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Why Does the First Click Always Pay So Much More?

Any idea?

     
1:46 am on Sep 1, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I have observed this for years.
Here is an invented, but representative example.

Visit stats -
Page x got one click for $10.
Return later in the day -
Page x now has 4 clicks, earnings now = $13.
(Every page has its own channel, and one ad block.

I see this over and over and over again on various pages.
So, why? I don't get it.
Is it a technique to get us hyped-up? By the advertiser? By Google?
Since Google always pays 68% to the publisher, it would not seem to be them.
Is it the advertiser who is manipulating things? Somebody is.

Does anyone have any idea?
.
2:59 am on Sept 1, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Do your ad blocks only have one ad in them? Or are there three or four? Do you know which ad the user clicked on? Is it not possible that the first ad could be paying $10 but the third ad twenty five cents? Also, do we have any reason to be positive that clicks and earnings are updated simultaneously and always in sync? I don't ever recall Google coming out and saying so, and I have anecdotal examples over the years that would suggest they don't.

I don't really see any reason (or motive) behind thinking it some kind of deliberate manipulation.

There are a lot of factors that go into a click at the exact time it occurs - certain sets of conditions on the advertiser side, on Google's side, and on your site's side. All these things have to be totted up to come up with the value of a click. And even then, sometimes Google has to come back later and adjust.

I understand your curiosity, but I think it's one of those things that you can wear yourself out trying to figure out, and you never will know one way or the other.
5:09 am on Sept 1, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Do your ad blocks only have one ad in them?
All blocks are 250x250 which never display more than 3 ads, which is the reason I use them.

Do you know which ad the user clicked on?
No.

Is it not possible that the first ad could be paying $10 but the third ad twenty five cents?
Yes. But what is the probability that the top ad is always clicked first, always followed by multiple clicks on ads #2 and #3? It seems unlikely. But because of personalization, IBA, geolocation and Cert. Ad Networks, I don't even know which ads are served to anyone and in what position, let alone which ads that get clicked.

Also, do we have any reason to be positive that clicks and earnings are updated simultaneously and always in sync? I don't ever recall Google coming out and saying so, and I have anecdotal examples over the years that would suggest they don't.
I agree.

I don't really see any reason (or motive) behind thinking it some kind of deliberate manipulation.
It is simply that it is Sooo consistent over time, that it begs the question. Big money, then little money. Weird.
8:35 pm on Sept 4, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Maybe a symptom of advertiser daily budgets so the auction has less bidders as the day goes on?
7:56 am on Sept 5, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Heck, if I got a $10 click and then four $3 clicks for sure everyday, I'd be a happy hamster.
9:56 am on Sept 6, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Remember, I did "invent" the numbers, for ease of explanation, but the proportions are about right. I don't want to violate any T&Cs.
6:07 pm on Sept 6, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I see what Sally was talking about. I made a point of looking more to see what was listed when I saw 1 click for the day. Today I had $18.63 for 1 click...the first click. That was at 6 am or so... as the day goes on i'm averaging $2 a click. I watched this for the last 4 days and the first click has always been way higher than the average clicks. I think it's just the way google stats work.
11:42 pm on Sept 6, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Ahh. Another observer.
I think it's just the way google stats work.

I would LOVE to hear an expansion of this statement.
I just can't understand HOW they could "work" in this manner.

1. Does the first click reward you for potentially upcoming future clicks?
2. Then, are all subsequent clicks downgraded?
3. Or, do Adwords buyers say, "I will pay big money for the first click only? On all subsequent clicks, I will pay far less."
4. Does Google do this to "encourage" us early each day, to work harder? They could start out with one "bonus" click, and then pay us less on subsequent clicks, to even out to 68%?
5. Could it be "catch-up" - Google holds back money from the previous day, while it checks out those clicks, and then dumps the extra money into the first click of the next day? What about those occasions where there were ZERO clicks on the previous day? How long does it take Google to validate a click? 24 hours? I am thinking milliseconds.

I am certain of only one thing - this is weird. And I can offer no plausible, logical explanation.
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12:56 am on Sept 7, 2011 (gmt 0)

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I'm assuming google is tracking so many clicks/impressions it takes time for the data to process. Sometimes I'll have 6 clicks with $0's. Then later in the day I see some revenue for those clicks... Unless the 7th click happened to the one that paid something...

1. I don't see how it would relate.

2. Not downgraded, just averaged out as the day goes on.

3. I never heard/read anything to that effect.

4. Could me... :) a little incentive.

5. Don't know. They could just credit the click on the day in question, no reason to tally it up the following morning on top of a click.

I am certain of only one thing - I had a good adsense day today.
7:21 am on Sept 16, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Possibility is : Might be cost per click is much higher for first click.
8:56 am on Sept 16, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Just a guess: Advertisers set maximum click cost and daily budget in AdWords. Campaigns with a high max click cost are displayed first and more to the top, because of the real time auction in Adsense. So they get clicked first; but their daily budget will be exhausted quicker for the same reason. So towards the end of the day, only the lower paying ads are left and get displayed.
2:59 pm on Sept 16, 2011 (gmt 0)

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Also, do we have any reason to be positive that clicks and earnings are updated simultaneously and always in sync? I don't ever recall Google coming out and saying so, and I have anecdotal examples over the years that would suggest they don't.

Well, we don't have any reason to be positive about anything, but hasn't it been the accepted wisdom for years -- since AdSense started -- that clicks and money aren't updated at the same time? I, for one, still find it useless and counterproductuve to look at AdSense stats in real time as they don't tell me anything I can use.
 

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