Have Highly Targeted Ads Increased Your CTR / Earnings?

Hey there! My main site is in a niche that isn’t particularly supported by Adsense, and so it seems their ads fall back to the types of ads that they do support, but that probably perform worse in the real world. For example, my site has a bunch of downloadable files within my niche, mostly PDF’s. Adsense doesn’t support my niche, so the ads I see being sent to my units are things like “Download PDF’s!”

Those ads are nonsense. I have a good amount of spam traffic coming to my site, so I pretty much trust Adsense’s reports on my “real” traffic on the dashboard, rather than looking at the theoretical CTR % that they show, even though most of those views and clicks don’t reflect my real world performance. For example: Adsense shows a CTR of well over 7%. But when counting the actual views and clicks that are counted, it’s more like just a bit under 3%. I figure I could improve that quite a bit, and see big improvements to actual profits per click…

Now I’ve been looking at using affiliate ads, all of which are well within my niche and should theoretically engage more of my visitors. That’s the hope anyway. And from what I can tell, their earnings per click so to speak, looks to be between 30 cents and nearly $2.00. Do you think that I would actually GAIN overall CTR %? Because suppose I was actually doing 5% per day at an average of let’s say, 50 cents per click overall, it seems like I’d be doing FAAAAR better that way, than with Adsense. Likewise, it would actually give me the resources to invest back into promoting the site, so it just seems like a win-win.

What do you guys think…? Should I expect my CTR, overall earnings and so on to increase with these affiliate links because they’ll probably be more attractive to my visitors? Or am I maybe just deluding myself? :frowning:

The only way you’re going to be able to know, is to try.

Simply put, anyone here can give you generalized vagueries about what their results were, or what the SEO community says about this or that…

but that doesn’t apply to you. You’ve already laid that out in your first sentence.

I guess that’s fair ha. Yeah, it’s going to be a bit tough to get direct answers on this because… I don’t want to say my situation with Adsense is completely unique, but it’s certainly not something the average site owner runs into I would think…

For the next week or two, I think I’ll keep it up with the Adsense ads, and then try out the affiliate stuff for my niche, and just see how things are going.

Weird question, but is there any way to make Adsense failover to one of my selected affiliate ads (not on Adsense platform of course) through the whole ad balance thing? For example, suppose that Adsense is showing I’m getting 90% of my revenue from like 40 percent of ads. Any way to manually put in the ads I want served the other 60 percent of the time, effectively only showing the most profitable Google Ads and also taking advantage of the others?

Not sure if you can do that alone with just ad sense. I know some of the header bidding solutions do allow you to set a floor price and if they don’t sell you can then put your own content in place.

I also agree with the above in that you are best to just try running a test over a few weeks to see what is better. It is very hard to tell without actually trying out in live environment.

If ad sense does not do what you want you could always do A/B style test use googles A/B testing tool to replace the adsense ads for 50% of the traffic. That way you should get a good idea of how each does?

Yeah, you guys are probably right. I think I’ll keep regular adsense up for another week or two, then change to affiliates only, and compare. And then maybe figure out a mix.

So, can you do that sort of thing with… What is it called, AdX? Basically, “If it doesn’t meet this price, fill in (whatever I put in)”?