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

 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?

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



 6:33 pm on Feb 6, 2005 (gmt 0)

For my site, CPM and EPC are totally consistent with the last 12 months. However, since the Alegra update, I have lost almost all my natural traffic, and am receiving only ppc traffic, resulting in a 50% reduction in impression, clicks and, alas, earnings. I have been #1 - #3 for 100's of my top kw's, and now I rank maybe in the #600 - #700 range.
For an interesting perspective, my company name, which didn't exist before I created it, does not even come up in the SERPs point to www.mycompany.com any more. Sigh. This smells like a penalty to me, not just an algo change.


 6:50 pm on Feb 6, 2005 (gmt 0)

I agree bnhall. "Allegra" seems more like a purging / penalty, than an update. Sites in my theme without adsense, haven't moved at all this month, yet my site went from #1 to nowhere. The site is a clean site, no shady seo practices at all. I keep wondering if adsense opened me up to getting hit by Allegra, perhaps tossed in with all the "made for adsense" sites and directories they're liking trying to purge? Not sure what to think of all this.


 7:08 pm on Feb 6, 2005 (gmt 0)

keep wondering if adsense opened me up to getting hit by Allegra, perhaps tossed in with all the "made for adsense" sites and directories they're liking trying to purge? Not sure what to think of all this.

Why would they purge legitimate sites that carry AdSense ads? In effect, they'd be killing off the AdSense program--not to mention information sites ranging from mom-and-pop sites to major newspapers and magazines.

FWIW, my own traffic is up by about 30% since Allegra hit, and I've got an AdSense ad block on nearly every page.


 8:00 pm on Feb 6, 2005 (gmt 0)

What is Allegra?


 8:10 pm on Feb 6, 2005 (gmt 0)

Adam said: ...my daily adsense clicks have dropped by 60%, yet average daily earnings have remained the exact same, completely unchanged by thousands of less clicks per day....

That anomaly is something I have observed (in reverse) for a long time, basically for more than 1 yr., whereas as my traffic, impressions and clicks regularly increase, my income seems to often stay the same or it it does move up, at a less strong uptrend.

In other words, it seems there is a need to work harder and harder, get better and better domains and sites, and get more and more traffic to make much headway. Similar to sailing into the wind, or against the grain.

Sometimes I wonder if G somehow rewards lesser volume publishers with better income per thousand, but somehow reduces CPM and revenue as your traffic grows. Perhaps that is far fetched but I often wonder if it could be really going on? Anyone else on this?

[edited by: trader at 8:20 pm (utc) on Feb. 6, 2005]


 8:17 pm on Feb 6, 2005 (gmt 0)

Nothing's guaranteed with adsense. I think everyone understands that reality. But what is so confounding is the constant up and down. And, by this, I don't mean the normal day-to-day, week-to-week fluctuations, but, rather, these seismic (for some of us, not all) events that keep happening every few months (though, in all fairness, this could even out next week, who knows).

Unfortunately, adsense is an auto-pilot kind of thing. They run the program and we hope it flies in the right direction.

With regard to my own niche, the "potential" value gained by cutting out adsense and supplying leads directly (my site offers the most comprehensive treatment of its very narrow subject online) to the core group of industry advertisers who regularly appear on my site totally outstrips adsense two to one. The reluctance to abandon adsense has been based on the fact that adsense is so easy, and, despite the bad months, there's been enough good months to make it worth staying in the program.

However, the one thing that begins to weigh on a persons's composure is the perpetual uncertainty that permeates this program. Truthfully, no one can ever know how things will go from one day to the next.

I think that if a legitimately-perceived adsense competitor (Y or MSN) ever comes out onto the field, more people will jumpship than would have been the case simply due to the fallout of perpetual irritation and uncertainty.

Having said that, a Y or MSN competitor, after it lures a number of publishers away (in full or in part), may be no better.

