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Google Suggests Discussion of AdSense Revshare with Publishers
Announced at World Economic Forum in Davos
elsewhen




msg:4071072
 4:43 pm on Jan 30, 2010 (gmt 0)

At the DLD conference in Munich Monday, Burda CEO Paul-Bernhard Kallen, on a panel with Drummond (Google's Chief Counsel), said publishers wanted transparency and their “fair share.” I asked him, a fair share of what — AdSense? Kallen said yes.

At today’s briefing (at the World Economic Forum in Davos), Arora (Google's President of Sales) said that the company was considering more transparency. I confirmed with Google’s people that this was new. I suspect that they’re not going to promise the possibility and not deliver something.

[businessinsider.com...]

 

BillyS




msg:4071647
 12:29 am on Feb 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

I think the revenue share amount could matter. All relationships, personnal and business should be open.
For example, if GG is keeping 90% of the monies I would likely focus more on capturing the advertising dollars directly.

Do manufacturers tell you their exact margins? Besides, you're doing yourself a disservice if you're not capturing advertising dollars directly. Google doesn't stop you from taking that action.

buckworks




msg:4071659
 1:30 am on Feb 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

If AdSense revealed the revenue splits, here's what I'd do:
The same things I'm already doing.

Yep.

I'd be curious about the proportion, because I'm the sort of person who is curious about everything.

But it's not actionable information.

martinibuster




msg:4071788
 8:14 am on Feb 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

Is it possible that if the information is revealed it would set an industry standard?

And if they set this information free would it put pressure on other networks to meet or beat what Google is paying?

Would revealing this information be good for other ad networks or bad?

Would revealing this information create a more equitable marketplace for publisher ad space because publishers can choose the network with not only the deepest reserve of advertisers but the one that pays the best percentage?

loner




msg:4071841
 11:59 am on Feb 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

The more info out of Google, the merrier.

netmeg




msg:4071956
 3:10 pm on Feb 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

Would revealing this information create a more equitable marketplace for publisher ad space because publishers can choose the network with not only the deepest reserve of advertisers but the one that pays the best percentage?

Maybe - but I doubt it. Bottom line is... the bottom line. People are going to go where the money is. For all the bitching about AdSense, it's still easiest way to make the most money with the least effort.

incrediBILL




msg:4071963
 3:29 pm on Feb 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

OK, if someone offered to pay you to mow their lawn would you do it without first asking how much they are paying for the lawn to be mowed?

What would happen if you agreed to mow that lawn without knowing how much you were getting paid?

Then, how would you feel after many hours of hard work they thank you and pay you ONE PENNY for mowing that lawn?

That's exactly what happens to many AdSense publishers so I think it's about time they tell us how much we're getting paid to mow Google's lawn.

Lame_Wolf




msg:4071977
 3:55 pm on Feb 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

OK, if someone offered to pay you to mow their lawn would you do it without first asking how much they are paying for the lawn to be mowed?

Yes, but normally people would say "Would you cut my lawn for x amount"

What would happen if you agreed to mow that lawn without knowing how much you were getting paid?

It does depend on who is asking, but normally I would say yes. But in such cases I would state before I started that I'd do it for free. (I like to know where both parties stand before starting).

Then, how would you feel after many hours of hard work they thank you and pay you ONE PENNY for mowing that lawn?

Again, depends on who it is. I would cut someones grass for free. I've made websites for people for free - one I had spent well over 50,000 hours on.

Just the other month I was at a show and someone liked the cabinet I was using. I'd never met them before, and I went and bought them one. It was an 82 mile round trip. Didn't charge petrol (gas) and gave them the 1p change.

Would I do it again ? Sure.

Lame_Wolf




msg:4071979
 3:57 pm on Feb 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

That's exactly what happens to many AdSense publishers so I think it's about time they tell us how much we're getting paid to mow Google's lawn.

