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Would you still have the same desire to produce quality content?

If you weren't earning money through adsense

     
5:16 pm on May 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I know people who run good websites do it because they love what they do, but let's face it, now that people can earn good money through various ad programs (especially adsense for most people as its the easiest and most convenient), they also do it to get a return on their time and investment, and for some extra income which always comes in handy. Of course, some people even make a living off their sites.

What if you suddenly found your income was down by 70-80 percent because of poor adsense performance and this figure was not getting back for months to prior levels, would you still have the same desire to produce quality content or run the sites at all?

My personal view is that I am not sure if I would be able to devote time and effort and expenditure to run sites if I wasn't getting a return. I know back in the early 2000s a lot of people created content without expecting anything in return, but as far as I am concerned, the only people who might do that these days are people running personal blogs or some non-profit oriented organisations.

Now that you are expected to earn something in return, the only way to stay motivated is to actually keep seeing income roll in.
5:25 pm on May 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I'd keep my fireworks site; that was up long before there even was a Google, and a lot of people count on it. Some of the others, maybe not so much.
6:32 pm on May 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I was constructing sites for probably 4-5 years before Google even started let alone AdSense.

The nature of my sites means I would still continue, advertising is a very small part of my income but usually good enough for a few beers every month:-)
7:48 pm on May 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Same here. I've been building websites for longer than there was a Google. Look around. Money is being made without Adsense now. If you're building websites for Adsense, well, I think we found your problem.
7:51 pm on May 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Having lots of people in you niche that depend on your site daily results in many rewards that aren't monetary.

Plus you get offered real life opportunities that would have been unachievable on your own, or very expensive.

A good website can be like authoring a book. It establishes authority in the field.
8:08 pm on May 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

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i think the days when people made crappy fan sites just for their own personal satisfaction are rapidly coming to an end.
if people want to do that these days, they are much more likely to fire up a free blog where half of the job and the design is already done for them, or create a new group page on facebook, or something like that.

how many people take the time to create a complete site from scratch? with all the hosting and stuff that goes with it?

its all weighted against them these days. traffic is much harder to come by unless you know what you're doing. you have to put quite a bit of work into it, and that drains all the fun out of it.
things like backlinks could be picked up easy peasy ten years ago, but now 99.9% of link requests probably dont even get read.

also... the stuff that made sites fun to run (like having your own forum bolted on) are a million times harder to get started these days. because of places like facebook.

i still do have a hobby site, but its my main site that takes up all my time because that's the one that earns the money. i dont have time to mess around with my hobby site anymore.
9:18 pm on May 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

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"Same here. I've been building websites for longer than there was a Google. Look around. Money is being made without Adsense now. If you're building websites for Adsense, well, I think we found your problem."

Actually whenever I build sites I do not usually have any ads running for about 6 months to a year because I am not one of those people that builds for adsense. In the long run those types of sites just won't rank well at all.

However, making money through adsense sure does motivate me to make the site bigger, better in the hope of earning more. Its like a job where people will try to meet and beat targets in the hope of getting promoted so they will earn more.
2:55 am on May 6, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I remember writing software as far back as the VIC-20 many years ago. I enjoy it so no, I wouldn't stop creating quality sites.

Even today only some of my sites have adsense, if the ecpm isn't high enough I remove any/all ads and go for the page speed benefit instead.
3:00 am on May 6, 2011 (gmt 0)

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If the AdSense money went away, I would probably keep all my sites but only maintain the top two. So, yes and no. My smaller sites that aren't that profitable now would likely just fade away. The big two that still have tons and tons of quality unique content... yeah, I'd keep building them.
3:19 am on May 6, 2011 (gmt 0)

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>>Of course, some people even make a living off their sites.

all professional webmasters make a living from their sites.

if you are not making a living from your sites you are a hobbyist.
6:35 am on May 6, 2011 (gmt 0)

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all professional webmasters make a living from their sites.

The site doesn't make money in its own right. Does that make the underlying, profit making, B&M business a hobby?
9:35 am on May 6, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Does that make the underlying, profit making, B&M business a hobby?


That's the webmaster's beer money:-)
10:29 am on May 6, 2011 (gmt 0)

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My main site started as a "hobby site" but grew big and popular quickly and I am definitely a professional webmaster making a living from it. Putting Adsense on the site allowed me to use freelancers and buy in really good content - one has been working for me for 4 years now, another for 2, and the content they produce is very important to me and to my visitors. But I've had to cut back on buying in drastically since November and now scramble to cope with Google and Adsense changes, producing content myself, staying on top of the seemingly-required social media aspects etc. I'm working much harder, achieving much less, and I'm stressed like I have never been stressed before!

Would I still have the same desire to produce quality content? Yes. My visitors deserve it.

Would I still have the ability to produce quality content? No.
2:47 pm on May 6, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Would you still have the same desire to produce quality content?
If you weren't earning money through adsense

Yes. I created websites before Adsense. Some clients ask (and pay) for websites that I'm not willing to show as "proudly made by me", besides most of the clients create crpy content.

Having my own sites allows me to learn and get better about what I love to do, besides being able to sell those services. Is not the same loving boats than writing about boats, the last one is more serious.

I have friends with the opposite approach: creating content for clients only and nothing for themselves. Results? they sell, but when the client stops paying the sites go offline and there is little to show, that makes it hard to sell your same services.
 

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