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Most Profitable Ad Network For A Low Traffic Blog

written by John Chow on December 17, 2006

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Some may recall my posted titled Google AdSense A Waste Of Time For Bloggers. In that post, I questioned Jim Kukral’s comment that low traffic blogs can’t make money with Google AdSense. Recently Jim used my November blog income for a post to show he way over estimated what a blog at my traffic level should made.

According to Jim, a blog that receives 5000+ visitors per day should make anywhere from $100 to $500 per day. I don’t know where Jim came up with this estimate but that works out to an eCPM of $20 to $100. The number of sites that can command that kind of rate can be counted on one hand. The only one that comes to mind would be WSJ.com. Jim comes back down to Earth when estimating AdSense for lower traffic blogs. He puts the estimate at $1 eCPM, which any blogger should be able to beat with a bit tweaking.

The point of this post isn’t to call out or down Jim in anyways. His post got me doing a lot of thinking into what really is the best money maker for a low traffic blog. Jim is the founder of BlogKits, an ad network created to monetize low traffic blogs. Jim is convinced that his system will out perform Google, but he has not posted any real world results yet. If anyone is running BlogKit, I would love to know how well it’s doing for you.

In my search for finding the biggest money maker for low traffic blogs, I talked to a bunch of fellow bloggers on my AIM and MSN list – most have blogs with traffic ranging from less than 100 to about 1000 page views per day. As expected, everyone runs Google AdSense and many have experimented with other advertising networks and affiliate programs.

After tallying up the results, I believe I have found the number 1 money maker for a low traffic blog. The answer however, may not go over well with many people. The answer is PayPerPost.

I covered PayPerPost back in October and had some critical things to say about it. Unlike ReviewMe, PayPerPost requires that all paid posts be positive and no disclosure is required. However negative these two points are, it hasn’t stop a flood of low traffic blogs from signing up because the money they can make doing paid posts can blow away any other revenue sources available. One blogger I talked to said, “The only thing keeping my blog running is PayPerPost.”

How much can a blogger make with PayPerPost? Colleen Caldwell runs the Simple Kind Of Life and is a PayPerPost publisher. According to Performancing, which she is also a member of, her blog gets 2,130 impressions per month, or 71 page views per day. Since signing up for PayPerPost, Caldwell had made $1,000 from it in less than seven weeks.

Let’s work the math. $1,000 in seven weeks is $571 per month. Making $571 from 2,130 page views works out to an eCPM of nearly $270! Caldwell says she is currently on track to earn more than $6,000 this year from PayPerPost. Not bad for a blog with less than 100 page views per day.

I am in no way endorsing PayPerPost. I am not a PayPerPost publisher and this is not a paid post. The only reason I’m blogging about them is because of the question, “What is the biggest money maker for low traffic blogs?”

PayPerPost is changing their disclosure policy – all publishers will have to disclose if a post is paid starting on Monday. The requirement for a positive review does not change however. Whether or not you use PayPerPost is up to you.

In the end, the best solution is not any single advertising network. Putting all your eggs in one basket is never a good idea. The best solution is with a mixture of different ad networks that compliment each other. Were I to just stick with just Google AdSense, I would have made only $800 last month instead of $2,200. Getting the revenue mix correct is a tricky thing however. I will blog about that in a future post.

*Update – PayPerPost does not require all reviews be positive. The advertiser can set the tone of the review between positive, neutral and negative. A neutral tone allows the blogger to be either positive or negative. Publishers can also choose to accept or reject any review requests.

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