Actually, Google (CA) employed some sheep to keep the grass short.

farmboy




msg:4071997
 4:35 pm on Feb 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

OK, if someone offered to pay you to mow their lawn would you do it without first asking how much they are paying for the lawn to be mowed?

You and I and every other publisher do that every day. Google doesn't promise us anything up front, in dollars or as a percentage. We can look at the numbers at the end of each day and decide whether or not to continue.

What would happen if you agreed to mow that lawn without knowing how much you were getting paid?

Again, we've already done that. None of us has a contract with Google promising us a certain amount in exchange for having the code on our site.

Then, how would you feel after many hours of hard work they thank you and pay you ONE PENNY for mowing that lawn?

I'd feel bad, maybe angry. But I don't make business decisions based on emotions. I certainly wouldn't go back and mow the lawn again.

(I think people who are making business decisions based on emotions is the gist of the problem)

Besides, there has never been a payment period when Google failed to pay me more than ONE PENNY.

That's exactly what happens to many AdSense publishers so I think it's about time they tell us how much we're getting paid to mow Google's lawn.

I respectfully disagree. I don't think it's close to an apples to apples comparison.

--------------

This is all very interesting because I see the same thing happen where ClickBank is concerned.

Merchant A might pay an affiliate 35% and the affiliate earns $500 per month for having a link displayed on his site. Merchant B might pay 65% but B's product does not perform as well and the affiliate only earns $200 per month.

Yet there are people who won't promote Merchant A because they don't "feel" they are getting a "fair" share. It's very interesting to observe.

FarmBoy

buckworks




msg:4072005
 4:45 pm on Feb 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

Google doesn't promise us anything up front, in dollars or as a percentage.

That works both ways, because neither do we promise Google anything up front about the quantity or quality of the traffic we can deliver.

BigDave




msg:4072098
 6:31 pm on Feb 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

I think I might like it if google revealed what percentage they were paying. Some other systems would advertise that they paid a higher percentage, and they would draw away all the publishers that cared more about the percentage than the take home pay. That means fewer competitors for the good ads.

incrediBILL




msg:4072234
 9:08 pm on Feb 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

I've made websites for people for free - one I had spent well over 50,000 hours on.


Giving everything away and trying to make it up on volume doesn't work as proved in the big internet boom.

Besides, there has never been a payment period when Google failed to pay me more than ONE PENNY.


Yes, but you aren't the audience I was addressing this to as many people post in this forum all the time about the penny per click or pennies per day with often a substantial amount of traffic.

When I first tried AdSense it was on a high traffic page for a week and it paid like crazy so I went site wide and made thousands right away.

Others don't have the same experience and other than some obvious reasons, in some circumstances it's kind of hard to know why 2 very similar sites make very dissimilar income.

Even if they post the percentage of payout, I seriously doubt they'll post your smart pricing discount or give you any clues about why one site makes nothing and the other site makes a ton.

swa66




msg:4072244
 9:26 pm on Feb 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

I don't need to know the % of the revenue Google pays me.

It's like somebody working for a boss: you'll only get depressed knowing what your employer makes off of your hard work.

It's just not relevant what Google gets. What's relevant is what I get, in absolute numbers, not in percentages. Google reports that in relative detail already, I'm fine with it. I'd even ask Google not to waste time on this at all.

More importantly, the revenue I get - even the absolute numbers - are not even the most important part to determine if I'll continue with the Adsense program at all. What's far more important is how I can combat bad advertisers and keep my site looking honest instead of being thrown in with the scams promoted by the ads.

And that latter is where I want Google to focus on ... instead of giving in to those who are only going to start to complain they didn't get a bigger cut (no matter how much or how little it is).

So yes, I'd rather not know.

Chrispcritters




msg:4072250
 9:33 pm on Feb 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

The place that sticks on in my mind where this could be an advantage to the publisher is the case where they are not currently selling directly to advertisers and they want to start selling directly to advertisers. Instead of the advertiser spending 100.00 on ads they could spend it directly with the publisher for less, or the publisher could make more money. If I found that the split was... let's say 80/20 with 20% going to me I'd be highly motivated to cut Google out. If it were 20/80 then I'd be happy paying Google a 20% finders/processing fee as it might cost me more than 20% to handle it in house. Mind you, all this could be done without Google disclosing the split - it would just take more time and effort.

