Why we started AdSynergy.net
As an early Internet Publisher we faced a fundamental choice of using an advertisement network or doing our own thing, both of which had significant challenges.
What we wanted was control over the ads, not knowing what ads would be delivered by an ad network was not ideal.
Further we knew if we could match the right advertiser to our focused publication we could increase our revenues.
We signed up with AdSense, and it provided some income for time, till we were attacked.
Some click-bot from the dark web targeted our site and artificially ran up the clicks on the ads.
Google promptly cut us of and confiscated all our back revenue, which clearly was legitimate.
Lessons learned: don't rely on one ad network for all your revenue (and collect money owed to you ASAP).
- Use an advertising network.
- Solicit, serve and collect revenues yourself, directly from the advertisers.
While Ad Networks are a quick and easy way to start monetizing a website, they do not solve all our issues and created some as well (over and above getting cancelled).
Problems with Ad Network Ads include:
- They can look like crap. While Google AdWords might fit right in on a Craigslist.com site, they may not fit the look and feel of your site.
- They can be unrelated (crap). One of our sites is a career/job site. We don't want software developers having to view ads for breast development creams or procedures.
- The ads can be competitive. While taking revenue from you competitor may provide some reward, you might not want your traffic migrating to the competition.
Not all networks support competitive blocking.
- The ads can be devious or even malicious.
One example we found (network unnamed) was ads like "Sign up for our news letter.", that collected user names and email addresses from our users.
- The ads leave money and value on the table.
In general they don't recognize the difference between the front page, section pages and inside pages.
In our case front and section/city pages should provide higher premiums per view (as well as providing high impressions).
A "Direct Publisher-Advertiser" strategy has significant drawbacks as well.
In pratice it is not feasible for small publishers as it requires significant technology and ongoing development to support it.
- First contacting advertisers can be a daunting task, trying to contact the right person and get their attention.
- Then, you need to establish the if their ads would fit, both literally (size/format) and if the specific ads compliment your site.
- Then you need to negotiate a deal, which includes getting the advertiser to trust your impressions and click counts.
- Serve the ads.
- Collect the revenue.
As a publisher this is what we wanted:
- A directory of on-line advertisers.
- A recognized platform to invite advertisers to view our ad space.
- A recognized platform to deliver the ads and collect and distribute the revenue.
- The ability to negotiate deals one-on-one with advertisers.
- The ad server to deliver the ads quickly and reliably
- An ad server that keeps up with technology to provide maximum flexibility while fighting fraud.
- An ad server that provides real-time statistics on impressions and clicks..