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Adding a new site to your Adsense account

     
5:13 pm on Oct 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

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This is the second time it's happened.

I have an established site that was doing well in Adsense. Then I bought a new site (several PR6 pages, clean, was an authority site in 2001, but was neglected and gradually lost much of its traffic), and put Adsense ads on it. The figures suddenly went crazy. The established site's earnings dropped sharply (way, way outside normal variations) according to "channels" info over the last week.

The new site has no penalties, and is not even SEO-ed. The recent WHOIS changes could have triggered some flag at the plex but what I can't understand is why the existing site's CPM and EPC have dropped. I've ruled out end of month/start of month/seasonal factors as being almost impossible in this case - well, certainly to this extent anyway.

The recent SERPS changes don't seem to have changed the volume or quality of traffic Google sends my way, and the ads on the site don't seem to have changed.

Google won't let you open a new account for a new site but tread carefully when adding a new site to an existing Adsense account that is doing well. Maybe it's the case that when I added a site Google cleaned the slate of history on how well the ads on my site convert to sales? If that's the case then they could have dropped the % payout for all my ads. That's one possibility.

It'll probably pick up again but has anyone had a similar experience?

5:23 pm on Oct 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Have you taken this up with Google?
5:25 pm on Oct 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

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I can say that it must be something else. I have done what you said and made even more money.
5:36 pm on Oct 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

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My hunch is that it operates like this;

Payout = (conversion factor * click cost) - google cut

Conversion factor = some factor determined by how well your site converts *traffic* compared to the average. Traffic not clicks... so high volume low click throughs and low conversion... very low factor, or if in a sector where the average conversion rate is very high - then ... low factor.

I also think that the conversion factor is calculated across a publisher id - not a channel, not a domain.

Scenario 1)

You add a site where the converion rate is higher than your existing sites - up goes the conversion factor and earnings across the whole.

Scenario 2)

You add a site with heavy traffic, low conversion rate your factor would plummit. Especially if the new traffic was high compared to the existing sites.

Repeat this is just guesswork! Feel free to rip to shreds - especially if you have real evidence :)

5:48 pm on Oct 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

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fwiw, my impression is that gethan is 100% spot-on.
5:51 pm on Oct 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Feel free to rip to shreds - especially if you have real evidence

Translated: You can't have real evidence so don't dispute my theory? :) LOL

I also think that the conversion factor is calculated across a publisher id - not a channel, not a domain

My guesswork runs along the same lines.

Actually, I forgot to mention, the new site has never had Adsense so it's unlikely that Adsense has calculated some pre-defined worth of the site's conversion rate. Unless it's doing it on the fly...or, worse, defaulting to a low figure till the site has proven itself.

Chicken, logically it should make more money. And I'm sure it will pick up. Adsense has been good to me, major changes they've made caused other sites to lose money; mine just went from strength. Given a few weeks I have faith that Google will see that the new site is part of our network now, no hidden agenda, no undercover operations, no spamming. I also have faith that they'll find a good conversion rate and bump up their % split eventually. The reason I believe this is because the exact same thing happened with another Adsense account I have. Again, established site, took a hit when a new site started showing the ads, then recovered well.

I haven't taken it up with Google. I'll sit it out for a bit first and watch what happens.

[edited by: Macro at 5:53 pm (utc) on Oct. 4, 2004]

[edited by: oilman at 6:16 pm (utc) on Oct. 4, 2004]

5:52 pm on Oct 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

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I think I know why that is happening.

I also have several sites. Recently the site that has more traffic has been exhibiting ads that seem to match the content of the other smaller site but in average seem to pay more. Although they seem to be top performers of the smaller site, they really do not match exactly the content and audience of my larger site.

I don't know why Google is exhibiting them in the wrong site but I suspect that it is a flaw in their algorithms in attempt to maximize revenue.

Each site uses different channel tags, so there should be no reason for this confusion. I think I need to communicate this mistake to Adsense people.

5:56 pm on Oct 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

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I will remove the poorly performing site from my adsense and see if it helps to improve CPM. Since it is a forum site, the CTR is just terrible and the conversion, I guess, seems to be very low for the advertisers.

If gathan's theory is correct, we will see the boost on the overall CPM on other remaining sites. (BTW, I think this theory is correct.)

If you want to test the same thing, please report it back here.

6:04 pm on Oct 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Oh, Macro.

I also had same experiences twice before.

Another speculation is that the adsense look at the historical data and try to match the EPC/EPM, which means you will lose the overall EPC/EPM if you add brand new site or non-performing sites. The EPC/EPM will improve over the time to the close level as before if the new sites improve the performance.

If you add a high-performing site, then you will see immediate boost on EPC/EPM thanks to the new added site, but it will go back to the previous EPC/EPM level within 1-2 weeks. You will see the overall earnings increase due to the increased impressions and clicks.

I experienced both cases with my adsense account.
Of course, there might be other factors too. If you have an experience your own, please share with others.

6:12 pm on Oct 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

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> You can't have real evidence so don't dispute my theory?

I have lots of (circumstantial) evidence that it's more complicated than that ;) But at the core I think it's more or less right.

Google logic: "It costs us to send ad's - even if they are not clicked and it makes the program look lousey to advertisers if the ctr is real low - so lets encourage publishers to put adverts only on the performing sites... but we're google so we can't tell anyone this is how it will work, we'll just do it and maybe someone will catch on and let the cat out of the bag".... doh.