Lame_Wolf




msg:4072330
 11:08 pm on Feb 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

Giving everything away and trying to make it up on volume doesn't work as proved in the big internet boom.


Who said I was trying to make it up on volume ?
They wanted a site, I have the skills, they were friends of friends, so I made it, host it, and maintain it for them. No catches. Nothing to do with greed or "make it up on volume"...Some people really are like that.

martinibuster




msg:4072334
 11:15 pm on Feb 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

as proved in the big internet boom.


The internet bust didn't prove the model was broken. There were many reasons for the bust but probably chief among them were a lack of a coherent path to profitability and the lack of a market like AdWords. The money came from investors not advertisers.

It has been proven that subverting a paid model by converting it to free can be profitable. What's different now is that Google is there to match a legion of advertisers to publishers ad space. Not only that, but there are more paths to monetization now than there were in the nineties.

If Google revealed their payout, would this set an industry standard that others may feel they have to meet or beat?

[edited by: martinibuster at 11:37 pm (utc) on Feb. 1, 2010]

sailorjwd




msg:4072355
 11:37 pm on Feb 1, 2010 (gmt 0)

I think that the only good that can come to us by knowing split details is if it caused a split war between G and its competitors. Unfortunately G has no real competitors in the adsense realm - I know, I've tried every last one of them.

On the other worker's revolution side... I demand my 'fair share'. I demand google pay for my carpal tunnel. Give me more Google money! Stop those Google bonuses!

physics




msg:4072366
 12:15 am on Feb 2, 2010 (gmt 0)

Wow Google must feel like they can't say anything right. I can't even count the number of times I've heard people (myself included) complain about the lack of transparency by Google on issues like this.
Now they're (apparently) trying to be more open and people are critical of that.

ogletree




msg:4072445
 3:19 am on Feb 2, 2010 (gmt 0)

Google obviously has a quality score for websites and pages when it comes to adsense. It would be more important to release that number so people could improve it and make more money. I guess you could say that if they gave you a % to your id or site then you could treat that as a quality score and do things to try to improve that. Right now a lot of it is a shot in the dark we don't now if we are improving or hurting our split. Right now we can make changes that seem to improve our CPM or CTR but we don't know how our changes affect our split. If they show us the split we can then make changes that improve all of our stats and therefore income.

KenB




msg:4072464
 3:53 am on Feb 2, 2010 (gmt 0)

Wow Google must feel like they can't say anything right. I can't even count the number of times I've heard people (myself included) complain about the lack of transparency by Google on issues like this.
Now they're (apparently) trying to be more open and people are critical of that.


Sometimes I think that some people just want to complain no matter what.

// sarcasm follows

Obviously, if Google thinks it might be a good idea then it must be a bad idea, because publishers can never trust Google.

dibbern2




msg:4072490
 5:02 am on Feb 2, 2010 (gmt 0)

Google obviously has a quality score for websites and pages when it comes to adsense. It would be more important to release that number so people could improve it and make more money.


I agree that there is a quality score, but make it a public issue? No! It would launch a whole new branch of scamming the system.

maximillianos




msg:4072491
 5:06 am on Feb 2, 2010 (gmt 0)

Published rev share numbers don't mean jack to me. I kind of think they are a lot of BS. I always felt most ad companies just made that number up and paid out what ever they wanted to make their bottom lines.

I know what I make each month, that is enough transparency for me.

rajjesh




msg:4072503
 5:32 am on Feb 2, 2010 (gmt 0)

The only way it could help me, I could sell my remanent inventory at right price :)

Once I know the price on which I can sell to Google, I know that while negotiating with others I would use the total amount as minimum bench mark :)

yaix2




msg:4072526
 6:26 am on Feb 2, 2010 (gmt 0)

A nice move by G to get more transparent, even though it would be mostly symbolic, with not much value for publishers to know that number.

