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Adsense earnings plumeting, cost per click dropping April 2005

Adsense earnings plumeting, cost per click dropping like crazy

     

Oimachi2

5:03 am on Apr 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Adsense revenues have dropped dramatically for me since April 1st 2005. Same adds, campaign and traffic since 2003 ( with the tweaking and optimizing excluded ).

It's barelly even worth using them anymore...anybody has an alternate source of income for publishers? How about cj.com?

Bruno

MarkHutch

5:44 am on Apr 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Probably due to a big time merchant that was advertising big on sites like yours, has either cut back their advertising, paused it or cut off content in their delivery. If most of your income was coming from a high CPC advertiser, this could mess you up for awhile. However, it could just be something wrong in the Adsense system right now. It's hard to say for sure. I hope it picks back up for you!

Americanfreak

6:01 am on Apr 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I to am having the same problem. Everything has dropped by 50% or more this month.

dirkji

6:28 am on Apr 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I'm having a 50% drop as well. My earnings were roughly the same ammount for about a year.

Freedom

7:01 am on Apr 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



EPC dropped drastically in April 2004 as well. Over the course of the rest of the year, it started to come back up.

But now...

Heck, I can't even see any ads across 15 websites right now. Looks like their adserver is on the blink again.

Oimachi2

8:12 am on Apr 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I heard something about a "smart pricing" option. Apparently they punish "bad quality" versus "good quality " sites...

One of my adsense pages looks like this:

<snip>
I would agree that my site is low quality, was built by myself in 2001...

But it never affected my earnings before, regardless of how pretty the site is...

Anybody want to share what pages are getting low earnings so maybe we can gauge what they mean by good or bad quality.

Bruno

[edited by: Jenstar at 12:50 pm (utc) on April 22, 2005]
[edit reason] No URLS as per TOS, please! [/edit]

wrightee

8:26 am on Apr 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I normally ignore falls in EPC as they tend to bounce back up again, but now it's getting a bit serious... Down to 6% of their average over the last week.

dillonstars

10:10 am on Apr 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Anybody want to share what pages are getting low earnings so maybe we can gauge what they mean by good or bad quality.

I believe they look at the conversion rate data that the adwords advertiser gets from their site.

If a high percentage of your traffic converts into business then you may get a bigger portion of the pie. Quality in Google's case isn't subjective (ie aesthetics or usability) and is more likely an automated quality measure like conversion rate.

Over the 2 years or so that I have had adsense on my sites I have experienced 2 30-40% drops in revenue that I believe were smart pricing adjustments. I never recovered the CPC (or eCPM) but I did recover the earnings through a higher number of impressions.

idonen

1:01 pm on Apr 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



You win some, you lose some... I'm seeing a 100% increase in earnings since the beginning of the month.

fearlessrick

8:37 pm on Apr 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Well, I don't get it at all. I can understand some variation from day to day, but it sure seems to go in surges.

What I don't understand is how clicks, ctr, cpm and earnings all hit new, unprecedented highs a week ago, stay at or near that level for 6 days, then plummet like the proverbial rock. Less clicks, lower CTR, lower cpm, lower eanrings - like a third of what they were a week ago.

I'd just like a little taste of stability, just a little, instead of these wild swings which make no sense whatsoever.

ken_b

8:51 pm on Apr 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

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



What I don't understand is how clicks, ctr, cpm and earnings all hit new, unprecedented highs a week ago, stay at or near that level for 6 days, then plummet like the proverbial rock. Less clicks, lower CTR, lower cpm, lower eanrings - like a third of what they were a week ago.

Depending on site specifics, that could be explained by a big spending advertizer or two cutting back on bids or dropping out of the content network.

hunderdown

8:53 pm on Apr 22, 2005 (gmt 0)



An advertiser with a big budget jumping in and out of the content sites to test ROI might explain big swings up and down.

Or adjustments to the Smart Pricing algorithm that overshoot, with the next adjustment overshooting in the other direction?

