My Blog Monetization Experiment

Yep.  That’s an ad over there on the right.  Have I succumbed to the temptation of ads on my blog?!?!  Well, at least for a bit the way I see it.  Consider it a test of sorts, an experiment of which the results I intend to share transparently.

Let’s be honest, monetizing blogs is no new secret.  In fact most blogs do this very thing through display ads, affiliate links, or sponsored posts.  If handled well, there’s nothing wrong with it don’t you think?  The hard work of those putting great free content out certainly deserves the opportunity to earn a few bucks in the process.  The key is making it relevant and subtle.

I received an email from the IZEA network (affiliate link) notifying me that my blog qualified for their display ad program.  I had a familiarization with them, but I figured the timing was right.  I figured that if it required “qualifying”, then certainly the quality would lend itself to be a bit higher then a network that anyone can simply sign up for.  The requirements for this particular network were:

  • Have Google Analytics installed
  • Have a minimum of 2,000 page views for the previous month
  • Have at least 51% of your traffic come from the US (according to Google Analytics)

Another network I had played around with the idea of testing was BuySellAds.com, but never really got around to implementing it.  What I liked about the IZEA network is that they actually pay on impressions rather then click-throughs.  I’m averaging between 8-10,000 visits per month these days, so it will be interesting to see how it plays out.  At the very least, I will be using this experience to report back and share what results I encounter, and provide any tips or suggestions based on my experiences.

IZEA also has an interesting referral program as well, so for those of you interested in monetizing your blog or website, check it out using this link.  Yes, an affiliate link, but I’d like to get a sense of the return there as well.

For those of you that have already implemented a monetization strategy, what has or hasn’t worked for you?

16 comments

  • Jason, thanks for openly sharing your experiment, I’m interested in hearing how it goes with IZEA and if you expand to other providers as well. As a digital media guy, I’m always interested in getting more insight into the “other side” and will likely test something similar on my blog as traffic increases.

    • Thanks for stopping by Eric. I’ll definitely be sharing the results over the next few weeks through a few blog posts.

  • I tried Google Adsense, and it just seemed like a waste of time. Plus, the links unrelated to my blog looked like crap and deterred people. Now I’m doing paid posts and looking for good affiliates. Maybe I’ll try out Izea after I see how you fare. Why not have ads? Bloggers work really hard (if they’re any good), and it is lovely to see a bit of compensation. 😉

    • I would never through Adsense on my blog. Just never had success with it, it’s never relevant, and I feel it just makes your blog look cheap. The jury is still out on IZEA so I’ll have to see how it goes before keeping it.

  • Jason,

    That is really cool to know that you got into Izea! I had applied to BuySellAds, but they told me I needed 50,000 page impressions per month. I might have to check out Izea’s guidelines.

    Andy

    • 50,000…wow, I didn’t realize they had such a high threshold. I wouldn’t qualify for that anytime soon I’m guessing.

  • I get way over that minimum monthly number and my “income” from Google ads has been in cents…the re-launch of my site with PROPER SEO may increase my numbers but I’ll be VERY curious to hear how this works for you, Jason?

  • Sounds like an adventure! Like you, I am very wary about putting ads on my own site, but that one ad you have there is not really intrusive at all. It’s some blogs that have ads literally at every place my mouse lands that is a biiiiit overboard. 🙂

    Good luck with the experiment!

    • Thanks Morgan. I’ll never go to that extreme. I think that’s the key to making ads work on a blog is for them to complement the site, not overwhelm it.

  • Hey Jason! I have been thinking about it too.. I notice most in the style/ diy space sell ad space to individual people to ensure relevancy, and many use blogher… I am curious to see your results, I have had about 2,200 page views in the past 6 weeks or so… Hope you are well!

  • Hi Jason,

    According to me monetization strategy may work different for different niches. Everyone should try many monetization method and try some A/B testing on their site so that they come to know what’s working and what’s not.

  • I am tring to use this also, but can’t figure out how to install it, even after watching the instruction video.

  • There’s nothing wrong in trying the innovation of other people, this is one of the great way to have a brilliant ideas and produced new things…

  • I think trying is the same as experimenting new great projects which provides new things of development to all of us…

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