Saturday, December 31, 2005
By Carole Nickerson
1. Less is More
I believe the theory behind this lies within the visitor's experience at a website. If you serve up let's say... a 728x90 leaderboard, and a 160x60 side block, and maybe even an extra ad unit or link unit then you aren't just showing the top-paying ads, you're also showing a lot of the ads with lower values too. This is especially painful if your site only triggers ads in the $2 range. These low-paying keywords can be a distraction to the visitor and while the recommended "slop of gravy on top with a side of mashed potatoes" (describing sites using the 728x90 and 160x60 ad blocks on a page) has often been touted as the best placement for Adsense, it is being proven by many to not be all that tasty. Why? Because these ads are "outside" of your content, not within it. When Adsense ads are placed within the body of content, it generally performs better for many. I have seen this myself in testing different Adsense placement methods. One site I own jumped in CTR by 10% when I removed the full meal deal and opted for a small 468x60 text ad block within the body of my content.
2. Keyword Density
While Google doesn't reveal the specifics on the methods behind their Adsense madness, most people have learned through experimentation that keyword density plays a significant role. Adsense does rely on the content to determine which ads to show, and they want their ads to be shown. It would also appear that content towards the top of your page has a greater influence over the ads. It's almost a passive way of forcing Adsense users to boost their keyword density to not only show the most relevant ads, but to improve search engine positioning which improves the chances of those ads being seen. Perhaps an underhanded means of thumbing their nose to MSN, which seems to feed on keyword loaded sites these days propelling many an Adsense website into it's top rankings. Either that, or I've been watching too many shows about conspiracy theories.
3. Less is More - or More is More?
Another theory is that using fewer internal links on your webpage gives visitors fewer "click-away" options, thus improving chances of them clicking on Adsense ads. If you have 20 links on your page and let's say 4 of them being within a 728x90 ad block, then visitors still have 16 other links to choose from beside the meager 4 Adsense links. Keep only 5 links on the page, and they now have only 9 links to choose from other than Adsense ads. Add more Adsense ads, such as a block containing 5 more links carefully weaved into your content (such as a 336x280), and they now have a better chance of getting clicked on with a ratio of 9:9. Taking it a step further, you could also factor other numbers into the equation such as : percentage of page scanned before clicking away, percentage of page scanned before scrolling, number of average scrolls per page to predict good places to place ads, etc. The odds can definitely be in your favour with this tactic. I haven't aggressively tested this theory yet and with a blog this is certainly not an option, but I have noticed on another site I own this might explain the 20-40% CTR I'm seeing on pages where all internal links are at the bottom of the page.
4. Using Images Next To Ads
While it's reported that Adsense doesn't like images placed next to ads which appear to be served by Google, this has been proven by many to boost CTR incredibly. And because these images are different than those which caused the worldwide pandemic of "banner blindness", people are more likely to notice them. It really just makes sense. Human beings are visual creatures. From the time we were monkeys popping our heads over the grass to see if a lion was coming our way, our eyes have always been our first tool in evaluating a situation, and of course, checking out other monkeys. But back to Adsense... even more effective is when you use images that illustrate the content of the page. I've used this trick and find it reallly works well.
5. Font Type and Size
This was announced on the official Adsense Blog recently and it's a great tip. Adjust your page's font and size to match Adsense ads can greatly boost CTR. This could be difficult if your site has a lot of static pages, but a simple batch search & replace tool can help you speed things up. Now figuring out what the matching font is has been a chore for many.
I believe (through trial and error) that the font used mainly in Adsense ads is Arial, size: 11px
A number of people have reported that they've witnessed Adsense ads conforming to their page's CSS font styles. If anything is occurring here, I'm willing to take a guess that Adsense ads might be able to adapt to a very limited number of fonts and if you happen to use one of those fonts on the page, it will change accordingly. But as I said, if this is true than I think it's limited. After all, have you ever seen an Adsense ad in FontLeroyBrown 20px?
6. Test, test, test
Nearly everyone agrees that Adsense is only as effective as the unique way you integrate it into your website. What works for one person may not work for another. While there are some basic principles which are great starting points for any website, your design and content is unique and therefore visitor behaviour will be unique. Your best results will come through experimentation and patience.
