When we think of getting increased visibility and high rankings on search engine result pages, our primary concern is to become popular online and generate business from many different avenues. This desire is natural with anybody whose primary objective is to build a business.
Why would one even spend money on various search engine activities if there is no hope for a return on investment? Whatever business you are into, if you are seeking online help to promote your business then there is no doubt that you will also try to monetize your business through those promotional activities.
Professionally engaged digital publishing, blogging, and content development are effective ways to grab the attention of audiences and monetize published content through affiliate links (links to other products or service that generate revenue for the blog or website). However, these types of efforts require an extensive investment of both time and money because large amounts of traffic to the site are needed.
Programmatic ads (ads spread through an ad network) or affiliate links are two popular options applied by digital publishers to earn revenue for their publishing efforts. One factor that needs to be understood is there is no rule about which monetization practice is better. While one is suitable for some sites, the other may be better for others. We will discuss in the remainder of this article which approach might be best for you and what is the best way to monetize your blog or website.
Earning Programmatic Ad Revenue
Website owners earn programmatic revenue from an array of ad partners who use their websites to display their ads. Big ad space providers like Google, Facebook, and many others sell ad space to advertisers. The ads that they receive get distributed as per the campaign requirements planned by the advertisers across the websites that participate in the campaign to meet the campaign standards.
The most popular way to understand this is through Google Ads. Google Ads are used by advertisers as display ads to target their visitors. Websites engaged in ad campaigns can use Google AdSense and Google Ad Exchange to offer these ads to the visitors on their sites, and in return, they get paid by the advertisers through Google.
Is Programmatic Ad Revenue in Decline?
It is untrue that programmatic ad revenue is in decline. The truth is display ad revenue is in high demand based on the current market trends. Some naysayers are talking negatively about display ads, but the fact is the decline which people are talking about is due to the monetary value, and the direct ads deal between advertisers and website owners.
Advertisers have become dependent on partners likes Google for ad campaigns. It proves there is a rise in programmatic revenue, but direct ad revenue for website owners has declined because of the number of suppliers.
Website owners can earn revenue from affiliate links by referring their visitors to affiliates’ sites through links, leading the visitors to a planned result. Affiliate revenue is very much similar to a visitor to your website buying a product. You can opt from a wide range of various affiliate revenue plans. The most popular one is website owners earning a percentage of the total revenue collected from their referral transactions.
Payouts for Affiliates
In today’s scenario, Amazon is among the best examples of revenue generation through affiliate links. Through affiliate programs on Amazon, website owners can link their website pages to products on Amazon stores. If the visitor using the link on your website purchases products on Amazon then website owners can then earn money from the referral during the time of the program.
Affiliate programs have many variations. As in several ad networks, affiliates generally pay out over a specific period as per the fixed entry. The affiliates can make several arrangements for the website owners.
Are There Any Set Rules for Affiliates for the Best Revenue Options?
The question above depends on the website size, its target audience, and also the unique selling proposition (USP). It does not always work similarly for all website owners or affiliates. Even if the content and approach is the same, it is not necessarily true that the incomes too would be the same from all affiliate programs.
Your website may earn good revenue from one affiliate, but when you use the same content and same activities for some other affiliate, you may not get the same response. The content and audience of both the affiliate and the website owner determine the success of the affiliate campaign regarding revenue.
Even Amazon sees this difference. It is audience behaviors that dictate the terms on affiliate links to make them successful. It is not mandatory for all visitors to the website to click on the affiliate link and convert to a potential buyer for affiliates.
So, it is crucial that you select your affiliate sensibly so that you can get good returns on your investments. Also, look for products that may interest your audience. It is a myth that every good affiliate can offer good revenue. Affiliates should have content and products of interest for your audience, which is more critical in converting your visitors to buyers on your affiliate’s pages.
With that said, there is no set rule for affiliate programs. Do what suits your business and the audience of your website the best.
