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Google AdSense Forum

Traffic Quality And AdSense Earnings
How to Make More Money with AdSense

 11:56 am on Apr 18, 2014 (gmt 0)

SEO is primarily concerned with traffic. In theory it's possible to make a lot of CPM money like BuzzFeed etc but be aware that meangs getting paid pennies per thousand visitors. General traffic is going to disappoint because not all visitors are on your site with a credit card in hand. If you want to make money with AdSense, it's important to cultivate traffic that has one hand on the credit card.

If you've ever worked with AdWords then you know that some keyword phrases are a waste of time and some keywords are practically a sale every time. In between are consumers who are on the fence that need convincing to jump off and buy something. That is three kinds of traffic to cultivate.

1. Cold: Waste of time keywords
Pictures of
Homework related research
(some) Walkthroughs/tutorials

2. Warm: On the fence consumers
Product research
Product reviews
(Some) Tutorials
Evergreen how-to's involving specialized equipment/gear

3. Hot: Where to buy
Buying guides
Best Products
New (POPULAR) Product Reviews
New (POPULAR) Gadget Reviews

The point is that in order to improve your AdSense earnings you must have a firm grasp on what's happening on the other side of the AdSense mirror and that's called AdWords. The nuances of sales are truly fascinating. There's a lot of bad information going around so it's even more important to get your information from real authorities.

Here's an example of bad information: There's an old study called the Paradox of Choice that is the basis of landing page theory that holds that giving consumers too many choices is a bad thing. Just last week someone based a marketing article on that study, an article that was featured in the Moz Top Ten. But there's a problem with that study, it appears to have been faked. The results of that study have never been reproduced. Most importantly, there is overwhelming evidence that the opposite of that Less is More approach is best. Here are references:




If you are a follower of Moz Top Ten articles you would have been let down by that article. The truth, as pointed out in that Freakanomics article, is more complex.

Our own Brad Geddes (eWhisper) is a true expert on the AdWords side. Here are some of the topics he covers in his book (Advanced Google AdWords, 3rd Edition) that are relevant to making more money with AdSense because this information can be used to diagnose the right kind of content to create that will lead to AdSense clicks:

Understanding the Buying Funnel

Examining the Buying Funnel Phases

How Do Consumers Flow Through Your Buying Funnel?

Understanding Keywords

Types of Commercial Keywords

Wide vs Deep Keywords

Developing Unique Selling Propositions

Distinguishing Features and Benefits

Benefits, Features, and the Buying Funnel

When to Use a Feature vs a Benefit

Employing Themes That Get Clicks

Utilizing Numbers in Ads

How Strong Is Your Call to Action?

Writing Informational Ad Copy



 12:22 pm on Apr 18, 2014 (gmt 0)

Thanks, Roger. Great post.


 5:06 am on Apr 20, 2014 (gmt 0)

I second that one..


 3:15 pm on Apr 21, 2014 (gmt 0)



 7:12 pm on Apr 21, 2014 (gmt 0)

Good points there. I've generally felt that complexity that leads to doubt as to whether any choice is better than another is where at least one form of the paradox occurs (if it actually exists). Picking one of your 200 favorite chocolate flavors doesn't do that because you know there are some choices you can always live with. It's when you don't understand the choices or don't have the time or patience to gain understanding of the choices or when the consequences of making the wrong choice are quite high, that shutdown can occur. Of course, picking from a confusing set of options can also lead to the "who gives a damn" response and then you've got a coin flip on your hands. Can't say I've read the studies but this is how choice impacts me personally some of the time. How's that for scientific?


 5:03 pm on Apr 25, 2014 (gmt 0)

It's when you don't understand the choices or don't have the time or patience to gain understanding of the choices or when the consequences of making the wrong choice are quite high, that shutdown can occur.

You are on to something. I think you'll agree when I call bull on the Paradox of Choice. It's nonsense and debunked. Let's all move on. You know what makes sense? The Goldilocks Paradigm.

