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I have been Dumb-Priced!

Dumb Priced/Unsmart Priced!

     
5:38 pm on Jun 29, 2008 (gmt 0)

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We call it Smart-pricing when our CPM goes really low.

But what if the reverse happens? all of a sudden, my CPM has shot up by some 200-400% . And I have no idea why, there are no new sections of any spikes in my visitors. Almost everything is the same, but for one week now, my CPM is averaging close to $3.00, when it was always at around $0.85 for over 1 year.

I am not complaining and I hope I don't jinx it.

5:50 pm on June 29, 2008 (gmt 0)

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It could be that you used to be Smart Priced however any changes to your website / account or how ever it works could have got you out of the smart price rut.
7:01 pm on June 29, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I had understood that what we refer to as "smart pricing" can be either positive or negative - isn't it supposed to be a rough reflection of how well your traffic is converting for the merchants?
7:31 pm on June 29, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I subscribe to the school that believes SmartPricing is not meant to and can never be positive for a publisher. It is like an earnings dicing knife, the best that can happen to you is to have it off, i.e. When you are no longer SmartPriced you are back to where your earnings were before the dicing.

As for earning spikes, given the little data we have on how the system works, it can be explained as either site targeting by advertisers or a click/earnings dump.

8:28 pm on June 29, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I agree with Hobbs--smart pricing is a "discount" from the full price an advertiser bids. As such it can never go OVER that full price. If something happens to reduce the discount, of course, you will see your EPC go up.

By the way, is your CPM increase due to CTR improvement, an EPC improvement, or some of both?

9:39 pm on June 29, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Why doesn't google tell us potential causes that trigger smartpricing. My site has been smartpriced for over one year and is like being cursed by google. Before that I enjoyed a ~$25 ecpm. Now it dropped to $6-8 while my traffic is steadily growing.
9:43 pm on June 29, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Smartpricing from what I know is googles way of saying the traffic that you are sending is not the best at converting and therefore not worth as much?
10:16 pm on June 29, 2008 (gmt 0)

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They say the age of your site counts towards your eCPM. Maybe it's as simple as that - that your site has passed that "age threshold" and gained trust rank.

Then again... who knows about anything when it comes to Google Adsense!

10:57 pm on June 29, 2008 (gmt 0)

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They say the age of your site counts towards your eCPM.

I've never heard that before.

My eight year old site doesn't seem to support that idea either. Maybe it's just my site.... it lives in the land of the five and dime click with eCPM to match.

10:57 pm on June 29, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Trust Rank and age of site has nothing to do with with eCPM, content & traffic quality does.

On quantity, newbies's 500 visitors could be earning ten times what 500 of your visitors make you, but then you perhaps serve 30 times as much visitors as he does and take home 3 times his total earnings.
1:43 am on June 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Smart pricing is intended to be a discount for publishers, not a bonus for publishers.
3:25 am on June 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Check your context ads versus placement ads. It could be that you've been targeted by several advertisers that had to compete for your inventory hence the higher eCPM.
4:07 am on June 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Trust Rank and age of site has nothing to do with with eCPM, content & traffic quality does.

I stand corrected. <sheepish grin>.
In that case, I would think it's more towards traffic quality.

5:29 am on June 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Trust Rank and age of site has nothing to do with eCPM, content & traffic quality does.

Just curious...how to you know that for sure?

9:20 am on June 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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The content & traffic quality effect comes from Google.
The trust rank & age of site not affecting eCPM comes from common sense as well as own and other's experiences.
12:51 pm on June 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I don't think anybody will ever know exactly how smart pricing works.

I have a 5 year old site, great traffic, google regularly message me with ways to improve my site, I use only white hat SEO, the site does incredibly well in Google SERPS. Yet the site gets smart priced to death.

Yet I own another site, on the same subject and it earns 5x the CPC. It's insane. Nobody ever knows why when I ask them. The sites otherwise seem to perform identically, similar CTR etc. Just for some reason Google decides that my main site, gets smart priced to hell.

1:18 pm on June 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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realmaverick,
Do you see identical advertisers on both sites?
1:29 pm on June 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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'Smart pricing is intended to be a discount for publishers, not a bonus for publishers. Surramunga'

Smart pricing is actually a discount for advertisers not publishers.

3:47 pm on June 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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realmaverick,
Do you see identical advertisers on both sites?

Yep, pretty much identical. Google just for some reason decides to shaft me on my main site. I wish I knew why, because I'd earn a ton more if the CPC was the same as my other sites.

6:00 pm on June 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I believe smartpricing is always being applied to all sites at all times - it's mostly likely a predictive algorithm to figure out the likely quality of a click, and a click being paid full price is just as smartpriced as a click that's been discounted. It's supposed to protect advertisers from garbage traffic. Now, of course, none of us here deliver garbage traffic, however there are tons and tons and tons and tons of people who do (speaking as an advertiser myself I've seen it first hand) and that is why there is smartpricing. There's also just plain traffic that doesn't convert; it's not necessarily a value judgement of our sites, but if our audiences like to click but doesn't like to buy stuff, then it doesn't do the advertiser much good.
6:04 pm on June 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I believe smartpricing is always being applied to all sites at all times - it's mostly likely a predictive algorithm to figure out the likely quality of a click, and a click being paid full price is just as smartpriced as a click that's been discounted. It's supposed to protect advertisers from garbage traffic. Now, of course, none of us here deliver garbage traffic, however there are tons and tons and tons and tons of people who do (speaking as an advertiser myself I've seen it first hand) and that is why there is smartpricing. There's also just plain traffic that doesn't convert; it's not necessarily a value judgement of our sites, but if our audiences like to click but doesn't like to buy stuff, then it doesn't do the advertiser much good.
6:17 pm on June 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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4th of July all double netmeg?
7:01 pm on June 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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?

the post doubled because I got an internal server error when I posted it.