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Adsense smokescreen

April 2004 all over again

     
8:57 am on Sep 3, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Okay call me a moaning old git but I just look at the bottom line, and I am convinced that the 1st of September is a mirror of 1st April. Each time Google shaves a bit of my bottom line.

This time it is all nicely hidden behind the 3 ad units but time will prevail. My last 2 days have seen a significant drop in earnings. I would be interested what anyone else thinks about this

I am so fed up with Google playing God.

Oh I really hope they fall flat on their faces and let them have 1% of the anguish that they have caused many a webmaster with their aloof stance, straight jacket TOS, and to top the lot Goooooooooooooogle.

I will be glad when the day comes when Adsonar gets better targeting, MSN or yahoo comes up with something better.

Then I will say Goooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooooodbye

[edited by: Jenstar at 2:05 am (utc) on Sep. 4, 2004]
[edit reason] corrected company name [/edit]

10:15 am on Sept 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Hey thanks asinah!

I am curious to the responses the post will get. Will it be some sort of defensive type rant or will people go "hmmmmm you know maybe I have been looking at this in a way that isn't too constructive". Let's see what happens if anything.

10:25 am on Sept 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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You too ncw164x! Thanks! My ego is has now been inflated.

Rather dwelling in things I can control, I'd rather stick what is in my control. But that is just my opinion.

10:38 am on Sept 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Hey arubicus I take it you meant rather than dwelling in things I "can" control you meant "can't" control

I was told a saying years ago
when the going gets tough the tough get going

that exactly what you have got to do, get off you a**e and make you site work, no one is going to do it for you and give you free money at the end of the month.

but above all never ever ever give up

ncw164x

3:28 pm on Sept 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Nice posts arubicus!

It's easy to slip into focusing on the things we can't control, probably because of the frustration they cause.

But the time is much better spent on those things we can control.

3:57 pm on Sept 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Yes, extremely nice post. It needed to be said and you said it well.

Constant bitter complaining kills the effectiveness of this forum for sharing different ideas and strategies. It's one thing to report on what Google's doing to you, quite another to use this place as an anonymous soapbox where you can lambast Google without any repercussion. If you don't like their decisions, send them a private note and leave their program. Or post about it once here and drop it.

Don't indirectly use Webmasterworld to try to convince others to be dissatisfied alongside you. That just wastes this extremely valuable resource.

7:01 pm on Sept 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Last I checked google had a rep over here to get feedback from adsense pubs. We give feedback.

I have been with google for a long time, about a month after adsense started. Over these months I have made Google a lot of money and I have made a lot of money as well. I was very pleased with google for a long time, but then they started making little changes here and changes everywhere that have totally ruined the program. <snip>

That is great you do so many things to change your site and whatever that was all about, that is great, we all do that.

It sounds a lot like you either have a small site you do not really care about that much or you have not been with adsense long enough to compare today with the glory days. I commend you for your glorious efforts making changes to your site, but am confused to why you are in any position to be telling what other people can say here. I can and will say whatever I want about Adsense, I have been with them long enough and have made both of us enough money to be able to complain. If the program is heading in the wrong direction and everyone is making less, you bet I am going to complain and complain until it is fixed. Sitting back and ignoring changes to the point where you feel it is pointless to say anything about it, especially with people here, sounds a lot like a dictatorship.

I find your comments quite funny as we move into the days of google as a public company. Now, more than ever, they are going ot be hearing the calls and complains from millions of people around the world. Shareholders are certainly not interested in a company that keeps screwing up. If you do not want to hear people complain about google you better move to space, as it is going to get a lot more serious from now on.

<snip>

[edited by: Jenstar at 2:51 am (utc) on Sep. 7, 2004]
[edit reason] Off topic & TOS [/edit]

7:15 pm on Sept 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Thanks everyone! Thank for correcting my typo also!

I like people reporting drops in this and that. Don't get me wrong. When it comes down to just moaning, groaing, and complaining it tends to degrade this fine forum.

