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View Poll Results: Should adsense be used as a source of income for a charity website?

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  • Yes

    5 41.67%
  • No

    7 58.33%
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  1. #1
    SitePoint Guru Rob_D's Avatar
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    To use adsense on charity website or not

    Hi

    This is the website which wil be redesigned soon. A marvelous design has been submitted by MissLee. I have volunteered my services, mainly creating the HTML/CSS, and have already added adsense to some of the pages.

    The webmaster I am working with thinks the ads are not good because they may take potential visitors away from the site and therefore less people will consider adoption of animals etc. Most of the links are for large charity organisations (like RSPCA), shopping sites, or search sites.

    I personally think that the ads will bring in a good source of income for the charity.

    A donate button will be on every page anyway.

    What's your opinion?

  2. #2
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    I would say, put the ads only on selected pages where they won't interfere with the adoption process, eg. articles and other content pages. On the home page and any action-focused pages, eliminate adsense.
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  3. #3
    Beer drinker Srirangan's Avatar
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    I personally think that the ads will bring in a good source of income for the charity.
    Who would donate to a charity that tries to raise revenue by putting ads on their website?
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  4. #4
    SitePoint Guru Rob_D's Avatar
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    But do most people really know that the ads bring income?

  5. #5
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    I think ads on a charity website are in poor taste.

    It makes it look like profits are more important than the goals of the charity.

    But that's just me.

  6. #6
    SitePoint Guru Rob_D's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by tke71709 View Post
    It makes it look like profits are more important than the goals of the charity.
    Fair enough

  7. #7
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    I think ads on a charity website are in poor taste.

    It makes it look like profits are more important than the goals of the charity.

    But that's just me.
    Agree 100%

  8. #8
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    Isn't the goal of the charity to raise money though?
    Why is raising money through the use of ads any worse than asking people for it?

    It sounds from the responses that you would be turned off by a charity website who is trying to raise funds on a 2nd level.

    I think it is a good idea, personally, if you look at it as 'potential' to raise more.
    That said, however, take into account the sentiment expressed above.. people may be turned off to donating if it appears that you're trying to make a profit with the ads. So, if you do do it, use sparingly and tactfully.
    An alternative would be to get Corporate Sponsors, can be local med-sized businesses in the local area that the charity is for (if its a local charity) and sell them on it as a good marketing opportunity and tax write-off. Then you can include something saying "Much thanks to our wonderful sponsors: so and so..."
    etc. etc..
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  9. #9
    SitePoint Member Skunkard's Avatar
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    Yeah, It would be alright if the Adsense revenue went towards the charity, or does that not go down to well with Google's guidelines/TOS?

  10. #10
    SitePoint Guru Rob_D's Avatar
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    Well, I know it's not a good sample but so far 2/3rds are against and if that reflects on the sponsorship/donation uptake then I guess thay should be removed. Shame really...

  11. #11
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    Quote Originally Posted by Rob_D View Post
    The webmaster I am working with thinks the ads are not good because they may take potential visitors away from the site and therefore less people will consider adoption of animals etc.
    From what you stated there, it seems as though the overall goal of the charity is the adoption of animals. Raising money may also be part of that, but ultimately the goal is to have animals adopted.

    With that said, regarding the ads taking the attention away from the adoption of animals - I'm not sure that would be a major issue. Anyone who is on your site to adopt an animal will very likely return even if they do click away for a moment to an advertiser's website. If they really want to adopt an animal I doubt they would leave and never come back, unless they leave for another animal adoption charity site (and does that really matter, if it still results in an animal being adopted elsewhere?).

    I think one side effect of having ads like adsense on your site would be the potential they have to turn off / turn away people who are considering to adopt an animal but are not sure. They *may* get the feeling that the site is too commercial for a "charity."

    But, there is a way to have ads on your site and earn from them without it having the feeling of being too commercial.

    Quote Originally Posted by pjleonhardt View Post
    An alternative would be to get Corporate Sponsors
    Corporate sponsors. Or really, any sponsors from your local business community. If the sponsors are actually part of the local community I think it would be a nice plus. Potential new families for animals may appreciate knowing that their local hardware store (or whatever) is supporting the efforts of your charity.

    The right side section of your website, where adsense ads are currently, could be replaced with a sponsors section. Give each sponsor a single line of space for linking their site or just naming their business. Don't make it out to be like advertising... no monthly management, ad tracking, etc. Make the sponsorship simply be a 1 year listing on the site in return for a *minimum* contribution. You may find that some sponsors contribute more than the minimum.

    Have strict quality guidelines for the sponsorships.
    ------------------------------------------


    On another note, about having action based ads on charity websites - I think it is a VERY bad idea and a dis-service to advertisers. CPL & CPC type ads I believe have more chance of being abused on charity sites. Just a few days ago I had a member of one of my sites posting messages asking others to help support some charity by going to their website and clicking on the Google ads. Not only could that get the charity banned from Adsense, but I think there is possibility for much word of mouth promotion for ad-clicking in that way. CPM/CPS ads completely prevent that sort of abuse by those who may inadvertently think they are doing a good thing by supporting the charity in that way.
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  12. #12
    SitePoint Guru Rob_D's Avatar
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    Yes, I think sponsorship is the way to go and could be more "lucrative" than adsense.

    So, based on the following figures, what would be a good starting price for sponsorship?

    The site has avearge 3,481 unique visitors and 20,160 page impressions per month since May 2006, approaching 5,000 and 31,000 respectively.


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