Wednesday, December 31, 2008

The Ad Budget that is Reborn on New Years Morning

image We focus all of our attention on optimizing our sites, but sometimes it is not our sites performance that results in missing our Adsense earnings goals.  If you are looking at December results and thinking that you didn’t quite earn as much as you expected, don’t rush to change anything that you hadn’t already identified as broken.

Many advertisers have budgets that run out before the month of December ends.  Furthermore, those budgets are often not renewed until a few days into January.  To compound this type of thing, two other market activities kick in that can decrease your earnings.  Many advertisers simply stop spending ad money from about the 25th through about January 2nd.  If they have nothing to sell to holiday consumers, their money might get more bang for its buck when people that they are targeting come back online AFTER the holidays.

Plus, many companies and advertisers that do have consumers to target can move into the vacancies mentioned above and pay far less in Adsense money to run their own advertisements.  The supply of ads shrink and the bargain hunters move in.  Its classic economics, and it can account for decreases in Adsense earnings during December.

Monday, December 22, 2008

Google Crisis?

I found a very interesting article over on today regarding Google's latest crisis. The new crisis involves Google Search users visiting parallel sites (non-Google affiliated ones at that). You see, it is great to have a search engine that delivers users to your own sites, but it can be worrisome if after they use your search engine they leave your sphere of influence and spend time and money on someone else's site. 

Apparently Google is having the most difficulty with price comparison and shopping sites. Sites like BizRate, Shopzilla and PriceGrabber make up the top three traffic and sales hacks that Google is concerned with at this point. 

It will be interesting to see what Google will do in response to this crisis. I feel like they have been kind of ignoring their search engine for the last few months and instead focusing on spamming the hell out of YouTube. Granted, I cold be wrong, but this just seems like something they should have been ready for. Oh well, I'm sure Google will figure this out in time for Valentines Day.

Wednesday, December 17, 2008

Adsense Tips

There are a lot of folks out there who do their best to spread the word about Adsense optimization as well give tutorials in order to help users out. I recently surfed through YouTube to find some tips to share here and came across a great video made by the Australian Adsense team and posted on their YouTube channel "InsideAdsense".

In addition to offering great tips ranging from creating custom channels to tracking and measuring your results, the Adsense team delves into nearly every aspect in this video and others in their collection. I highly recommend checking out their channel over on YouTube to learn more tips and tricks in order to put an exclamation point on your earnings.

Keeping Tabs

I can't stress how important it is to keep tabs on your Adsense statistics, especially when you implement new SEO strategies, networks or anything for that matter. I recently began utilizing FeedBurners Buzzboost feature to better help publicize my blogs and have really enjoyed watching my traffic increase over the last couple of weeks. 

In addition to keeping tabs on your Adsense statistics, I highly recommend that when you implement a new strategy or tactic that you drop an email or comment to the Adsense tracking service to make them aware of any irregularities that might occur with clicks or page impressions. If you search the Blogosphere enough, you will find many horror stories about folks who have skipped that step and had accounts suspended for suspicious activity.

Personally, I suspect that Adsense tracking is tired of hearing from me, but I really don't want to risk my hard work earning clicks and impressions to go down the drain. In the end, it is up to you to keep track of your statistics (but that isn't going to keep me from lecturing you all to do so).

YouTube and Adsense

Whether you frequent YouTube or not, you may have noticed (heard) that Google now owns (actually since 2006) the popular user-upload site and has begun uploading their advertisements all over it. In addition to running a variety of Adsense advertisements, Google has offered users the ability to apply to become "partners". 

I am not terribly sure as to what becoming a YouTube "partner" entails, but I have seen that "partners" have videos ads placed on their videos as well as scattered across their channel and pages. 

Personally, I don't think that it is necessarily a bad thing. I think that it is a good opportunity for users and content producers to earn a bit of extra revenue for their hard work, but am curious as to how Google will view certain content on YouTube. I have heard that their will be a few search options for filtered and unfiltered content as well as some sort of re-rating for videos other than the 1-5 star format we are all so familiar with.

There are many popular YouTube channels that feature a variety of filterable material, but are quite popular and may suffer due to this new increase in homogeneity. Here is a quick video of a popular YouTube channel "thunderf00t". His channel deals in a variety of controversial issues and may be affected greatly by the new Google-run YouTube.

I don't know if I agree wholeheartedly with his "YouTube is dead" philosophy, but I think he makes a few good points about censorship and free speech. What are your opinions about this?

All Inclusive Vacations

Here we are again, another holiday with the airports jammed with weary travelers carrying fruitcakes and presents for loved ones. I don't know how many years it has been since I took a real vacation this time of year. Not that a trip to Mom and Dads or the in-laws isn't a "vacation", but I'm talking about an exotic location, exciting activities and just getting away from "it all". Having said that, I've been exploring some of the unique, all inclusive, SuperClubs vacation packages and am really liking what I am seeing.

