Client wanting to pay $1 per 1,000 impressions

I have a client who is wanting to pay only $1 per 1,000 impressions and says that’s the going rate. There’s no way this can be right… how should I approach this?

$1 per 1,000 impressions is fairly standard, depending on the setup and layout of the site and more, the ad layout itself.

For example, let us say that you displayed two of that client’s ads in different areas of the site (e.g. top banner and left sidebar). If the client had several ads for several products and an ad for that product showed up in both ad slots, they might charge that as just one impression, since it would be the same product SKU. (AdSense seems to operate this way, though I have never nailed that down 100%)

In any case, what type of site is it (i.e. blog, community forum, product). What are it’s traffic patterns? (visits per day, unique visitors, page views) Is it a niche site? (i.e. gaming, limited to 1-2 products) How long has the site been running. We need a feel for the site specifics before we could give any advice that would be of any use.

actually 1$ cpm is very good. if you are not intrested, send him myway
I would love to place his banner on my site. i’m getting a little better than that with adsense but my second tier networks are averaging less than $0.10 CPM

Yes, $1 is generally very good. I said “standard” because in some cases with a highly-niched site, it is more common.

For a run of the mill site, say a blog, it is very good.

Nos - very good advice, thanks. I think I’m gonna ask them for a down payment at an agreed rate of $1 per 1k impressions with an up front down payment and then based upon the success of this limited time event they either receive a refund or pay the difference.

That sounds good. $1 is pretty decent middle ground to start with.

You might find that it fluctuates over time, depending on the site’s target audience and it’s niche, but I see this as a perfectly reasonable offer on the face of it.

You may work with him without any hesitation as it is not a bad rate at all for 1 k impression.Just concentrate on driving more traffic to get more income from him.

just wondering how much an advertiser should pay in advance?
Is 50% fair for both parties?

I started emailing other sites in my industry and found this was a good standard:

First 250,000 impressions @ $0.50 CPM ($125)
Next 250,000 impressions @ $0.40 CPM ($100), 500,000 total impressions ($225)
Next 500,000 impressions @ $0.30 CPM ($150), 1,000,000 total impressions ($375)
Next X impressions @ $0.20 CPM (X * $0.20), 1,000,000+ total impressions ($375+)

I think 100% upfront is what you should go. Being bold is a good thing here, it will be a sign of strength and confidence on how his campaign will perform.

Standards are only good when it comes to the ad size (check IAB), you set the Price (or the market…).

$1 CPM is decent, it pretty much depends on the ad size / placement. If it’s above the fold and a 728x90, definitely worth the money for the advertiser as well. If it’s in the footer … argg… not so good.

1$ CPM is very low depending on your niche and audience.

I earn a lot more with AdSense and my direct sales prices are 6-15$ CPM

That of course depends on your niche and what advertisers are willing to pay
to be visible to your audience.

CPM rates vary wildly between content niches from $0.10 up to $15 CPM.

For a general site, $1 CPM is pretty much standard. When trying to work out the CPM rates to charge advertisers I look first at the eCPM I can generate using AdSense and other ad networks like Tribal Fusion and Casale Media. I then multiply that figure by two to see what to charge directly (as that is how much the ad network is charging the advertiser before they take their cut). From that point I amend the ad rate depending on how many advertisers want to buy the space (supply and demand).

I wrote a short guide on things to look out for when selling directly to advertisers over at

Just a few things to look out for :slight_smile:

masm50 offers excellent advice. I make new advertisers pay up front unless they are an established ad agency I can trust on some level. I’ve been scammed by one “company” in 10+ years (I didn’t require upfront payment because I was too eager to make a sale… big mistake!) The only other problem I had was back in the dotcom crash of 2000 when the big ad agency went bankrupt and left a $20k debt. In that case, I should have cut them off after they were late with that first payment or two. They were 6 months behind. Anyway, it’s not out of the question to require upfront payment and it’s standard in the corporate world. (For instance, magazines aren’t going to run a print ad without getting paid first.) For my site, $1 CPM is rock bottom and I only offer it if I’ve got a lot of unsold impressions (low demand/high supply).

$1 is low and not even worth it IMO.

Very, very good advice IMHO. masm50, thank you for the article. I’m going to check it out right now!


$1 per 1000 impressions is pretty good if it’s an entertainment type of site, but for business, financial, etc type of sites, then it would be low.