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February 2017 AdSense Earnings & Observations

     
8:19 pm on Feb 1, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Not sure if earnings are slow for everyone today, but mine have hardly got off the mark. It's only early afternoon in the US where the majority of my traffic comes from so hopefully things will look a bit more favourable tomorrow morning when I checked.
6:08 pm on Feb 7, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I don't think AdSense is declining, it's just not quite as good as it was two or three years ago. Sometimes I think things are really picking up and then all of a sudden the next month can be worse. I think we just have to take things as they come now. The main thing with AdSense is that as long as you can get approved you can put ads on your website. Surely the more people who have AdSense on the website the less there is to go around? There's probably several hundred thousand more websites nowadays displaying AdSense and I was three years ago.
6:16 pm on Feb 7, 2017 (gmt 0)

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And don't forget ad blockers plug-ins, mobile devices which are more and more used and we all know how ads are poorly performing on smartphones, Facebook is certainly also absorbing lot of the budget of advertisers, etc...

There is also the fact that people are no longer paying attention to ads as they used to...
10:45 pm on Feb 7, 2017 (gmt 0)

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To those who say that CPC is down this month, I just had a single $19.94 click. It happened before 3pm est and hasn't been rolled back (yet?).
10:59 pm on Feb 7, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Congratulations NickMNS ! When I see a "huge" click, often it's followed by very low days ,ending the week in the average :-)
2:45 am on Feb 8, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Well, for what it's worth, the site used to make many hundreds of dollars a month 6 years ago, went down to $50-70 prior to the Mobile Update of 2015, and last month it only made < $10...

The traffic level is still the same as compared to 3-4 years ago...in fact, things improved around the last Penguin, when Google finally "renounced" the Penguin fiasco it initiated in 2012.

I took a look at many of my site's performances and all have shown declines. I used to have many niche sites and they all could easily make > $100 per site/month back in the day. It's not like each one was getting a lot of traffic for that matter. Just a few thousand UVs per month was good enough in most cases.

Not any more. Today, just to have a site making $100 or more is not easy. The traffic has to be at least tens of thousands of UVs....unless you are in a high paying niche, and even then, the generally low CTR these days will knock you back down to size. If it's not CPC, it's CTR. If it's not CTR, it's CPC....

If this is not a decline in Adsense, then I don't know what it is. Hardly any "MMO gurus" are promoting/pushing Adsense any more. To me, it's an indicator that Adsense is losing or has lost a lot of its "value proposition".
3:53 am on Feb 8, 2017 (gmt 0)

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If this is not a decline in Adsense, then I don't know what it is. Hardly any "MMO gurus" are promoting/pushing Adsense any more. To me, it's an indicator that Adsense is losing or has lost a lot of its "value proposition".

It's probably harder to create a successful ad-driven (as opposed to audience- or editorially-driven) site than it was a few years ago, but if you've got a site with solid editorial content, a decent amount of traffic, and--this is key--an audience that delivers for advertisers, you can do fine.

Fact is, online advertising has grown up. It's gone mainstream. Ditto for online publishing. The days of easy money may be over, but that's a good thing if you're a publisher who takes the long view.
7:41 am on Feb 8, 2017 (gmt 0)

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The problem is that Adsense is hitting rock bottom.
The CPC is in the toilet.

My revenue decreased 10x in the last two years. My medium CPC was ~ 0.28, not it's 0.15 and getting down each month.

The era of the "free internet" is closing fast.
10:32 am on Feb 8, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Over the years , Adsense also modified the "rules". I don't remember exactly when , but at some point, adsense started to pay for click, IF the visitor was staying a given length of time at the advertiser's site, or viewing a given number of content.

Also, before, text ads were showing several ads, now, it happens, from time to time, but extremely rarely (I see it only on 728x90 ads).

And still I believe that advertisers are also more and more picky about the use of their budget. In the "old times",they were investing a lot and nearly randomly , to get their business promoted and to gain popularity very fast.
12:33 pm on Feb 8, 2017 (gmt 0)

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How would an individual online business decide which specific websites they want their ads displaying on? If you think about it, there are thousands of businesses out there that seem to have their AdSense and just about every website there is, no matter what the niche. My earnings are fairly stable at the moment and I'm earning just into the double digits each day which suits me. I haven't actually studied the figures closely, but as a rough guess, advertisers seem to be paying me anywhere between 10p and 1 for each click on a 300 x 600 ad unit. In a lot of cases, clicks are worth 50 or 60p which is too bad you add things up. However, when you think about it they must be forking out one hell of a lot of money if their ads are showing up randomly on thousands of websites.
2:33 pm on Feb 8, 2017 (gmt 0)

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mobile devices which are more and more used and we all know how ads are poorly performing on smartphones


I thought I'd better check this out since my mobile seems to be ok, what did I find so far in 2017?

Overall Page Views

Desktop 60.6%
Mobile 29.3%
Tablet 10.1%

Overall CTR

Desktop 87.8%
Mobile 111.6%
Tablet 127.3%

CPC

Desktop and tablet precisely the same, mobile 80% of those.

