Blog Advertising Update

As you know, as part of the promotion for this blog, I’ve started using the SiteMatch feature of Google Adwords to buy ad space on a few sites. Here’s an update on how those ads are doing.

Site Impressions Clicks CTR Avg. CPM Cost
StevePavlina.com 63,744 222 0.34% $1.26 $80.37
PlentyOfFish.com 61,438 95 0.15% $0.34 $20.69
ProBlogger.net 1,228 10 0.81% $1.47 $1.80
Webmaster-Talk.com 1,498 4 0.26% $1.76 $2.64
Total 127,908 331 0.26% $0.83 $105.50

So far I have spent $105.50 to get 331 visitors, or 31.9 cents per visitor. In order to analyze the numbers you will need the help of Google Analytics. Many webmasters use Analytics but few know that Analytics can be tied to Adwords.

Looking at the Adwords Analytics results showed me that advertising on Plenty Of Fish, while cheap, is worthless. Visitors came to the front page, then left. The best performing site (and the most expensive) is Webmaster Talk. A visitor viewed an average of 4.2 pages. ProBlogger followed this with an average 2.92 page views per visitor. Steve Pavlina did 2.33 page views per visitor. All three sites did better than the organic Google search of 2.11 page views per visitor. However, an organic Google visitor doesn’t cost any money.

I am not getting much impressions on ProBlogger or Webmaster Talk because my bid of $2 CPM isn’t high enough to have my ads shown that often. In order to increase the impression, I would need to raise my bid.

I cut off Plenty of Fish after the first day. I am going to let the ads run on the remaining sites for the rest of the month. Then I’ll decided if I need to do anymore cutting. My current impression is the traffic I am getting from Steve Pavlina, ProBlogger, and Webmaster Talk is high quality. The question is, are they sticking around? If you came to this blog from an Google ad, it would be great if you can leave a comment and let me know.


41 thoughts on “Blog Advertising Update”

  1. Mayo says:

    No, i think people come here from related websites.

    I don’t know but i think i came here from PlentyOfFish blog.. smoeone mentioned you there, or is it….??? 🙂

    Well anyway i don’t use ads that often, if i do i must have some reference – like:

    John Chow’s blog –
    The man who knows
    how to make money(R)

    🙂

  2. John Chow says:

    Mayo – Of course. The advertising only sent 331 visitors, which is like less than 0.002% of all visitors that visit this blog in a month. Ya, I’ve been talked about at PlentyOfFish blog before. 🙂

  3. Mike says:

    I really enjoy your blog and just wanted to point out that statistically speaking, you actually do not know whether Webmaster-Talk.com is better.

    4 visitors just is not enough data to draw to any conclusions. If you do a lot of advertising via PPC, you might like to check out http://adwords.optimizer.com

  4. Rory says:

    Heya John,

    Good Post, thanks for keeping us in the loop.
    its interesting to see how much Google Analytics can do.

    I stop using it , and just relied on Awstats I may take a look back.

  5. Nomar says:

    you dont need to promote it chow, your blog is in heaven already

  6. Mayo says:

    Oh, one more thing Johh, i tend to click often posters name in response thread if he has website and he has a clever and interesting response to the blog owners article.
    This option would be time consuming but it would brig in many people who have interest in similar topics – for example if you would watch Markus PlentyOfFish forum and comment, Pavlinas blog and comment there too, ProBloggers often comment ….

    i.e. be active in blogosphere and comment oftenly – i.e. trade time for clicks (but you only have to comment once and be clicked 1000 times 😉

  7. Nick says:

    I first came here from one of your posts on the Digital Point forums.

  8. Alex says:

    Best regards – I firt time came here from Digg.com – excelent posts mede me stay and blog “landed” in bookmarks.
    I vist this twice or three times a week just for good read…

  9. Gdog says:

    I still get a kick out of those custom Google Adwords on your blog, from other websites. Funny stuff.

