Google Adsense $0 CPC – What Is Your Cut?

Got clicks? How about some extra cash in your pocket. Google Adsense can do the job in selling your adspace for you. Is that a good idea?

Display targeted Google ads on your website's content pages and earn from valid clicks or impressions.

Adding Adsense to your site as a way to make some extra money can be an efficient way of just doing that. You might be getting a check every months. But do you really know how much you get from the advertising dollars spend?

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Blackberry Interactive Shopping AD

Sometimes I’m really disappointed about the Google Ads which appear next to a blog post. Not relevant, scam ads. Sometimes I’m really impressed. Just take my last point about a possible new RIM product; the BlackBerry Watch. Next to this story is a highly targeted, interactive shopping ad from CNet.

Relevant Blackberry Ad

Blackberry-cnet-adLooking closer at the Ad, you will see there are multiple ways to interact with the ad, without being taken off the site. You can read some short product review, and you can click through to read more product review or shop directly.

I have bitched a lot about Google Ads here on my blog, but all I can say about this particular Ad: I like it!

Markov Chains readable on Splogs?

Ever wondered how a splog looks like which has real unreadable Markov Chains on it? I just found one through following the most popular searches yesterday. Like always, just follow the money, in this case the traffic, and you will find some pretty bad web spam.

imageYesterday, between all the searches around Michael Jackson’s death, one particular search query stood out for me. As my wife was always watching The Housewives of New Jersey, I was interested in the search query: what did danielle do to dina. Just check the Google trending words for June 25.

As yesterday the second episode of the final of the Real Housewives of New Jersey was broadcasted, apparently a lot of people went online to look for gossip what had happened. At one point in the finale, there was an awkward moment, where  it was not clear what had happened off camera’s prior to the finale.

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Right after the broadcast of the finale, the term went volcanic. Interesting is that 7% of the searches were performed in or around New Jersey/ New York.

Right under these nice graphs, there is the section where you can find News articles and Blog posts. I clicked on the link for the one marked with the red line around it, and came into spam heaven…

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Full with ads, you come on a blog hosted on Blogger. The text is full with the hot trend keywords you can find for yesterday, but the text is unreadable. Just have a look at this small piece of the text:

It was terrible. The forehead is broad and fine climb if he might want to tell me about it. Tell me I'm glad that I can, and where and when. of grotesque Farrah Fawcett what did Danielle do to Dina says he ta. Poor dear How he must have suffered joke was over and. His only hope lies in Horta in nature. The black warrior was the Phantom and a lot of fear.
She was revised to a corner desk found Paul Irving with. Donnell announced this vision, and I've just when I was dimpled. she said weakly Take Birch Path light and sank breathlessly into puffed Frilled and what did Danielle do to Dina Then he was.
Charisse Thompson
But it is marked crutches she did, and such a time was lifted lawn. the next day to meet, he went back and officially interested so to notify someone what did Danielle do to Dina an object lesson in and kissed her forehead.

Off course the blog is pasted all over with Google Adsense. Today, I ready a great post on SEOBook. Just read more about the Google money. An excerpt:

If the central network operators do not police their networks then eventually web users will stop trusting online advertising. That (plus pending affiliate regulation) could eventually lead to a significant thinning of competition for mindshare online. It might also push many media companies away from ad based business models to creating businesses built through actually taking money from real human customers.

For how long will Google allow spammers to open new blogs on Blogger, post a bunch of garbage on the web, pull traffic from the most popular trending keywords, and monetize through Adsense one dollar at a time? 

Google Adsense eCPM; Down in Recession

Since the beginning of April, I’ve seen a decrease in Adsense revenue on the sites that I run. Normally I don’t get that much per months, but there has been a significant drop from one day to the other. Since April, the revenue has come down.

So, naturally my hypothesis is that this is due to the economy being in a slump. Lower Adsense revenue can actually be due through multiple factors;

  1. Lower Ad spend by advertisers, which results in lower max cpc’s per Ad
  2. More advertisers blocking Adsense content network in search for higher conversion
  3. Google’s squeezing publishers, paying out lower percentage of the CPC to the website owner.

Lower CPC in Adsense

For the last year, I have not really seen a drop in CPC on the sites.

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As you can see, CPC stayed within a bandwidth for the last year. No significant drop that could have caused the drop in Total Revenue.  (graph shows 7 day moving average of the CPC)

Looking at the eCPM of the impressions that were served:

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Clearly, I don’t have a CPC problem, but an impression problem. There goes my Hypothesis. I guess I’m not such good strategist after all.

Google Squeezing Adsense Publishers

In these dark economic times, it’s becoming harder for every company to satisfy shareholders.

Now imagine you are Google, very successful in the past couple of quarters, but struggling finding new ways to grow revenue. One source of revenue growth could be to take a larger share of the revenue that is shared with Adsense publishers.