The Goldilocks Paradigm
Choices can boil down to a range of products that are Too Hot, products that are Hot and products that are Just Right. Too hot represents outrageously expensive product or service options. Sometimes those products aren't really there to be sold. Those products are sometimes there to make you feel better about discovering a more reasonable choice.

You can splurge on Hot and feel ok about it but a consumer might feel even better if they went with Just Right because they can get the job done with a quality product that is priced... just right. Click.

How this applies to Traffic Quality is that the content must be focused on the consumer of goods, consumer of books, consumer of whatever and their needs for achieving a particular goal. Not the gawker. Not the celebrity gossiper. Not the people who just want to talk and talk and talk.

A domain name that alludes to achieving a particular goal or identifies with a social group is good for traffic quality. Personally I think a meaningful site name is better than an EMD. The projected identity or projected message of your site name can influence the quality of your traffic. There are link building applications to this, too. But that's off topic.

[edited by: martinibuster at 8:55 pm (utc) on Apr 25, 2014]


 8:51 pm on Apr 25, 2014 (gmt 0)

The topic under discussion is within the context of improving AdSense Earnings. Nothing wrong with operating a non-profit site. If not making money is your thing then this discussion is not for you.

However for those who are interested in earning, read on. Duane Forrester, Senior Product Manager at Bing today posted this about doing business online today and in the future: [bing.com]

For a business to really achieve success, they have to look beyond the search engine and set their sights firmly on impressing the customer. If you attract their attention, weíll follow. If weíre not showing you the love you think you deserve, maybe itís time to do some real-world testing to see if youíre impressing customers as much as you think you are. And if you are, then you should ask why your customers arenít compelled to share that love.

When that customer gets up in the morning and goes online, itís with a goal. If your goal is to build the best optimized site then youíre misaligned. If your goal is to provide that customer with exactly what they seek, and maybe a bit more they hadnít expected, but find very useful, then youíll be successful. Those are the stand outs. Those are the sites that customers canít wait to tell friends about. Those are the ones they share, link to and talk about.

Of importance is where he said your content should impress the consumer so much that they share your content and link to it. That's cultivating traffic that converts, traffic that clicks. You are leaving money on the table if you fail to give your site visitors the opportunity to share your content via social media and/or tell-a-friend buttons/links/widgets. Don't make people work to share your content. Make it easy to share your content.


 6:01 pm on Apr 26, 2014 (gmt 0)

Thankfully SEO was never in my past so I never became dependent on it to become my future. Find a niche of loyal fans to your site and make it easy to for them to share your content. Simple and effective strategy that will be profitable in the long run.


 10:47 am on Apr 28, 2014 (gmt 0)

There's an old study called the Paradox of Choice that is the basis of landing page theory that holds that giving consumers too many choices is a bad thing.

I first heard the idea that too many choices can paralyse the chooser about 2 years ago. It did seem to make sense when I heard it. This is the first time I have read that the idea may be too simplistic and that there are circumstances under which there paralysis may be more likely and others where it may be less likely.

I wonder if the following factors might be taken into account:

1) The penalty for making the wrong choice
2) The reward for making the right choice
3) The range of "good fit". (ie. is the only choice that will make the chooser happy the single best choice - or, if they unknowingly picked the third best choice, would that still be good enough?)
4) How much effort is required to narrow down (or filter) the choices


- there is a high penalty for making the wrong choice
- the range of good fit is narrow (e.g. only the first or second best choices will suit)
- it's a lot of effort to figure out which items slot into the good fit range

then we might well expect to see abandonment of the selection process where there are 25 items to choose from.


- there is a low penalty for making the wrong choice
- the range of good fit is large (eg. any of the top 50 choices are good enough)
- it's immediately clear which items slot into that "Top 50" range and which don't

then we might expect to see a relatively quick selection process completion and follow-through, even with 2500 items to choose from.

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