I could sell my remanent inventory at right price


That was my first thought too. It would make it easier to find a market pricing, especially on small niche sites.

jomaxx




msg:4072533
 6:49 am on Feb 2, 2010 (gmt 0)

I agree with the many people above who feel that knowing the split wouldn't change anything for them. I have enough experience with direct ad sales to know that I'm happier outsourcing the whole headache to Google. Trust me, you can earn more in theory but it's no pot of gold.

But if Google do go ahead with this, I expect it to be a "no good deed goes unpunished" lesson for them. People will have less ammunition to complain about the lack of transparency, but the soreheads will positively erupt in outrage when they discover what Google rakes off the top. Whatever the number turns out to be.

zett




msg:4072541
 7:17 am on Feb 2, 2010 (gmt 0)

First, the more we know the better it is. Transparency is good, not bad. As someone said earlier: "Knowing the percentage does no harm."

Second, the information is valuable as it allows you to determine the real value of your sites. Say, you're earning $150 in a given period with a split of 40/60 (40 for you). Then you know that Google is able to draw in customers at a value of $150/0.4 = $375. This is the benchmark. With this information you know what you pay Google for marketing, sales, billing, and *cough* customer service. Now, you might think that you sell your advertising differently by (a) selling through another network or (b) selling directly to the customers.

I agree that in the first case (other network) the split is not necessarily important as the payout to you matters more than the split. BUT in the second case (selling directly), you know that you can spend up to $375-$150 = $225 for marketing, sales, billing, and customer service on your own. You could, for example, hire a sales person and a customer service rep. You could offer discounts for good customers AND STILL SET a lower price than Google.

So, the more I think about this, the more I come to the conclusion that such a step would be a big turn-around at Google. In the past, Google blindfolded us and took control over the entire process. Should they decide to disclose the percentage, they would admit that the publishers have the full power because we now can decide what to do with the ad networks based upon the total market value of the sites (and not just upon the crumbs we get shoved over from Google).

ogletree




msg:4072588
 8:55 am on Feb 2, 2010 (gmt 0)

You don't need to know the split to pick a better network. All you have to do now is try each one. The one that pays the most wins.

If Google gives you your exact split you can use it as a quality score. If they give anything it might be a split for the entire network which would be useless because each site gets a different split depending on your quality score which is in the form of smart pricing.

MikeNoLastName




msg:4072614
 9:57 am on Feb 2, 2010 (gmt 0)

I'm with Sonjay and Ogletree. Knowing this is helpful as long as you know it at least on a per account basis and hopefullly have a network-wide average to compare it to otherwise it is useless. Knowing it for your account, on a timely basis, you can experiment with various things and work on improving it. Knowing it would also go a long way toward determining if your increased earnings per click this month are arbitrarily due to a single high budgeted bidder or just your score improving.

ChanandlerBong




msg:4072746
 3:06 pm on Feb 2, 2010 (gmt 0)

who are you going to choose?

google that pays 58% that equates to $1200/month

or

SupaAdAgency that pays 72% that equates to $750/month

the percentage split is meaningless. Bottom line is all that counts.

netmeg




msg:4072760
 3:17 pm on Feb 2, 2010 (gmt 0)

Once I know the price on which I can sell to Google, I know that while negotiating with others I would use the total amount as minimum bench mark :)


If you have any history, you already do know that. If you're averaging, for example $3.00 eCPM from Google now, then you know that your direct advertising should probably start above that mark, and you can fill the remnants with AdSense.

If they disclose or don't disclose, I don't much care. It's not going to change anything I'm doing, but I'm not going to get jacked up about it either way. There are lots of other things to get jacked up about ahead of this.

drall




msg:4072770
 3:25 pm on Feb 2, 2010 (gmt 0)

I really REALLY do NOT want to know.

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