The only ads I run on my responsive sites are a responsive AdLink at the top and a normal responsive at the bottom of the page.
2:43 pm on Feb 8, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Yes, indeed, I just (re)discovered the AdLinks thanks to another topic here, and it's clearly a huge improvement with mobile visitors.
9:13 pm on Feb 8, 2017 (gmt 0)

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What the hell is going on today? With the exception of Christmas Day, this is the lowest number of clicks recorded.
9:47 pm on Feb 8, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Looks like today is going to be above average for me. My 300 x 600 ad unit located in the left column has a page RPM of 3.67 and an impression RPM of 3.82 at the moment. The same size unit located within text is 2.41 and 2.42. Even one of my 300 x 250 units is performing quite well today, 2.44 and 2.50. And it's just coming up to 4 o'clock on the east coast 5 o'clock midwest US where the majority of my traffic comes from. So I've got several hours to go.
12:36 am on Feb 9, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Lucky you. Whereas the USA represents 50% of my daily incomes, today, it show a big flat $0 , inspite of impressions being in the normal range :-/ , other countries, are in their average.
Backup ads are still doing fine.

I'll take a break, and hope it's just a glitch, have a good time, see you in a little while.
12:55 pm on Feb 9, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Has anyone noticed a big decrease in time every user spend on their sites ? I used to have 2.30 mins on average for the past months, and this month it's like 30 or 40 secs....
3:56 pm on Feb 9, 2017 (gmt 0)

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@AndyMorris what is your bounce rate? If for some reason your pages are taking a long time to load then maybe people are leaving before the page has loaded properly and that's why you are seeing these readings.

However, I suppose it depends on what content you are offering your visitors. When I visit Google analytics I can see what pages people are sitting on quite often stay there for a while. My articles are all based around a certain niche and give information that people are looking for. So somebody types in a search term and comes to my website, I would hope there are going to stay and read the full article. I recently made some very big changes to the layout of my pages as well. I shortened paragraphs, put more paragraph headings in to make it more user-friendly. When you go to articles now they are not so intimidating and I believe people are more likely to hang around rather than get frightened away. This is just one thing to look at if people are not staying on the page very long. Either that or you're just not offering anything that people are interested in.
4:45 pm on Feb 9, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Hi Ironside, thanx for the reply. My bounce rate has always been high, between 70 to 80% but since i switched to https at the end of january i lost love from Google News and users, and i dont know why.

The load time has been the same since before and after the drop. Pages dont take too much time to load, between 4 and 5 seconds for the DOM, and the rest is loaded after. I'm even slightly faster than most of my competitors, bar the first two.

My website is a sports website, on a football team, fairly "new" for the web, 2 years. Just like you, small paragraphs, slightly bigger then usual font, and people come to find what they are looking for from google news or aggregators. They dont come to my website by accident.
5:31 pm on Feb 9, 2017 (gmt 0)

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It's very rare nowadays that I find a website that is not loading fast enough for me and I go elsewhere. Most of us have fast broadband now and nearly all webpages load fairly quickly. Obviously some are a lot faster than others, but it's nothing like it used to be in the days of dial-up when you could wait a minute for a page to load.

Hosting companies will normally start moaning if your hosting package is not quite up to handling the amount of traffic your website produces. That certainly happened with me, my website would go down completely and I would get a message from a hosting company telling me that I needed to increase resources. Ever since I did I've not had any more problems.

Have you ever thought about putting some kind of feedback component on your website? Maybe ask people if they are finding the information they are looking for.

Have you checked where you stand in the search listings? Maybe one of your keywords has dropped and somebody else is coming up before you and those taking the majority of the traffic. Just a thought
11:18 pm on Feb 9, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Just want to chime in a little bit on the dwell time. Visitors can find a page a bit then return to SERP immediately. That results in high bounce rate / low dwell time, but at the same time gives Google signal that the result is satisfactory (If your site is the last place the visitors look for information). In short, bounce rate / dwell time by itself is not a good measure of satisfaction. However, to improve your adsense earning, it is in your best interest to lower bounce rate because it practically means that more pages are being viewed = typically more $. But in terms of traffic quality it's not a very good tell and full of noise.

I believe that user's CTR on SERP itself is more used but completely out of our control. ie. If users tend to click on your result on the 2nd and 3rd spaces more than the first one, Google slowly gravitates you to the top. This is my main strategy to build out my content and brand over my competitors. Make better stuff and stuff relatively less ads in my user's face..

Usually a drastic shift in dwell time / bounce rate can suggest visitor intention or type has been shifted. Maybe check to see if the pages being viewed have changed. I would not worry too much if the actual traffic volume has not changed. But observe the search data and make sure that your site is matching and satisfying user queries. Ie. You do not want your Football site to start returning queries for other football teams than the ones your covering. I am not familiar with Google News however and I do not know how that space / ranking works.