Imagine being able to choose from a series of romantic vacations and packages at a Jamaica all inclusive resort. I would love to take my wife to a peaceful exotic locale and sip drinks oceanside watching the waves drift in lazily. One of my favorite aspects of the SuperClubs resort packages is the fact that you would never be troubled to find anything as the packages are all inclusive. Talk about being able to focus on having a great time with the family or special loved one!

In addition to great vacation packages, SuperClubs offers a variety of other packages including Caribbean weddings. These wedding packages include some incredible amenities as well as unbelievably gorgeous locations for that special day. If you have been considering taking a tropical vacation this holiday season or over the winter months, why not make it an all inclusive SuperClubs vacation? I think you will really like what you see!

Monday, December 08, 2008

FeedBurner BuzzBoost

Having spent a bit of time lately link building in order to raise traffic as well as Adsense clicks and page impressions, I wanted to take an opportunity to talk briefly about a great FeedBurner feature that can help your blog or site a number of ways; BuzzBost. BuzzBoost is a tool by FeedBurner which allows you to create a HTML code to share with other blogs and websites that, once embedded, will not only link your blog and posts, but hopefully drive traffic between sites stimulating your Adsense statistics.

I recently became aware of this program through a friend of mine and have begun putting the feature to use. I hope to see a nice traffic spike in the coming weeks, which will hopefully mean increased Adsense revenue generation (got to pay for that hosting service).

In the meantime, I would definitely suggest checking out the program which can be found under your FeedBurner feed account under the tab of "Publicize". The HTML code is easy to set up, you just have to select a couple of boxes to determine what information you would like displayed once the code is embedded. Once you save you will be given the code which can then be embedded onto a blog or website. If you get a chance, definitely check this one out!

Competitive Ad Filter

Google's Adsense program offers decent rewards to anyone who is dedicated enough to explore its intricacies (dashboard) and apply the knowledge of the sages (Adsense bloggers) in order to reap the benefits. Having said that, I wanted to take a minute or two today to mention the Competitive Ad Filter in the Setup menu. 

The Competitive Ad feature will enable an Adsense user to determine which ads they will run on their page. Granted, this sounds like the simplest of tasks, but it is actually quite involved, so hold on.

The best way to explain this whole "process" is to suggest you look at it first-hand from your Adsense account. Basically, log-in, select account setup and then competitive ad filter. Once you select the competitive ad filter you will be greeted by some text as well as a few examples of how to filter ads for your blogs. 

In addition to that tool, Adsense now offers an Ad Review Center where you can review the ads before they run on your page. Personally, I believe that the ad filter works well enough, but if you aren't in the mood o run the research and block domains on your own then the new review feature might be right up your alley. Either way, you are bound to have the ads you would prefer running about 90% of the time. 

Thursday, December 04, 2008

Reporting Traffic Spikes to Big Brother

Many people and businesses who use the Adsense program successfully utilize many of the setup and reporting options instead of just simply embedding code and hoping for the best. Having said that, I want to discuss, in brief, the importance of reporting traffic increases (spikes) to Google in order to not be reported as being a baron of suspicious activity. There are countless stories across the Blogosphere about people having their accounts suspended or given warnings for suspicious Adsense clicks and impressions.

The best way to combat the aforementioned pitfalls is simple. All one has to do is file a quick report via your Adsense dashboard informing Google that you have done something (added directories, networks or links) that will likely increase your page impressions and clicks. By filing this simple report, you can rest assured that your Adsense account will not be flagged as suspicious or given a warning. 

After putting in all the work of increasing your blogs traffic, the least you could do for yourself is submit this two second report to keep your account open and profitable.

Tuesday, December 02, 2008

BlogMad Purchased

Having mentioned sometime last week that BlogMad, a popular traffic generator, was put up for sale, I wanted to provide an update. Apparently, sometime in the last few days, BlogMad was sold to For those of you unfamiliar with, they are a pay-per-post site not all that dissimilar than Associated Content. 

In addition to purchasing the domain from BlogMad, it would appear that current members of the purchased site will have the ability to sign-up at just as anyone else. Unfortunately there aren't any special perks for former BlogMad members. 

I suppose in the grand scheme of things, it isn't too much of a surprise that the traffic generation sites are beginning their death throes. I mean, its all about organic traffic nowadays and site recognition. Besides, organizations like Google don't particularly like these types of sites and have been known to penalize users whose sole traffic generation efforts stem from sites like BlogMad. 

Anyway, the site was purchased by and the transfer will go down sometime on December 12th. BlogMad users have about 10 or so days to burn through their credits and find alternatives before the domain swap occurs.