What blows my mind is that people are making 5 digits a month, 6 digits a year off this technique I was only vaguely aware of. Even if there are barely 1000 people doing it at those levels, that's MILLIONS per year going through Google. Stunning.
Perhaps this will also lighten up Google's content server load.
But on another note, are visitors that click happy? Click a vague ad on one site only to click another ad on the destination? Are there that many people who don't read content anymore?
|This is beginning to attract some main streem news: |
See here: [news.google.com...]
Blogs and internet-only media is not mainstream.
|Blogs and internet-only media is not mainstream. |
I'm not sure this story will make the lamestream media. It's a little more complicated that "Paris Hilton goes to Jail"... It might make something like the Wall Street Journal though..
|As to why those affected are less vocal here, it could be that it's still early on. Maybe around June 1st, we'll see more of them here. |
It could also be the bashing.
Would you come out and subject yourself to all these snappy comments .. in order to help those who are reviling you?
A bit of maturity in this thread might yield some informational dividends.
For those of you who may think this has only affected a few people... let me tell you that this is huge. I know quite a few people doing this and they ALL have been shut down. All of them. And if you are doing this and you haven't received your email yet....just be patient....you'll get it.
I'm sure we will see something soon on the official Google Blogs about this.
June 1st will be an interesting day on the content network. In my opinion there will be far less inventory available which will kick up bid prices big time. The next step in my opinion is you will see minimum bids go back to 5 cents if not higher.
And for those of you who never realized what some of these people were making.....they were making A LOT......thousands and hundreds of thousands a month.
|The next step in my opinion is you will see minimum bids go back to 5 cents if not higher. |
I hope so. Since January my adsense cents/click have dived 40% from last years average.
Yeah something definitely happened since January because with all the growth in traffic and CTR on my sites, revenues have been stagnant. Many threads have been made on that topic. Something was going on.
|A bit of maturity in this thread might yield some informational dividends. |
That may be, but when you see people glorifying themselves as legitimate businessmen making tons of money on the back on real content publishers, you can't expect them to stay completely neutral on the news they may be gone for good, this time, after pleading Google for years. How should people feel when they lose a user on a $0.03 click?
|they were making A LOT......thousands and hundreds of thousands a month. |
|How should people feel when they lose a user on a $0.03 click? |
well, I feel a bit stupid actually. Here was I, diligently plugging away at building a handful of sites for pennies, when all the while I could have been riding the wave. It's not like I didn't know how to do it either. Any research on SEO will pretty soon turn up an article on flipping traffic. I guess I didn't have the nerve - the "risk tolerance" as someone on this thread put it.
|well, I feel a bit stupid actually. Here was I, diligently plugging away at building a handful of sites for pennies, when all the while I could have been riding the wave. It's not like I didn't know how to do it either. Any research on SEO will pretty soon turn up an article on flipping traffic. I guess I didn't have the nerve - the "risk tolerance" as someone on this thread put it. |
I couldn't for the same reason I couldn't do up and promote a "pharm" site when people were riding the wave and making bundles, even though I had a dynamite, clean keyworded domain name.
I just couldn't, still wouldn't and never will.
There's got to be 100,000s of the MFA sites.. I don't know how many are doing arbitrage.
So there is a lot of room for a large amount of bitching and moaning over the next couple of weeks.
I was just searching for sites that have snippets from my opening paragraph (fairly unique) on my home page and found many many MFAs just from that.
I'd be surprised if I get an adsense cancellation letter since I was using Adwords long before Adsense came along and only offset my business advertising expenses with adsense (now). (I used to be a six-figure adsense arbritrager until last July)
I have zero sympathy with those who run arbitrage sites. Reading about their $20k/month income figures does not help. Looking at the sites I used to block, many of them are these zero-content, zero-quality, no-value-at-all, pure MFA sites we all know about. Sooo, I sincerly hope that Google is honest with this approach.
This cleanup will help honest publishers big time to increase the metrics of our success, especially EPC and total revenue. Google's intention seems to be to get more money out of the content network (no problem with that) by enforcing their quality standards both on the Adwords side (LPQ comes to mind) and on the Adsense side (business models accepted into the program, aka "Adsense Disabling Arbitrage Accounts" [ADAA]).
The reduction of ad space available (no more MFAs) will probably increase ad prices, while the reduction of ad demand (no more ads from MFAs) will slightly lower the ad prices. As the MFAs were pretty efficient to place their ads, I guess the effect will be positive for honest publishers.
The reduction of ad space comes together with a reduction of ad inventory, as the MFAs will certainly cancel most of their AdWords campaigns after June 1st. So to which side the balance flips has just to be seen.
The light at the end of the tunnel might be that Google increases the minimum bid price, or that other advertizers get confidence in the Content Network again and increase their content bids or return to the Content Network.
