|Step 3: Profit?
I have not had a payout from Google Adsense since 2014. That is because I stopped running ads on the blog all those years ago. Out of curiosity after hearing about what others were making with similar traffic I wanted to test the waters again. Here are the results from a month-ish of auto ads!
First, I want to apologize to any visitors that felt the ads were over the top. I did opt to use Google's "auto ads" that, to be honest, pukes ads all over the page. I did verify with my own ad blockers that this was not skirting common ad blocks so if you block ads you were seeing the nice clean site that existed before. If you didn't block ads... well... sorry.
For context of how much traffic the blog sees; the blog enjoys about 600-1000 visitors a day. New posts usually hit anywhere from 50 to 100 views in the first day. My top performing search areas from Google and Bing are around the game New World. For the month (and a couple days) the auto ads were on we hit 30,000 visits. A normal month of traffic.
Before we get to the "how much did I earn" let's look at some things I learned
- Auto ads ruins page experience. It causes longer loading times and increased bounce rate (i.e. visitors exiting the site as soon as it opens).
- It may have reduced visits to new posts. I can't prove this conclusively but new posts FEEL LIKE they had fewer visits their first day than I am used to.
- Even with ads spamming the page my visitors don't click on them. There were only a few clicks over the entire month across hundreds of thousands of ad impressions.
So the real question: how much did I make? The answer: $1. I rounded down because does it really matter it was $1.47 and not just $1? For the level of invasion the ads had it was simply not worth it. I will also not see that dollar anytime soon because the minimum payout is $100.
What's next? I am actually going to keep ads on but use static placement in areas that are not obtrusive. I will re-evaluate after a month.