Carole Nickerson has been a web developer and internet marketer since 1998. She now spends her days actively filling up her new blog with all she has learned. To find more Adsense tips & tricks, or post a comment, visit: http://www.CaroleNickerson.com
Tags: Adsense, Google Adsense, Adsense tips
Friday, December 30, 2005
As you know an excellent way to get traffic to your site is through the search engines. Search engines love blogs because they're updated constantly.
Know how to use blogs? Then you can easily get more traffic to your website. Just post your keywords in the title and have your blogs indexed.
Another way to get traffic to your site is to use popular free traffic exchanges. They come in many forms such as start exchanges, safelists, toolbar ads such as Instant Buzz and forums such as the free advertising forum.
Looking to get more traffic using the power of blogs? Now you can advertise for free on a new BLOG that actually allows you to place your ads for free on their site.
The reason this is good because you get all the benefits of placing your ads on a BLOG and you get free advertising.
Most people would look at this as a no brainer. Although most webmaster do not like people to advertise on the blogs, this site was made just for that.
It is free to join and thousands are flocking to this service to drive huge traffic to their sites in just days by simply posting one little ad on their home page.
Anyone looking for free advertising and to increase their profits should look in to
Free Advertising Blog
If you have the concept down, you then need to find some product or service you'd like to promote. There has to be some kind of identifiable target audience that would want this product or service. Now you actually have to promote the product or service to make money online. You can easily do this by setting up a blog or other type of website.
By Dave Cooper
Making money with affiliate programs isn't rocket science. You don't need a marketing degree or a college degree to do it. In fact, affiliate programs are an excellent way to make money online and it can be easy to do if you go in knowing some key points.
First, to make money with an affiliate program, you need to understand how they work. An affiliate program works by signing up people to represent certain products or services and then paying those people a commission to sell the company's product or service. This is a great way for companies to expand their sales force and market share. Nowadays, with the Internet making the world your global marketplace, making money online through affiliate programs is more feasible than ever.
Hundreds of thousands of firms have launched affiliate programs that have continued to be a great success. Big names you know such as Ebay, Amazon, and Google have affiliate programs where it's possible for an individual to make a good amount of money online through their affiliate programs.
If you're not sure how to begin the process of making money online through an affiliate program, here is a brief outline to get you started.
First, find a company with a product or service you'd like to represent. Normally you will sign up at the company's website. If they don't manage their own affiliate programs you might be registering at an affiliate management site such as Commission Junction or ClickBank. You will be given your own unique i.d. as an affiliate of the company to sell its products online through its affiliate program.
Then, set up a blog or your own website and advertise your product with a link to the company's site that includes your affiliate i.d. so you can be given credit for each sale. When people hit your blog or website, they will see the advertisement for the product or service you're representing and when they click the link to go to the company website, you will be given credit if they buy the product or service. You probably won't have a problem finding products to sell in an online affiliate marketing program to make money. There are numerous products in categories such as art, automotive products, cards, computers, credit cards and finance, gambling and adult venues, home businesses, magazines, matchmaking sites, web hosting services and so much more. It's just a matter of deciding what you feel has mass public appeal and what type of products or services you'd be comfortable representing.
There are two key points to being a successful affiliate and making money online through affiliate programs. Number one, you must market yourself. The previously mentioned blog is an excellent way to market your affiliate program and make money online. With a blog you can write personal, newsy messages and you can go a step further and keyword enhance them to give your page more relevance in search engine return results. It's a great way to "soft sell" the public on your affiliate program items. If you don't want to use a blog, set up a website. Don't put a bunch of screaming graphics or huge letters. The most successful affiliate sites are not full of fluffy words and empty promises about products. The successful websites are low-key in design using low graphics and light colors. Another great way to market yourself is to write articles about your service or product you're selling. Use a product review style and post them on any of the free article databases out there with a link back to your site.
The second key point in making money online through affiliate programs is to be organized. You can use your computer and build a spreadsheet, make notes on a pad and keep it in your desk drawer. Whatever works for you so you can keep track of your programs. You just need to be consistent and diligent about keeping records of your clicks and sales to insure that you make money in your affiliate programs.