As a combined AdSense and AdWords user (no arbitrage), I have often been able to drive AdWords traffic from the Content Network to my sites for an average of $0.02, while I had to pay an average $0.30 or more for the same keywords in the Search Network. If this gap will be closed in the next months after Google's tightening of their rules which publisher's business model fits their AdSense program I would be happy, even though I would have to spend more on my AdWords campaigns to drive a comparable amount of traffic to my brick and mortar sites. In that case my brick and mortar sites would still have a positive ROI, while my AdSense content sites would see an increase in earnings.
Most arbi players have no sympathy for "honest" publishers that moan & groan that they can't make $$'s from their sites.
I laugh every time I hear someone try and make out they're an "honest" publisher. Because others used a Google sanctioned method to turn a dollar, somehow that makes them "dishonest"? Gimme a break.
If you didn't have the smarts to make a buck, then don't whinge at those that do. Arbi is just a small piece of the web pie. If you can't make $1000's/mth from the web then you're in the wrong game.
You probably wouldn't believe me if I told you some make $10k/day from the web. All perfectly "honest" methods.
And not an Adsense ad in sight...
[edited by: Avo19 at 4:45 am (utc) on May 21, 2007]
There is no need for sympathy. Every business model is a business model and some people feel more comfortable with one than with another. Also, there are no reason to believe that arbitrage players are not honest. Google didn't terminate those accounts because they were breaking the TOS or otherwise cheating, but because their business model doesn't fit AdSense anymore. This is an economical reason rather than an ethical one.
You are right. I just get annoyed with the "holier than thou" attitude of some members of these forums.
--- I just get annoyed with the "holier than thou" attitude
Avo19, you sound like you didn't get a memo yet.
Wahoo! Good for Google, at last they are getting rid of all these junk sites.
I can see some consequences of Google's email flood yet.
I have one AdWords ad group running in a country/language combination which is specific for one of my brick and mortar sites. Since december of last year I haven't been able to advertise with this ad group in the content network for that site, even with bids as high as $0.50 (normally the ads in that country/language go for about $0.03 in the content network and $0.10 in the search network) so there was presumable so much MFA ad inventory that my ads were not necesarry to fill the available ad space, even at those high prices.
Since a few days, that ad group is running in the content network again with the following impression counts:
May 16. 0
May 17. 20731
May 18. 107622
May 19. 131285
May 20. 99538
Since May 18. the number of impressions has been limited by my daily budget, so with some tuning of budget and CPC, I will be able to go well beyond the hundred thousand impressions per day for this single ad group.
The only reason I can see the ad group is running again is that one, or maybe a group of MFAs stopped advertising on these specific keywords on May 17th. Looking at the dates mentioned in this thread, I can only see it as a result of Google's termination of MFA accounts.
[edited by: lammert at 5:31 am (utc) on May 21, 2007]
memo as in an email from G? If that's the case, yes, I've received my "memo". See my first post.
*edit* As I stated on another forum, any increase is more than likely due to small players pulling their campaigns in the hope of flying under G's radar. Otherwise I cannot see any reason why you wouldn't milk the last drop of profit from current campaigns until midnight May 31st.
[edited by: Avo19 at 5:37 am (utc) on May 21, 2007]
|Otherwise I cannot see any reason why you wouldn't milk the last drop of profit from current campaigns until midnight May 31st. |
I was under that impression too and was actually surprised to see some of my ad groups have significant impressions in the content network starting May 17th. I don't know the precise text in Google's email as it is forbidden to quote them directly on this forum, but maybe Google deliberately used some vague wording about the payout for the last two weeks of May scaring people that they won't be paid for these weeks and thereby causing a fast pull of AdWords campaigns.
I for one am happy with the current development. I only have to scale up my brick and mortar activities to cope with the new number of potential customers :)
arbitrage is most effective in combination with mfa, right? every little piece of useful content on an arbi landing page would dilute your ctr and your bottom line. it would intervene in the needed 2-click-behavior of users (click ad on content page, then click ad on landing page).
so how come you arbitrage folks state that this is a legit business model sanctioned by google?
if you do arbitrage in combination with mfa (which imo is inevitable in this business), it is against tos and just because google didn't do anything or doesn't mention it explicitly doesn't change a thing about this fact!
google was utterly naive with their belief that the market would sort the crap out by itself. apparently what they didn't recognize was that the arbi practice couldn't be sorted out by the market at all. why? because of unlimited supply of dumb or confused users (being forced to click). just like spam will never die because of idiots buying from spammers who make it worthwhile.
to let it go on for years only seeing the cash flow without recognizing the damaging effects on user experience and consequently the adsense brand was fatal. it's about time now to stop the arbi/mfa crowd as regaining trust in the content network will be difficult enough at this point.
anyhow, looking at the overall quality of ads, even more effort in cleaning up the inventory is needed (ebay keyword ads, scam ads, deceptive ads etc). but it seems to be a serious start.
