Today I was reading a post on Extreme John’s Blog about how Bloggers Should Clean Up Your Crap. Now John’s main gripe is that some bloggers have so much crap ads on their blog that it takes away the main purpose of having a blog, their blog posts! I have to admit I have seen a lot of blogs full of more crap than just ads though, there is so much going on in the sidebars that it can be pretty distracting because everything is so disorganized.
I also notice the other day on one of Mitch’s post, Six Figure Blogger Blueprint – A review where David makes the following point;
Both you and Sire really load up your blogs with ads and widgets and things in a desperate attempt to gain a click from a visitor. My point is that, with an email list, you won’t have to try so hard. Monetization is much easier, more efficient, and less about interruption of the user experience on your blog.
What’s that, David who, you ask? Well, you’re going to have to check out Mitch’s post to find that out because ever since my famous Why I No Longer Link To The Likes Of ProBlogger And John Chow where people accused me of name dropping for link baiting purposes, which was absolute crap, I am very careful of even mentioning those guys.
In answer to David’s comment, the only widget I have that has anything to do with money is OIOpublisher, something that he promotes on his blog but doesn’t seem to use. Also, they’re not there because it’s a desperate attempt for gaining clicks at all, but there is a reason why I have them there, and I will get to that shortly.
I’ve also been accused that I’m blogging simply for the money side of it, and once again that is far from the truth. I blog because I enjoy it and if I can make some money on the side, and I’m not referring to online payday loans, what’s wrong with that? Also, ever since I was ripped off some years ago by an Internet scam I made a commitment to myself that I would endeavor to find all the legitimate ways of making money on the Net and I would share them with my readers. If I find out later that the site is a scam, like the post I did on The great American Photo Contest I will remove the link and add a little edit to the post.
As to why I have those ads, you need to know a bit about my background. I have been in business for some 30 odd years and a lot of that has been in the retail sector, and some as a salesman in an hi-fi / electronics store. I found that when you pay so much per square foot of space you need to capitalize on as much of it as possible without making things look tacky.
A great percentage of sales from these stores come from what is known as impulse sales, and usually these impulse products bring in a greater margin. They are placed in such a manner that even if a customer has not come for that particular product it get’s their attention and a lot of the time they do purchase it. The amount of added revenue these impulse lines bring at the end of the day can be quite substantial. Probably the most popular area is around the checkout and the items placed there range from lollies and gum to magazines.
I’ve also read that having too many ads etc. can confuse people and they will probably leave buying nothing at all. This may be true for blogs but in real life people will not shop in a store unless there is a good range to select from. Some of our major retail chains are cutting down on other companies products and selling more home brands thinking people are more worried about price than branding. This has actually forced a lot of people to the smaller chains who have a greater selection as they want to be able to choose branded products if they so wish.
So, seeing as how this is my background it’s probably why I choose to run my blogs in such a fashion that I try to utilize as much of the blogging real estate as possible. Right or wrong, I believe that space in the sidebars or header is exactly that, prime real estate, and as such I should use them to my best advantage. I use rotating ads so that it constantly provides newer content and I believe I have placed them in such a fashion that it doesn’t detract from my posts at all. The fact they produce hundreds of clicks just proves to me that they are doing their job.
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