About a month ago I decided I wanted to test out ads on my blog to see what kind of return I would get by devoting some right sidebar space for a medium sized ad.  I was a bit leery about the idea, but figured it was worth a shot seeing as my blog traffic had reached a point where I thought the return could be worth it.  I decided to go with Social Spark (IZEA) since they offered a model that pays on impressions rather then click-throughs.  I knew the return probably wouldn’t be as high as a click-through model, but I figured it was a good starting point.

Here are the results for the past month:

  • Total Impressions: 9,384
  • eCPM: $.0.81 (amount paid per 1,000 impressions)
  • Total earnings: $7.60

So in essence I earned a couple cups of coffee.  Worth it?  Not in my opinion.  It’s not really a knock on IZEA in anyway, the market bears what the market bears, so what it really comes down to is that if you want to incorporate an impression based monetization strategy on your blog, you better be in the 100,000 page views per month for it to bear any real fruit.  Sure, I could just keep the ad on there and earn a few bucks, but quite honestly, I’d rather have the real estate for something else.

What I’ve learned is that it makes much more sense to monetize a blog of this size through affiliate and referral links of products and services I use, enjoy and trust.  I don’t get a ton of return in this way, but when I do, one sale equals what an entire year of running an impression ad would.  Therefore, I’ll stick to that model.

What monetization strategies have worked for you?