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Don't miss out on AdSense image ad revenue?

     
2:59 am on Sep 7, 2010 (gmt 0)

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That's what my account said when I logged in:
Don't miss out on AdSense image ad revenue

I've had AdSense image ads disabled for ages because it was notoriously off topic and IMO used to hurt my earnings, not help them, as earnings appeared to go up when images when off.

However, now that AdSense isn't paying quite as well as it did last year, I decided to turn it back on when AdSense suggested it and I must admit, earnings appear to be quite a bit stronger for the last few weeks.

Sure, it's showing some off topic stuff but it appears to be paying so what the heck, I'll run it for now and see if the earnings hold up.

I know others have disabled image ads as well so why not give them another try?

What's the worse thing that could happen, lower earnings and you turn it off again?

Worth a shot!
3:35 am on Sept 7, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I have always had mine on, so Id be curious to see how your results end up in the short run. If you see a decrease in earnings I might turn my image ads off to see what happens.
4:20 am on Sept 7, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Their suggestions are automatic. I don't think a machine knows better about the best strategy for my site.

Probably if they would hire some real people where you can contact them it would help but as long as it is just a machine i don't give a ... about those automatic suggestions.

Talking to real people would be nice, machines are dumb :)
10:12 am on Sept 7, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Their suggestions are automatic.


SEOPTI, where did you get that info from?
12:26 pm on Sept 7, 2010 (gmt 0)

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You talked me into it. For the first time since dinosaurs roamed the earth, I decided to give image ads another opportunity - but only with one ad unit on my best site and page.


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12:59 pm on Sept 7, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I have advertisers who have specifically created image ads for my sites, they really do look good and I have been told by them personally that they have a good response to them.

Saying that I had some strange KLM booking image ads this last week for a couple of days. It would be interesting to know whether a totally off-topic ad actually got any results.
2:25 pm on Sept 7, 2010 (gmt 0)

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SEOPTI, where did you get that info from?

The message itself says that.
Here is what I have in my account:
Our system analyzed your domain, [my site], and found that you’re not opted-in to image ads on at least 50% of the pages of your site. For example, we’ve found that your 336x280 ad unit on [one of my best performing page] is only opted-in to text ads. We recommend that you opt-in to image ads for all of your AdSense ad units
.

I followed their suggestion, enabled Image ads (and text)on September 1 on 336x280 ad unit (the other two ad units are already Image enabled along with text) and saw earnings improve.
However, that could also just be coincidence since September is expected to pay more than August for me.
4:01 pm on Sept 7, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I'm pretty sure the messages you see in your account are auto generated. If AdSense wants to talk to you personally, they send you email. At least, that's what they did for me. The messages I see in my account and those of my clients who have accounts are all the same, all show up at the same time, and all predictably generic.

Now, all that aside - I have gone back and forth on image ads over the years. This year I devised a sort of test which, although probably faulty, at least gave me some feel for how they'd do during my peak traffic. I created an ad block that was text only, and another one that was image only, and I used PHP to rotate 'em evenly. After a million pageviews or so, the image ads turned out to have a much higher CTR and EPC. So they stay on for me.

Even though that damn giant glazed donut is still following me around, even on my own sites. Every time I am tempted to block image ads to get rid of it, I have to remind myself how well they're paying now.
4:55 pm on Sept 7, 2010 (gmt 0)

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If a publisher wants to attract image ads, are there ad unit sizes more likely to accomplish that?


FarmBoy
6:11 pm on Sept 7, 2010 (gmt 0)

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A *smart* advertiser uses all the available ones. But not everyone is smart. The most popular seem to be the 728x90, the 160x600 and either the 300x or 338x squares. I personally make use of the 468x60 a lot, but there don't seem to be as many different ads in those spots.
9:13 pm on Sept 7, 2010 (gmt 0)

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When I had image ads enabled, I got a lot more junk ads.

I don't care whether or not they pay more. I'm not going to degrade my site for the sake of a few more dollars a month. Long-term site viability and popularity with my visitors is more important short-term profit.

Although.... that was before we had category exclusions. Maybe I should give image ads another try.
1:15 am on Sept 8, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I usually have image ads enabled via the "text and image" selection.