Now that I think about it, maybe I shouldn't have said anything. I could use their weakness and expoit it for my profit! While they are complaining I could have designed a site, overtake their SE positions, take their business/readers, put more time into a marketing campaign, brand the site, create more useful content... I wonder if adsense would really matter to them if I did this?

Anyway, thanks again everyone.

7:47 pm on Sept 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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It sounds a lot like you either have a small site you do not really care about that much or you have not been with adsense long

No I don't have any small sites in fact quite the opposite FYI and have been using adsense nearly from the start, yes it is true that a lot of changes have happened and our earning do fluctuate up and down but you don't see many people passing the adverse comments like you have been doing all over the forum over the last few days, if you are not happy with the deal then remove it from your site and put some other advertisement code in it's place.

Oops but it's not that easy is it because there is nothing else which can match it at the moment, still as they say half of nothing is nothing, better to leave the code on your site and earn something

No one is saying you do not have rights to your comments but we also have our rights to reply

ncw164x

7:51 pm on Sept 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Chris - I love it when I am right!

my earlier post - "Will it be some sort of defensive type rant"

snip

I have been with adsense from the beginning. I have seen the ups and downs in EPC. But you know what. I still rake in the bucks and continue to do so.

Chris - "I find your comments quite funny as we move into the days of google as a public company. Now, more than ever, they are going ot be hearing the calls and complains from millions of people around the world. Shareholders are certainly not interested in a company that keeps screwing up. If you do not want to hear people complain about google you better move to space, as it is going to get a lot more serious from now on."

I am not against people complaining and I understand that google reps stop by from time to time, but yours is a growing trend. Rather than lookig for opportunities and soulutions under your control you much rather complain until you get your way 'John Kerry'. Kinda reminds me of those people that demand everything in their life but won't do a damn thing to add their own value to it. They spend all of their time energy sitting on their butt complaining and sulking in the misery of life waiting for that handout.

I didn't post it just for your sake but for the sake of others that you tend to drag into your misery. To save them and the newbies out there new to internet business from this sort of thinking.

Being unhappy with everything and moaning and groaining is just planting the seed for more misery in your life. You are what you focus on. You bring into your life what you give to it. You are a reflection of your own values and beliefs. We can see through your crap what you truely are and it is sad.

I am not trying to silence you. I have offered to you as an opportunity to learn a different way to think and to grow from it. Your EGO is just adding the misery back into your life. Again I predicted this would happen because we can see your values shine through in the way you act. I gave you a gift. A start to a new line of thinking that would bring more into your life. It is your choice to take it or leave it, moan about it or use it to enrich your life. It is your choice. I am willing to bet that some others out there, even your compeditors will be willing to learn.

P.S. I tend to wonder why you got this resentment towards publicly traded companies or powerful ones at that. You may want to look into it because it is overshadowing you common sense.

[edited by: Jenstar at 2:53 am (utc) on Sep. 7, 2004]
[edit reason] off-topic [/edit]

8:16 pm on Sept 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Chris - "I have been with them long enough and have made both of us enough money to be able to complain."

They already paid you for those past clicks and you accepted and continue to use the service. Oh I see. "I will accept this money but won't like it" type attitude. Be thankful you had the opportunity to make what you do! It is how YOU use this opportunity that will make the greater difference. By the time google will answer your demands, enough time would have passed that you could have doubled or tripled your income!

There is also difference between complaining and contacting google and offering constructive advice. They are more willing to work with you if you are helping than sitting here cutting them down and degrading their business. I wonder why they haven't been around for a while.

If you want more money then use your creativity to do so. Or is it too much work?

8:34 pm on Sept 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Or is it too much work?

Way too much work! :)

By that logic a person who hate his or her job but accepts the paycheck should just shut up and deal with it or try to make his / her situation better? I would rather try to improve the situation to achieve more for both parties.