Oh c'mon, we have nothing to prove here. I could agree with Avo19. As a thread starter I asked a question, but mods have renamed this thread and it is now flood with offtopic "moral-immoral" discussion stuff.
I can also add that I was waiting for this letter for 14 months so far, and don't regret at all about starting this venture in 2006. Because one month being "unethical" equals to 2-3 years of being so-called "honest" publisher and barely earn 2-3K a month.
|arbitrage is most effective in combination with mfa, right? every little piece of useful content on an arbi landing page would dilute your ctr and your bottom line. it would intervene in the needed 2-click-behavior of users (click ad on content page, then click ad on landing page). |
Some took that route. But my take on it was that if I gave my visitors useful info they wouldn't feel rorted. Which is what I did. I had original content that gave good info about whatever topic/product I was targeting. Worked well for me.
*edit* Just to expand a little on this. I purposely gave good info, but didn't offer the final piece so to speak. I left that to the Adsense advertisers to do that. If they wrote good copy, then they would supply the "final" piece. I just gave them a stage to display their wares in context. And my CA filter was always chockers...lol
[edited by: Avo19 at 6:35 am (utc) on May 21, 2007]
I would not be surprised to see better filters soon. It is a logical consequence of the recent efforts to improve overall quality in Adwords/Adsense.
Having said that, I emptied my filter list once I heard the rumors of Google booting the arbitrage/MFA folks. The effect was a good Saturday (but it seemed to be an overall good day for all sites, so I do not attribute this to the empty filter) and a really bad Sunday (which I do attribute to the empty filter list).
I suggest to wait until June 1st to empty filter lists, and then do it only cautiously.
Please please guys, let's (try and) keep this thread informative and keep tones down.
The "MFA vs. 'honest' publishers' debate has been going on for years, and will never and cannot arrive to any solution, apart from the "solution" that perhaps will be caused by to this move from Google.
Someone was wandering on how few arbitragers are here speaking aloud: try and understand that few people will come here and speak just to get bashed.
From both sides of the debate, this stuff is IMHO the most important thing that will happen to your Adsense account this year.
As a non-arbitrager, I value VERY much the information these guys are giving us, and I think trying to understand what is going on will help us "regular" publishers what will happen to Adsense and to our accounts in the next weeks.
Frox: "As a non-arbitrager, I value VERY much the information these guys are giving us, and I think trying to understand what is going on will help us "regular" publishers what will happen to Adsense and to our accounts in the next weeks. "
I couldn't agree more. This thread is turning into an MFA/Arb bashing exercise - which is totally non-constructive. Perhaps by those that were banned sharing their experiences - then a whole load of "get rich quick" bods will be deterred, and instead build worth-while sites.
I think this thread has gone off topic, and is now just a collection of "I told you so" posts.
trannack & frox
I Understand, but is not about what we would learn, it is the just fact that making 10K+ a month/day by using the method in question just becoming obsolete. and Obsolete is the fear of any IT or Marketing Pro.
Blend27 - it is not that I disagree with the sentiments expressed in here, its just that it is not very useful for anyone. The MFA/Arb debate has been expressed in counless threads in WebmasterWorld. I just feel this is turning into very useless thread - when it could be a good reference thread for anyone who is remotely considering the MFA/Arb game.
By providing useful and constructive comments - perhaps newbies would be more inclined to build quality websites and not try to game the systme.
No one is disputing that ridding the net of useless sites is a good thing - both for legit business models, and for end-user experience.
Lets move beyond this and start making constructive comments in here. By collaborating data from those that have been banned it will be possible for existing webmasters to gain a greater insight into what to expect to happen over the next few months. It will also perhaps kick some rather borderline sites into action to create something better and more useful.
Just my thoughts.
Google Adwords Adsense ARbitrage is going , what about Yahoo MSN Adcenter and Google Adsense pair now?
Yes, let's explicitly make this a positive "the way ahead" discussion: what can new entrants to the online publishing business do to make money and avoid the bearpits and in particular business models that G feels unhappy with?
If the arbiters provide a great thing, and they're really onto something, and on the ball, one of them can and will start a new ad network and pick up where they all left off with Google. This is how the economy works, supply and demand.
Of course, they'll have to sign up publishers. What will the pitch be?
"Making too much money on Adsense? Would you like to get pennies per click? Here at example.com, we believe if we take care of the pennies, the dollars will take care of themselves.
"In a market niche without many advertisers? No worries, we can make sure none of those nasty little PSA notices appear on your site. We guarantee it. We are experts at filling the ad space trough.
"What's the catch? Because of our proprietary PenniesToDollars(TM) technology, we guarantee you'll never earn less than a penny a click. Of course you won't earn more than a penny either.
"A penny for you every 99 pennies for us. Please sign here."
My two cents,
[edited by: engine at 11:05 am (utc) on May 21, 2007]
[edit reason] examplified [/edit]