But if I were at Y or MSN and had any inkling regarding the amount of publisher anxiety that exists re: adsense (I know, I know, not everyone is unhappy, got the point)---I would exploit this in an attempt to lure as many adsense publishers away simply for the purpose of thopping google's quarterly bottomline and shareprice. In fact, I would run advertising on some well-known webmaster resource sites for that express purpose. Bill, you listening?

Do I sound irritated? lol


 8:45 pm on Feb 6, 2005 (gmt 0)


The day a major competitor to AdSense that provides transparency to its publishers ever comes out, keep your eye on the short interest on Google's stock to see if it jumps.

By transparency I mean some reporting or policy method that allows a webmaster to feel they can reliably predict changes to their earnings by known factors like traffic, keyword bids, etc; even if the forces driving those earnings are still unpredictable (traffic, advertiser pool, etc.)

Lucky for Google these "bumps in the road" on both the AdSense and AdWords side happened after they were funded by the IPO, or they'd be a subsidiary of Microsoft in a year. On the AdWords side I am referring to all the publicity in the press lately about click fraud and the new "impression jacking" bot scam to deactivate competitor ads.

Remember, whatever doesn't kill you makes you drink irresponsibly. :)


 12:46 am on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

how ironic that i read your last line whilst bringing a flagon of wine within reach. er, no connection between my drinking and this weeks's figures, of course.


 3:30 am on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

Trivia quote of the century:

"The poison is in the flagon with the dragon not the vessel with the pestle."


 9:16 am on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

the vessel with the pestle has the brew that's true :)


 9:17 am on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

Februray 2nd was a bad joke.
CPM, CTR down to virtually nothing, although the visits and displayed ads remained the same as usual. It must have been a Google error. Since 2nd, everything is back to "normal".


 4:35 pm on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

:) 'Court Jester' starring Danny Kaye. Probably my favorite 'way before I was born' movie. And don't forget the chalice with the palace.


 4:44 pm on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

One thing you might consider is that we are out of the "buying" season. Christmas is over and so is the bargain month of January. Most gov. budgets have been spent and are waiting for new funding.

I personally dropped all of my Google listings to 0.05 for "a while". I was running 3k+ per month in spending on both O and Adwords. This is our slow season. Most of our competitors have done the same.

I usually bid in the 0.30 range during busy season which won't ramp up until August. Some of my competitors will go as high as a $1.10+ for major keywords.

Just some thoughts. Good luck.


 4:50 pm on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

One thing you might consider is that we are out of the "buying" season. Christmas is over and so is the bargain month of January. Most gov. budgets have been spent and are waiting for new funding.

It all depends on the topic. For many travel sites, there's steady growth in both traffic and advertising revenues from January through summer--and, in some cases, well into the fall. (My European travel site's slowest time of year is during the Christmas-shopping season, when traffic and revenues at the widget sites are at their peak.)


 5:05 pm on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

just curious? how is 2/7/05 looking so far for people?


 5:12 pm on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

I finally figured out why my main site cut it's income almost in half. :(
Dropped a whole PR on most of the pages. I think there are some sneaky 301/302 redirects stealing from it - gotta investigate but that's gonna take weeks to fix.


 5:28 pm on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

just curious? how is 2/7/05 looking so far for people?

The day is only nine hours old by GPT (Googleplex Time), so it's a bit early to tell. I don't see any big changes so far, though: CPM is within a few cents of my average for the month.


 5:40 pm on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

My stats are down again for today. Yesterday showed a slight recovery, but so far today is the worst day in the last week - and the last week was the worst week in months.

As for slow sales and lower bids, all I can say there is that my affiliate sales ads (which are all on the topic of my site) are very strong, in fact they are the strongest I've seen in the last 12 months (basic consumer electronic stuff). If AdSense advertisers are backing off and lowering bids because they think sales are slow in my area, they're wrong.

Historically for me AdSense has outperformed affiliate sales, but that trend has reversed recently. I'm just glad that I have some backup for times like these when AdSense takes a nose-dive.

What we really need now is YahooSense or MicroSense to come on line and provide some competition to Google!


 5:49 pm on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

Historically for me AdSense has outperformed affiliate sales, but that trend has reversed recently.

