Today I want to cover ways to increase you advertisers’ (and your own) revenue by providing what I believe are the most important checklist items to look at around how we best optimise ad space on suggested Web sites or apps.
Essentially, I’m expanding on this important topic which I opened up the Pandora’s box on in my last newsletter. Optimisation can be crucial in determining the best ROI, but it’s often an area overlooked due to lack of knowledge, time, or, frankly, ignorance.
1. The basics: increasing quality of content
Quality of content is, of course, essential for ad revenue. The advertiser will only want to pay for views or clicks, which in turn, requires an audience with high traffic. And the best way to raise traffic is to create top quality content. That’s exactly why placing ads within low-quality content is unlikely to generate decent revenue.
Your ad client’s content needs to be unique, credible, and valuable for the audience (before Google will even recognise it). And it needs to be SEO-friendly, with appropriate keywords … with high search volume and low competition, if at all possible.
In essence, the better the SEO, the higher that Google, and other search engines, will rank your page.
2. Provision of dynamic content for the advertiser and their audience
Web pages where the content doesn’t change (or change much) are very unlikely to deliver well in terms of ad revenue. It’s simply not good enough just to post, say, an article and hope for the best. Google likes forums, blogs, or vlogs where publishers and users interact with the content — on a constant basis. It’s all about demonstrating high levels of engagement.
3. Bypassing the ad blocker scenario
763.5 million net users will use ad blockers (source: Statista) to stop ads from appearing, which, of course, ends up damaging ad campaigns.
There are two things publishers can do to bypass ad blockers:
- Ask the audience to turn off ad blockers while on the advertiser Web site or app. This can be a controversial strategy however, as it may result in the relevant audience departing, regardless how unique or engaged they are with your content. If your audience begins to bounce, it can damage the ad client’s monetisation aims as well as their Google ranking.
- Alternatively, the other approach using native ads interwoven within the Web site’s content. This strategy is far more attractive as it won’t annoy the user and will add value to the content. For instance, it would no doubt be beneficial to display an ad that promotes, say, new software for e-commerce on a page about e-commerce strategies. Common sense.
4. Tracking ad performance
The initial audience reach will usually have the highest CTR and, therefore, media companies tend to place ads with the highest CPC or CPM in what would seem to be the most attractive placements.
But every publisher needs to find what works best for their client Web page or app. For optimal monetisation, it’s best to keep watch on performance, changing the order of ads as and when necessary.
5. Using flexible pricing
Seasonality can be a factor of ad revenue. The obvious ones being Christmas, Valentine’s Day, Black Friday, etc., where revenue will be at peak levels.
Where a publisher relies on client ads as an important revenue source, they will need to embrace a strategy that manages demand fluctuations over a period. Yield optimisation is an applicable strategy here, allowing media sales teams to make the best out of their ad inventory, selling all possible ad space for the highest price in the year. This is possible through, for instance, Google Ads Auctions, selling ad space to the highest bidder.
This relies on the (potential) customers’ behaviour, making prices flexible and depending on a range of external factors such as, as mentioned earlier, demand and seasonality.
6. Optimising sizes of ads
Although the perception can be that bigger ads are better for online ad revenue, consumers won’t appreciate having their screens dominated with advertising. As more than 60% of organic Google searches (in the U.S. alone) presently come via mobile phones, choosing ad size is something which needs care and attention.
Great user experience (UX) is the order of the day — and something that will have an impact your client’s site ranking.
7. Using differing ad formats and types
As advertisers will often use a variety of channels from Web sites to video channels,social media to apps etc., the formats of ads and types will change appropriately.
Ads maybe in text form, video, or maybe image-based, and they can appear as a banner, a native ad, a push notification, interstitial, etc. Some of these ads might yield a better ad revenue than others, depending on the advertiser’s industry and their target audience, so it can be a good idea to test/analyse performance. It’s true that some types of ads will perform very differently on desktop vs., say, a mobile phone.
It's also good to experiment different formats on Web sites, as this usually provides a much better UX and increases the CTR.
I’m sure that your advertisers will appreciate your efforts, too.
8. Choosing the correct placement for your client ads
If you’re suffering from low ad revenue, one reasons could be you’ve chosen an incorrect/non-optimal ad placement or maybe simply, bad timing? These mistakes can easily lead to quite low ad visibility and can therefore significantly affect your advertisers’ and your own end revenues.
Always check if your ad placements are both visible as well as being easily clickable for any Web site visitors. Some ads will no doubt perform better than others. For instance, ad space in the centre of your content, and below the nav bar, or within any white space usually has much better monetisation potential.
The monetisation of Web sites, apps, social media, etc., needs a well-considered advertising strategy. It is important to constantly track your advertisers’ ad performance and to be near the top of the Google search results.
If your campaign ad revenue is not performing as you or your clients were expecting, it’s up to YOU to troubleshoot any issues and provide valued insights as to what needs to happen next. It’s all about increasing your ad revenue and best optimising the space available on your suggested Web sites or apps.
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