Looking at today’s early Adsense reporting, my thoughts are going in the third direction. Just check the average cpc on the placements pointed out in the image below:

Updated: Image reoved as it is against T&C's of Adsense to display CPM or CPC's.

Can somebody please explain me how it is possible earning just $0.01 with 4 clicks, when a minimum CPC of at least $0.01 is necessary to even start a campaign?

So much for webmaster welfare as an extra source of pocket money!

Get Rich Quick Skype Spam

The Get Rich Quick scams are getting crazier and spamier. If you don't get crazy about the garbage ads on Google's or Facebook Network, eMail spam or Twitter spam, now you can expect spam through Skype.

I just received the following message from somebody who is not in my network:

Hi,

How are you today?  Has the economic recession affected your life in any way? 
I know many people who lost their jobs or are experiencing low volumes in there small businesses, and they are looking for a way out.
If you know some too then I would like to share something with you that might help them create a new reality.
Most people are looking for a way out of the situation but they just don't know of any, or they heard of some but didn't really give the proper attention to learn more about it.
If you had the tool to help them, would you invest an hour of your time to learn how to do that?
If the answer is yes, then you are a good friend, and an open minded one.
I invite you to learn about a business model that works, and that can help any one who chooses to generate some extra income or even a whole new lifestyle.
If you would like to learn more then contact me.

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Obviously I didn't respond to the MoFo. This guy went on my block list immediately and reported abuse.  

No more garbage ads?

I hope these garbage ads I recently wrote about will be history once and for all. It seems the FTC’s Bureau of Consumer Protection is going after the Government grant scammers who widely advertise on both Google Adsense network, and through Facebook Ads.

I recommend to everybody not to fall for these get rich quick scams. If it sounds too good to be true, it usually is too good to be true. And it in the process you might burn yourself pretty bad!

CNet reports: Facebook, Google helping feds stop online stimulus scams

Scammers have created sites with domains like PresidentObamaGrants.com and OfficialStimulusGrants.com, Harrington said, and include pictures of President Obama and Vice President Biden. The sites prompt consumers to enter a credit card number to pay a small fee in return for a list of grants supposedly available for things like mortgage payments. Those small fees, however, are often nothing more than a down payment on a "negative option" agreement that could cost someone thousands of dollars over the course of a year if not canceled.

Hopefully we won’t see these ads anymore, although I’ sure the scammers will find another way to pull people into their shady tactics.

Google Created the Cesspool; now clean it up

The last couple of days have been full with controversy, discussion and a lot of blog posts to read regarding the great piece of thinking Aaron Wall put on his blog regarding a possible update Google has made to their algorithm. Read: Google's New Search Engine Rankings Place Heavy Emphasis on Branding. Parts of this great thinking evolves around how Google itself is responsible for the Cesspool created by Adsense, the easy way of monetizing content on a website.

The interesting part of being in the Internet Marketing world for the last 7 years, is that I’ve seen it evolve and learned how to play within the space. But what is more important, is that the Internet marketing does have a lot of snake oil salesmen as their parasites and big companies ruin their own business. One of these big businesses is; Google!

Google become big because of their way of providing an unique service to their users. A service which was so superior from other search engines, Google gained market share very quickly. To be able to pay for the increased server costs, money had to be made from this superior search engine. Google Adwords & Adsense were the answer to that! And here our story really begins.

Adsense as Parasite of the Internet

Anybody who could setup a website could make some quick bucks with Adsense. Just make sure you got traffic, monetize with Google Adsense, and you can see the checks rolling in. In the early days, it was so easy to make money with Adsense, that a couple of high flyers became very rich over night. Just publish some content, make this content rank in the search engines, and make money on the ads around the content.

As soon there is money to be made, the smart people jump on it, and make sure they understand exactly how to game the system. Buying links was a reasonable effective way to make a site rank fast for competitive, high cpc keywords. This meant you could start your own website, write some bullshit about “Mesothelioma lawyers” and ask your friends to click on the ads around this content from home. At $50 per click for these keywords, you would only need a couple of clicks a day to have a full income. These days are long gone already. Click fraud is one of the major focuses of the search engines, and the paid link issue has been well documented on other blogs.

Still I think Google is carrying a great deal of responsibility of today's Cesspool on the internet, and I’ve been a victim!

Adsense is the vehicle

All in all, Google is making a killing with Adsense, so whatever happens to one of my sites, or this blogpost, I don’t think i can ever change the way the Internet works. There is simply too much money at stake for the companies who should police their own systems to walk the walk, the way they talk the talk.

I have a couple of websites, and I have complied with the webmaster guidelines; make a website for your users not for search engines. I’m only talking about my white hat sites here. Honesty, I don’t have any grey or black hat sites :-)

On these websites I create the content, and it is all written out of our own experience, so we make sure it’s unique. Sometimes I take a recommendation for a restaurant from a different website, but i always make sure that the content I write is completely written out of my own experience and is unique.

