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Mobile Website Launch

Did your Adsense increase or decrease?

     
5:38 am on Oct 7, 2014 (gmt 0)

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My highest earning website is finally getting a long overdue mobile version of the page.

What are your experiences, in terms of the revenue, once your mobile users were being directed to a mobile version of the page?

I keep getting mixed reviews. Some said their Adsense stayed the same with mostly 300x banners used. Some said they took some serious dips in revenue because the mobile tags pay a lot less than say, a leaderboard.

How did your revenue change and what would you say are the highest earning Adsense tags for mobile?
4:04 pm on Oct 7, 2014 (gmt 0)

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I think it really depends on whether you're able to change your entire website over to a mobile version immediately, or if you have to convert it in stages.

I've been doing the latter, and so as a result I really almost have two websites -- a number of pages in the new design, a number of pages in the old. The first group is becoming larger every day while the second group becomes smaller, but still it's a disjointed experience as a whole on my site, and as a result revenue (for me) isn't what it was this time last year.

Traffic is largely the same for me, better some days and worse some days than the same time last year, but that's due to a number of factors beyond the design.

In terms of revenue, I think you need to really need to think about these things -- they're not that different from desktop best practices, just some tweaks:

1) Use the 300x250 ad size. It's one of Google's recommended sizes, and nearly every advertiser creates ads for it. It's also recommended for mobile devices, so it should work for you on both desktop and phones.

2) Incorporate ads so that users see them (without having to scroll) when they visit a page on your site for the first time. That means minimizing logo sizes or other visual elements that can distract from the ads, where it works.

3) Place them after your headlines or first paragraphs, and at the end of your content.
4:15 pm on Oct 7, 2014 (gmt 0)

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On my html5 responsive sites I only run two ads:

320 x 50 at the top of the content page - this performs terribly, I am currently trialling 320 x 100, if this doesn't perform I'll remove it altogether.

At the bottom of the content page a 300 x 250 performs well to the extent earnings are 10X the top ad.
7:26 pm on Oct 9, 2014 (gmt 0)

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I put up a mobile version of the homepage on one of my sites as a little tester. Earnings went down considerably.
8:07 pm on Oct 9, 2014 (gmt 0)

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80% of my visitors are mobile, and earnings are good. Still get more EPC from desktop, but the sheer numbers of mobile users make up for the lower EPC.
6:28 am on Oct 10, 2014 (gmt 0)

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My earnings have been going down dramatically since the end of 2012. If October 2014 continues how it has started, my projected earnings for this month will be 8.7% of my earnings for December 2012. If I was doing this for a living, which fortunately I'm not, my house would have a foreclosure sign outside and I would be eating at soup kitchens.

I've read comments from other publishers who have suffered the same thing saying, "I haven't done anything wrong." In my case all I have done is added new content.

This argument is countered by some who say that doing nothing is the problem when the Internet world has completely changed.

I listened to these comments and noted the fact that Google has been putting lots of pressure on people to build responsive sites.

My low scorecard rating for Multi-screen was one way that they let me know and when an Adsense adviser contacted me a couple of years ago the message was to make sites for mobile.

A couple of months ago I started converting my site to a responsive design. It isn't finished yet, but now all the sections that get most visitors are responsive. It took a lot of time and effort.

It was hard work, but what kept me going most of the time was the belief that this work would get my earnings back on track. I now have full marks on my scorecard for Multi-screen.

Google search would love me again and give me traffic, users would love me because they could look at my site on any device, and Adsense would love me again and start feeding relevant ads again that paid more than tuppence.

Sadly, this wasn't the case.

I didn't think that it was possible for my earnings to drop any lower, but as soon as I launched responsive pages with responsive ads, they did.

I looked around the web for similar experiences and found one forum post where the publisher said that earnings dropped after going mobile, but then came back about two weeks later.

I have had responsive pages for about a month and the story is the same. My earnings figure for the last 7 days looks like yesterday's earnings from a short time ago. Yesterday's earnings often looks like one click.

A combination of things has killed my site. Google SERPS and all the Panda updates have been a disaster and I see that a lot of people on the SEO forum are suffering from lost traffic.

My particular niche has suffered as a result of political problems, but that doesn't account for the huge loss in earnings.

I refuse to start trying to micromanage Adsense, but the targeting is dire. I see ads that are wildly mistargeted in terms of content, language and location.

The final nail in the coffin was going responsive. I have always been very white hat and have always tried to do what Google wants publishers to do. They wanted mobile sites so this is what I did. Whatever I do I continue to be punished.

I went to live abroad 11 years ago and have written exclusively about my new home, which I know well. This is not enough for Google to regard me as an authority and thus I don't do well with keywords.

Someone who visits for two days and posts a blog article or writes a review on one of the big travel sites is regarded as being much more authoritative than I. The whole thing is quite depressing, but Google does what it wants because it is so dominant.

I have quite a few gripes with the Amazon affiliate program, but Amazon too doesn't need to change anything because Amazon is so big and so dominant.

I watched a news article this morning about how Facebook is helping to improve Internet access in undeveloped areas. Facebook continues to do everything it can to be completely dominant and Google's war with Facebook and its desire to preserve profits is also something that affects publishers.

I've been spending quite a lot of time on the SEO forum here lately and some of the comments there sum up perfectly what is happening.

Back in my old home town in the UK all the interesting little shops and pubs disappeared and were replaced with large chains. Exactly the same is happening with the Internet.

I saw the writing on the wall some time ago, but thought that my site might last for a few years. As it stands, I may have to shut everything down sooner rather than later.

This is a bit of a rant, but the topic caught my attention. After putting in so much effort to do what I thought was the right thing and then being punished even more, it really hurt. The short answer is that even when I thought earnings couldn't go any lower, they did when I launched a responsive site.
5:43 pm on Oct 11, 2014 (gmt 0)

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my revenue for mobile was going up and then this month it dropped like big time. Very low CPC now. Its a mystery. Going to remove the mobile version next month and let users land on the old ugly pages not fit for mobile again to see if that improves things again. If thats the case, then google recommending optimizing your site for mobile is air... :)
 

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