Alex – What I am up to Adsense & PPC

Hey guys, I wanted to do a post on what I am up to for those who are curious and also for myself to get refocused/organized because I am doing a lot of different things at the same time… To start off with, after many months of going downhill adsense in January went back to the $3k+/month mark without any of my involvement in prior months. I pretty much have been very lazy with these and was simply focusing my time on other things such as hobbies and iPhone app PPC promotion. However, I did switch some of my higher risk sites to a new adsense account (you can have 2, one under your name and the other under a company). I also had a few sites that started getting 100+ people a day so I decided to just add those to my new account. While I more or less care about adsense currently, it’s definitely cool to see it come back to a good income level. Passive income is quite nice :) Here are the 2 screenshots of my adsense accounts.

adsense main account

Total of $3,249 off adsense :).

I’m not abandoning adsense… I decided to start redoing the sites that got sandboxed during September as I mention in that month’s income report. They were after all making $10-20/day with minimal effort. Some of the keywords are already back to page 1-2 on the new sites :). For testing purposes I’ll retry all the current services I use but give them each different sets of keywords, see if they are all still as effective as they use to be ;). I mean, ya adsense can be unstable but it’s definitely a good source of passive income when I consider how little work I’ve done to these sites since around the end of September.

Facebook, PPC, Ads = Fun times

I did a lot of work on Facebook recently, adding like boxes and building custom fan tabs with iframes which contain a sales video. A really cool thing about fanpages for me is that you can make them appear in french if the user’s Facebook settings are french (English by default obviously!). bilingualIt was a HUGE hassle to find someone to code this for me. I was trying to learn it myself because people were asking for $150+ when I knew if I could find someone who had done the code I could get it done for way less… Eventually I found someone who indeed had done it before and he gave me it for $50 :). This was on Odesk (which I always use for outsourcing but was highly tempted to try other websites after a few days…). This is kinda of a big deal in Canada because the french Canadians (like me) usually make a big deal about stuff being in french (I don’t care). So to have the french “intro” page appear when they go to my fanpage is really cool, especially since I am doing Facebook ads in English to both English and French users but at least when they reach my fanpage it fully converts to what they use.

Next up is starting Google PPC and Facebook. I have been doing a lot of Adwords right now, Google is being really lame though with my ads for the search networks… Giving me low quality scores and putting me at the BOTTOM of the page. I’m trying uncompetitive keywords that cost $0.20-0.40 per click and I expected to be at the top of the page but either because I’m one of the only advertisers OR because of my low quality score I’m put at the bottom of the page so I get a measly 0.5% CTR or less… I did a separate campaign for the display network and something very interesting that I found out is my header banner (leaderboard, 728*60) gets a ton of impressions (600+/day) yet so far gets 0-2 clicks while the 160*600 add on my sidebar gets 1/4 the impressions but gets a 5-7% CTR.  The sidebar one is really lowering my CPC :D. From $1.5 it seems to have averaged out to 0.20 cents.

<3 Bing

For those trying PPC, I HIGHLY recommend trying bing’s adcenter out. Yes the traffic is way lower but they are MUCH better to deal with then Google. I am getting 4 cent clicks off the search network and unlike Google they aren’t annoying me with poor quality scores. In fact, because Google does not always show my adds due to poor quality scores, I get about as many impressions on both networks (yet Bing is often giving me clicks at 1/4 the cost or less). You can get a $25 coupon for Bing off your hostgator account (I got mine there). I used to hate Bing for SEO because for some reason they almost never give me #1 ranks but for PPC they are awesome :).

ad-blindnessAlso, since Bing/MSN is kinda of the default search engine for people using windows, you tend to get people who are less “add blind” such as older folks so it helps with CTR and I would assume conversions if you were trying to sell a product.

I’m testing a lot of different advertisement logos and text and I’ll probably be able to share some of these with you guys in a month or so. Right now, it’s time to learn a lot about conversions, eventually I will be bringing this knowledge back to my current sites and start doing email lists (once I have the time to write an auto responder series…). After that I will sell products/affiliate offers to them. A big mistake I have been making is not focusing enough on conversions at this point, I will try to remedy that in 2012. I think I could make a lot more out off the 50-80k monthly page views I get on my adsense sites.

And finally, I have been wanting to do an ezarticle link review on this website. Long term readers might remember I actually recommended it to the email list many months ago and for the blog post on this website I wanted to show some of the great results I still have been getting with this service and the rank tracking software that I use has started working again with the latest update so I will be able to finish it with some screenshots :).