We’re frequently asked by clients if and how they should generate some advertising revenue from their website.
I’ll first address the “if you should” part of that question. Running advertising copy on a website really makes sense if your page is informational vs. you are trying to sell something yourself. The last thing that you want to do if you’re trying to sell something is to place an advertisement on your website which will take someone away from you before they make the purchase. Further, advertising on your website is usually there because the information on your website is relevant to what’s being advertised. So if you’re selling widgets, the ads at your website should be for widget companies. Don’t help the competition.
Also, there is no point in placing advertising on your website until you’ve built traffic to a decent level. There’s no hard number but I’d say that until you have at least 1,000 visitors per month to a page, concentrate on generating more traffic vs. trying to make money from that traffic. Read a prior blog posting to learn how we recommend that you track your website traffic.
The next question is: What’s the best type of advertising to place on a website. I’d suggest that you try two methods and see which does better:
1. Google has a service called Adsense which is a way for them to place advertising on your website and share the revenue they generate with you. It’s a quality product and worth trying. You are paid for each person who clicks on an ad at your website. Do not try to generate revenue by clicking your own ads as you will get caught and be booted off Adsense.
2. If you have a website with a strong focus on a specific subject, you may be able find affiliate programs that are on-point. An affiliate program will pay you a small percentage of the revenue the company generates from sales that originate at your website. You are only paid if the website visitor clicks the link on your website and then completes a purchase. I think the best way to find affiliate programs is by doing a Google search of “affiliate programs” or “affiliate program subject” (with “subject” being what you’re trying to sell such as credit cards if you give advice on financial services). Read through a lot of affiliate programs and feel free to try a few to see what works best.
The key to generating dollars from either Adsense or affiliate programs is traffic so keep working to get your traffic as high as possible.