I tend to think you need to look at entire months if you're going to find real long-term trends. There's too much daily and weekly up and down...

nutsandbolts

9:58 pm on Apr 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



I agree, look at the entire monthly picture and not just a few days. Most of this month has been amazing but the last few days have been dreadful - worst of the month! But overall, things are higher than last month...

golocal

11:26 am on Apr 24, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



For discussion only - not complaining:
As publishers our job is to keep attracting eyeballs.
Been using Adsense since Dec 03
Now have enough data to run a THIS YEAR VS LAST YEAR Comparison. Pages with adsense this year are about the same as last year.
ACtual Numbers not important percentage of increase or decrease is the barometer.

March 04 to March 05

Ads Served UP 30% up 149K units
Clicks on ads UP108% up 10k clicks
Revenue Down-40%
Pd Per Click Down-71%

Last year March getting a quarter per click
This year seven cents per click.

photo200

2:58 pm on Apr 24, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



looks the same.
:(

Will see what will be next.
Yesterday system WAS quite slow.
It could mean new filter (smart pricing) is
on the start phase.
Let's wait couple more days.

Actually trying to suck out those 2 cents clicks
by starting my own Adwords campaign.
But it really looks like I still need to spend
20-30 cents per click to be shown on pages
where I'm ACTUALLY making 2-5 cents per click in Adsense.

Funny story. :(

Oimachi2

3:13 pm on Apr 24, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I think the Google gravy train was nice while it lasted, pretty much got me in Thailand!

But I think this time it's over. Time to find a new way to generate income...I've been trying www.cj.com for the past few days, 291 impressions ( all organic traffic ), 5 clicks $0 payout...

There must be some alternative to adsense. Anybody know other solutions?

jomaxx

3:48 pm on Apr 24, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member jomaxx is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member



291 impressions isn't enough, especially because with affiliate programs you make all your money from that 1 impression in 1,000 or 10,000 that eventually results in a sale.

Affiliate marketing is a good substitute (and a good supplement) to AdSense, but there's a long learning curve. Here's a hint: CJ has a lot of dogs, even programs with high EPCs. Look for companies fitting your website subject who run their own programs.

europeforvisitors

4:40 pm on Apr 24, 2005 (gmt 0)



I'd just like a little taste of stability, just a little, instead of these wild swings which make no sense whatsoever.

Become a premium publisher with a CPM deal. :-)

In theory, Google could offer a CPM option to mom-and-pop publishers (not just to the megamillion-impression-per-day crowd), but such an option would have to pay less because Google would be assuming more of the risk than it does with the present model. In practice, such an option isn't likely to happen because it could be abused too easily by unscrupulous, incompetent, and/or lazy publishers.

twinsrul

6:04 pm on Apr 24, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Could this have anything to do with Adwords TOS being updated recently? Any changes to adwords effects adsense. Its a shame how google keeps adsense publishers in the dark with all these earning fluctuations. But as long as they keep sending checks, I'll be happy. Seems to me adsense is going to have a huge loyality problem soon. I would leave in a second if I can make money somewhere else.

[edited by: Woz at 7:45 am (utc) on April 25, 2005]
[edit reason] TOS#4 [/edit]

entropicus

10:27 pm on Apr 24, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I'll bet that all of these sorts of posts all boil down to a simple explanation.

Say there is an "a-list", premium publisher, one who has been on the program since the beginning, like for eg., EFV's site.

Then an adverstiser (with a big budget) tracks their prime conversions coming from a site like his, and communicates to G that they will keep spending good $ if they can keep the relationship with EFV as a publisher. G obliges the advertiser and gives EFV a bigger portion of the profit to keep them in a key publisher--advertiser relationship.

Then G obviously has to get the extra profit that they give to EFV (in the form of higher eCPM) from a finite pool of revenue. Which would mean that there is then that much less revenue in the pool to go to other publishers.

So then, all of the publishers who are not on the a-list, (such as my hypothetical example of EFV) would notice a decline in eCPM and $. From there, they start an endless conjecture about what the causes may be, such as SmartPricing, etc. ad infinitum. This is why most people will claim that their income is declining, while there are those few who say that profits are going through the roof.

