Google AdSense, 3 and Half Year Later

It has been 3 and half years since I first added advertisement from Google AdSense on this website. The amount of traffic has been steady over the last 3 ½ years although I have been really slack blogging here recently. Here are some interesting statistics on monetising this blog with Google AdSense.

Year Impressions Clicks Revenue
2005 87,xxx 2,1xx $372
2006 212,xxx 5,4xx $1,030
2007 205,xxx 2,6xx $498
2008 211,xxx 2,0xx $363

Note that I have only started using Google AdSense in July 2005. So you might want to double the 2005 stats to get a more comparative number, assuming the traffic level in 2005 is constant. Also although there are still ½ month to go for December 2008, the stats shown above should give you a general idea. I have also changed to a new theme which may/may not affect the revenue generation. Finally, many of my most popular pages on this blog (mainly those WordPress plugin pages + the front page of this blog) don't actually have ads shown on them.

So, what can I conclude from the stats generated from above?

  • Lazy bloggers won't make truck load of money. Actually, even if you are a heavily effective pro-blogger who can consistently produce a few well-written insightful blog posts a day, you probably still won't make as much money as an investment banker or a seasoned J2EE/.Net engineer. Your blogs probably won't sell for more than their redundant packages either, in the current economy climate.

    Still, a few hundred US greenbacks are more than enough to pay for the web hosting for this site and many others (which are currently on USD$20/month SliceHost VPS). Still got some spare changes for a treat every now and then...

  • People are getting more and more blind to the online ads. While the number of impressions stays pretty constant, the number of clicks (and thus the click through rate) has dropped year after year. Assuming Google has maintained the quality of ads shown on this blog (finger crossed), I can only concluded that people have fed up with the online ads and become blind to them.

    I guess that's probably the reason why there are more and more aggressive ads on big news sites like SMH, where they take over the whole screen to make sure you see them. Did I say aggressive or annoying?

  • Not just CTR, CPC has been dropping too! If you divide the revenue by the number of clicks, you will get the Cost Per Click (CPC), and you'll see them drop year after year as well. That means you now need to get 150 clicks to make the same amount of money where you used to be able to make it with 100 clicks. That sucks more because CTR is dropping at the same time.

    I guess there might be multiple reasons behind it. Google AdWords bidding is still a mystery that I don't think I will ever understand. No one wants to bid on my site anyway after seeing all the crappy writing I have here. The financial crisis and economy downturn has also reduced the marketing budget of many advertisers. Finally there are many more websites parked with AdSense to compete for the cake. No wonder my slice gets smaller and smaller.

Well. That's about my it -- my thoughts on Google AdSense on this blog. With imminent recession in 2009, I guess I can pretty much predict the number..