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Ezoic - Opinions / experiences

Here's mine...

     
8:58 am on Oct 3, 2018 (gmt 0)

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I recently signed up with Ezoic to test on one of my sites. So far there have been fairly significant earnings improvements, but I have yet to fully look into how these have been achieved. I guess they also have to run their optimisations as something of a black box as otherwise I'd just take the improvements and use them for free.

My first concern about Ezoic is the lack of any independent reviews about their services. They run an affiliate scheme so virtually everything written about them by other websites is fairly glowing, followed by a "find out more" affiliate link at the bottom.

My other concern is how they achieve their improvements. Most of my earnings from this site are from mobile and to me it seems mobile provides a fairly reduced set of options for ad placement. (So how much scope is there for their big data / AI based tweaking) Therefore we are left with increasing the number of ads, which they have. Previously I ran 3 ads per page, with Ezoic I have limited it to 4, plus there is an anchor ad running.

Now that I have reduced this to 3 ads and removed the anchor ad it seems my earnings are close to where they were previously. In other words the increase was coming from running more ads, which is fine, but I can't see how this wouldn't affect UX - even though Ezoic claim to optimise this too. To be honest I think my site looks a little trashy now and I don't know if that is a good long term compromise.

I guess I'll let things run a little longer and keep tweaking. What strikes me as a little odd though is why Adsense would not be performing equally effective optimization themselves, if not on placement at least on responsive ad size / format...
2:48 pm on Oct 3, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Thanks for sharing!

They keep trying to get me to sign up every few months. Just something about their process, and them, that I dont trust right now.

And I found the same thing to be true about independent reviews on them...seems everyone loves them - which is highly suspicious.

Why introduce a middleman into the adsense-publisher flow anyways?
3:47 pm on Oct 3, 2018 (gmt 0)

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I have nothing to share regarding Ezoic as I had not even heard the name until this thread. However, I do have a general comment about the value of machine learning (AI does not exist except as marketing hype - the more times AI is keyword stuffed in a comment/article the fluffier the content).

While Ezoic's service is something that any site can do many have neither the time nor expertise. Over time every single referrer builds up a unique traffic conversion identity, one to many interest click tracks and associated conversion behaviours.

A good ML 'black box' can identify such and more suggesting and testing improvements. The more inventory control and on the fly ad adjustment capability possessed by the ad network or similar agency in the middle the more tailored the conversion.

Regrettably most I've looked into have simply inserted themselves into the process to siphon off revenue for little to no to negative value added.

Ezoic may be a good tool allowing smaller sites access to business intelligence not otherwise available. My concern would not be so much whether it is or is not a good resource, rather whether it can be trusted with your data. Trust and confidence in that trust both now and going forward is the critical question. As I said previously I know little about Ezoic, just a lot about business on the web.
Caveat emptor.
3:52 pm on Oct 3, 2018 (gmt 0)

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What would be the difference with Adsense own Audo Ads?
9:10 pm on Oct 3, 2018 (gmt 0)

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What would be the difference with Adsense own Audo Ads?

I think Ezoic may have auto placement options but I didn't use this, as I wouldn't trust anyone/thing to do this. Looking at Adsense's offering it is pretty poor.

The way I have used Ezoic is to specify a large number of potential placements along with a limit to how many ads to display (which is optional). Within these parameters Ezoic uses machine learning to analyse the best conversion, and also apparently user experience.

As I said above, I can't see the number of permutations for mobile placements is that great so it may be overkill. Just some low level experimentation may have the desired effect, without having to share anything with a third party...
1:35 pm on Oct 4, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Ezoic is too complicated, unnecessarily. They also slow down your website. Avoid.
5:29 pm on Oct 4, 2018 (gmt 0)

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I tried them for about six weeks. Support is outstanding but the traffic I sent them actually lost money. I was told to be patient, but they finally admitted that their system could not beat my own system. Plus the pages I sent to them were slathered in ads and looked horrible.
12:42 pm on Oct 5, 2018 (gmt 0)

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Ezoic pestered me and pestered me for months. Finally I relented and threw them a bone, adding their CDN on one of my niche sites (while keeping them away from my main high-traffic sites). Earnings were a little up on Adsense but site speed suffered and ad placements were fugly. I deleted after six months and wouldn't recommend them.
7:37 pm on Oct 5, 2018 (gmt 0)

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This is all good to know.

I've been on the fence about them for years but my gut told me to avoid. I always felt they tried a bit too hard to sign me up (and promised the sky) so that was a huge warning flag right there.

I'm sure it works for some but it doesn't sound like it would be a good fit for most. Adsense Auto Ads does a good enough job for me - once it learned where to and not to place ads. Now it does well for me.
2:28 pm on Oct 12, 2018 (gmt 0)

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I've tried Ezoic before. I don't know if they've improved, but they did not increase my earnings and their ad placements were all over the place. My website looked like it had broken code in it, it was a mess.
2:35 pm on Oct 12, 2018 (gmt 0)

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The best is still to experiment ad placement yourself, and keep a control over your page layout.
3:13 pm on Oct 12, 2018 (gmt 0)

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To be fair Ezoic do allow pretty tight control over page layout now. You can choose placements via a Chrome plugin or by wrapping your existing Adsense ads. Within this you can specify ad sizes per placement. You can even limit the number of ads per page.

So, pretty much complete control.

And yes, they did improve my earnings. But then again this was with running more ads than I had done and there is a little pressure to put ads where I didn't like - although Ezoic claim to monitor UX.
Also, Ezoic isn't free so that needs taking into account.

At the moment I have switched Ezoic off to get an effective baseline. I may give it another go in a few weeks with a tighter set of placements / ad sizes just to see what they can do.
I'll also be looking at site speed.
6:08 am on Oct 16, 2018 (gmt 0)

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I've been using Ezoic since Dec/16, nearly two years now. They're OK overall. I find the indirect statistics to be a little misleading. Their main metric is EPMV so of course it looks like they're earning you a lot more money if you just look at that one metric which they really push.

I looked at last month's earnings on 2 sites I have with them. Just looking at a straight earnings per 100K pageviews, Ezoic increases earnings on the one site about 49% and the other 64% compared to AdSense alone. The EPMV increase would be higher. I only let Ezoic have 50% of my traffic BTW.

Yes they do put more ads in different places but the appeal to me is that the testing is done automatically. It's basically AI testing. I don't have the time to run hundreds of tests. They make money off me but they also make me more money overall.

In terms of bounce rate, page views per visit, time on site, etc. my numbers do look slightly worse using Ezoic (they compare them side-by-side) but we're talking smaller percentages (e.g. pageviews per visit of 1.46 original site vs 1.54 with Ezoic, time on site 2:49 original site vs 2:33 Ezoic, etc.)

Overall I stay with them because they work. I have two different sites in the same general niche and one outperforms the other obviously but in the end Ezoic has worked for me. Do they put more ads in different places? Yes. Is it ugly? Yeah, sometimes. Does it work? It does for me.

One other advantage to Ezoic that you can't get with AdSense is access to the ad exchange (I think that's what it's called). It gives you a bigger pool of ads, so more competition.

I compared my analytics from Sept/16 to Sept/18 and there is a negligible difference in total visitors, pageviews, etc. so it has not hurt my site. Traffic is honestly about flat though between that time interval.

For what it's worth.