Monday, March 31, 2008

The 250 x 250 Adsense ad is out

For a couple years now people have been saying that the Adsense 250 x 250 or 300 x 250 ad placed at the top or floating to one side or another of an article is the sweet spot for Adsense click through conversions.

These days, I think that ad placement is history.  I am seeing much better conversions on 728 x 90 placements, not at the top but at the bottom of an article. 

Some people would say that you have to put it at the top otherwise they may click away before they get to your ad.  That may be true, but if your content is so crappy that they click away before they get to the bottom then you are probably not doing something right anyway.

Now, I haven't gotten around to updating all of my websites to act on my findings, but I am beginning the process.  I have found that many of Google's new ad types work very well in the widest available format and that seems to be key.

On a different note, I have also seen that relevancy for Google ads are more hit and miss than they ever have been.  Some of my sites are dead on for the topic and other sites are not picking up anything relevant at all.  I had a tech site the other day picking up ads for walk in tubs, and then one of my heaviest traffic sites with the most subscriptions was running PSA (hurricane spots) all day one day.  This might just be the reason why Google is seeing flat click throughs, they are losing control of Adsense relevancy.

Google's Stock is Sucking Wind While Smaller Users Adsense Revenues are Up?

Something is cooking with Google these days.  Overall their click through revenue this year was flat as compared to last year and that has their stock sucking wind. 

However, many smaller websites are seeing an increases in Adsense revenues and click through rates.  This could potentially have something to do with lower click through rates on the larger websites that Google courts, typically at the expense of smaller websites like fluorescent ceiling lights outshine wall sconces.

Have you noticed a difference yourself?  Are you seeing increased Adsense click through rates or are your sites experiencing flat growth like Google's?

Wednesday, March 26, 2008

Is a scam?

If you have not yet seen this email hit your inbox, its probably just a matter of time.  Either way, you will need to know whether or not it is a scam.


We've seen your website at
and we love it!

We see that your traffic rank is 377354 and your link popularity is 20.
Also, you have been online since 7/10/2004.

With that kind of traffic, we will pay you up to $4,800/month to advertise our links on your website.

If you're interested, read our terms from this page:


Crystal  Weckerly
The ContactThem Network

So I like anyone that receives this email automatically thinks, $4,800 a month for my site?  Where do I sign up.

Then about 2 seconds later you think, its got to be a scam.

No one is going to pay $4,800 to advertise on a site with that kind of traffic (Alexa metric by the way, which kind of shows the worthlessness of the valuation). 

Now I own dozens of sites with similar amounts of traffic, links and age.  If this were legit, I could be making a couple hundred thousand dollars a month by the end of the month.

So what is going on with or or

Note they have lots of domains themselves, which is kind of odd.


They are running a Multi Level Marketing (MLM) scheme or program(think Amway).  They pay you when people sign up and get you to send out emails to people you know and people you do not know.   They then get the people you know to send out emails as well and get more sign ups and you get a chunk.

It costs money to sign up and essentially this is like a manual way to harvest email addresses.  Combine a spammer and a virus and someone could harvest all your email contacts out of your computer, and then turn around and spam those people.

This method essentially turns you into the virus.

Now, that is an emotionally loaded statement so let me step back from my analogy a bit.  You basically are referring people.  If they end up buying something worthwhile, well then there may be no harm in the referral.  If they get junk, something worthless or worse yet they get ripped off, well then that would be a problem for you.

MLM programs are definitely not new to the internet.  Some affiliate programs are essentially MLM programs.  MLM programs are more famous probably for pyramid schemes where there is absolutely nothing of value exchanged and people are paid with the money from new sign ups until the thing blows up and people can no longer be paid.

So what's my final word on this one?

It smells to good to be true and I suspect that if its not a blatant scam then its probably an unsustainable pyramid scheme.

Shy of that it could also get people in trouble with the canned spam act.  That could get you thrown in jail and or have your domain or website taken away from you.

You might run the ad on your site, but I would think long and hard about sending out emails to people you know if you are not following the canned spam act laws.  The email that I received DEFINITELY did not follow the law.

For what its worth, the person that sent the email was not the name listed in the signature, even though the person listed in the signature does appear to be associated with the program or company.

So before you quit your job, and put a down payment on a new mansion replete with home theater seating, consider whether or not your actions are lawful.  If you can make $4800 a month without breaking the law or screwing over everyone you know, more power to you.

Friday, March 21, 2008

Create Easy Video Ads with EZ Show


Maybe you do or do not know how to create video ads for the internet, but if you work with EZ Show it can be as easy as point and click using their stock video clips, audio clips and even still pictures and images.

