Adsense Update

I’ve posted my Adsense stats in the past and I like to do it
fairly regularly, particularly if there is an observation that I can make from
them.

Here is the chart of my Adsense ad views since the beginning
of the year.

Daily_page_views

The sharp increase in early June resulted from the insertion
of Adsense ads into my Feedburner feed. I have three feeds, only one of which runs through Feedburner, so the
Adsense ad views represent my blog page views plus roughly one-third of my RSS
feed views.

Adsense doesn’t load an ad into a page or a feed unless it
has been opened in a browser or a reader so this is an accurate measure of the
number of views I am getting on the places I have Adsense running.

I know that my blog averages about 2,500 page views per day,
so the increase to about 8,000 ad views per days says that the Feedburner feed
is driving about 5,500 ad views per day. And if I were to add Adsense to my other two TypePad feeds (atom and
rdf), then I’d probably have about 20,000 Adsense ad views per day.

That’s an impressive number for a one guy/part time one
hour/day operation. Assuming I could get
a 1% click through on those 20,000 ad views, that would be 200 clicks per
day. And if I could get $0.50 per click,
I could make $100 per day. That’s $700
per week, and $36,500 per year. For one
guy/part time one hour/day, that’s a huge number.

But alas, it doesn’t work that way. I suppose you all knew that it wouldn’t.

First, I don’t have Adsense running on my two TypePad
feeds. If I could run them through
Feedburner, I could run ads easily. But
so far, neither TypePad nor Feedburner has figured out how to make that happen
for me. I hope they will soon.

That cuts my earning potential by 60%.

Then there’s the nastly problem of little to no click through
in the RSS feeds. I was getting a 0.5%
click thru rate before I added RSS feeds (down from 1% for all of last year, a
decline I still can’t figure out). With
the addition of RSS, my click thru is now 0.2%.

Here is a chart of my click thru rates since the beginning
of the year.

Click_through_rates

If I assume the web ads still have a 0.5% click thru rate,
then I am getting 13 clicks on my blog on the web on an average day. That means the extra 5,500 RSS ad views are
generating an average of 3 clicks per day.

If you buy that math, RSS is generating a 0.05% click thru
rate (one tenth the rate the blog page generates).

So it’s hardly worth getting ads into my other two RSS feeds
until the RSS click thru rates improve.

I don’t read my blog in RSS so I don’t closely monitor what
kind of ads are running on my RSS feed. I’ll take a look and report back, but this is a concern for everyone who
is betting on ads in RSS to make them lots of money.

So in conclusion, what happened to the $100 per day that I
projected I could make with my current traffic? It’s a tiny fraction of that. Currently its running at around $4/day, and that’s still “labor of love”
territory. Here is a chart showing my
dollars per day since the beginning of the year.

Dollars_per_day

I don’t keep the money I make on Adsense, I donate it to the
Grameen Foundation, but nevertheless I am troubled by something.

In February, I was generating 2,000 Adsense ad views per day
and was making north of $5/day on a good day.

Today, I am generating over 8,000 Adsense ad views per day
and making less than $4/day on a good day.

Some of this is due to the RSS issue, but even without it,
my traffic has gone up by at least 20% since February and I am making less.

Something is wrong and I think it’s the targeting and
relevancy of the ads. There’s $96/day of
opportunity for someone who can address this problem and that sounds like a big
bucket of money to me.

Please let me know what you think.