I have never been a fan of sitting around and keeping quiet about everything. If you are suggesting that all criticisim is always in a negative atmosphere i take issue to that. Certainly I am satisified with google presently enough to continue with the program, but when they are coming up with new ideas that i think are detromental to the program as a whole (such as GOOOOOGLE and multiple ad units) I am most certainly going to speak out about those. I know google employees puruse around here and certianly will remember my comments next time they are in a meeting.

Google has many good things going for them, but the style of management they are using is ineffective for what they are trying to accomplish for themselves and for the public that now owns a large stake in the company. Google can no longer sit back and make all the decisions themselves, they have others to make happy now, and when we are not happy, we will certainly complain. Proxy votes speak quite loudly to upper management.

Publishers here, like you and me, know what we would want in an ideal world out of Adsense. In my eyes, that ideal program does not include GGGOOOOOOOGLE on ads, it does not include multiple ad units, but it includes things like direct deposit and less of a authoritarian attitude from adsense. For anything to work two parties must be working together. Being top fed everything by google is not a healthy recipe for success.

A huge part of the time devoted to my site these days is making changes with ad colors, positions, styles, and page modifications to maximize CTR to squeeze everything I can out of my sites. To see EPC be reduced to about 30% of values a week ago is very very frustrating. I have to now increase CTR by that much more just to break even to where I was prior to some of these changes. I have to work 70% harder to accomplish the same thing. Frustrating when I am trying to expand my sites rather than make changes to achieve what I have already done in the past. Sure work is invloved to stay where I am, but needing to keep working harder and harder every month to stay where I have been while having to neglect other activities to expand my sites is frustrating.

EPC, however low it may be in comparison with the golden days is still higher than other programs. I do think other companies recognize the wants of us publishers here who "endlessly complain". Companies know their is money to be made in this racket while making both parties invloved happy. I think that these companies have a better understanding of effective communication and how it can be beneficial in the business community than Google does, and as a result, I think it is only a matter of time before we see Adsonar and MSN coming along and taking a lot of business from adsense, as a publisher i am certainly a free agent right now, i am content enough to stay with google for the time being, but once i see someone make an offer i am shipping out.

8:35 pm on Sept 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Are you suggesting that Arubicus should follow your example and act like Zell Miller? :-)

Gosh that was horrible wasn't it? Talk about someone with a lot of pent up anger. You lefties can have him back he is a liability to any party.

The ensuing Chris Mathhews argument was certainly wonderful television.

8:36 pm on Sept 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Chris:

April 2004 all over again

While some of us received horrible earnings during the first week of April, the EPC got better afterwards and the earnings were not that far off from the normal.

While the first few days of September look bleak, the fact that it is a holiday/hurricane weekend might have something to do with it.

I say lets wait it out, or if it isn't making what it should make in your site "replace it". The biggest vote of non-confidence you can do is to take the code from your site. That move actually hits Google's pocketbook.

BTW, July and August 2004 have been the more rewarding for me in both Adsense and affiliate programs so I can't complain that much.

8:44 pm on Sept 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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By that logic a person who hate his or her job but accepts the paycheck should just shut up and deal with it or try to make his / her situation better? I would rather try to improve the situation to achieve more for both parties.

That's actually what we want to see here -- suggestions on how to improve things that we can apply on our own. Not daily rants day in and day out. So far, we have yet to read anything constructive from you. Just "I hate G" and "I hate G more and more" rants every single day. When someone suggests or tries to give an analysis on a situation, your line is always "Last I checked, you are not a Google employee" when you know that many of us here except for ASA are not Google employees. How can that attitude foster any good camaraderie here?

We want to read something constructive, that's all. We're sick of your daily rants.

9:00 pm on Sept 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Chris -

Very smart of republicans to use a Democrat like Zell Miller to do the complaining for them. It made the Republicans point on the issue and also that the anger that is shown in the Democrats.

Chris - "By that logic a person who hate his or her job but accepts the paycheck should just shut up and deal with it or try to make his / her situation better?"

