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Google, SEO and an AdSense experiment

by Martin Aspeli last modified Apr 10, 2009 10:32 AM

Reaching #7

If you are reading this on my site (rather than on you may have noticed some ads showing up on the right hand side. I hope they are not too obtrusive, and they may be there for a long time, but I wanted to do a little experiment.

I have Google Analyics set up for this site. For a while, I've noticed that this article has unusually consistent and unexpectedly high page views. Then I realised that most of the traffic was coming from Google, and sure enough, if you Google ExtJS, that article shows up at number 7 or thereabouts.

That's pretty amazing. This site has very little to do with ExtJS apart from that one blog post. I don't do any marketing of it. Most traffic comes from Google or And yet, here it is number 7(ish) for a major JavaScript framework. I think this says something about how well deserved Plone's SEO reputation is.

I've always been interested in how well web ads (and Google AdSense in particular) actually work. Do people actually click on them? Do they make any money at all except for really huge sites? I suspect the answer to both may be "no", but I thought I'd give it a try over a few months. So for now, there'll be some ads in the right hand side column, courtsey of collective.portlet.adsense. I hope you don't mind.

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What ads?

Posted by at Apr 10, 2009 11:41 AM
I can only share the experience I had with my blog. I had non-intrusive Google text ads for over two years on my blog. In those two years I had about 10 clicks and earned a total of five dollars or so (way below the amount that you'd actually get paid).

What I found is that most people read blogs either via a planet or RSS feeds today. The other technical audience I had, has in a majority add-blockers installed, so they won't see any ads either. And even the people that see the ads need to actually click one of them to have any kind of real effect.

You might get different results based on the audience, but I wouldn't expect much.

What ads?

Posted by Martin Aspeli at Apr 10, 2009 12:04 PM
I suspect you're right. I have zero expectation that this will make me any money, but I am interested in getting some first-hand experience with AdSense and how it works - even how it works in a Plone context.

$34.76 and counting!

Posted by at Apr 11, 2009 02:09 AM
I was originally inspired by to put ads on, and while I am not getting rich I did earn $2.04 in March, which actually seems like a lot to me considering I've only earned $34.76 since February 2007… I just checked and that is about average, with high and low of $4.14 in June 2007 and $0.01 in November 2007. So, at this rate I will earn $100 by Plone Conference 2013. ;-) Good luck! :-D

You will make less because the ads are Plone

Posted by at Apr 13, 2009 10:20 AM
ExtJS is not the only example of your site doing well in an unrelated context. Look at the results in Google for the search:
training in washington dc

You're post is #5. But your ads are all Plone this and Plone that. You will get more clicks if your ads were more general audience and not just Plone related ads.
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