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Is it worth doing?

     
7:23 pm on Aug 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

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I run a small photo exhibition website of my own photographs, I get about 30,000 visitors per month, just wondering if this amount of traffic will have a chance of making enough income to justify changing all the webpages to accomidate the adsense layout. Time is scare for me so I've been holding off going that route without hearing from others who have similar traffic on their sites.
7:26 pm on Aug 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Not sure exactly what type of site you have but if it is a photo gallery type I am pretty sure that is against the TOS and you won't be accepted. Or then again you might be accepted but kicked out before you receive any money
7:33 pm on Aug 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

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My Site contains photo essays of various subject, and also some travelogues from some traveling I've done in the past. www.oboylephoto.com
I didn't realize that Photo exhibition sites were not allows into the adsense program.
7:39 pm on Aug 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member ken_b is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



Worth doing?

There are so many variables that it's hard to say with any certainty.

Part of it depends on if you have enough descriptive text on the photo pages for the adsense bot to target ads with.

Basically blank pages with just the photo probably would not work well, even if they were accepted by Google.

It doesn't take all that much descriptive text, but it does take some.

The other thing is how much money you think would make the effort "worth doing". Only you can anser that. Some folks are fine if they recoup their hosting costs, other want to live in luxury. I wouldn't expect the latter.

[added] And welcome to WW and the Adsense forum!

[edited by: ken_b at 7:45 pm (utc) on Aug. 13, 2004]

7:41 pm on Aug 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



If you have a bunch of html files to change, you better write a script to insert the adsense code. Doing it all by hand could take a lot of time.
8:29 pm on Aug 13, 2004 (gmt 0)



After looking at your site, I'd discourage you from applying for AdSense. Here's why:

1) You probably won't get accepted. Most of your photos have minimal captions (just titles, really), so ad targeting isn't likely to work very well. (A title like "Bethlehem Steel Mill" might yield ads for steel or steel mills, and a title like "Eastern State Pen" might yield ads for ballpoint pens since there's no body text for the Mediapartnerbot to analyze.)

2) Your visitors are likely to be more interested in your photos than in other goods and services that may be advertised by Google.

If I were you, I'd emphasize print sales more heavily and try offering lower-quality prints or posters at lower prices. For example, your $50-and-up prints could be signed photographic "collector's" prints, while you could offer cheaper inkjet prints or posters for students and other people who don't have much money but would love to have a nice picture of a steam locomotive or Mt. Everest to hang up on the wall.

You could also try an affiliate program like AllPosters.com, which might appeal to the kind of people who browse through photo galleries.

Finally, it wouldn't hurt to include text captions where you can; that way, your pages would do better in Google Search, and you'd get more traffic as a result.

8:43 pm on Aug 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Thanks Ken for the welcome.
I'm all ears because while I did build my website, I have a lot to learn and am starting to do homework about building a PHP and MySQL search engine for my photo website.

I did apply to adsense earlier in the year and was accepted, but never got to changing my pages to add the ads.

If I do go with Adsense I will probably do some work to my pages at the same time to make them more likely to be targeted correctly, currently, as europeforvisitors mentions, there are many pages with no text, just photos and titles, that clearly will not work for adsense, but if I add descriptive information and location information and perhaps a running story about the location, that may help and make it pay off.
And thanks for the suggestions about the print sales, selling cheaper versions of prints is a good idea and one I may go with.

8:47 pm on Aug 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



As far as I know AdSense doesn't specifically prohibit gallery sites, however it does say:

==================================================
No Google ad may be placed on any non-content-based pages. This includes error, login, registration, "thank you" or welcome pages.
==================================================

If there's just a photo (and maybe a caption) on a page, you're running pretty close to "no content" as far as AdSense is concerned, since there's no basis for them to serve relevant context based ads. "Content" means something that they can analyze to serve relevant ads, i.e. a significant block of text

8:57 pm on Aug 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



i disagree with most here. you asked is it worth doing? of course it is, there's no cost to you, just oppotunity cost of space on your site.

i would describe the pictures a little more, and maybe go into camera/lens/filters and all that fun stuff on each picture.

You could without too much work get equipment ads showing on your site, which would be targeted and decent.

why not, go for it.

9:27 pm on Aug 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



In the interim between now and converting your site to PHP/MySQL, you might consider getting a copy of Homesite to do the find and replace to insert the adsense code on your current HTML pages. It lets you do F&R on a whole directory of .html files. And Homesite is good to have, anyway, if you're going to be doing any more web stuff.
9:28 pm on Aug 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Technically - photos are content - at least as far as i am concerned.

That issue aside I don't think I would put adsense on a 100% photo site - it seems a likely venue for "invalid clicks".

10:00 pm on Aug 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



One of my sites is a Stock photo download site and I get great targeting using url rewrites and active meta tags, So don't be put off go ahead and try.

be prepared however for a dreadful CTR, for some reason people click on the pictures and not the ads!

11:44 pm on Aug 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I've got some photo-heavy areas to my site(s), and so far they are doing okay. In your case, your site might serve tourism ads. It could do well for you. Who knows?
12:16 am on Aug 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



soboyle

Google has already approved you site and has seen the "content" on it. I say try it.

