Advertising revenue represents a huge pie in the world of e-commerce. So it should be easy for every business, big and small, to get their fair share of it, right? That certainly is the ideal. But if you’re a small business without the visitors and branding of giants like Yahoo or AOL, getting even a sliver of the pie can seem next to impossible. That impossibility may very well be due in large part to some misconceptions surrounding the advertising of web sites, in addition to the number of heavy hitters you may be competing with. Below are two of the most common misconceptions.
The Commercial Viability of Your Business
Some business owners think that advertising their site enough will result in revenue. That is simply not true. The main indicator of a business’s advertising success will be in how commercially viable it is. Plainly put, if a web site is advertising products or services that are part of a popular industry, then it’s more likely that advertisers will be willing to pay to advertise on that site. You may be selling an awesome product or service, but if it’s in a niche market, your audience is likely to be much smaller, which means fewer eyes to see the advertising on your site.
The Quality of Your Content
In addition to commercial viability, your business must have another very important element, which is high quality content. This could take virtually any form. An e-book written on a subject that’s close to your market, and that you offer for free on your web site is a good example. Anything that you publish on your site that can teach your visitors something is a potential piece of high quality content.
There are a few caveats to be aware of if you plan on generating future advertising revenue from your content, however. First of all, most entrepreneurs are aware that Google’s Panda algorithm will rank sites with poor content lower than those with quality content. And it’s important to understand that internet users have become more sophisticated, and will be willing to look elsewhere if they find the content on your site to be mediocre.
Some elements of less-than-quality content could include:
- Publications disguised as educational materials, but which are really advertisements for your business;
- Advertising which interferes with the visitor’s reading experience, such as pop-up ads;
- Email addresses which bounce back frequently.
Of course, there are a number of other elements of your web site which also must be in place in order to properly prepare to generate ad revenue. These include the optimization of keywords, traffic generation and arranging your site to allow for advertising.
Affiliate advertising involves getting paid by companies to whom you refer customers. This works by placing some kind of ad for the company on your site. When a visitor clicks on it, they are taken to the company site and if they purchase, will earn you a commission.
A sponsorship can be another great way to earn revenue from your site. Sites which generate large amounts of traffic are the best candidates for sponsorships. Companies looking to sponsor your business will offer to pay you a flat monthly fee for advertising their offerings on your site. If your site is well-known and has impressive traffic stats, this can mean a lot of monthly revenue for your business.