When Google released their latest earnings report, it showed some bad news for web publishers (including bloggers) who monetize their digital content via Google’s AdSense program.
Google has never shared the exact percentage of revenue that it pays out to AdSense publishers, but one can figure out the number fairly easily by using Google’s earnings report that is released at the end of the quarter.
The “Google Network Revenues” section of the report represents the total revenue generated through the AdSense program, and the “Traffic Acquisition Costs” section shows the total paid amount to Google’s AdSense publishers. You can calculate the approximate revenue share amount by dividing TAC with the total AdSense revenue.
Here’s a brief chart that compares the two numbers for the 2009 year. The revenue percentage that Google shares with AdSense publishers has decreased from 75% in the first quarter to 72% in the fourth quarter of 2009.
This isn’t the greatest news, but it’s meant to inform people of what’s going on with the AdSense program rather than scare people off. If you want to earn big through advertising placements on your site there’s a variety of options similar to AdSense, but you may want to consider approaching an advertiser directly.
If you have decent site traffic and targeted content, it’s fairly straight forward to approach targeted, niche advertisers. Rather than going through a service that a company like Google offers, these advertisers would buy ad space on your site directly. Ultimately, you win in two different ways: you get a targeted, high quality advertiser on your site and you increase the potential of earning more than you would through a system like AdSense.
For those who run sites in the tech/web niches, http://buysellads.com can be a very effective 3rd party solution for a few different reasons: you don’t have to deal with any CPM tracking or customer service, and you don’t have to do any sort of extra work to get advertisers to place ads on your site – Buy Sell Ads does all of that work for you. The downside is that they take a percentage of earnings, but if your site is related to a fairly popular niche, there’s a lot of advertising potential and you can potentially charge a few hundred per ad slot on your site.
So as you can see, this AdSense news isn’t the end of the world and the system isn’t simply going to die overnight. Will it change? Sure, but everything in Internet marketing does! You just need to adapt and leverage what you can.
Check out this post, it may give you a few ideas on how to attract potential advertisers to your site.