But there have been enough times when a single ad would show on hundreds of consecutive pages that I now alternate channels on those pages so that if I get bombed with one ad I can simply turn off image ads on half of those pages by changing one chanel to "text only".
6:57 am on Sept 8, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Will turn image ads on again. Maybe now close to the holidays might work.
12:54 am on Sept 9, 2010 (gmt 0)

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With the new ad formats and image ads enabled my earnings are up about 30% for a few weeks now and holding strong
2:08 am on Sept 9, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I have never understood why anybody would opt out of images. GAS' business model has always been to server the most appropriate / highest paying ads. The more ads that are competing for your ad space the more you should earn. Plus, with so many more advertisers in the mix this is just compounded.
2:22 am on Sept 9, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Visit Thailand, image ads for the most part are irrelevant or too general. For example, for some specific generator, it would show images for Home Depot. No company is going to create an image ad specific to that generator. Text ads have more ads and are specific. I'm giving again a try to image ads but in the past they just weren't that good. At least on my site.

[edited by: cien at 3:07 am (utc) on Sep 9, 2010]

2:57 am on Sept 9, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I turned it back on again for a 12 hour period for a couple of sites for one specific ad unit. Clicks virtually disappeared.

What works for one, doesn't for another I suppose.
4:55 pm on Sept 9, 2010 (gmt 0)

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CodeJockey, you didn't say how many impressions you were talking about but a 12 hour test is in my opinion not long enough to make a call. There are stats delays almost every day with AdSense. I usually give changes at least 1 week to gauge it's effectiveness, even if it looks bad the first day.
7:27 pm on Sept 9, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I have never understood why anybody would opt out of images.


Results - or lack thereof.


...image ads for the most part are irrelevant or too general.


It could be the inventory of image ads for some topics is just more prone to generate clicks than the inventory for other topics. My experience, at least, seems to support that theory.

FarmBoy
7:29 pm on Sept 9, 2010 (gmt 0)

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With the new ad formats and image ads enabled my earnings are up about 30% for a few weeks now and holding strong


My earnings are up since the new ad formats but took a nosedive when I introduced image ads to the mix. When I turned off the image ads, it was like flipping a switch - earnings went back up.

I guess its YMMV.


FarmBoy
8:42 pm on Sept 9, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I wouldn't test for less than a week or a hundred thousand or so pageviews myself.
11:00 am on Sept 10, 2010 (gmt 0)

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swanny007: Relatively small, in the range of 10,000 impressions in the 12 hours. The $$$ is within a narrow range also. (I've always thought that they're allocated a specific number of impressions and a specific amount of $$$ every day and that's it, there's no more.) Perhaps I was quick to revert to text ads, but going from an almost known amount of $$$ to virtually nothing was making my palms sweat.
3:56 pm on Sept 10, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I think text vs image depends a lot on the niche you're in. In my niche I make good revenue with image/rich media ads. I've experimented a few times and I always make more with image/rich than text only.
4:52 pm on Sept 10, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I got the same message and gave it a try. Within a week earnings were up significantly. 30% btter than previous month and 20% better than the same month the previous year. I am very surprised. I tried this a year ago but the results were terrible.
5:00 pm on Sept 10, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I am very surprised. I tried this a year ago but the results were terrible.


Exactly why I had image ads disabled as well.

It used to be radically off target and replaces better paying ads and at least in my situation, and some others posting here, it appears to have been corrected.

... for now ;)
8:12 pm on Sept 10, 2010 (gmt 0)

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I've always had mine enabled. I'm glad I did too with the new Adsense interface with it's reporting for ad types/sizes/etc. Now I have historic data about which types of ads actually perform well on my sites.
9:24 pm on Sept 10, 2010 (gmt 0)

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There are times when limiting an ad block to only images or only text is beneficial. How it was explained to me by my AdSense rep is that by making one ad block limited, it can create a scarcity of impressions for the other, which drives up the bid price of a click. If the other is at a higher click-thru location, it can improve CPM.

I've done extensive testing on this and I can get my CPM to go up about 30% for about a week, then it goes back to normal. IGWS YMMV.
10:24 pm on Sept 10, 2010 (gmt 0)

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Meh. So far not so good. Not impressed by the images/advertisers. It used to be different when I made good money from AS, but there's no sense selling out for what, at best, are pennies. I'll give it a week.
10:51 pm on Sept 11, 2010 (gmt 0)

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We added image ads for a bit and CTR nosedived. Our visitors just will not click on photo ads, but they love text ads. Go figure.
11:08 pm on Sept 11, 2010 (gmt 0)

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We added image ads for a bit and CTR nosedived. Our visitors just will not click on photo ads, but they love text ads. Go figure.


In my world, text ads say "Click me", image ads not so much. They seem to say, "look at me" or "watch me."

------------------------------------------

There is an image ad on one of my pages right now that has text reading something like:

Widget Express
Call us now
555-555-1212

I can't help but think I'm giving that advertiser free advertising on my site - if not free branding also.


FarmBoy
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