  10. mark says:

    I don’t remember where I initially found your posts but I believe it was when one of your posts got dugg by digg.com 🙂

  11. HMTKSteve says:

    You can always buy a link on my blog directly from me if you are looking to get some additional traffic!

  12. John Chow says:

    Mayo – Excellent point! Thanks. Yes I do check out the sites of my regular commenters.

    Mike – Very true. I’m going to let it run some more before making any real conclusions.

    HMTKSteve – I don’t need any additional traffic. This is just one of my crazy case studies. 🙂

  13. HMTKSteve says:

    I’ve been noticing something John…

    Your Google Ads are good. I mean real good. I never see ads that are not related to your content.

    My Google ads tend to suck… Real BAD!

    What is your secret?

    I’m tired of posting a story on my blog and seeing nothing but junk ads for “free laptops” or other items that have nothing to do with my post.

    Your blog is pretty varied as well and it’s not a case of ads targeted to other posts showing up.

    In your current entry about Real Estate I’m only seeing Real Estate ads. No computer ads or AdSense scam ads… Just Real Estate Ads.

    If I post an entry about Real Estate on my blog I’ll end up with ads for Free Laptops, AdSense scams, or IT Blogs and Blogging resources.

    Come clean… What’s the secret?

  14. John Chow says:

    HMTKSteve – My secret. If I tell you, I’ll have to kill you. 🙂 OK, the truth is I don’t really know, but I can take a few guesses.

    First guess: Google likes me because I’m a decent size publisher. I would imagine the bigger you are, the better your ads, or they make sure you get more of the good inventory, instead of the MFA crap.

    Second guess: I have a dedicated AdSense account rep who looks after my interest. When I first started this blog, I never had to deal with the Google sandbox.

    Third guess: Google knows I’m a Google Adwords advertiser as well as an AdSense publisher. So they make money on me two ways. While Google will never state it publicly, I believe they give better treatment to publishers who are also Adwords advertisers.

    Fourth guess: I’m just lucky.

  15. Bryce says:

    I want a dedicated AdSense rep 🙁

  16. furst says:

    I saw a few of your stories on Digg.com. After reading through a few of your articles I decided to add your feed to my reader.

    I wonder how getting Dugg compares to all of the advertising you do on those blogs.

  17. John Chow says:

    Digg sends a lot of traffic if a story hits the front page, but that traffic doesn’t convert very well. However, the traffic is free and a few readers, like you, may stick around.

  18. Tony says:

    Digg/Reddit traffic is pretty bad. From what I’ve heard (and personal experience) you get something like 1.1 view/visit and 0 ad revenue.

    Interestingly enough I became a regular reader/commenter after coming across this blog on digg multiple times.

  19. Gavin says:

    Dude I found you through digg, and I honestly would never click on an ad to go see a blog. So I’d keep up the interesting articles, since that will keep your viewership up. I have a simple personal site (http://www.gholt.com) that uses no ads and gets most of it’s traffic from search engines and other websites.

  20. I am not surprised about the pale result from plenty of fish. I predicted it when you jumped into the venture, they just can’t be targeted traffic for your niche.

    Many of us came from digg to know you. so it is wrong to describe us as “few”. We are quality and targeted traffic… what more? we got stock with your good blog.

    If out of the 120,000 hits sent your way in a day by digg, 12,000 stock with you over weeks and months, that ain’t few, when considered from the daily average hits of 1,200 before digg.

    Nomar and HMTKSteve, you need to understand what the master is teaching us here, using 10% of your Adsense revenue on Adwords campaign is best for your Google P.R. Google visits my site about 8 times daily. What they come to do there I don’t know, some times they view 5 to 10 pages and spent 25 minutes, at other times they spend zero seconds LOL

  21. John Chow says:

    Philomena Ojikutu – You are absolutely right. 12,000 is not a few. But 12,000 out of a 120,000 can be viewed as a few. 🙂

    I think I will make a post in the future asking where the readers came from.

