Building a website is only the first step, but growing your visitor base and making actual money out of it takes significant effort and time.
Publishers, bloggers, and website owners constantly put up great content to increase their reach, user engagement, and SEO. Although many manage to get good traffic, making money is still their challenge.
Most people think of AdSense when it comes to monetization. But there is another, actually transparent, way to monetize a website.
Are there any AdSense alternatives?
Google AdSense is a very popularized monetization service. But it has a lot of drawbacks. For one, there’s a strict approval system. Many high-traffic websites, like adult websites, for example, simply can’t be approved.
And if you are in the mainstream niches and get approved, you have absolutely no control over how your spots are bought out. You have no idea what your actual cost per impression is because AdSense has a concealed auction. Its minimum payout is $100. It significantly impacts your page speed, which damages your user experience. And a lot more.
So looking for an alternative to AdSense, many would go with cost per mile or thousand impressions (CPM) ad networks. But guess what, it won’t be enough.
Why Won’t CPM Ad Networks Bring You Enough Profit?
Most look for ad networks in their niche. But working with ad networks is bothersome and not as profitable as you hope. The reason is as follows:
- Being an intermediary, they cut the prices, often including black rev-share.
- Most of them don’t have any ad quality control or just don’t put enough effort into doing it properly.
- Finding the best-fitting network for your traffic specifics takes a lot of time and effort.
- Working simultaneously with multiple networks is technically complex and time-consuming.
- Networks tend to search for a higher commission in the first place and serve multiple ads in one ad spot without caring for user experience.
So, the better alternative here would be to find a solution that combines ad networks demand and smart and transparent monetization service. You might have heard of ad mediation platforms—for example, AdSpyglass.
What Is Ad Mediation?
Ad mediation is a technology that helps you efficiently monetize your website. An ad mediation platform allows you to work with multiple ad networks simultaneously, using one ad code and one dashboard to do it. Simply put, a mediation platform creates an auction market for your inventory.
Ad networks, DSPs, and direct advertisers compete for your ad spots, and you receive the most profitable offers, show the ads with the best eCPM. This way, you make more money, show only the most relevant ads, get the fullest fillrate, and keep your user experience intact.
How Does Ad Mediation Work?
To understand this, it’s essential to know how publishers earn from ads in the first place.
Ad revenue = Ad requests * eCPM * ad fill rate
So, if you want to increase your ad revenue, you will need to optimize eCPM or fill rate, or both from each ad request.
An ad mediation platform can offer you access to several ad networks, DSPs, and direct advertisers within one ad spot. Next, they compete to get the available inventory. The mediation platform will choose the ad network, DSP, or a direct advertiser that can offer you the highest payout.
Furthermore, the ad mediation platform can also let you rank those ad brokers based on your preference.
Nevertheless, you can be sure that the ad will be shown at the highest CPM among all available brokers as the ad mediations’ auction prioritizes the available advertisers based on historical analysis of each broker’s CPM with a breakdown by GEO.
What Features Should an Ad Mediation Service Have?
A good ad mediation platform will have some of the key features, such as:
Transparent Ads Rotation
Ad rotation, when done right, lets you display the best ads on your website for your visitors. It should prioritize the ads based on their performance within the same ad group and optimize ads using parameters like location, device, keyword, etc. This way, you can improve your impressions and clicks.
A lot of publishers try custom code for server-side rotation. But doing it yourself is very complex, and often nothing good comes of it.
Easy Onboarding and Reliable Support
An ad mediation platform must offer an easy, hassle-free onboarding process. You must not have difficulty setting up your account and getting started with it.
So, when you choose an ad mediation platform, enquire about the complete onboarding process and how much help you can expect from them.
Speaking of help, you also need to check how reliable the customer support team is. You don’t know when issues may pop up, and if it does, you need somebody to help if you can’t solve it yourself.
If possible, check the support’s team background. It’s good if they have experience being on your (the publisher) side of things.
Customization and Personalization
A good ad mediation platform should allow you to customize its settings so that you have the flexibility of using it the way you want. You must be able to make some changes in the settings, customize the dashboard and reports, etc.
Similarly, personalization is key in today’s marketing. Hence, this is also an important feature that an ad mediation platform must offer. You must be able to set up the behavior to personalize your ads based on the users’ personal information, interests, region, country, language, device, etc. It must also give you plenty of filters to view your traffic by platform, browser, device, proxy type, campaign, ad network, date, etc.