If people are clicking your links and you're not getting sales. Obviously you need to tweak out the wording for your products. People are turned off by phrases such as "It's the Best" or "You MUST have this product/service". Instead, tell people how they will benefit from the product or service with out using sales fluff and filler words, give them a few uses for it, show them why they should purchase from you, and they will. You in turn, will make money online for simply hosting an affiliate program.
When a sale is made, you will be given credit as long as your affiliate i.d. was associated with the sale. Most affiliate programs let you sign up for free and pay you a percentage of the sale. You don't do any shipping or direct sales. Usually, if you market hard and consistently, you stand to make a good deal of money online through affiliate programs. That's the sheer beauty of using online affiliate programs.
Now that you know the potential for making money online with affiliate programs, sign up for some affiliate programs to represent products or services you feel have a mass appeal. It's not too late to get in on one of the fastest and easiest moneymaking opportunities you can find to make money online.
David Cooper can help you make money online with affiliate programs. He specializes in helping people with their affiliate marketing efforts by offering real world tips and strategies. Download his FREE Affiliate Marketing Primer ebook at: http://www.affiliatemarketingarticles.com
1. Consider your Audience
2. Genuine Recommendations and personal endorsements always work best
3. Link to Quality Products
4. Contextual Deep Links work Best
5. Consider positioning of links
6. Traffic levels are Important
7. Diversify without Clutter
8. Be Transparent
9. Combine with other Revenue Streams
10. Track results
Thursday, December 29, 2005
Advertising can be a great way to make money online and increase your cash flow. Static advertising online has been around a while while contextual advertising online is newer.
These are ads you place on your site that are dynamically targeted to the content of your page. Since they're targeted to the content, your visitors will likely be interested in the advertisements. They will be more willing to click on them. Contextual ads provide value to your site by potentially providing visitors with solutions to what they are looking for. The most popular is Google's Adsense program. Some webmasters (those with a lot of traffic) make a lot of money online with Google Adsense.
These are ads that don't change in relation to your page's content. They are usually found in the form of image ads, like those banners you see on a lot of pages. Or they can be found in the form of text links. Static ads can still change due to rotations though. And sometimes you can't control what static ads you receive.
Other than ads, there are a variety of methods you can use to make money online. I'll outline some of those ways you can use to enhance your cash flow.
Affiliate marketing can be a great way to make money online. Basically you act as an online salesperson and refer visitors to merchants' stores. You get paid for actions like leads or sales. The amount you get paid is usually a percentage or some set amount. Make sure that the prices are competitive and that your commission is not super low.
Sell Services or Physical Goods
Find something to sell that's related to your site's topic. You could make money online by selling some services, especially if you become known as an expert in your area. Or by directly selling goods related to your topic. For example, if you have a site about scuba diving, you could sell scuba diving equipment. Whatever comes to your mind!
Sell Digital Goods
Digital goods don't have the overhead that physical goods do. They're also amazingly simple to reproduce and distribute. You could write an Ebook on your topic of expertise. You could develop useful software or hire others to develop software related to your site.
Sell Website Memberships
Are you an expert in your site's topic? Can you or a team provide regular, timely, useful content that your visitors would want? Can you provide services on your site that people would want? If so, consider selling site memberships to help you make money online.
Do people like your site, feel connected, and want to support you? Consider adding an online donation button, but only if you think you have a compelling reason for it.
Sell Your Website
Over time, your site will grow in value as your traffic grows and cash flow increases. Sometimes circumstances pop up and you won't be able to work on your site. Or you plainly lose interest. In that case, you may want to sell your site to someone capable. You lose out on future profits but you make more money at the time of sale.
By Carole Nickerson
Before I start, I was hoping to bring you some figures on the number of users who own a scroll-mouse, or at least some recent sales statistics. While I haven't yet found that data, I can say that I did find that the scroll-mouse (especially optical) are among the most popular because of the ease it offers in scrolling documents.
With that in mind, the "Adsense Scroll Mouse Theory" goes something like this:
People scroll a webpage in mainly two different ways: A) They are browsing quickly and looking for something to catch their eye, or B) They are reading a document where their scrolling is much slower and paced. When a user scrolls the page, there are natural breaks which occur due to limited finger movement. Based on the two kinds of scrolling, finger movements and the fact that eye-level content gets the most visibility, an estimate can be made (in pixels) which determines where the majority of these breaks occur at eye-level.