Hell with the logic buddy! Humans don't do anything based on logic! We are emotionally based. We do things to obtain a feeling. Your concious mind tries to use logic but still no matter how much you rationalize, you still base the decision on feelings and rules to obtain those feelings.

What I am saying is not shut up but use the situation as opportunity!

Your example of the person with the job. They have a choice. Continue to work there and remain silent, make the place better with constructive advice, quit the job, complain and be unhapy, start a better company, or what ever.

At that an employee may not have the athority to MAKE THE DECISIONS! Alot is out of their control. Like pay raises, perks, and that sort. If you b***h at management all of the time they tend to loose respect for your opinion and person as well especially if your focus/resentment leads you to performance issues. If the employee would stick to what is in their control (thier own behavior) they can create a better atmosphere to work in, increase their own VALUE to the company, and so on.

chris - "Publishers here, like you and me, know what we would want in an ideal world out of Adsense."

Presubposition - I am sorry I am not like you. I don't need it to be ideal. I am confident in my own abilities to make the most of it. I am not affraid to work. If I don't want to work I will hire someone to do it for me! Hmmm, another opportunity found. :)

chris "A huge part of the time devoted to my site these days is making changes with ad colors, positions, styles, and page modifications to maximize CTR to squeeze everything I can out of my sites. To see EPC be reduced to about 30% of values a week ago is very very frustrating. I have to now increase CTR by that much more just to break even to where I was prior to some of these changes. I have to work 70% harder to accomplish the same thing. Frustrating when I am trying to expand my sites rather than make changes to achieve what I have already done in the past. Sure work is invloved to stay where I am, but needing to keep working harder and harder every month to stay where I have been while having to neglect other activities to expand my sites is frustrating."

Take a look at this paragraph. This is full of beliefs that are completely overshadowing such opportunities to grow. Just look at it and see what you can find. Pay close attention. What are you actually looking for? Drill it down and you will find that all you are looking for is a just a simple feeling. Nothing else really will seem to matter. It is just like a bunch of crap sitting on a table. The table is still a table. Take the crap off and you can see the table better and actually use it. When you find the feeling you can look at it different and find your opportunities.

What you are doing is CREATING more resentment in the program by just focusing on that. Whatever you focus on, you will bring into your life. Focus on the same problem but in a different way and you will see a shift. I am not say that you should say "oh well" I am saying that it is ok to look at the problem but choose a different way that will be more productive.

11:27 pm on Sept 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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By that logic a person who hate his or her job but accepts the paycheck should just shut up and deal with...

Exactly! Thats the way it works. Your option is to quit the job or deal with it. You accept the paycheck, you live by the rules your employer sets down.

Same goes for Adsense. If you aren't happy, you have the same two options -- deal with it or leave the program.

12:58 am on Sept 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

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There is something to be said about "the squeaky wheel".... That is the reason why I don't mind people complaining. Who knows, I might even benefit from their complaints.

It is just not in my nature to complain in a business setting. If it works for me, I continue using it, if it doesn't is bye bye.

1:17 am on Sept 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Great Posts arubicus!

Your vision is clear :)

There is a difference between making constructive suggestions and constantly barfing all over people, ( I have attempted many times to type that same message and never got it right....constructive without being condemning)

I was thinking that making suggestions to Google about what is /isn't working helps everyone...they need to know that. By remaining in "solution" mode we can make the best of it by changing adjusting or dropping the program. IT IS ALL A CHOICE AND WE ARE IN CONTROL OF THAT. Like you said, maybe these challenges are just another opportunity waiting to happen :)

Thank you again for saying what needed to be said :)

1:24 am on Sept 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

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All very nice and homespun advise....good philisophical approach...but the heart of this thread was "another April?". Think Chris is voicing his opinion that adsense continues a downward trend in epc as he sees it. Talk all you want about opportunities etc, but when one side of the equation in the calculation of earnings continues downward...its difficult to improve earnings. Think Chris is expressing the opinion of many that Google is always seems to be flattening out the revenue, epc goes down as publishers find ways of improving ctr? He may be right or wrong but you have to respect that position.
1:43 am on Sept 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

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We do respect his position ... but too much negativity can be boring at times. It's one thing to complain, and another to lambast every chance he got the hands that feed him. I think I have yet to read any move he is making to arrest the slide in his EPC.