If you have a specific product that is not covered in their stock footage, maybe your company offers ellipticals training or elliptical machines, EZ Show can come to your location and film additional footage at your place of business or location of choice.

The cost is fairly affordable given the learning curve that EZ Show enables you to overcome.  $49.95 per month enables you to make as many different video ads as you like. You can find more information on EZ Show at or

Are You Linked on the Top 50 Sites on the Web?

As you work to build up your website and bring in more traffic, consider whether or not you are connected to the top 50 websites on the Web.  It is definitely important to build up links naturally from relative sites, but it also makes sense to bring in links from the top of the top.

There was a time when many of these sites were locked down and shut out smaller sites, but today in an age of growing social media it is now easier than ever to build up links from many if not most of these sites.  So go out there, do a self assessment on your backlinks and consider whether or not you are hitting with these top sites and if you are not, create a short list of the top sites that have yet to link to you in some form, shape or fashion.  Then check back maybe on a quarterly basis and try again if you do not make it in on the first try.

Here's the list of the top 50 websites according to traffic:


Monday, March 17, 2008

Google Selling Impressions through Feedburner

feedburner-advertising You may have missed it last fall, but Google bought Feedburner, the most popular and successful feed management company on the internet.  Now Google has found and interesting way to generate revenue through that company, they are selling impressions to people that want to advertise their feed.

If you want to build traffic to your site, you could look at advertising through Feedburner.  To do this, you must first have a website that runs on a feed.  Then you must set it up with Feedburner.

Once you have that done, you can set up a headline animator and combine that with a more traditional advertisement which Google will then market across thousands of channels to bring your add thousands of impressions (example $25 for 1 week on computer and technology bringing about 4k impressions or about $7 CPM. 

Its not the cheapest and its not the most expensive way to get some attention, but if you are good at creating catchy and timely headlines and if you are decent at putting together banner ads, this type of advertising could generate some real results for you.  It may not be attractive for a Pennsylvania personal injury lawyer, but could do very well for a blogger, business blogger or internet marketer.

Friday, March 14, 2008

Google Adwords Keyword Tool

Here's a quick tip and free tool that can help you in choosing keywords for your meta tags or descriptions.

This one if from Google and its called the Google Adwords Keyword Tool.


Its definitely a handy tool.  You just type in your general term like auto insurance quote or something that you think a site is about and Google will list all related terms.  You can then sort by the terms that get the most searches.  If you click the add button for each term, you can then add it to a list, which can later be exported to a text or .csv file.


With that you can then drop the keywords into your meta keyword section and you are off to the SEO races. Sending and Receiving Money

I love PayPal to death, but its not the only game in town.  Last night I was finishing up a project for a client and they asked me, if I could accept payment via


Now, I didn't have a MoneyBookers account, but as a consultant I want to make things as easy as possible for my customers.  So I spent about 3 minutes setting up a quick account and rapidly (easier than PayPal) linking it to one of my bank accounts so that I could direct deposit funds once received.

Once I was set up, I sent my client my MoneyBooker email account and I was off to the races with yet another way to accept payments for my online business.

Lesson Learned from MoneyBookers

Maybe once a year or more often, maybe right now, you should spend about an hour (no more) taking just a little effort to get setup with the latest in tools that enable you to accept payment from your customers, advertisers, whom ever.

If you are operating an internet business, you want to be accessible.  You do not want to make it difficult for people to pay you.  MoneyBooker's is a service that is very easy to use for people, especially outside of the United States where they offer very low fees.  From a customer service perspective the last thing you want to do is give your customers the tedious job of having to transfer money around to pay you. 

Whether you are selling MP3 players on Ebay or working as an internet publisher or serving people in web design or consulting, make your business easy and accessible and save your customers some time and trouble so that they walk away with a positive impression even when they pay you.

Monday, March 03, 2008

Crazy Adsense Ads get Attention

horse-through-windshield-adsense-adI saw this crazy Google Adsense ad on tonight.  I didn't click on it and I'm not sure I really want insurance from a company that insures for this type of accident, but then again I have been hit by two deer at the same time . . .


Regardless it makes a great point that image ads get a lot of attention and the right image ad will get you people to your site and get you clicks if you are a publisher.   There might as well be an Adwords hall of fame for advertisers and they should line that hall with fiberglass columns with images hanging from those columns of all the great ad campaigns that have ever been . . .


What's the craziest Adsense/ Adwords campaign you have ever seen?

If you are familiar with the 'fart button' campaign put on by Spencer's Gifts that actually has won some advertising awards believe it or not.