I have a site that's mostly pictures (~100) with some descriptions of a country I've visited. I have placed Adsense ads on this site about half a year ago. So far Google did not complain. I don't know how much I've made from this site because I never thought of making a lot of money from a personal site. But I will say that the ads are very targeted.

It should'nt take you too long to add Adsense code to your pages. My site uses a template coded with SSI so adding the Adsense code was quick and painless.

2:28 am on Aug 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Thanks all, I've decided to go ahead an add adsense to my pages, or at least start adding to pages that have some text on them.
Roomy mentions using active metatags to help along with pages with photo only content, that seems like a good option, as long as I am careful about what words I use.
Hughmungus mentions using find and replace (I have dreamweaver, not homesite)to add the adsense code to the page, what would I be replacing in order to insert the code?
Thanks all, I picked up a book on PHP and MySQL tonight, I have my work cut out for me. Anyone with hints on where to look for good info for building a searchable photo archive?
3:01 am on Aug 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member ken_b is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



using find and replace (I have dreamweaver, not homesite)to add the adsense code to the page, what would I be replacing in order to insert the code?

That depends on where you want the ads to appear on the page. For example, if you wanted to use a 468x60 banner at the very top of your pages you could search for your opening <Body....> tag and replace it with the same tag followed by the adsense code.

If you wanted it at the bottom of the page you might search for your copyright code and insert the adsense code before the copyright notice when doing the "replace".

If you are using Dreamweaver to do this, I'd strongly suggest making a back up of your pages first.

[added] I'd also suggest doing one folder first to try it out. Depending on how large your site is you might want to do the whole thing folder by folder. That would allow you to use individual channels for at least some folders to see which perform best.

3:08 am on Aug 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



My impression is that AdSense doesn't use the meta tags. I'm pretty sure the Google SE doesn't either.

I think the idea is they want to know what you actually say on the page, not what you say you say via meta tags!

8:35 am on Aug 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Google has already approved you site and has seen the "content" on it. I say try it.

Thats what I thought, but someone else on this board claimed that it was against the TOS to have a photo gallery. Of course I can't find the thread now. Anyway I had a travel site, with highly annotated pictures, but to all intents and purposes it was a photo gallery. I though that was the reason I got kicked out. Perhaps I was wrong and I was guilty of something else.

9:18 am on Aug 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



My site is in some ways similar to a photo site with regards to lacking "contents". It is not a against the TOS but the targetting mechanism may get too litlle information to work with.

The trick is to use every form of alternative text that html will allow. Specify img/alt, a/title, metadata. For every photo write a short text explaining details about the photo: Where it was taken, what equipment was used etc. etc.

30.000 visitors pr. month is ok for starters but don't expect too much.

Good luck.

10:44 am on Aug 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



"I had a travel site, with highly annotated pictures, but to all intents
and purposes it was a photo gallery. I though that was the reason I got
kicked out. Perhaps I was wrong and I was guilty of something else."

So I can expect to get canned from the adsense program at any time for my content. I read the agreement, the only thing I saw related to photos was the no pornographic content, so I'm unclear that as to why they would exclude a travel related site with many pictures, especially is there is a lot of discriptive explainations of the photographs. Anyway I've started adding the ads to my pages, starting with my travelogues first, since most of those do have stories that go along with them, hopefully the lightning bolt from the gods at adsense doesn't strike me.

1:47 pm on Aug 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



So I can expect to get canned from the adsense program at any time for my content.

Hey, its me that is the pessimist. We need strict demarcation to keep to our jobs :-}

In the end it is of course your decision, just don't rely on google making you a millionaire. Good luck though whatever you decide, all I know is that google had free advertising on my site for two months as I never receieved a dime from them for my "gallery" site.

2:03 pm on Aug 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



soboyle, great site by the way. Fantastic pictures.
2:20 pm on Aug 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Yep, agreed, that's one of the nicest sites i've seen for a while, soboyle! Fabulous, story telling pictures! I'd remove the double adsense code though as it displays the same ad twice (see my_cameras.htm).

And what europeforvisitors said: i'd concentrate on selling prints and licenses and further add descriptions to the caption only pages to make the most of AdSense.

2:41 pm on Aug 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Using the adsense preview tool, which I have found to be very reliable. I get ads for all 6 pages that I tested including one with less than 20 words of text.

You are going to get very different ads and there is no way that your site is going to be able to pull off a "theme", but the number of PSAs should be manageable.

2:55 pm on Aug 14, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I also checked out parts of your site and found that you are already getting targeted ads in your Costa Rica pages.

By the way I also went to Costa Rica on my honeymoon in 1994, October. Then went back in 1998.

Good luck with your site.

5:15 pm on Aug 16, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



"Using the adsense preview tool, which I have found to be very reliable. I get ads for all 6 pages that I tested including one with less than 20 words of text."

Where does one find the Adsense preview tool? I looked on the adsense page and didn't see one.

5:57 pm on Aug 16, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Go to the FAQ under the help section, and see question 12 under "program basics".
 

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