Yesterday I setup an account with BlogAds to add a new advertising channel to this site. My intention is to find something to replace the Chitika ads. I was impressed with Chitika when I first started using them, especially after reading about Darren’s amazing experiences with it on Problogger.net, but since then Chitika has been rapidly losing favor in the blogging community. First, they cut publishers’ earnings and tried to justify it with some marketing double-talk (i.e. trying to make it sound like a good thing instead of just saying, “Yeah, sucks to be you.”). Then they unilaterally violate their own Terms of Service Agreement by paying November commissions two weeks late, announcing the delay in their blog only hours before the original deadline. To me these aren’t good signs at all. As my friend Rudy likes to say when we’re playing blackjack together and we each stand on 17 against a dealer’s 10, “I don’t feel safe.”
I’ve seen my expected Chitika revenue drop significantly since the initial launch, even though my traffic and Adsense revenue have gone up a lot during the same time. I even tested their ads in premium locations, and the results were extremely weak compared to using Adsense in the same spots. I still make a few hundred dollars a month through Chitika, which is better than nothing, but I don’t think they’re a good enough fit for this blog, as they don’t seem to have enough personal development advertisers. I’ve put a reasonable effort into optimizing their ads, and it’s become clear that the best optimization will be to find a suitable replacement.
Many bloggers have reported good results with BlogAds, so I decided to test this service. Via BlogAds, individual advertisers can very easily advertise on this site without needing a Google Adsense account. I’m initially offering one of the best spots on the site — the top left corner below the masthead. You can see the current ad rates here.
I offer very little discount for longer advertising terms because traffic grew at an average rate of 21% per month in 2005. So for a 3-month ad, it’s reasonable to expect a lot more ad impressions in the third month vs. the first one.
This month I’m expecting 1.5 to 2.0 million page views for this site.