Welcome to WebmasterWorld Guest from 3.214.184.196

Forum Moderators: martinibuster

Message Too Old, No Replies

Why AdSense is Alive and Well

And How Some Publishers Seemingly Make a Career Out of Losing

     
5:23 pm on Jul 1, 2016 (gmt 0)

Moderator This Forum from US 

WebmasterWorld Administrator martinibuster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Apr 13, 2002
posts:14935
votes: 494


People have been experiencing difficulty with Google for ages. Even when Google was "easy to rank" there were always a group who blamed Google for their inability to rank. Some said that Google prefers brands. Others said that Google only ranked spam. It's always Google and never them.

Throw away your crutches and walk
Let's be honest. There are always a certain segment that struggles. But is it Google's fault? There's always a segment that succeeds, is that Google's fault too? Blaming your inability to make money online on Google's preference for brands is worse than an excuse, it's a crutch. Stop leaning on your crutches and entertain the idea that maybe you don't know everything about SEO and marketing. Entertain the idea that maybe there's something more. Maybe times have changed and your site has not. Drop the crutches and start walking.

2006 [webmasterworld.com]
Google is not your friend. Its a front. They are capitalists. Dont be evil?
A better motto would be "dont die broke".


2009 [webmasterworld.com]
As others have said, Google is not your friend and they don't give a darn about your business.


Some people get it and some people will never understand
I've done my best to share but not everybody has the aptitude. I privately shared a hot money making tip with someone on Facebook. He asked me to spell it out for him. I mean, really? You want me to write a step by step manual, would that help? Sorry, but some people do not have the aptitude and no amount of spoon feeding will help them.

The business has changed. This isn't 2008 anymore. The problem with some folks is that they are failing because they're still optimizing like it's 2008.

Just last year or so I was telling you people to let go of your keywords and some of you were scoffing and insisted that keywords in the title still worked etc. even though the proof was in the goddam SERPs. It is self-defeating behavior to cling to outdated SEO practices even though the proof that your knowledge is dated is in the SERPs.

Willful refusal to change is a self-defeating behavior
A few years in the AdSense Forum I talked about social media sharing and how it was helping drive traffic. The same people who complain about low earnings openly scoffed and encouraged the idea that it's a waste of time. Not a waste of time. Social media is part of the changed landscape. Go out and make friends with millenials and others outside of the industry.

Change. Adapt. Keep up the momentum!
Feel the change. Then use that knowledge to build something new or improve what you have. Do not resist change. Do not resist the new. Embrace it.
5:48 pm on July 1, 2016 (gmt 0)

Senior Member from US 

WebmasterWorld Senior Member netmeg is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Mar 30, 2005
posts:13012
votes: 222


I'm with him. ^^^
6:09 pm on July 1, 2016 (gmt 0)

Senior Member from US 

WebmasterWorld Senior Member ken_b is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Oct 5, 2001
posts:5893
votes: 120


OK, if you insist!
6:21 pm on July 1, 2016 (gmt 0)

Administrator from CA 

WebmasterWorld Administrator bakedjake is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Apr 8, 2003
posts:3883
votes: 61


Don't forget from the advertiser's perspective that Google is innovating tremendously on the remarketing side. It's hard to recommend a traditional display campaign to a small business, but a remarketing campaign is a no brainer for a lot of reasons.

Spend that was previously search only is now being partially directed towards display. So as publishers, that's a benefit to you. I see small businesses spending more money on display these days than 3 or 4 years ago.
6:43 pm on July 1, 2016 (gmt 0)

Junior Member

Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Mar 11, 2015
posts: 101
votes: 31


Well said @martinibuster!
11:02 pm on July 1, 2016 (gmt 0)

Preferred Member

5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Oct 29, 2012
posts:552
votes: 98


The hardest part is figuring out what changes are real and what changes are fading fads. And especially who to listen to. Different site size and backgrounds do have to approach certain aspect differently, and advice given with different setup can vary.

I have spent a good chunk of my earlier time in this business chasing and changing for things that were indeed waste of time. As time goes by, I became better at sniffing and avoiding the time wasting traps. With some recent example come into mind...G+ and authorship stuff.

Now I spend more of my time looking for trends, changes, and adapt. It is much easier to see what already works, duplicate it while making it better, rather than trying to find a path and force it to work.

Read between the lines, piece together what people making money are doing, and try to figure out what "losing" people are doing or not doing. I was able to avoid alot of pitfalls this way and add more income for myself.