In this experiment, I recorded results from 10 different scroll-mouse users to measure their scrolls in pixels, based on two different scrolling habits.
A) Fast browsing - the average mouse scroll is 600-700 pixels vertically, meaning when the user pauses, their eye-level falls within the 600-700 pixels range on the page (from the top of the document, not the browser). They scroll and stop, scroll and stop. They have no choice.
B) Slow browsing - the average slow mouse scroll is 400-460 pixels vertically (scrolling in smaller chunks while reading), meaning that they pause at eye level every 400-460 pixels vertically. As they read a section, they usually start to scroll bringing more content up into their immediate eye-level.
Considering these two key mouse scrolling behaviours, it would make sense to place ads exactly at these points, or use an overall average to concentrate ads within every 400-700 vertical pixels on the page. The best fit would be a 336x280 ad block as it catches both ends of the slow & fast scroll.
You might be wondering about people using a browser's scrollbar instead of a scroll-mouse. With a browser's scrollbar, fast scrolling habits either stopped at around the 2000 pixel mark (for very long pages equal to just slightly more than half-way down a page) or the bottom of the page. For slow scrolling habits, the pauses occurred at eye-level about every 400-460 pixels, just as with a scroll-mouse.
The consistency in slow mouse & slow browser scrolling habits would leave you to assume that Adsense ads placed around the 400-460 mark might be something worth testing on your own website.
But consider this too: Initial eye-level on a webpage is somewhere around the 200-231 pixel mark. You could try placing ads at this point, the 400-460 mark, and then at the 600-700 mark. This way you are getting immediate visibility with the top ads first presented when the page loads, caching slow readers as they scroll, and catching fast scrollers too. The only group you'd have a problem slowing down are the ones using browser scrollbars. Images used next to Adsense ads can help catch their attention, especially if the page has a lot of text.
Now it's very likely someone else has already thought of this and it's already been discussed to death. I haven't found anything related to it. Everything here is really just theory, but something I plan to test myself using live test subjects (it sounds cooler than 'search users') and will post results as they come.
I would love to hear if you tested this out and what your results were.
Carole Nickerson has been a web developer and internet marketer since 1998. She now spends her days actively filling up her new blog with all she has learned. To find more Adsense tips and tricks, or post a comment, visit: http://www.CaroleNickerson.com
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Carole_Nickerson
Wednesday, December 28, 2005
By Carole Nickerson
All too often, many affiliate marketers discover that an affiliate program's promises of high converting sales simply never materializes. They followed all the instructions, used all the affiliate marketing tools & tips offered by the program, and learned everything they could about profiting with affiliate programs but still ended up losing - both money put into advertising and faith in the concept of making money online. So what went wrong?
Let's say you sign up for an eBook affiliate program where you can earn $20 per sale. If the average conversion is claimed to be 1 out of 35 visitors to the site, then you know you'll have to refer at least that many people to make a single sale. This might be ok if you are simply putting a banner on your site or writing an article which doesn't cost anything, but if you use PPC engines to drive traffic, you might find that it's just not worth it.
So off you go to Adwords, find a few keywords to bid on and see that you have to spend $0.25 per click in promoting that eBook affiliate program just to average 15 clicks per day. That right there is $3.75 per day you'll be spending. But wait, that was only 15 visitors. Because the average conversion is 1 out of 35 visitors, you're likely going to have to spend $8.75 more to meet that number. Add it all up and you've spent $12.50 to send those 35 visitors. Your actual profit is knocked down to $7.50 per sale at this point. But that is only if you get that steady 1 out 35 people converting into buyers. Not as exciting as it first sounded right?
But that's not all. What do you do when you realize that it actually takes 45, 50, or even 100 visitors just to make that one sale? You'll end up losing more money than what you'd ever make in commissions. This doesn't even include the amout of time you've invested just in tweaking your ad copy for the campaign, testing different keywords, etc. Now I know there are some nuts who will dump $1000 into a campaign just to make $1200, earning them a profit of $200, but for most people (especially those starting out) it's just not realistic or financially feasible. It's a huge gamble. What a lot of people don't realize is that when an affiliate program is claiming very high conversions, they aren't basing it solely on affiliate conversions (that is if they are being honest and basing it on anything at all). These "conversion" figures are often used to manipulate new affiliates into signing up.