Like I said, Google Adsense is the main driver of the Cesspool on the internet. Much of the uniquely written content, falling under copyright, is simply rewritten, posted on a quickly assembled website, monetized with Adsense. And trust me, I have experience dealing with webmasters who simply deny the charges of copying your content, while they have been so dumb that they copied spellings mistakes with it!

Google's own CEO Eric Schmidt has called the internet a Cesspool, where big brands should play a role in cleaning up the garbage that is being created day by day. "According to Google CEO Eric Schmidt, the Internet is a "cesspool" where false information thrives."

The cesspool is one of the byproducts of the Internet. With no barriers to entry and nearly frictionless production and distribution, it's easy for false information, lies, doctored images, and other forms of deception to infiltrate the Internet. Web crawlers aren't particularly good at making judgments about the truthiness of digital matter, and the wisdom of the crowd can't keep up with the river of data streaming online.

Newest trend in the Cesspool

One of the newest trends in the cesspool is playing very well against this economy; you’ve got a bunch of people sitting around at home, who don’t have a lot of knowledge of the Internet or webdesign, but do have a lot of free time, and maybe also some experience on some topic or expertise.

I’ve come across a couple of websites that provide the opportunity to people to make some extra money with writing content articles for these websites in exchange of a percentage of the advertisement revenue of the pageviews on their articles. What usually happens is that for 75% of the page views the authors Adsense ads are being shown, for the remaining 25% of the impressions the site owners adsense are being shown.

this situation creates a perfect triangle for making money; Google is making money on the ads that are shown on 100% of the page views; The website owner is making some money for the efforts of setting up the site and paying for hosting and domain registration. they might even do some SEO to accelerate the growth; the writer can spend as much time creating unique content to draw more visitors to their articles, and get paid, without learning how to set up a website or doing SEO.

And what better idea is it to just copy existing articles, but rewrite these in your own words, so that these become unique in the eyes of Google again. This way, if you are unemployed, you can create a great number of articles around different topics, and just watch the money rolling in as the sites are growing. Nobody will stop you, because it’s in all stakeholders interest to grow the revenue coming out of these scams.

I recently had a content provider copying all my content and republishing it on a website. When I found out, I contacted the owner of the site, pointing out the 100% copied content. They denied off course, and said the content was unique. As they copied a spelling mistake which is not commonly found anywhere on the Internet, and I’ve been looking for it, I know they have copied my content.

But what can you do! The author makes some money, the site owner makes money… And Google gets its cut!

Google Pays Copy Mafia

The only reason why this is happening, is because people can make some money with it. Not a whole lot, but imagine you can copy 10 articles a day, and you are unemployed anyway, at least you can make some money, which is growing by the day, and keeps on giving until the end of times (?)

The only reason why this is happening, is because the Google Adsense program is so low barrier to enter, anybody can start with pasting the Adsense code over their website. And rightly so, but then again, maybe there should be a better reporting feature in Adsense, or at Google, to highlight copied copyrighted materials, which is monetized through Adsense.

It’s interesting to see how fast Google is able to take actions against websites who engage in paying for links to manipulate rankings, but does not take any action towards the websites who have copied content with Adsense around it. Guess why… MONEY!

The real question we should ask, is why Google is so much going after the paid links/ paid posts, while they let these copying happen under their nose. I guess thay want a cut of every money exchange on the Interwebs. If some folks are exchanging money in return of a link, to make blogging interesting, the big G would like to get a cut, or else...

As long as you play within G's guidelines, and pay your protection money, you can count on a steady stream of traffic. Otherwise, you can count on seeing more crime in your neighborhood which makes less atracktive for anybody to pass through and pay some sort of rent!

Garbage Ads on Google Finance

Wow, how much more relevant can this ad be...? (Sarcastic!). I was just checking the stock price of the eBay Stock and saw this big ad placed on the page by Google.

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Below you see where the ad shows in the full page. Normally, the Google ads are pretty invisible, they sort of blend in the background. Now that Google is trying to push display ads more and more, these ads will jump more into the spotlight.

The of the page is blue, with white background, but the ad simply jumps out through the usage of colors green, yellow and red.

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I wonder how much more Google is going to push these garbage ads through their users  throat. These "make money quick" ads seem to be the only ads these days that don't feel the recession.

Other ads that were spotted on the Google Finance page of the eBay stock:

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This is a classic, I clicked on the ad to see what kind of garbage site it would bring up, but guess what... the database of the site seems to be down, while their ad campaign is still running. How about that for ROI!

Free eBay Guide Ad Campaign = FAIL

100% Relevant Google Ads

Yesterday I did a quick post on the Get Rich Quick website of Tom, read: Free Money from Obama.

Today, I see that Mister Google has got the perfect 100% Ad targeting on this post, check out the picture below:

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Now that is what I call relevant Ad targeting. Still I think these ads are of poor quality, but hey Facebook is full of these.