Adsense is alive and well, it's just not the same adsense compared to a couple years ago. It has evolved over time, and so should we as publishers. Fight on.
11:14 pm on July 1, 2016 (gmt 0)

Moderator This Forum from US 

WebmasterWorld Administrator martinibuster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Apr 13, 2002
posts:14935
votes: 494


The hardest part is figuring out what changes are real and what changes are fading fads.


On the Internet everything is a fading fad.

Remember DMOZ? At one time Digg was huge and people made a lot of money off it. If you wait long enough even Facebook will one day be faded fad.

Don't let "analysis paralysis" keep you from taking action on a current trend. Get on the trend and ride it for as long as it lasts. Then jump on the next one. Change is the nature of the Internet.

As time goes by, I became better at sniffing and avoiding the time wasting traps. With some recent example come into mind...G+ and authorship stuff.


That's an excellent point. The people who sold their followers that social media likes are a ranking factor have a long history of consistently being wrong about Google, going as far back as Text-Link-Ads.com and claiming Google would never penalize link buyers because they were buying advertising and not PageRank. They were wrong then and they continue to be wrong today about a great many things. So yes, be careful who you believe.

As for ranking promises from Google, based on the entire history of Google's interaction with web publishers, they give good advice and interaction, but Google has never handed out a ranking bonus that pushed a thousands of web publishers to the top of the SERPs. It's never happened and it never will.

That's why I never jumped on the authorship train. HTTPS is similar. I don't care what Mueller or Illyes spoon feed people, any ranking bonus assigned to an HTTP to HTTPS redirect is eaten by the link decay that affects all 301 redirects or it is so small as to be defacto insignificant.
2:58 am on July 2, 2016 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Mar 17, 2015
posts:819
votes: 456


@martinibuster wins the Internet.

Google is neither your friend or your enemy. Google is not out to get you; Google is not hatching evil plots; Google is not stealing from you. Google is doing what big companies have done since the Gilded Age: constantly adapting and refining its business practices to protect its revenue stream and its bottom line. If you don't understand that, you'll never succeed.

Further, in my experience most people are lousy at self reflection and objective analysis of their position. If your revenue has died or your can't build your site, it's highly unlikely that Google has a hand in your pants and is intentionally squeezing your danglies. It's much more likely that your content, SEO, design, UI, ad placement, mobile responsiveness, etc. etc. are not up to scratch.

No doubt some will remain in denial about that. They may get defensive. But while I'd like to take the complainers here at face value, it's hard to without knowing their sites. If I had to stake my house on why someone is failing, my money would be on failure to adopt best practices, not on a Google conspiracy.

My own personal views on Adsense, stated several times before, is that it's slowly evolving into a CPM network. Impressions are becoming just as important as clicks. That's not to say that big clicks aren't still out there, but I see far less of them these days. Because of this, my emphasis is on traffic and lots of it. I'm not sure the low traffic high EPC niche has much future, beyond the short term.

Short answer is this. If Adsense isn't working for you, and you've exhausted your own stock of ideas, then slap down some cash for a dev, or at least a professional site review or reliable second opinion. I have, and I haven't looked back. If you're not willing to do that, you should probably give up and try something else. Brutal, I know, but true.

The fault, dear Brutus, is not in our stars, etc.
4:05 am on July 2, 2016 (gmt 0)

Senior Member from US 

WebmasterWorld Senior Member netmeg is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Mar 30, 2005
posts:13012
votes: 222


Google, and AdSense specifically, are just tools in the toolbox. They're not going to be the right tool for every application, and in some cases, they break. Then you find a new tool, or a new project that works with the tools you got.
9:23 am on July 2, 2016 (gmt 0)

Senior Member from GB 

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Mar 9, 2003
posts:2099
votes: 10


I think an awful lot has gone on in the last 8 years apart from just Google AdSense.

It's easy to blame "just AdSense" when, in fact, massive falls in AdSense income may stem from other factors entirely. Factors quite far removed from Google, never mind being entirely disconnected from AdSense.

For me, 2006-2010 was the high earnings period of my web operations, though the apex was in late summer 2008 (just before recession hit) and I never reversed the downward trend after that.

