For the first time this year, I’m pleased to report a significant increase in AdSense revenue. After a very lukewarm February of just over $400, March is shaping up to bring in just under $650 by the end of month at midnight tonight. Here’s the lessons I’ve learned over the last two months and what has helped me to increase earnings:
- Do What You Love! I know… this is one of those overused phrases that has the effect of being completely ignored because if you’re like me, you’ve just become numb to hearing it all your life. But I encourage each person to ask yourself if everything you do online is something you enjoy doing? Let me explain how I arrived at the importance of this..For the first time since I started trying to earn significant money online since last year, I was getting burnt out. What I was doing was working but I can honestly say that I did not enjoy much of it. Based on spending a lot of time at the Warrior Forum (a site I do recommend for those looking to increase online earnings), I was doing a lot of the mundane tasks that many others considered a necessity to making money. It was advice that I initially took because everyone seemed to be doing it. The one that was taking most of my time is a process called article writing. Article Writing is visiting the many article directories online and submitting news stories on different topics and linking to your site(s) within the articles. Since many sites copy article directories, you will notice a nice increase in backlinks over time. It does work. Unfortunately though, I found myself dreading the process more and more as time went on. Trying to create new articles just for the sake of creating articles is not all that fun for me.I finally took a look at all of my time being spent and asked myself if I couldn’t do something equally as productive but more enjoyable? I focused on what I was good at and started getting back to designing, programming and interacting with others socially. I made an immediate decision to do away with writing articles to promote my blogs and I will never look back! I’ve been spending that time finding like minded blogs, getting to know people again by participating in discussion and leaving my backlinks in this way. The joy is back! I’ve started looking forward to opening the computer every morning again. I’ve found that others are stopping by my blogs and reciprocating.
Since I enjoy programming, I’ve also been working on an entire website design that I could potentially sell down the road (it’s a secret hope that I’m quietly working away on). Programming can be a slow learning process at times but I love it. It’s fun to create something from nothing.
- Change those AdSense colors! For the longest time, I used the traditional bright blue links that are most common all over the web. Sometime last year, I read an article that this might be the worst color to choose simply because people have ad blindness regarding this overused color scheme. I tried changing the color in February for the first time. I went with solid black links, wondering if the ads would stand a better chance of being looked at. By months end, I was still just barely above 2% for my CTR (click through ratio). That is almost the exact percentage that I’ve always maintained (my highest month was December with a 2.55 CTR) since firing up AdSense last summer.For March, I went with another new color based on some more research I was reading. It’s a bit too early to truly determine if this was just pure luck or if this color is the real deal but I’m happy to announce that March had a CTR of 2.91%. That’s a substantial difference. What color did I use? Try 000080. You’ll notice that’s still a shade of blue but it’s a darker blue that’s a bit more sophisticated, easier on the eyes, and I believe it just naturally grabs the attention more.
- Use More Ads. For the longest time, I used only one ad size on my page and that was 336×280. This month, I tried incorporating a lot more ads into many of my blogs and I saw an increase in clicks. I should point out that the color test I described above was only looking at my 336×280 channel but overall, I simply saw the most clicks p/ impressions that I have had to date. I placed 280 width sidebar ads on all of my blogs and another 336 ad channel under my posts as well as several places in the middle. I’ve never been a huge fan of muddling up a page with the overuse of ads so I do try to incorporate them tastefully and I’ll reserve this technique for a few of my blogs but overall, I still don’t plan to get to crazy with the idea.
That’s it in a nutshell. AdSense is slowly crawling upward and I have every reason to believe that it will be over $1000 a month by year’s end. That’s pretty exciting as that will almost cover the expense of my monthly mortgage payment! I’ll post my next AdSense video when I hit the $1000 mark. This month will actually see a profit of around $800 as I’ve done a few installations and coding projects for a handful of people on a forum I belong to as well. However, I’m still keeping AdSense earnings as my ultimate online goal. (Have I mentioned that I LOVE Google?!)
Outside of AdSense, I’m diversifying my online portfolio a little more. I’m venturing into some new projects and I think I’m going to start utilizing this blog a little more by showing an example site of mine and how I modify it as well as promote it. There is so much we can all learn from each other online and the more involved we become with each other, the greater the success of each individual.
How’s your online business treating you? What kind of plans and goals do you have for 2011 and what steps are you taking to get there?