I am seeing some RPM boost over the last 4~5 days, I think particularly because of Valentine campaigns. My boost observed is about 10~20% above the average RPM over January and beginning couple of days in February. It appears that certain advertisers have returned to my niche space.
11:23 pm on Feb 9, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Normally I don't participate in this thread but this is unusual for me.

Traffic [page views] is up around 12%
Impressions are up 11%
CTR is up 167%
EPC is up 53%

This leads to RPM being up 265%

Ordinarily I would ignore it all as an aberration - but it has now been relatively consistent throughout most of the month. More consistent with well over 12+ months back.

I can only assume advertisements are now ideally consistent and more relevant to page content. We will see.

Then again with both Google Search and AdSense? Who ever really knows?

[Added] - I just noticed a panel - "We thought you might find this card interesting"

It seems 100% of revenue is down to "CPC Bids".

I dunno, I only work here....

[edited by: IanCP at 11:28 pm (utc) on Feb 9, 2017]

11:25 pm on Feb 9, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Awesome IanCP, it's great to hear good news and make me feel more motivated!
9:56 am on Feb 10, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Thanx for all the good advice guys, that's really nice, i'll try and make all that happen.

I suppose it's a time of year when people click less and are less on the internet for my niche. It's really the first few months where i try and analyze the stats "in a professionnal way", pretty interesting.
12:06 pm on Feb 10, 2017 (gmt 0)

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The biggest challenge with any website is keeping it within the range where people are searching. A few months ago my website really started slipping down the ranks. So I completely rewrote all my articles and tidied things up and miraculously it's come back to life again and is back up there near the top. Even though earnings are not as good as they were two or three years ago, I'm finding that I sailing on a steady line at the moment.
1:52 pm on Feb 10, 2017 (gmt 0)

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My website is based on every day news so i guess it's a different strategy

What i suspect as well is a kind of punishment from Google. I usually made 30 dollars each day and these days only 10 if i'm lucky. That's since feb 1st when i made a hundred dollars on just one day. Maybe ad sense took that as a fraud or something...
2:04 pm on Feb 10, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Two or three years ago I was in the same boat. I think the best day ever had was probably about 37. However, I was averaging around 25 a day. I was getting anywhere between 60 and 100 clicks to achieve these earnings. Clicks now are probably between 50 and 80 and daily earnings are half of what they used to be. But like I said, things are really getting dire a few months ago, absolutely terrible it was. However, it certainly picked up again now which is good.

I'm absolutely convinced that it's all down to mobile use, I've been saying that for the last year or so. From what I can ascertain the people who visit my website and mainly doing so on mobile devices, iPhones to be precise. I think Samsung comes a close second. If I check my analytics then it's very rare that more people are using a desktop and mobile. More of my revenue comes from mobile usage as well so I'm really having to try and tailor my ads for mobile use. Having said that, I tried everything, responsive ads, ads in all different positions. I finally came to a decision that responsive ads are really not working for me. So I've gone back to fixed size ads which bring in 99% of my revenue.

Do you use channels so that you can track which ads are working for you? I don't have channels and individual ads any more, just one particular size that is placed on certain articles. So I can see which of my 300 x 600 ads are working quite well and where they are placed on the pages. I don't know whether you tried media.net yet? If you haven't, that's worth looking at. The last payment I had was 141, that was the equivalent to $192. Media.net is good because the ads that show follow your niche. It's not always the case when you click on one of the buttons, but nine times out of 10 they got it spot on.
2:44 pm on Feb 10, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Thanx, yeah i think i found the issue

It's what i suspected, from early february, Google installed a new features which make people on mobile site click TWICE on an ad, to confirm that they really want to visit the ad site. But only on selected sites.

Apparently it's a way to prevent accidental clicks. SO i guess that feb 1st day where i had too many clicks got me into that new "programm" that google installed on some sites. weird coz i havent seen those double clicks and my ads are always well placed in the content so there's no accidental clics. But i guess the "incident" from feb 1 is the reason of the CPC and CTR drop.

Most of my clicks come from mobile too, and traffic too, like 60%/70%.

here is the google ad sense forum discussion about it

topic is "Sudden Drop of CTR 90% in 3 days" on adsense official forum

[productforums.google.com...]

Apparently, loads and loads of people are affected by this

I'm not using media.net but i'll check that out, thanx :)
4:23 pm on Feb 10, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Stats stuck anyone?

I am noticing a distinct difference yesterday and today between AdSense PVs and my logs some by as much as 300%.
4:40 pm on Feb 10, 2017 (gmt 0)

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@Red bar not sure if they are completely stuck, I've got a quid and a half already today, but things are certainly very slow.
4:43 pm on Feb 10, 2017 (gmt 0)

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It moved for me as well, slowly this afternoon, but this is the lowest ive had in a year i think, today.
4:47 pm on Feb 10, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Just checked across several of my sites and some are not showing ads whatsoever, one specific site has not had 1 PV according to G however I, obviously, know different, wtf?
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