This will help increase relevance and boost traffic and ad revenue.
Good Choice of Ad Networks in Your Niche
Another desirable feature in an ad mediation platform is wide-ranging options of ad networks in your niche. You must be able to add and remove ad networks easily using a single platform. It will not only increase your productivity but save time and effort.
So check how many ad networks, including the major ones, they are integrated with. It will ensure you will have ads with high eCPM, and your ad spots are filled with valuable ads to achieve more profit.
For example, AdSpyglass is an ad mediation platform that offers easy integration with 35 ad networks already, including PropellerAds, BigClick, Bidvertiser, AdX, etc.
Access to direct advertisers
A meditation platform should have a solution to easily add direct advertisers (have their own DSP or let you add your own connections), not only to ad networks. And direct advertisers are always better than networks. They offer better quality, you can be 100% sure the ads are always relevant, and they usually pay more.
Imagine you work with two ad networks long-term. They usually buy out 80% of your traffic (US traffic, for example). The remaining 20% of your traffic comes from Europe, and you show no ads to those visitors. Because the networks you work with don’t have offers for European traffic.
When your mediation platform provides access to direct advertisers, you can connect with a direct advertiser who wants European customers, add their ad to your rotation, and monetize 100% of your traffic.
Support for All Popular Ad Formats
Not only does the number of ad networks matter, but also the ad format.
With ad mediation platforms, you’ll have multiple ad formats so that you can have many options to display ads. You can be more creative with more format options, such as display banners, popunders, native banners, direct links, out-stream, in-video, sliders, push notifications, and more.
This way, you will have the flexibility to decide where and how to display ads on your website to make it interesting and not overwhelm the visitors.
Unified Reporting and Analytics
Detailed reports help you understand many things about your ad spots monetization. It will give you an idea of how much revenue you actually are generating from the ads. When it comes to reporting, you must get a fully detailed understanding of:
- Each activity and performance
- Which ad network brought how much revenue
Visualizing all the numbers directly without confusion will help you spot discrepancies and things to improve upon. It will also help you strengthen your plus points to stay ahead of the competition.
Anti-Adblock tools are the solutions that enable publishers to display advertisements even if a user enables Adblock (to block ads). This helps you recover your ad revenue from losing it to Adblocks. According to TechCrunch, 30.5% of the top 10 thousand sites ranked by Alexa use an anti-Adblock tool to prevent losing revenue.
Providing an anti-AdBlock solution, a meditation platform indicates it truly cares about your income. AdSpyglass does, for example.
Ad Quality Monitoring
Ad quality monitoring is the process to ensure viewers can have an engaging, safe, and pleasant experience with your site’s ads. And if it’s related to user experience, you must always take it seriously and make efforts to improve.
So, an ad mediation tool should offer ad quality monitoring.
The aforementioned AdSpyglass offers quality monitoring to its users as an additional service. Their team sets up the ad behavior, monitors the quality of ads with integrated quality scoring tools, and informs both the publishers and the ad brokers whenever a bad ad is detected. Hence, necessary steps can be taken immediately to remove those ads before they can drive your visitors away.
An effortless payment process is what everyone craves. No one likes a lengthy payment cycle with so much groundwork to do to get paid.
Hence, an ad mediation platform, when it comes to its marketplace activity, must offer a flexible payment system. It must not hold your earnings for no reason and keep you waiting in each payment cycle. It should also support popular payment methods such as PayPal, Payoneer, Bitcoin, WebMoney, etc., to make the process easy for you.
Using an ad mediation platform like AdSpyglass makes it easier and faster to monetize your ads while offering you deeper control over your inventory.
Previously, selling ad space used to be trickier. Publishers working with multiple ad networks, direct advertisers, etc., found it challenging to manage those networks and faced difficulties with frequent price shifts and irrelevant ads. Hence, they started craving for better, clear, and accurate visibility into what’s really happening with their ads.
Ad mediation solves these issues while significantly increasing your income. And the best thing about it – all you need to do is add one code to your website once. And let the platform do its magic while you put all your effort into creating great content and growing your traffic.
Let’s hope one day we have more of these platforms for every niche.