Another form of manipulation is the claim of top affiliates who earned $10,000-$30,000 or more in a single month. Sounds good, but what they aren't telling you is that only a very small fraction of affiliates ever make that much, and of those that did either had websites directing 1000's of visitors every day, or they spent $1000's in advertising. The affiliate program owner isn't going to say "The affiliates who earned $30,000 last month had to invest $25,000 to make that much, equating to an actual profit of just $5,000". Are there really people who invest that much money? I'm afraid so. I personal am not that brave nor rich. I would rather take that money and put it into developing my own products, which is far more rewarding and has more profit potential any day of the week.
Hype is hype - and it sells well. That's business, nothing personal. Whether it's hype about the product itself, or hype to recruit affiliates - it's all part of the game. Of course, nobody really wants to talk about this because it sheds a negative light on these affiliate programs and discourages sign-ups, but for those who already have trouble making ends meet and hoping to find riches online, these are things they need to consider before jumping into the affiliate marketing game.
In conclusion, these low-ticket items really need some evaluation and the conversion claims need to be taken with a grain of salt. It is wise to test affiliate programs first using free methods of promotion like writing articles or putting a button on your site. Get those first 35-40 targeted visitors rolling in and see what happens. If the sales do start to accumulate, then you know it might be something worth investing in. If you want to try out PPC advertising options, set a budget and stick to it. Crunch the numbers yourself and figure out what a reasonable investment would be. This little bit of time quality spent with a calculator can go a long way in not only helping you work smarter, but helping you realize your goals more quickly as you can dump the poor performing programs and focus on more profitable ones.
Carole Nickerson has been a successful internet marketer since 1998. To learn more about internet marketing, affiliate programs and making money online, visit: WealthAddict.com or visit the new High-Ticket Affiliate Marketing Blog at: http://best-internet-affiliate-programs.blogspot.com
Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/?expert=Carole_Nickerson
Content is really important for webmasters. Why? When people surf the web, they are looking for information.
They aren't looking for you specifically, unless you're well-known.
If they visit your site and don't what they're looking for, they will leave quickly. And they
probably won't return to your site. Well, they might stumble back onto your site, but not on purpose.
Quality sites provide quality content. Quality content helps you retain visitors. Visitors may spread
the word about your site and thus attract new visitors.
Adding new high quality content to your site regularly is also beneficial. With more content, you will have more
pages indexed by the search engines. More pages indexed means you will have more opportunities for people to find you via
So how exactly do you get content for your site?
1. Your unique knowledge
Everybody knows something others don't. Use your own unique insight and knowledge to provide content. Think of
what activities you've participated in the past. Think of what you've learned through past experiences.
Any experiences can help, whether at home, school, work, or anywhere else. Of course, providing your own content
regularly can be very difficult.
2. Personal stories
Personal stories are the basis of some sites and blogs. Want to connect with your audience and let them know
more about you? Use personal stories. However, if you don't want to be too personal, make sure you inject
your personality into your writing. Personality differentiates you from the rest and can keep visitors
3. How-to guides
People have problems and like to figure out how to solve them. Had some problem you struggled with for a while?
Did you eventually solve it? The way you solved it could be written into a how-to guide. Or write a how-to
guide about your expert area. For example, if you're a technical computer whiz, you could write a
how-to guide for fixing computers.
4. Do research
Do some research on the web. Use search engines, search directories, and follow links to find
relevant sites. Do some research at your local library. Grab some books
about your site's topic and start digging through them. Find local experts, teachers, and professors
and ask them questions about your site's topic.
When you research, note down interesting ideas and you'll undoubtedly learn more.
You'll have more unique knowledge that
you can turn into content. You might even discover something earth-shattering!
5. Subscribe to newsletters
Good newsletters are a great way to keep informed about a particular topic.
They can keep you informed of offers that you may be able to provide on your own site. As well, they
can keep you on top of what's
happening in your area by providing time-sensitive content.
to find out ways to help you generate a cash flow from your website's content. Read more about
finding content, getting traffic, and monetizing your site.