“What impacts the rate advertisers are willing to pay for my ads?”
This is a really good question and there are many considerations that advertisers use to determine the value of an ad space. There are many qualifiers that advertisers use to determine what they’ll pay for certain ad slots. The major influencing factors are:
- The number of ads on a given page
- The size of those ads
- The placement of the ad
- The traffic quality of the visitor
These 4 factors make the biggest difference in determining the value of your ads. As we talk about these considerations remember that every blog is different and even identical blogs, if they differ in size, will perform differently.
Number of Ads
When it comes to ads more is not always best. Setting aesthetics aside, the number of ads on your page is critical because you want to create a healthy amount of competition on your page without overdoing it. Too many ads on a page deflates the impact of all ad spaces while too few leaves money on the table. The Ideal number of ads on a page is 5-6 but that number varies based on the type and design layout of your website.
Size of Ads
Size is also an important consideration when determining value.The International Advertising Bureau (IAB) has set standard sizes to “reduce and simplify the amount of work for agencies that may be faced with having to create several assets of a similar size for different publishers.” Advertisers make the majority of their ads in standardized sizes. If you choose to use nonstandard sizes there will be a smaller supply of ads to fill your inventory and thus your ads will not fill at high prices. The top performing ad sizes, in order of performance, are:
- 300×250 pixels
- 728×90 pixels
- 160×600 pixels
Keep this in mind when designing your header, your sidebar and your footer to make sure you’ll be able to accommodate these sizes. Here at Monumetric, when we implement your tags, we’ll resize your header, sidebar, and/or footer (with your permission, of course) for free to make sure you’ll be able to get the best yield from your ad sizes.
Below is an example of ad sizing, and also of ad placement’s which we’ll talk about next. Credit to Bunny’s Warm Oven for letting us use her blog as an example.
There is a big industry debate as to the importance of placing your ads either above or below-the-fold (above-the-fold is the top 1000 pixels of a page). Our historical data has shown that while ads placed above-the-fold do perform better than ads placed below-the-fold, this margin of performance is sometimes only by a penny or two! In almost all cases the formatting of your website should not be changed simply to accommodate more above-the-fold ads. Rather, it’s best to make room for a leaderboard (728 x 90) somewhere above-the-fold and make sure your sidebar will accommodate a 300 x 250 ad placement.
The next most important consideration to keep in mind when placing your ads is the ad’s proximity to your content. Advertisers want their ad to be seen alongside content. This consideration is a higher priority than above or below-the-fold so it is not uncommon to see sidebar ads, which are below-the-fold, perform better than an ad of the same size above-the-fold (as long as the below-the-fold ad is close to the content, of course).
Ads placed far from the content have been nicknamed “orphan ads”. Orphan ads almost always have low fill rates and low eCPM’s. To help your ads get the highest revenue possible, format your page and your posts so that your sidebar stays close to relevant content. Proximity to content is also why in-image ads perform so well.
Advertising is a game of communication. Advertisers want to talk with visitors who are most likely to buy their product or use their service and they use information from your blog to identify them. Sites with high levels of user engagement such as large numbers of followers, comments, and links will perform better because advertisers can identify viewers in their target markets better from that extra information. The longer a visitor spends on your site and the more pages they visit on your site is also important to advertisers. More screen time = higher eCPM’s.
Advertiser will also look at the caches of those who visit your site and send them ads tailored to their search/browsing history. Have you ever visited a website and noticed that the advertisements are all for the same company? You (or someone who has used your same browser) have most likely visited this advertiser’s site before or performed a search that has identified you as a good candidate for their product. This is an example of “retargeting ads” and will boost the price advertisers are willing to pay to advertise on your page.
In the end, nobody should get into blogging because they have a passion for ad management. Bloggers become successful when they are passionate about their valuable content that people want to see and share. Keep these ad tips in mind as you work to build your content and design your sites so you can maximize your revenue potential!
If you have any questions about your specific blog, feel free to reach out to your ad manager. Or if you aren’t a member of Monumetric yet, click here to join!