  22. Mayo says:

    I don’t konw if anyone is using it but i will for direct selling calculations 🙂

    http://www.text-link-ads.com/link_calculator.php

    Interestigly, the script gives more (i.e. approx by x2) revenue calcultion for this blog than for TTZ ?? 🙂

  23. John Chow says:

    Mayo – That’s because the Text Link Calculator is for blogs, not content sites. 🙂

  24. Mayo says:

    Wow, no way you’r touting this blog John!!! 😉

    Alexa: TTZ 19,078

    vs.

    Alexa: johnchow.com: 5,882

    It could that TTZ could become your side project in forseeable future 🙂 (I don’t think it earns you small bucks) but by Alexa you will earn more on this baby than all the others if you leverage it right! 🙂

  25. Mayo says:

    Blogging is cool, if i succseed with my pet project i could only with my blog AdSense revenue pay the entire bandwith cost, and not any bandwith but 1Gbit multi-homed!
    😉

  26. Mayo says:

    LOL 🙂

    “Only $1,000 a month!” Good point there 🙂

  27. Mayo says:

    John, do you earn more on affiliate than on banners/text links??

    Also how to calculate properly the price of ad/link space. Text-link-ads calculator is cool but it seems it’s useless… ????

  28. Mayo says:

    Also is it intelligent to link bait with big fat check or big fat bank statement (like PlentyOfFish and others) … if i ever come to that stage… 🙂

  29. Hi John,

    For you own information here is how I have done on your website this month through SiteMatch.

    I really have no idea how many actual members signed up from your blog but it was fun anyway. There was also probably several type-in leads.

    Impressions: 21,196
    Clicks: 165
    CTR: 0.77%
    Ave CPM: 1.39
    Cost: $29.56

    Overall CPC is was about .18 per click.

    My CPM went up a bit after I started doing it and I have also reduced my CPM recently so they are not getting as many impressions.

    Overall I think this is a great place to advertise, especially if one happens to have a website in the same general category.

  30. Tom Hanna says:

    I came here off an ad on Steve Pavlina’s blog. An interesting ad, too – “I love Steve Pavlina.” I had to click, even though I wasn’t sure what I’d be getting or if I’d do more than glance at the front page and decide I didn’t like it. Kind of like all those teaser marketing ads – sometimes it’s a real letdown when you find out it’s an ad for a product you have no use for. (To be clear, in this case, I wasn’t disappointed.)

  31. John Chow says:

    Mayo – This blog doesn’t have any affiliate stuff on it. Only links and banners.

    Tim – Ya, it’s been fun. I’m going to let the ads run for a bit longer to get more data.

    Tom – Welcome. I’m glad you like what you saw. 🙂

  32. Rat says:

    I can’t remember if I clicked a google ad or not. I think it was a link from another blog about the “google whore” article. I was on the fence about starting my own site and when I read that article that was all she wrote. In my first 6 weeks I have almost 20,000 pg views. Considering I didn’t know the first thing about blogging in sept., I am very happy with how things have gone. Johnchow.com has really helped me get started, from plug in advice to advertising with adsense/adwords. Thanks John!

  33. Mayo says:

    Sorry John! :))

    I thought of TTZ… 🙂

    But also this is a nice property for Amazon … when you talk about some topic … say tech, or what you read you could also have Amazon link… or banner 😉

  34. Dave says:

    Really John, 16.5 million visitors a month?

  35. John Chow says:

    Rat – Good work! Keep it up.

    Mayo – My TTZ Media Network out performs Amazon by a country mile.

    Dave – What are you referring to?

  36. Dejan says:

    Hi there
    I come here to view Your post about Blog Advertising Update
    and not from any advertiser…
    I’m reffered hee by friend

  37. David Mackey says:

    I did not come from Google Ads, I think I came from Digg…Sometime ago.

  38. Artur Paikin says:

    Well, I came here from baron.vc, which advertised on your blog and whose ad I saw on stevepavlina.com.

    Not very simple, you know 🙂 But adwords rocks, as I see.

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