wouldn't say someone would click an ad just to get out of the page. More likely he saw something he was looking for.
You could say the same for adwords ads on organic results.

I would like to repeat here that if an ad is clearly presented as an ad and a user willingly clicks on it, there is absolutely no way that his further actions are determined by a page he's coming from.

The possible conversion depends, as always, on other factors (besides the landing page/site's quality) such as geographic location (mostly of both:buyer and seller), economic class of the user, niche, market competition, etc.

MikeNoLastName




msg:1402478
 11:45 pm on Feb 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

"Your intent is to get qualified leads but what you're actually paying for is the opportunity to get qualified leads, not qualified leads, themselves."
------------------
Well said. And the reason they're NOT 'qualified' is because Google WON'T LET US! Publishers can't even MENTION the ads, so how can we, for instance, tell readers to 'ONLY click on the ads if you're absolutely sure you're interested'. The average content-site PUBLISHER has no WAY to pre-qualify ANYONE. Therefore the only people who CAN qualify them is Google themselves and the ad WRITER who needs to be more specific. I've seen many advertisers who bid on keywords that they don't even mention on their landing page. HOW can people who click on them possibly be pre-qualified? Perhaps it's THOSE type of advertisers who are screwing it up for everyone and should be banned from G. Likewise I've seen plenty of ads for services in the entirely wrong geographic area for a regional specific site. I certainly don't think a chimney sweep from London is going to travel to Osh Kosh, Wisconsin to answer a service call. Who is to blame? Google. Who is getting punished? The publishers AND the advertisers!

Powdork




msg:1402479
 11:53 pm on Feb 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

Your intent is to get qualified leads but what you're actually paying for is the opportunity to get qualified leads
I'm sorry you misunderstand me. What I am paying for is qualified leads. When I find out I am only getting the opportunity for qualified leads or I am getting leads that are not qualified (i.e. their click was a vote for the lesser of several evils) then I stop paying. When others stop paying the program ceases to exist.
Now, if I had a choice of blocking the offensive site rather than backing out completely, I would gladly do that.
Additionally, there are some sites or methods that I simply don't want to be associated with because of irrational reasons such as foolish pride. I should have that choice.

icedowl




msg:1402480
 12:59 am on Feb 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

Using myself and my way of using the internet over the past 11+ years as an example, I just don't see that clicking on an ad in the SERPs makes me any more qualified than if I were to click on an adsense ad on a publisher's site.

For example, in years past (prior to both adwords and adsense) I used to do a lot of searching for software. In many cases I didn't know what software existed to accomplish my goals. Most of those searches led me to what we now call publisher's sites where I was able to compare the different packages and their capabilities. I was able to learn what software existed, which in turn enabled me to go deeper in my searches for the ones that really interested me. Those finer tuned searches still led me to publisher's sites for information. It was only after I had enough info to satisfy me that I ever went to a site that had what I had decided to buy "for sale".

Now, had adwords and adsense existed in those days, I most likely would have taken the route of an adsense link from one of the publisher's sites that had given me enough information to make my decision. The adsense link would've been the most convenient.

What I did do back in those days was find the manufacturer's site directly and either order directly from them, or find a local brick & mortar that carried the product.

europeforvisitors




msg:1402481
 1:11 am on Feb 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

I wouldn't say someone would click an ad just to get out of the page. More likely he saw something he was looking for.

You need to look at more scraper pages. :-)

You could say the same for adwords ads on organic results.

Not in all honesty, I couldn't.

I would like to repeat here that if an ad is clearly presented as an ad...

That's a big "if." In reality, many scraper pages make it difficult for the average user to differentiate between ads and search results. Google has made such deception easier by giving publishers virtually unlimited control over colors of borders, backgrounds, etc. The use of multiple ad units on pages with little content also increases the likelihood that a user will click on an ad for reasons other than "Hmmm, I think I might be interested in buying what that advertiser has to sell."

Still, advertisers can take solace in the knowledge that AdSense is a first-generation product, and further refinements are inevitable just because Google can't afford to let a competitor like Yahoo or MSN come up with a higher-quality alternative to AdSense.

HughMungus




msg:1402482
 1:35 am on Feb 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

What I am paying for is qualified leads. When I find out I am only getting the opportunity for qualified leads or I am getting leads that are not qualified (i.e. their click was a vote for the lesser of several evils) then I stop paying.

Ah. Right. I thought you meant literally. I'm sure Google will get it together and eventually allow site-specific inclusion and/or site-specific exclusion for advertisrs. I do wonder, though, if they'll ever start vetting individual publisher websites.

esllou




msg:1402483
 1:42 am on Feb 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

my number one item on my adsense wish list would be random hand spot checks on sites, all sites checked before inclusion (not just the first....total lunacy, that policy!) and adsense sites divided into dmoz-type categories for advertisers to check boxes against

shopping >>> education >> subjects >> sciences >> chemistry >> chemistry equipment

ok...so that's three wishes.

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