• ---- Old Rule "Less Ads = Higher Income" Still Valid?

swa66 - 11:01 am on Mar 29, 2013 (gmt 0)

It's essentially all about math and habits of visitors.

Let's do a simple example:
- You have a grand total of 2 pages
- page 1 links to the page 2 and nothing else
- page 1 is your landing page (all incoming links point here)
- page 2 has no outgoing links
- page 2 only has one incoming source fo traffic: page 1
[I'm trying to make it less complex :) ]

Scenario:
Visitor lands on page 1.
Visitor has 4 options:
- go way (bounce)
if they go to page 2
they again have 5 options:
- go way (bounce)
- click back

Now if you know your pages very well you could guess at the chance of each visitor taking each action (or run google analytics to get the data).
You could also learn the expected CPC for each ad.

You also get a good idea of how often a

From that you should be able to predict the expected value of a visitor.

Let's take the example:
Visitor lands on page 1.
Visitor has 4 options:
- go way : odds: 44% revenue: 0
- click ad1: odds: 5%; revenue: \$0.15
- click ad2: odds: 1%; revenue: \$0.01
if they go to page 2
they again have 5 options:
- go way (bounce): odds: 90%: revenue: 0
- click ad1: odds: 3%; revenue: \$0.50
- click ad2: odds: 1%; revenue: \$0.25
- click back: odds: 6%; revenue: TBC

You can then go on with the scenario, but let's assume we know we have negligible visitors that actually do anything alse but bounce after they click back (I want to keep it simple ...)

page 1 - ad1: 1.00 * 0.05 * 0.15
page 1 - ad1: 1.00 * 0.01 * 0.01
page 2 - ad1: 0.50 * 0.03 * 0.50
page 2 - ad2: 0.50 * 0.01 * 0.25
Make a visitor worth \$0.01635

Next, we redo our page 1:
we make link to page 2 stand out better, make it look more promising and get rid of ad2

This shifts our average visitor's behavior a bit, not just on page 1, but also on page 2 as our site is now more attractive and perceived differently.

Visitor lands on page 1.
Visitor has 4 options:
- go way : odds: 40% revenue: 0
- click ad1: odds: 5%; revenue: \$0.15
if they go to page 2
they again have 5 options:
- go way (bounce): odds: 80%: revenue: 0
- click ad1: odds: 5%; revenue: \$0.50
- click ad2: odds: 2%; revenue: \$0.25
- click back: odds: 3%; revenue: TBC

Adding it up, our average visitor is now worth \$0.024 - a 47% increase! But it's due to page 2 being visited more, not due to the revenue of page1 in itself (which lowered a tiny bit).

Now this scenario is obviously oversimplified and it's hard to understand the motivations of "the average visitor", yet having that insight is what enables one to cover the visitor not just on a page by page basis (what Google does already - but from their viewpoint), but also as a whole over your entire site and over more than one revenue stream (e.g. if you have affiliate sales on there).

What I've learned by trying to understand this is that less is more ... esp. if you do it in the beginning of their visit on your site - esp. if the site is large and does sell well on affiliates: it's not worth it to let a visitor escape from you on the first page they land on for cents: I'd rather try to sell them a book or two on the subject.
Yet at the same time the typical landing page is also where those less interested seem to find a way out in a prominent ad block - so you need to balance it all, but you need to do it for a site as a whole, not a page at a time as they are all linked ...