Non-AdSense factors which affected my AdSense earnings:

- Summer/Autumn 2008: The newest version of Javascript (ECMA 5), still over 1 year before official launch, is really gaining traction amongst developers. It's a massive leap forward from ECMA 3 (1999) and it enables big, corporate publishers to take on nimble, smaller publishers because... when the former now throw money at front-end scripting, it is powerful, it will work and it doesn't need to be endlessly modified to cater for different browsers and browser versions. On that front, nimble, smaller publishers have lost their former advantage.

- Summer/Autumn 2008: jQuery also really gaining traction - see above.

- August 2008: Price of Crude soars leading to Businesses having to re-arrange their finances. Some advertisers go bust. Advertiser competition decreases. Ad revenues go down.

- Autumn 2008: Massive recession hits UK, more advertisers go bust. Advertiser competition decreases. Ad revenues go down. Consumption falls. Ad revenues go down further.

- Early 2009: Twitter starts to gain mainstream traction; Facebook Pages are introduced. More smaller social-oriented publishers join the fray (who don't have and don't need any experience in SEO). Larger corporate publishers have budget to maintain numerous channels simultaneously. Small legacy Publishers who have built their businesses via SEO are stretched further and further.

- Spring 2010: iPad launched, first good Android touchphones launched. Handheld is now becoming a mainstream channel. More smaller app-oriented publishers join the fray (who don't have and don't need any experience in SEO). Larger corporate publishers have budget to maintain numerous channels simultaneously. Small legacy Publishers who have built their businesses via Desktop/SEO are stretched further and further.

- Late 2010: UK university students (one of my key target consumer groups) see university tuition fees soar, affecting their available spend for discretionary purchases

So... technical change, increase in channels, more publisher competition, decrease in advertisers, decrease in advertising spend among remaining advertisers, decrease in spending power amongst target consumer group... and that's all before Panda even hits in February 2011.

From Spring 2010, I devoted my efforts to a new project (same brand, different project) which would focus on taking advantage of the growth social channels and growing use of handheld-screens (touch-based tablets and mobiles) as well as incorporating my experience of desktop-oriented SEO and - I hoped - the new project would restore all the ground I'd lost since late 2008. I recognised scalability was much more important than it had been in the past, so I also focused on transforming myself from a writer with some technical skills into a technician who could write.

Needless to say, it didn't work.

While the old (shelved) project (desktop, handwritten, mid-2000s SEO) was devastated repeatedly by new generations of Panda (though relatively untouched by Penguin), the new project (mobile, scalable, social) initially looked like it might thrive under Panda, but then, when Hummingbird properly spread its wings, it also dimmed and largely died.

For the entire time from 2010-2014, advertisers repeatedly reduced their advertising spend and / or stopped advertising and / or went bust and dropped out of the market.

So... a decline in AdSense earnings may be everything to do with the outside world and nothing to do with AdSense at all.
2:18 pm on July 2, 2016 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

joined:Dec 29, 2001
posts:1138
votes: 42


So... a decline in AdSense earnings may be everything to do with the outside world and nothing to do with AdSense at all.
Bingo! Give em a cigar, blue ribbon, etc.. I'll take blame where is due, adjust and do what needs to be done..

However, the theme that "It's all my fault" adsense earnings have dropped I don't buy.. My facts are that traffic has increased every year, sticky-ness has improved and my site is well known across the world. Seriously - the world.

Ecpm has dropped almost linearly over time - with some spikes downward and upward. Advertisers are just not paying what they used to in my vertical.

I agree that we should always first assume that our revenue problems are "ME" but eventually one should prove it one way or the other. Be wise with your pursuits..
2:59 pm on July 2, 2016 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Dec 27, 2004
posts:1995
votes: 75


Advertisers are just not paying what they used to in my vertical.

I would assume that in some verticals the intended Audience(the clickers) is also heavily equipped with AdBlockers(not just skimpy ones that let AdSence thru). Some publishers refuse to recognize that blocking those users deprives them of very valuable "user engagement" data/statistics...
3:47 pm on July 2, 2016 (gmt 0)

Moderator This Forum from US 

WebmasterWorld Administrator martinibuster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Apr 13, 2002
posts:14935
votes: 494


The ball is in your court, not the advertisers court.

Advertisers chase after profits, not traffic. If your vertical cannot deliver sales then what can you do to attract a different visitor?

Someone mentioned that the industry is evolving toward a CPM basis. I agree that to a certain extent it is but the reality is that online advertising, because it is hyper-measurable, has evolved to be conversion focused. So if conversions happen at roughly every 10,000 impressions then that's going to factor into the CPM you're paid. Period. The ball is still in your court. Take due notice thereof and govern yourself accordingly.

