This blog post cost me about $150.
It’s not often that I blog about money on this site. The income that I make on this blog hasn’t covered the hosting bills for my blog and the 20+ other sites that I host for friends, family and some charities. This year will probably change that, though. That’s great. I hope the blog pays off well this year and will help with the expenses of my son starting college.
Anyways, now you know that my blog’s primary focus is not to make me money. I do encourage people to try, though. If anything, simply to learn more about affiliate marketing, adsense, and behavioral advertising. If you’re serious and want to learn a lot about making money online, then visit John Chow. John is a pro. In fact, I read about using AdsBlackList on John Chow’s blog.
I love to test!
You may have noticed with my site in the past that I really enjoy testing and tweaking, then observing the results. When I read about AdsBlackList, I did just that. For two months I tested the recommended filters on and then off to see what would happen. Though my clicks were up and down during this time, when the filtering was off, the amount per click was off by over 25%! Click-rates without the filters were approximately 16 cents and with them on were up about 22 cents. (This is where I lost the money!)
You can read the full explanation on John’s site on how you get undercut by MFA and Arbitragers. Those sites will buy placement on your site, paying much less than a normal advertiser. When someone clicks on the ad, they pay you a few pennies. However, the person who clicked is brought to another page where the authentic ads are placed for a higher price. The site in between collects the difference. I hope Google takes some action to rid themselves of these guys, but in the example above Google made a little bit off of both of us so there’s not a lot of incentive to stop.
It’s a pretty cool means of making money, albeit risky. I would never do it for a living, but plenty of people do. If you ask me, it just clogs up Google’s system with a bunch of lame ads. This, in turn, makes people avoid the ads in general so the advertisers and the sites both lose in my opinion.
How to filter out these Sites
You don’t have to fall victim to this, though! Sign up for AdsBlackList and be sure to add their recommendations to your Competitive Ad Filter. Start with the free filter and you’ll immediately see the difference. After you’ve used it for a while, your revenue might be enough that you pay for the upgraded service.
Just as many folks might click on your ads, but you’ll make much more per ad! For me, it was 25% more!
Getting Professional Assistance
Please Note: I’m not guaranteeing that you’ll receive the same results that I have using this methodology. I’ve just started to ‘test the waters’ with purchasing Adwords and toying with Adsense. Pat East from Hanapin Marketing is a local resource I’ll be looking to get some assistance from.
Pat’s company works with some major clients on how to spend their money online effectively. Look him up if you need a hand! They’ve also got a great blog, PPC Hero!