Always Look for New Opportunities
Many times a website receives an increasing number of clicks for a particular review or guide posted on their website for one of their customers or partners. If this is the case, you can always approach the partner or customer and share your observation and also plan an affiliate program around the success of others. The customer may agree, and then you can begin marketing the new opportunity. So, keep looking out for such occasions.
Always Remain Attentive
Do not rely too much on any one particular affiliate or programmatic ad revenue stream. Always be on the lookout for new and improved sources of revenue for your website. Areas that may be suitable affiliates today may not be around forever.
Also, Google keeps updating their algorithm for search engine optimization purposes. So, be attentive to these changes to make sure that you are ready to make program adjustments as time moves forward.
Is it a Good Idea to Partner with Multiple Ad Networks and Affiliates?
The simple answer is no. Too much of anything becomes extremely hard to manage, and the expertise begins to wane. There are website owners who choose too many options to monetize their websites, and the result is always poor in the long run for such sites.
Do not annoy your visitors with too many affiliate links. Over monetizing can kill your online business prospects. Visitors who spend less time on your website than expected can be a huge loss for your revenue generation plans through affiliate links. Simply avoid dumping all kinds of ads on your site and annoying your visitors. It rarely does any good for your website. There should be a reasonable blend of your website content and display ads and affiliate links. Be careful about the likes and dislikes of your target audience.
Balancing Website and Ad/Affiliate Programs
Too many ads and affiliate links may be suitable for short-term promotions, but for long-term advancement, it can be damaging to the website's revenue generation. It is necessary that you understand the right balance and implement your programs accordingly. You will have to find out how ads are responding to other ads and how they are helping the website get the expected results.
Do not go for every affiliate link that you come across. You will have to check the page views per session or engagement rate it offers and how display ads are affecting the revenue. If you get an inadequate response to all these observations, then it is better to avoid such programs.
Whatever it may be, always try to find out if the revenue that you will generate from display ads or affiliate links would be valuable enough for your website.
You need to understand that visitor engagement and the impact of their engagement on your revenue works together. It would be best if you realized what engages them, how they get engaged, and what value you are getting from that engagement. If it is worth it, then go ahead. Otherwise, ignore the opportunity. Understanding will ensure the long-term survival of your website.
Enroll in some analytic programs that are available with data analytics providers. Google Analytics is one of them that can help you monitor audience engagements on your website on a regular basis.
What to Opt for – Display Ads or Affiliate Links?
There is no hard set rule for this decision. People use either of the two or both. It entirely depends on one’s interest or business requirements. Check what suits you and your audience best to generate revenue.
It is essential to have good, long-standing partners who are well established in the industry to earn from affiliate links. It may take years to find the right affiliate partner for your business. Affiliate programs do not work all of the time, and if they do work, they may not last for a long time.
Display ads are simple but require lots of time for optimization. You may find it easy to start with display ads, but as you continue, you may find it is very complicated as it requires much of your time to maintain the sustainability.
Therefore, continuous testing will be required since both display ads and affiliates link programs have their advantages and disadvantages. You have to keep finding out what avenue best suits your business requirements. Only then can you determine how to get best out of both.
Thanks for checking out What is the Best Way to Monetize Your Blog or Website?
Be sure to sign-up for our newsletter to receive monthly emails on all of the latest trends and happenings in the digital marketing space. You will also receive our FREE E-Book with the Amazing Marketing Tools for Powerful Business Growth. Sign-up below!
Also, if you got some value out of this article, please share with your friends or colleagues, or leave a comment/question below. We really appreciate you reading our blog!
Share this Post
Robb Fahrion is a Co-Founder and Partner of Flying V Group. He is passionate about helping businesses grow using the power of the internet. Robb graduated from Chapman University in Orange, CA and currently resides in Costa Mesa, CA. Robb enjoys writing about digital marketing, helping his clients turn their dreams into reality, and he is a HUGE Mike Trout fan.