Monetizing your website - have you done it? Did it work?

Good evening, everyone.

Whilst glumly pondering the state of the Savannah household finances, my thoughts turned, as usual, to the web. I have a long-established personal website, and a couple of other sites as well. Personally, I’ve always been proud that my site is ad-free, but I am wondering about putting ads on it as a source of small income supplement. I am not imagining this is a path to riches, of course. But a few cheques here and there would be very pleasing.

Of course, the first thing I thought of was Google’s AdSense, but my site is adult, which isn’t permitted, and though some might go ahead, I don’t want to flout the rules of the Mighty Google. So I think I will try another ad company that does do naughty sites.

Have you ever turned a hobby website into something that generated money for you? A blog that became a book? Have your quips turned into cash? What companies would you recommend for affiliate ad programs (if that’s the right terminology) and which ones are rip-offs? Tips? Tricks?

Ad-vise away!

It takes a lot of traffic to earn any significant amount of money from ads. My own site started with a single page hawking motorcycle tire changing tools; once I got interested in Google Adsense, I added some other material for people to browse through. With about 100 page impressions per day and a click-through rate of a little less than 2%, it earns me about a dollar a day. Ain’t gonna break the bank, but I’ll take it.

I haven’t really explored other options, since I doubt anything I do there is likely to earn much more than a dollar a day; hours of research and comparison isn’t really economically justified unless you’re talking about the difference between $100,000 and $110,000 per year.

Sorry I was hoping this was about adding water lilies to your site in an impressionist style.

Carry on.

I have a few website and it does take a lot of traffic, even to get enough money to pay the cost of your domain name per year.

But it can be done.

The trick is do the ads slowly and they MUST blend in to your site. By this I mean you want to make sure they are clearly labled as “ads” but you also want to place them where people will see them and click on them

One common error is people use static webdesign and place ads to the right.

If you use 800X600 as your resolution the ads on a static website (and placed to the right) will often not even show up. So make sure your webdesign is fluid and your ads show up in any screen resolution.

Remember they must blend into the design, but must be clearly be “ads” to your visitors. Nothing ticks people off faster than placement of ads so you click on them when you didn’t mean to.

In terms of generating money, it is a long trial and error, to figure out what kinds of ads will cause your visitors to click. So monitor this on a daily basis and don’t be afraid to try different things

Adult sites should monetize much better than non-adult sites because you can put adult ads on there. Consider using Google Website Optimizer or some other A/B testing tool to vary the placement & type of ads on your page to figure out what would be optimal.

Can you give some more details about the number of visitors you get/how they find you?

Thanks for the replies, folks.

I’d settle for a dollar a day! It’s better than 0 a day…

I will consider adding some water lilies. They are lovely flowers.

Naturally, I have a fairly static web design and naturally placed the ad(s) to the right. I’ll look at playing around with that, thanks. And try other things, too.

Unfortunately, I don’t have a lot of information about visitors to the site. I’ve been lax about it for the last while. It’s fairly simple, and the last redesign I did went to a very spare appearance. It’s a “author’s website” with some of my fiction, where I’ve been published, a link to my blog.

It is the first result in a Google search on the name, which is good!

But in order to make this work, I will have to update it regularly, which is a good incentive!

I will be sure to update the thread when I cash my first big cheque for a gazillion dollars! :slight_smile:

I think **Mangetout **has some pretty good traffic to his website and he’s mentioned the ad revenue in the past (not sure if it’s loads though) - possibly a vanity search will turn up this thread and he’ll pop in with some wisdom.