On my travel site, AdSense is stronger in the off-season than affiliate sales are, but affiliate sales are stronger during the main travel-planning season.

Also, AdSense has a faster payment cycle because a click earns money right away, while an affiliate booking normally doesn't earn money until the user has stayed in a hotel, picked up a car, etc.


 5:53 pm on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

my morning stats looked good (compared to a sulfurous hole in the ground i.e. last week), but, yes it is too early to tell. Just for fun, I will not check again until after dinner. That way, if the figures are in the toilet again, I can try out the time-honored roman practice of purging, though my purging will most likely be an involuntary reaction.


 6:01 pm on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

when I checked my stats this morning my cpc was way way up (still up now but not strangely so). I'm thinking maybe some suspect clicks were held back from last week and are now being recredited.

Yesterday was normal, today is looking to be good - here's hoping that last week will soon be a distant memory...


 6:02 pm on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

ack, I gave up reading this thread on page 8.

But, I came here to the adsense forum because it's happened to 'me too'. My traffic has gained 30%, but my adsense earnings has gone down 20%...

today (2/7) is looking about the same as it's been this whole past week.

Sweet Cognac

 6:59 pm on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

On an informational site - By noon today, pageviews up, clickthroughs up, EPC 75% down. Weird.


 7:16 pm on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

I wonder if some of the increases in traffic are less (or mis) targeted visitors. And if that could result in greater traffic, but lower performance.

For example, on my classic car site, if someone looking for a new car happens to land on my site (OK that's unlikely, but it's an example) they might flip through a hundred pages on a trip down nostagilia lane, but I'm not sure they'll any interest in buying an old car or parts for one. Or even finding an antique car club, museum or show near them.

The result is more traffic, lower CTR. IF a lower CTR results in a lower eCPM via Smart Pricing, then this traffic isn't doing me much good in the short term.

I'm happy to have the traffic, I hope they enjoy the site and tell their friends about it. But in the short term the benefit might not be very great.

Of course I suppose I could alwways ad a "new car" section.

Sweet Cognac

 7:39 pm on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

If advertizers pay at the least 5 cents, and publishers made 3 cents and now are recently making 1 cent, what has happened?

Are you saying increased impressions cause lower CPM or is this a theory? The CTR is 2.2


 7:46 pm on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

Feb 2nd was the only day ever when my click tracking script registered 50% more clicks then reported by Google. In my case they simply ignored all the clicks after about 2pm. Out of curiosity I looked up all the clickers and where they come from – nothing unusual. Seems like google's glitch. Can anyone confirm my observations?


 7:54 pm on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

I don't independently track clicks - but...

On Feb 2rd, my clicks were down 50%. On Feb 3rd they were down 66%. They recovered to normal levels over the weekend. Traffic was UP through the week, peaking on the 3rd - when clickthroughs tanked.

And From 2/1 on, cost per click has been down from 50% to 80%.

These are many thousands of impressions and hundreds of clicks....


 8:35 pm on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

anyone care to rub a lamp to see if either googleguy or asa will pop out?


 8:38 pm on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

I agree Sine 2/1 cost per click has droped like a lead ballon. Here is a fictional example. (so I'm not violationg ToS.)

Before 2/1 CPC = $1.65
After 2/1 CPC = $0.52

I am not sure what is going on.
My ctr is the same. However, due to the lower cpc my ecpm is now at a all time low.


 9:12 pm on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

My CPM appears to be dropping today (although it's really too early tell, due to stats lag). On the other hand, the last two days had some of the best CPMs I'd seen in a long time, so I figure it's the usual seesaw. Thirteen hours don't make a trend, and neither do two days (or two weeks, for that matter).


 9:30 pm on Feb 7, 2005 (gmt 0)

My 2 cents: my adsense earnings are up about 50% each day since this topic was started. note: they took a huge dive around mid-December and have been down since. Now I'm back to normal. hope this lasts...

This 434 message thread spans 15 pages: < < 434 ( 1 2 3 4 5 6 [7] 8 9 10 11 12 13 14 15 > >
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