|A Whole New Web|
Is AdSense single-handedly reshaping the Internet?
In many of the posts I read here at WW about AdSense, I find one (somewhat) frightening trend: an evolution of how content is written solely based on AdSense earnings. Webmasters seem to be tweaking their pages to the point that the content on the page itself is no longer important. The focus has shifted to generating more AdSense clicks.
As the presence of AdSense increases across the web, webmasters seem to be trading in the prime locations on their pages for AdSense ads...so much so that I'm beginning to wonder if we're re-shaping the way content is presented.
I value the AdSense program, and find it to be a helpful contribution to our bottom line. But I am concerned that some have literally built their *lives* and sites around this model...to the point that it's reshaping every page on their sites. On a large scale, our positioning of Adsense seems to be slowly changing the way information is gleaned from a web page.
How soon will it be before AdSense is a staple on nearly every content page? If that saturation level occurs, how will the world view AdSense?
I'd rather there be millions of individuals getting a piece of every advertising dollar than a couple multinational corporations grabbing 99% of it.
I'd guess that most AdSense publishers are using the program the way it was intended: as a way to monetize existing content.
They've never heard of Webmaster World, and they don't have the time, ability, or desire to crank out template-driven sites or to build AdSense- and search-optimized pages around commercial keywords.
Also, there's nothing new about Web entrepreneurs trying to profit from the latest moneymaking trend. Not so long ago, boilerplate affiliate sites were flooding the Web; today, multimillion-page "user review" sites and scraper sites are cluttering Google and other search engines. Next year it'll be something else.
Interesting questions btsteed:
|how content is written solely based on AdSense earnings |
Mine definitely is not and I suspect many others too.
|the content on the page itself is no longer important |
Factual and accurate content is the single most important factor insofar as I am concerned. If I were to present unimportant or irrelevant content/information, then I would soon know about it.
|trading in the prime locations on their pages for AdSense ads |
I see nothing wrong in positioning an artcle for maximum benefit...that's what newspapers and magazines have always done...no dfference.
|But I am concerned that some have literally built their *lives* and sites around this model |
As with the off-line world there will be winners and losers and the ones who present the information the most preferred way should be the winners. Heck, I don't know which:-)
The beauty of Adsense is that it has gotten a lot of people out of their disliked existences however I would tend to agree that some may not find it so financially rewarding as they believe.
|How soon will it be before AdSense is a staple on nearly every content page |
Now that will depend just how many of the larger companies consider the option of Adsense?
Do IBM, Dell, Mercedes, Sony, Coca Cola want to be seen using Adsense?
Now that would be interesting...
|If that saturation level occurs, how will the world view AdSense? |
As advertising and no more, that's all it is and I suspect Joe Public likes it since it gives him options which were not previously offered except from regional/national/international dominant companies and it gives the mom and pop business, SME the chance to compete with these bigger boys at very reasonable cost.
Adsense has opened up global advertising for unbelievably low cost, it is controllable and one can have IMMEDIATE results to a campaign.
Compare that to ANY traditional off-line medium and the contractural hoops they will make one jump through and the costs they try to justify.
As much as Adsense can be maligned, by me included in that, it is a revolutionary advertising model in a constant state of flux since nothing like this has ever been tried before...no wonder they keep having the occasional blip!
My forecast is that it will get better and better, more options and with greater advertiser and publisher choices as both Google's and our experiences with it are refined.
Excellent post. I for one, believe that many publishers are using adsense and other related advertising programs to simply make money that they could then turn back into advertising their own site. There are many out there that are putting up websites just for adsense, but I believe the majority is working hard at building content, making some money as a reward for their efforts, and then using some of that money to advertise and get the word out on their site.
I see Adsense as a temporary stopgap for under monetized content on the web. Or, for content that can't easily be monetized any other way. A lot of these sites will eventually wither away IMHO.
well, I for one have made a big move away from adsense since allegra and bourbon hit my sites. Some may have followed my saga through these two updates. Suffice to say, I decided not to get angry with G as others have done here, but I got even instead.
Now about to launch subscription part to my main site, which will take away all the reliance I've had on affiliate sites and adsense from day one.
I know I will breath easier the morning I launch.
|I am concerned that some have literally built their *lives* and sites around this model...to the point that it's reshaping every page on their sites. |
Advertising does that, with other media as well.
I don't think Adsense is a threat to the web. It's web advertising done right for the first time. Unlike the old banner culture, Adsense promotes content development and meaningful ads.
Also, what's the alternative? How could we otherwise develop costly content that's not selling something (like affiliates), that's not government funded and that's available for free?
I think that Adsense is reshaping how serious Adsense publishers create their sites and converting many people who would have been hobbyists into publishers... but I also think the effect is self-limiting. Right now we put our ads in the hot spots, but soon people will be used to seeing ads there and we'll have to redo the pages. Right now short, narrowly focused Adsense-friendly articles are comparatively uncommon, but eventually the sophisticated section of the web will catch on and start rejecting such articles. As long as people think of advertising as a meaningless distraction from content*, ad blindness is going to set in and force us to keep our approaches to our pages fresh, limiting Adsense's permanent impact on the web.
* I'm talking about the idea of advertising rather than any given implementation of it. Let's not derail the thread with instances in which advertising adds to a page...
|In many of the posts I read here at WW about AdSense, I find one (somewhat) frightening trend: an evolution of how content is written solely based on AdSense earnings. Webmasters seem to be tweaking their pages to the point that the content on the page itself is no longer important. The focus has shifted to generating more AdSense clicks. |
Interesting thought. It's basically the same principle as SEO changing the dynamics of linking. It used to be a way to point the user to related information; some now use it to boost ranking. (Arguably, not everyone.)
If ads get too out of hand, people will ignore them, and the advertisers will go somewhere else. Just as popup blockers came into existence to keep annoying ads off of screens, tools will be developed to keep other types of annoying ads off of screens.
This could make an interesting media study. I wonder if anyone like Lawrence Lessig has explored this.