But the real reason is that G is simply dishing out more moolah to the prime publishers to keep its prime advertisers happy. This all makes the most sense to me. Which is G's bread and butter -- a little site with 1k page impressions a day and avg conversions, or a big site (like EFV) with a good niche, loads of targeted traffic and excellent conversions in a competitive area. It makes sense that G will do whatever it takes to grease the palms of these publishers over all else.

[Of course this is also yet another addition to endless theorizing, since G will never reveal its pricing/payout scheme, we will never prove or disprove these notions.]

CheeseburgerBrown

10:49 pm on Apr 24, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Somebody with a baby-sized site chiming in here (I only get around 1500 uniques/day, normally).

I have a page that's going crazy right now (see my post about having a blog featured on TV), and it's been interesting to see the ads change in response to the traffic.

For instance, ads for "Discount Widgets" were replaced within 24 hours of the traffic spike with ads for "Deluxe Widgets." I saw this change across the board, and my guess it is that it is due to the high number of conversions (the targeting was/is really bang on!).

I've noticed other ads which *seem* to pay a different amount for clicks on the same ad (imaginary price 1=88 cents, imaginary price 2=5.88), which I theorize (in all my ignorance) may be because of a customer sent via my site makes an actual purchase rather than just browsing. Is G's system that dynamic, or am I full of it (again)?

Anyway, I'm enjoying my ride with "deluxe" ads while it lasts!

ken_b

10:50 pm on Apr 24, 2005 (gmt 0)

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



Talking about EPC without also talking about the overall picture including CTR and eCPM is not all that informative.

You can easily have a drop in EPC and still have a bigger check at the end of the month.

ken_b

10:53 pm on Apr 24, 2005 (gmt 0)

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



Cheesburger...

Those spikes from media or prominent temp links can really be fun to watch, and you never know where they will pop up.

Enjoy the ride!

Ducain3

12:58 pm on Apr 25, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I receive about 50,000 impressions per day in the area of my site where I'm running adsense, and since the 18th I've really been taking it on the chin.

I'm not sure what happened since the 18th, but there have been no changes on my part, no drop in impressions, but I'm earning less than half of what I was, CPC.

I'm gonna just ride it out and see what happens, but this has definitely taught me that adsense isn't something I can depend on. I think before I would ever consider making a career out of something like this, I would have to wait until I was consistantly earning 3X my current salary, haha.

Cheers.

Oimachi2

2:11 pm on Apr 25, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



Same here Duncan,

Half the revenue, been like this for close to a full month now, don't get your hopes high for a rebound...

europeforvisitors

2:36 pm on Apr 25, 2005 (gmt 0)



One thing to keep in mind: Search-engine referrals can affect your EPC and CPM. Every time an SE's algorithm changes, the mix of traffic on your site can change.

Google's SERPs changed quite a bit after March 23 (at least for some topics). If your AdSense numbers started declining around that time, search referrals could be part of the reason.

Also, there was a thread somewhere else on WW (it may have been in the Supporters Forum) about a slow April. If e-commerce sites are having a sluggish month, that's likely to translate into lower bids and budgets for AdWords/AdSense.

fearlessrick

2:39 pm on Apr 25, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Duncan, same here, straight down from the 15th to today in ALL METRICS, clicks, ctr, cpm, earnings. About an 80% fall-off from the 15th.

Pretty disgusted with the whole thing. Waiting for an alternative service that respects publishers.

Never trust anybody who says "trust me."

howiejs

3:45 pm on Apr 25, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Bad bad last few days

CTR drop which is weird

Oimachi2

6:32 pm on Apr 25, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I can't even make a profit anymore, loosing money everyday...adwords are costing me more than my adsense revenue...

oddsod

6:42 pm on Apr 25, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



EPC has gone up by about 15% since Saturday on most of my channels. No idea what's caused it. Can't be a single advertiser as it's gone up on a site that covers a range of subjects and does #*$!x clicks per day (so not a miniscule sample). Can't be smart pricing - which I understand is sitewide - as two channels are showing lower EPC. Oh well. Forget the stats and keep working on the sites.
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