[edited by: oilman at 6:17 pm (utc) on Oct. 4, 2004]

6:16 pm on Oct 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

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If the sites are related then one is stealing from the other. There is only so much inventory out there. I have a ton of sites with AS and I am adding new sites all the time. There is no way to guess what is going on with AS. There are too many unknown variables. What you said is no difference than saying that Black has hit 10 times so Red must be coming and the casino must have rigged it because I know it was due. Guessing what G is going to do is like guessing in a game in chance.

Factors.

1. Inventory changes by the minute
2. number of competiters changes every day
3. Bids on adwords is changing by the minute
4. Traffic is not consistant every day

I don't beleive that G is turning knobs around that change the payout on a per site basis or even over the whole thing. I'm sure the formula is complicated as everything they do is way over complicated. There is no way to prove what you are saying unless you work at G and have access to their data. It is something else. I have worked with many AS accounts and many AS websites and have never seen what you say. There was alwasys another explanation.

Walk away from the foil hat. :)

6:18 pm on Oct 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Question: How does Google know what converts to a sale etc? What if a site only wants traffic and doesn't "sell" a specific product? What then?

Sorry if this was asked somewhere before, just couldn't find it:)

6:25 pm on Oct 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

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I will remove the poorly performing site from my adsense and see if it helps to improve CPM. Since it is a forum site, the CTR is just terrible and the conversion, I guess, seems to be very low for the advertisers.

If gathan's theory is correct, we will see the boost on the overall CPM on other remaining sites.

It would be interesting if you reported back the results of this experiment.

6:35 pm on Oct 4, 2004 (gmt 0)

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"Question: How does Google know what converts to a sale etc? What if a site only wants traffic and doesn't "sell" a specific product? What then?"

clearvision, here is a thread that discussed how conversions are might be calculated.

[webmasterworld.com...]

2:49 am on Oct 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Since it is a forum site, the CTR is just terrible...

I think it depends on where you place the ads in a forum. Mine seem to do quite well.

This is an interesting and unintended consequence of using one table to output the forum posts (as my site does) -- Google's ads show up and there is often a slight pause while the table is being sent to a visitor's browser. Result? The person is looking *directly* at the ads for sometimes up to 3 seconds while waiting for the rest of the page to load. ;)

4:02 am on Oct 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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You may want to take the new site on and off your account about 5 times over a couple of weeks or so to see if there is any consistent patterns appearing before you attribute a drop in Adsense earnings to the addition of a new site. Adsense earnings change all of the time, so adding a new site and having an earnings drop on the existing sites may just be a coincidence and not a cause and effect.

I added a new site and saw a big earnings drop on an existing site on my account, but further testing showed it to be just a fluke unrelated to the addition of the new site.

6:25 pm on Oct 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Just to ad my 2 cents. I have found it is not worth putting all your eggs in one basket in case Google takes away the basket.

I found out the hard way! Limit your sites to two per account, that way if Google does decide to pull the plug, you are still earning on your other sites.

7:17 pm on Oct 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Adsense earnings change all of the time, so adding a new site and having an earnings drop on the existing sites may just be a coincidence and not a cause and effect

I know that there are several my-EPC-has-dropped-in-the-last-two-minutes threads but I've got enough metrics and experience with the program to know - as confidently as one can possibly be with Adsense - that this is not a coincidence.

Endomorph, it's a good policy to spread your eggs around the only problem being the lack of baskets.

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

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Well, in my experience adding a new site, even one with a much lower EPC and click through rate, has not made any difference at all to the revenue from existing site(s) on the account. I play around with different ad and affiliate programs and take sites on and off adsense all of the time.

These are totally different sites though on different topics, so one site having or losing adsense ads doesn't have any impact on the ad inventory for the other sites.

8:00 pm on Oct 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Thanks for that feedback, Jane. So, it must be just me. But it's happened twice now ...with both my accounts. Hmmm.

OK, I'll try your earlier advice of taking the new site off. I'll let it run for a few more days though.

2:47 am on Oct 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

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I would bet a month's adsense check that conversion has NOTHING to do on how a website is compensated.

Either you are a low-tier website and use Adsense or you are a premium advertiser on Adsense using their XML feed and negotiate a % rate.

I don't think it's anymore complicated than this.

Adsense payments are less X-files than most people think.

M

3:21 am on Oct 6, 2004 (gmt 0)

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>>>> Adsense payments are less X-files than most people think.

Adsense payments are based upon on their expected value to the
advertiser. The Adsense group sent out an email to all publishers in the past stating that a number of different factors are taken into account when calculating the expected value of a click. So I would presume they've put some thought and effort into those calculations.

10:39 am on Oct 13, 2004 (gmt 0)

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>> OK, I'll try your earlier advice of taking the new site off. I'll let it run for a few more days though

I kept the site in and sat out the problem. I'm glad to report that it has picked up again back to normal levels.

Since this happened twice to me here's my theory:

When you add a new site Adsense takes a "step back" and re-evaulates your position and value to them somehow. Then if they find nothing untoward, no spamming, a decent reputation for the added site etc. they let your earnings return to normal levels.

But that is a theory based on only two examples I've got. Others may not have experienced the same thing pehaps because they are in a different sector or.... maybe Google trusts them more than it trusts me ;)