The rise of performance based advertising
Offline advertising was based on an irrational model. There was no way to measure conversions on a $50,000 one day ad spend. The cost of offline advertising has always been irrational since it could never be directly measured, based largely on what the market will bear but not based on performance. That's irrational. Online advertising became rational when affiliate marketing was created, followed by PPC. From there online display advertising started slipping. Online advertising, your business, is performance based.

It is up to you and only you to make it work
This is your business environment. Understand it. You are involved in a performance based business model. The ball is in your court. It is up to you and only you to make it work.

I've spent the past few months riding trends and setting the groundwork for growing and it's paying off. I have more projects in the works and I know I'm going to kick the living crap out of my competition because they are myopic and can't see the bigger picture, which is where I see their overlooked opportunities. It's not the first time I've done this.

You can't squeeze juice out of the same fruit twice
I have competition that once were formidable but they are now are like ants. They were so desperate on squeezing juice out of yesterday's lemon that they even allowed me to advertise on their sites to siphon off their visitors and learn interesting things about their traffic patterns. It's been years since I've thought about them. They don't rank for jack and nobody talks about them anymore.

[edited by: martinibuster at 5:52 pm (utc) on Jul 2, 2016]

4:47 pm on July 2, 2016 (gmt 0)

Senior Member from GB 

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Apr 29, 2005
posts:2112
votes: 122


Because of this, my emphasis is on traffic and lots of it


That's where my emphasis is as well, for so many reasons.

It's not the absolute number of page views which counts, it's the number page views in your niche relative to the competition that matters.

Volume is the only way I see to secure yourself against changes in schemes like Adsense.
6:13 pm on July 2, 2016 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Apr 1, 2016
posts: 2709
votes: 822


Volume is also the key to diversifying away from Adsense. It is real hard to sell direct advertising to anyone when you only have a few users. Once, you have scale, you begin to have more options open to you.

Also, I imagine that one key to being successful with Adsense is when you reach the point that advertisers are seeking your site out specifically as opposed to seeking out topics or keywords that your site contains.
7:34 pm on July 2, 2016 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

joined:Dec 29, 2001
posts:1138
votes: 42


The cost of offline advertising has always been irrational since it could never be directly measured,
Sure it can, for example... 800 number as a POC.. A discount code to get the great deal price. Single point advertising mailers to targeted customers.

Nothing new...
7:48 pm on July 2, 2016 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

joined:Dec 29, 2001
posts:1138
votes: 42


Volume is also the key to diversifying away from Adsense.
Agreed! I've focused on sticky-ness - getting my visitors to bookmark and come back has created a revenue island. Think Facebook, Google, Yahoo, and all the other web properties with native advertising and services. It is my opinion now and for many years (check my old posts) that AdSense is not the best revenue plan for the long view.

Chasing new eyes by way of SEO is expensive and time consuming.

BTW - I'm not trying sell anything here. I develop my own web property and am not for hire.. Just sharing my experiences.
9:32 pm on July 2, 2016 (gmt 0)

Moderator This Forum from US 

WebmasterWorld Administrator martinibuster is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Apr 13, 2002
posts:14935
votes: 494


Nothing new? You're quibbling. The overwhelming majority of offline advertising cannot be tracked. My point still stands.
9:42 pm on July 2, 2016 (gmt 0)

Senior Member from US 

WebmasterWorld Senior Member tangor is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Nov 29, 2005
posts:10455
votes: 1090


There's tracking and then there's stalking. Off-line has always had a way to verify ad spend, else they wouldn't do it. The web, on the other hand, provides a more invasive method of tracking. Both methods, however, accomplish the same thing: verification on ROI re: ad spend.
10:06 pm on July 2, 2016 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Aug 5, 2009
posts:1730
votes: 387


With respect OP, your theory is flawed. The gateway for 90+% of the population on earth is through Google. I know 5% or 10% is likely lucrative, but to say there is the great frontier that exists outside of the Google bubble counters the actual usage out there. Mobile, what is Google's share? Sure you can get people to you site that doesn't involve Google. For some that is a pursuit worth investing in. People can live well off the 5% or 10% that might exist outside of Google search. That #1 ranking in Bing might pay some bills. However to suggest that there is another gateway to a website online is strictly a fallacy. The pie is rich, but it's 10% or less in reality. Block Google from accessing your site and let's have a discussion a year from now.
10:32 pm on July 2, 2016 (gmt 0)

