What I did was so simple, I’m almost ashamed to dedicate a post to this.
I hope you forgive the simplicity of what I’m about to reveal, but sometimes the simplest changes make the greatest impact.
In early November I added a 728×90 unit to the header of my Site Build It! site, Flat Stomach Exercises. That unit began earning around $40 per day for the first few days and then leveled off to $30-ish per day.
I’ve also had decent success with the same unit on my forum, WebsiteBabble.com. The banner doesn’t convert nearly as well there, but it still does OK and is worth the placement.
Note: I attribute the lower performance to the fact that WebsiteBabble.com is targeted to Webmasters and Bloggers who often have ad blindness. So it’s no surprise that unit doesn’t perform quite as well there.
I had been reading about how well the 728 unit performs on many sites and thought of adding a unit to 2 Create a Website, but was afraid it would distract from my overall sales goals. However, I am less concerned about that on Flat Stomach Exercises (FSE).
FSE is primarily an Adsense site for me. As many of you know, I created that site to do a test run with Site Build It! so I could use it as a case study/example on 2CreateAWebSite.com.
To be honest, I’m not as passionate about fitness to work on the site frequently (not to mention I don’t have the time), so I just let it sit and earn passive income. I never dreamed that test/case study site would perform so well with limited content updates.
So I’m OK with being a little heavy on AdSense ads with that site. Not sure I would use that same strategy on 2 Create a Website because I have other goals, and I have to be careful AdSense doesn’t become a major competitor for the main products I promote.
Understand When AdSense Makes Sense for You
It’s tempting to read this post, dart over to your AdSense account and create a 728 unit for your site. That’s fine if the primary goal is to earn money with AdSense, but that may not be your best move.
AdSense may be the primary monetization option for some sites, yet more of a supplement for others. You have to decide which one it is for you. Adding more units to your pages may actually distract and compete with other products you are promoting.
For example, say you are earning $500/month in commissions by referring a product on a specific page. After adding the 728×90 unit, your AdSense earnings increase by $100/month, but commissions for the main product you promote drops to only $200 per month.
In this example, the AdSense banner probably hurt your net earnings. I say “probably” because it may be hard to prove that was the exact cause, but if you see drastic results after making a change like that, AdSense may be the culprit. That’s why you should test everything.
This is the very reason some people choose to only put AdSense ads on pages that have high bounce rates and pages that don’t promote their “important” products.
So you should always look at the big picture for your site. If your AdSense earnings are increasing rapidly, are sales for something else declining? These are statistics you should pay attention to, and it’s the reason some people don’t use AdSense on certain pages if at all.
Always know your individual site goals and make sure your monetization decisions support them. Believe it or not, a boost in your AdSense earnings may not always be a good thing for your bottom line.