I agree with the previous post - if it is a business arrangement and I find that I am in a disagreeable position, I find ways to reverse the situation. If there is really none, and others in the same boat as I am are suffering in the same way, I simply quit. And move on to better pastures. Not whine every single day.

2:09 am on Sept 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Can't disagree with the comments about the ranting...but have yet to read anything in the posts in this thread that would help him or anyone else with stopping the epc errosion...and I think that is the basis of his rants.

This in his opinion is controlled by google...perhaps someone has the magical formula to help him in changing his position in this area? If not then perhaps the posters need to consider that the errosion of epc is and has been an ongoing issue with the program?

2:56 am on Sept 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Chriskud5, your bitter tirades are really getting on a lot of people's nerves.

This is NOT Google's rant corner and you're constantly derailing threads with your own agenda. Just drop adsense and be quiet already if it's so bad. You think Google will change its policies because the same guy posts an off-topic rant in every other thread? I think your type is the reason we get less of AdsenseAdvisor lately.

I really wish WebmasterWorld's forums came with an ignore user feature.

Visi, thanks for getting the thread back on topic.

3:11 am on Sept 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

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"that the errosion of epc is and has been an ongoing issue"

Not so sure I agree with you on that...our epc on the average has remained the same (until recently, be it the goooogle or the multi ad units, the hurricane, the holiday) for the past 6 months. Maybe this is different for other topic matter?

Hmmmm...a solution. The challenge is how to keep both parties happy. If someone is using both, you can more easily see both sides... it is almost like putting on two different hats!

First look at why, then think of how. (Just examples there could be other why's and hows:)

Why is the EPC slowly decreasing:
1. Maybe epc started out higher in the beginning, but has now become saturated with Adsense publishers trying to capitalize on the higher paying keywords.

2. Maybe advertisers thought the coversions weren't worth the ppc and have slowly been lowering bids. You can't FORCE an advertiser to pay more per click.

How do you fix that?
1. If sites were reviewed more closely for following the TOS as far as original content, they could weed out those spammers, thus "unsaturating" a market. Yet, can you imagine it? Just think of the diabled sites thread! Publishers rarely see anything wrong with their sites, but Google obviously does. Yes, I am sure some have done nothing wrong, but on the whole I am sure Google doesn't go around diabling for no reason. ***Making us Adsense publishers more accountable for our sites content.

2. This would also help build confidence in the Adwords Advertisers knowing that their ads are displayed on sites that are legit. Maybe they should allow publishers the option of seeing what sites their ads are displayed on and they could disable unacceptible sites. Yes, there would be a lot to consider as far as how much info they wanted to give, but you get the idea of where it is going. ***Making the advertisers happy and possibly opening up the trust so more Adwords advertisers use the content option...thus increasing epc.

There are probably other, better ideas out there, but brainstorming is better than ranting!

Solution mode....how would you tackle the challenge?

Question: Correct me if I am wrong, but how is Google shaving off the bottomline ( other than the faux pax of gooooooooogle) Advertisers are in control of how much they pay per click?

3:30 am on Sept 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Well clear I think that is the heart of this discission ...as to whether the average price advertisers pay is decreasing...or whether google is decreasing the payouts. We have seen indications previously it is google (broadmatching last October and the April...."adjustment") The question posed in this thread has there been a further revision this month?

By the way after removing adsense due to low returns in July/August from many of our pages, this is the first month that we have seen some recovery in earnings since April. So at this time we would have to disagree with the basis of this thread.

3:47 am on Sept 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Jeez, must we got through this every holiday weekend? Besides the three-day Labor Day holiday in the U.S., the following have been occurring:

-- The GOP convention, which diverted quite a few Web survers;
-- The second major hurricane in a few weeks' time;
-- The Olympics;
-- The end of summer vacation and the mass migration of millions of college students back to school while families sneak in last-minute vacations. (Most Web browsing occurs at work -- no work, no traffic).