Senior Member from US 

WebmasterWorld Senior Member netmeg is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Mar 30, 2005
posts:13012
votes: 222


Survey: Amazon beats Google as starting point for product search [searchengineland.com]

And don't even get me started on Facebook.
11:59 pm on July 2, 2016 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Aug 5, 2009
posts:1730
votes: 387


The thinking is flawed. The organic funnel is small, and growing smaller. There will always be a % of success, but the question is whether it's attainable. Throw away the crutches. Right. Just like I see all the enthusiasm from the plentiful Google SEO posts right? You might have 10 million dollars in your bank account but would it be advisable or responsible to advise people that they are somehow "lesser" because they didn't figure out how to make that 10 million? Adsense is dependent on organic traffic. The FCC said Google's share (a couple years ago) was 95+%. It's massive whatever it is. I could have 2 million in the bank from Adsense right now but it wouldn't make me tell everyone that there is some magical gold path that exists outside of the reliance on Google. People get to websites through Google. There might be some side streets and alleys that don't involve Google, but the reality is nobody can exist doing Adsense by blocking Google from accessing their site. Now if anyone is running an experiment on running a great Adsense business by blocking Google just to prove a point, I'm all ears. That would be one hell of a niche. Bing is worse than ever and I don't think Facebook is in the search space yet unless I missed something. I'm sure both those entities can account for something, but is that something worth banking on and investing in.

Undeniable truth: Google has more of the mobile search market than anyone else. It was astronomical during the FCC hearing a while back. We also can all agree that more than ever before our traffic is from mobile devices. Perhaps there are means of discovery that people are able to milk like Facebook, but if I'm making it with Adsense, I need Google in a bad, reliant way. It's undeniable.
7:09 pm on July 3, 2016 (gmt 0)

Full Member from US 

10+ Year Member

joined:Apr 11, 2006
posts:243
votes: 21


Survey: Amazon beats Google as starting point for product search


I can believe that, but I'm surprised eBay isn't close behind at No. 2 instead of 6 percent.
9:12 pm on July 3, 2016 (gmt 0)

New User

joined:June 28, 2016
posts:7
votes: 5


Building a website around "...and we shall dominate the SERPs" is just not a viable solution anymore, and hasn't been for years. If you build a site that people want to visit, around a topic that appeals to advertisers, you will usually do very well in Google without even thinking about SEO. When you're trying to build traffic, look to other sources: Amazon, ebay, Pinterest, Facebook, topical forums, Reddit. Probably no single source will bring as much as Google, but there's plenty of non-Google traffic out there to be acquired.

As for revenue, relying on ads alone is a bad idea - always was. You want some combination of ads + affiliate marketing + ebook sales + speaking engagements + sponsored posts + whatever you can think of that works for your niche. Ad revenue has fallen for many reasons - the marketers' ability to pinpoint exactly what works and pay only for that, the global recession, etc. But that's what happens in business. Major brick and mortar chains are having to adapt, too. And if you have backup plans and other strategies in place, then a drop in one income stream doesn't do as much damage.

It's not rocket science. All of this is just basic business and basic marketing, and it's all been true since decades before Google was around. The form has changed, but the substance has not.
9:17 pm on July 3, 2016 (gmt 0)

Senior Member from US 

WebmasterWorld Senior Member netmeg is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Mar 30, 2005
posts:13012
votes: 222


Nobody wants to say it, but not everybody is cut out for this. That's not meant to be a slam, just a truth. I can't fix a car and I suck at doing taxes - I'm not cut out for those things. Some of the people attempting to earn a living from online publishing are not cut out for it.
11:11 pm on July 3, 2016 (gmt 0)

Senior Member from AU 

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Aug 22, 2003
posts: 2266
votes: 152


I can believe that, but I'm surprised eBay isn't close behind at No. 2 instead of 6 percent.

I agree, however I go to eBay first, then Amazon usually only as an indicative price check. Google is usually pointless for product search - except when trying to find detailed specifications.

Then AdSense will show me heaps of ads in coming weeks for the product I have already purchased.
12:49 am on July 4, 2016 (gmt 0)

Senior Member from HK 

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

joined:Nov 14, 2002
posts:2301
votes: 20


AdSense is not dead, as long as you understand some metrics that are under your control.

