I have some updates, mostly positive, that I wanted to share. I should point out that I have no affiliation with Sulvo other than as a recent client, and I'm not getting any type of commission or compensation for this. My purpose in posting is mostly because I've read so many people talk about their Adsense dropping (including me) and I think this can help.
Plus, I figure that them having more publishers will result in more advertisers targeting them, which should be good for all of us.
I had mentioned before that their default pay-out is Net 60. If you make more than $2,000 /month then you can apply for an "Advanced Payment" program. The way it works is they will pay 70% of your monthly total on a Net 14, and then the remaining 30% on Net 60. There's a 4% fee for this, which I think comes out on the Net 60 payment. Which makes sense, when I think about it... they haven't gotten paid from the advertisers yet, so they're more or less giving you a loan with the expectation that the advertisers will pay.
I signed up for it, anyway, because Adsense pays on Net 30, and if I had moved everything over without the Advanced Payment then I would have skipped an entire month of payment, and I couldn't afford that. The increase in revenue more than pays for the 4% fee, anyway.
I was approved for Advanced Payments on November 6 (less than 24 hours after applying), and I received my first payment on Nov 15. It was exactly what I was expecting (70% of my October revenue), so I have no complaints there. I lost 0.8% to "invalid traffic", but it's still much better than what I was making on Adsense.
After being approved for the Advance Payment, I see that there's an option now for a Responsive banner. It might have been there before and I didn't see it, but I definitely see it now. I haven't used it, but since @Lame_Wolf asked...
Comparing Revenue to Adsense
I moved all of the banners over for my largest site on November 7, EXCEPT for one banner that only shows up on longer pages. I didn't move it because it's a little harder to modify the code, and so that I could compare it's Page RPM with Adsense against Sulvo; eg, if I see it go up while Sulvo goes down, or vice versa.
I have a 300x250 above-the-fold (ATF) banner and a 300x250 below-the-fold (BTF) banner that only show on high-resolution screens (screen width > 900px), a 728x90 above-the-fold that only shows on low resolution screens, and a 728x90 in the footer that shows on every page. My site isn't mobile friendly yet (I've been working on a new build forever), so mobile users see the 728x90 at the top and have to manually zoom in.
I moved the 300x250 BTF on October 24 for a test run, and I'm still seeing an average increase of about 70% over what I was seeing with Adsense.
I moved the others on November 7, and I honestly didn't see a major increase on any of them for that first week. For example, comparing November 13 to November 6 (my last day on Adsense), the ATF banner saw an increase in impressions of 2.65%, and an increase in revenue of 0.03%. The quality of the banners seemed better and loaded faster than with Adsense, so that's all positive, but just not the increase in revenue that I saw from the BTF banner.
Their system also shows "vCPM" bid rates, and the highest bid for the BTF banner is almost 60% higher than the ATF banner! That's a big surprise, you would think that the ATF would have the much higher bid. When I went back to October 24, though, the highest bid for the BTF was only slightly higher than the current highest bid for the ATF banner, so I'm thinking that I haven't given it enough time for an accurate.
I emailed my Sulvo rep, and he suggested giving it more time to build history, too. I see that everything dropped a little after November 11, though (on both Adsense and Sulvo), so the longer it runs the harder it is to make an apples-to-apples comparison.
In retrospect, I should have done a more traditional A/B test, giving 50% of my impressions to Sulvo and 50% to Adsense. But frankly... I needed the money to go up FAST so I could pay the bills! Adsense has been so low this year that I've been paying bills on a credit card :-( So I couldn't afford to lose money while testing.
I'll do another comparison at the end of November to the end of October and see if these banners have increased any. If not then I'll probably still keep them with Sulvo, though, because of the quality and load speed.
The 300x250 sticky ad that I set up from Sulvo on September 25 is still doing great. I had a few complaints in the first week from users that they didn't like it, but after a week or so the complaints had stopped and I saw no drop in traffic (it actually went up a little). One of the biggest complainers even messaged me and said that it didn't bother him anymore, so that was cool.
For November, the sticky banner alone has increased my revenue by about 45%! :-D
If the rest of November stays on the same average as the first half of the month, though, my revenue at the end of the month will be almost double what it was with Adsense :-D
Comparing Sulvo to other companies I've tried
Before Sulvo, I have also worked with Baron's Media and MonetizeMore.
I have to say that I loved working with Baron's Media! They were a smaller company, and I clicked with my rep (Joe) strongly. He and I talked every day, mostly about ideas to improve revenue, but also just chatting like old friends. He sent me Christmas gifts, he would call whenever they had a new opt-in revenue stream, and I really felt like they appreciated my business.
After Joe was promoted, though, and I was given a new rep, things kinda went downhill a little. The connection wasn't as strong, and revenue started to go down. After awhile I saw that my smaller sites were having a much higher RPM than I was getting with them, so I had no choice but to move back to Adsense. Leaving them was hard, though... it felt like I was betraying my family.
A year or two later, I decided to try MonetizeMore. I saw an immediate monetary improvement with them, but customer service was definitely on the low side... I got the feeling that I was a small client for them, and they really didn't care one way or the other. After a few months I saw that Adsense was making more than them, too, so I switched back to Adsense. And I haven't heard from MonetizeMore at all, not even an email from my rep to see what happened.
Customer service from Sulvo is somewhere in the middle... David replies quickly and efficiently, and he's worked with me a lot, but on a strictly professional level. So it's better than MonetizeMore was, but without the warmth I had from Baron's. Which isn't necessarily a bad thing, it's just an observation.
Comparing Nov 7-16 (beginning with the day that I moved all of my banners over) to Oct 7-16, and excluding the sticky ad that was exclusively with Sulvo, I saw an increase in revenue of 29.3%. Including the sticky ad, though, I saw an increase of 231.5% (the sticky ad alone made slightly more than all of the banners combined on Adsense). Pageviews for the same period were up by 2.07% (from Analytics) and ad impressions were up by 7.8%, but it's notable that I have my Ad Balance on Adsense set to 100/62 so that excludes the Adsense banners that had no value.
If you prefer to compare the first Wednesday to the following Friday (which is how I usually do it, because I see traffic patterns that follow the days of the week), that would be comparing Nov 7-16 to Oct 3-12. Analytics shows an increase in Pageviews of 0.24% for November. Excluding the sticky ad, I saw an increase in revenue of 28.1%, and including the sticky ad there was an increase of 229.4%.
Based on my experiences with Baron's and MonetizeMore, I have no delusions that Sulvo will always be better than Adsense. I'm keeping my smaller sites on Adsense, and when I see that Sulvo is dropping in revenue while the Adsense Page RPM is up or unchanged then I'll have no problem switching back over to Adsense for awhile. I suspect that they will always have waves like that... sometimes AdX is better, sometimes Adsense is better, so you just have to keep an eye out and go with the flow.