My Google revenue has been down the last week or so, along with site visits and CPM ad revenue. It's the end of summer. Everything grinds to a halt. Business will resume first thing Tuesday.

As for the multiple ad units ... in some ad categories, there are more willing advertisers than inventory. Displaying more of them on your page might result in your getting clicks you would not otherwise have received, even though they might be lower-paying clicks. Which is better? No click-through or one that pays a bit less than that category normally produces?

No one has to display additional ads but if you have the room, why not? After all, legitimate ads are a service to readers. The process is known as "tweaking" and it can provide incremental, if not gargantuan, returns. It really seems to me that the carping in this thread is completely our of proportion to the supposed injury.

4:05 am on Sept 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

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jhood -

Income fluxes are normal, not a big deal.

4:09 am on Sept 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Sorry about the late post.

clearvision - There you go someone was listening! Well, you probably understood before my posts.

Visi - I understand why Chris is ranting and raving we here it all of the time. Obviously what he is doing by ranting and raving is not working. If it isn't working then change what you are doing and see if that works better. Well enter my little post to offer the idea to Chris.

It just seems that Chis places his whole life, his income, his happiness, as well as his own well bieng in the hands of a 3rd party. When you do this you have no stability in that you loose control over the things you put into it. A factory worker who has worked there for 20 years get's laid off because the company wants to improve their bottom line. A life put into the hands of a third party.

Visi - "Talk all you want about opportunities etc, but when one side of the equation in the calculation of earnings continues downward...its difficult to improve earnings."

It may be difficult but not impossible. Just because it is difficult doesn't mean that it can't be more rewarding. Chris may feel as if he is stuck and there is only one way to go about getting what he wants. With a different approach he may actually find that he ins't stuck in an adsense rut and discover that there is actually many other choices and opportunities. Chris has boxed himself in and I believe that he can open the box and step out of it with this free advice from our kind forum members. Constuctive advice if you will. This my way of respecting Chris as a fellow webmaster.

With the posts coming in about possible why's, next (and this is for all people) ask yourselves what is good about all of this? What can I learn from it? What can I do immediately to overcome some of these obsticles? What can I do for long term stability in the advertising market and when thes obsticles show their face again? What other opportunities do I see in this problem? (I can think of about 10 right now - 2 of which are now written down to further explore! Man I love business and opportunity)

5:39 am on Sept 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Wow - I feel like there needs to be online boxing in here or something . . . .

But back to the business side of things - You do need to watch your EPC and look for trends both up and down.

Is it the theme / topic of the page? Are you using the word "free" or "sample" that is driving down the value?

Do you have an adwords account where you check each week the max bid and the traffic estimates for your target terms?

Do you also look at overture's bid tool for any trends - like the top 3 advertisers there dropped their bid from $3 to $1 (because there is a great chance they are advertising on adwords also and took the same move / cut)?

Do you believe your content is worth $x.xx a click? That is the toughest question to answer. You have to look at your site and what ads are being "picked" and say this is on target and ya know what it is only worth a few cents a click . . . .

The HARD part that the core of this thread is getting at is the CHANGES. Nobody likes change! If you started at several dollars a click and are now at several cents a click - you have to wonder what happened and it is hard not to have any control over the change. If it started at a few cents and then one day it was a few bucks - you would never complain!

7:47 am on Sept 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Good post. I like the questions because it gets you to think and explore. Thanks.
2:19 pm on Sept 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

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"Is it the theme / topic of the page? Are you using the word "free" or "sample" that is driving down the value?"

Dang this one was like a lightening strike.

How could I be so stupid...!

I had 4 instances of the word 'free' in my main footer alone.

ARGGGGGH.

Thank you thank you. Any more flashes of wisdom you want to offer please do so. :)

This 64 message thread spans 3 pages: 64