Some tips I've shared with friends....

- Understand that you'll never get the highest bid from the winning impression, you'll get the loosing bid + a fraction more.
- Understand that you need auction pressure and high fill rates to optimise your second bid.
- Figure out how to improve your second bid using DFP (inhouse + second tier networks etc)
- Use the two intelligently across devices / geolocations. Desktops vs Mobile, Revenue from US vs say Ukraine.
- Improve visibility and optimise to deliver your content (and ads) as fast as possible
- Ask yourself what is better over 100,000 impressions. 30% fill rate at $10 or 100% fill rate at $3. (Same revenue, but which one do you prefer?)

While you're doing the above, be prepared to make a ton of mistakes but record every change and you'll within a month see improved revenue numbers.

Be prepared to optimise every few weeks as advertisers come and go, seasons change and crap happens. :)

I've been with AdSense for 13+ years now and it still remains a very good income source. You just need to throw away the "its passive income" mind set.
5:06 am on July 4, 2016 (gmt 0)

Senior Member from US 

WebmasterWorld Senior Member tangor is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Nov 29, 2005
posts:10455
votes: 1090


Actually, for most publishers is appears that way. But we know that if one seeks success, ACTIVE participation is the only way forward! BTW, nice short list of how to get active.
1:33 am on July 5, 2016 (gmt 0)

Full Member

10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:Dec 15, 2006
posts: 201
votes: 26


I probably am somewhere in the middle.

I donít agree with people that think success is unrelated to things like hardwork and research.

But I do think there is some randomness involved. This not sour grapes I am doing better income wise this year than I ever thought possible.

Two identical sites could get 2 different manual reviewers and have wildly different earnings after those reviews.

A decent amount of SEO is predicting where google is going with future changes. But there is a bit of randomness here as well. Which random middle manager has more pull at a company meeting can dictate direction. And the one with more pull and political capital does certainly not always have the better idea.

Plus I have had projects that did much better than expected and projects that bellyflopped. I donít think my talents changed from project to project.

All that said this is my advice to people that are struggling. If you are struggling with a site/project for a decent amount of time its probably a good idea to move on to a different project.

If you site or collection of sites has a black mark from google search or adsense its probably a better use of time to move on and start again. The best decisions I have made were to move on and try something new.

Plus its probably more fun to have a new site and watch it grow versus working with an old site and always struggling to get back what you had.
7:50 pm on July 5, 2016 (gmt 0)

Senior Member

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

joined:July 18, 2002
posts:2312
votes: 42


Block Google from accessing your site and let's have a discussion a year from now.


So, just by coincidence, I accidentally did this 2 weeks ago. To be honest, I initially thought that I had been hit by Panda. And I have been hit by Panda TWO OTHER TIMES. Turned out a rogue WP plugin blocked Googlebot while I was away for a long weekend and completely delisted my site from from Google. It took me another 3 days to figure out what had happened. And it looks like it will take the site a full month to recover. I can honestly, honestly say that when it looked like I was looking at another long haul of not having Google traffic, I shrugged and thought, "Well that is sucky, but life goes on." There was no panic, there was no despair.

But you know what, while I was thinking that we were looking at a Panda meltdown again, I was able to sit down with my 2 full time employees and A) assure them that we would still make payroll easily with the traffic we had left and B) come up with plans to better utilize the traffic we already got.

Yes, Google traffic is great. But don't tell me for a second that a site NEEDS it to survive.

Heck, just read up on how Buzzfeed decided not to roll over and die when Panda hit them. They completely changed how they approached getting traffic. I had to do that the first time I was hit by Panda too. And it made my site so much stronger when the Google algo blessed me again. I no longer fear losing my Google traffic. I may not like it, but I don't fear it.

Owning a site means that you have to roll with the punches and use the tools available to you. I do make most of my money from AdSense, but you can bet your bottom that I have a very viable backup plan in case I suddenly can't make money from AdSense. Yes, I (normally) get most of my traffic from Google, but I still can survive without it.

If AdSense does not work for you, don't complain, make another plan. If Google does not work for you, don't complain, make another plan. Guess what ladies and gentlemen, that is what being a grown up business owner is all about. It is about making plans to keep your business alive regardless of what anyone else does.

And for the record, that is all Google and AdSense does too. They are keeping their business alive regardless of what anyone else does.
This 44 message thread spans 2 pages: 44