I am going to show you how to increase your WordPress blogs income with banner advertising.
It takes next to no time to setup, but once setup you will have a completely new recurring revenue stream that runs on complete auto pilot.
It might sound complicated, but don’t worry! It is really easy to add banners to your WordPress site to start generating revenue.
What Is Banner Advertising?
Banner advertising (sometimes called displaying advertising) is one of the oldest and most established advertising techniques on the internet.
If you have spent more than 60 seconds on the internet you will have seen ad banners at some point. They are literally everywhere!
In fact if you take a look at my sidebar you will see that I have a 300×250 banner setup which rotates through various advertisers banners.
You can see precisely how much I make from banner adveriting on the blog in my monthly income reports.
How Does Banner Advertising Work?
Its pretty simple really – you have the advertiser and the publisher.
The publisher (this blog for example) makes certain ad banner space available to rent.
The advertiser (can be anyone) rents the space with a banner that links to wherever.
Sometimes there is a 3rd party involved such as BuySellAds or Google Adsense that help bridge the gap between advertisers and publishers, for a fee.
How To Make Money From Banner Advertising
Well that depends if you are acting as the publisher or the advertiser.
As The Advertiser
As the advertiser you can hunt out advertising opportunities across the web, place your banner/affiliate link and generate sales.
No link building, no site, no email list – heck you can even use the banners provided by the affiliate program.
As The Publisher
In this case, this blog/me is the publisher. I choose where the ad spots will be, the pricing and how many ads will be in rotation.
It can be as simple as having 4 125×125 banners in the sidebar rotating 2 per slot at $20 per month each.
That would earn an extra $160 per month more than the blog is earning without them.
But as the publisher you do risk not selling the ad space which makes you precisely nothing.
Unless you place your own affiliate banners there temporarily, which I do :)
How Much Money Does This Blog Make?
I introduced the 4 125×125 banners you see in the sidebar a few months back which have earnt a total of $610.
At the weekend (13th April 2013) I opened up the following ad positions-
- 2x 468×60 banners at the end of the post (2 per slot)
- 1x 125×125 banner at the end of the post (3 per slot)
- 5x text link ads in the sidebar (1 per slot)
I chose those positions because they weren’t too obtrusive for my current audience but still got decent eyeball coverage.
That is a fine line to walk, time will tell if I succeeded with my judgement.
I got in touch with current/previous advertisers and in just 14 hours 75% of them sold out bringing in an additional $428, making for a total of $1,038 from banner ads alone.
I’m guessing my traffic converts well for you guys as nearly all of those sales were repeat orders :)
I also chose to increase prices of the sidebar 125×125 banners due to the blog getting triple the traffic now than it did when I set those prices.
There is another advertising option, which is a sponsored review set at $997. I want to point out here that a paid review, does not mean a good review.
It means I will reserve a portion of my time to review the product/service as I personally see it, the payment simply secures my time and my time alone.
Basically if your product/service sucks, my readers will know about it and I’ll back it up.
Anyway, back on topic.
This means through banner advertising on this blog alone the monthly earning potential is-
- Sidebar 125×125 – $360
- Sidebar text links – $50
- End post 468×60 – $260
- End post 125×125 -$165
A total of $835 per month.
Now that assumes the advertising space is always sold, but in just a few months I had a list of people waiting for ad spots and willing to pay more.
Even so, when the ad spots aren’t filled my own relevant banners with affiliate links are rotated so its win win from my end!
That doesn’t even take into account the $997 (at time of writing) sponsored post price which I’m choosing to limit to 1 a month. If you want a video by the way add 50%.
All of that extra income and earnings potential was literally created out of thin air.
You can do it as well in less than an hour!
How To Add Banner Advertising To WordPress Blogs
Adding banner, text link and post based advertising to your blog is really is with WordPress based banner advertising software.
I chose a WordPress plugin that handled everything banner advertising related and provides a self serve management system for advertisers.
That plugin is OIOPublisher, costs just $47 and takes the hard work out of every aspect of selling banner advertising on your site. I have more than made my money back :)
This means all I actually have to do is approve or reject banner ads as they come in.
OIOPublisher handles the rest including putting them live, taking them down on the right date, processing billing, providing advertiser statistics, sending out notification emails, geo targeting, category targeting and so on.
Once they have paid I get an email like this, click approve/reject and that is it.
How To Set It Up
Setting up OIOPublisher is really easy and is no more difficult than-
- Install the plugin
- Create an AdZone (eg Sidebar 125×125 banners) and setup pricing
- Setup default banners to use if there are no current advertisers
- Setup payments (just your PayPal email address)
- Use the sidebar widget or paste the code where you want the banners to appear
That is it! Check out the settings I have used for my end post 468×60 banner-
I have manually edited my themes single.php file to include them at the end of posts.
Setting Up An Advertisers Page
So now you have an awesome easy to manage self serving ad platform setup – but how are you actually going to sell it?
For that – you need to create an advertisers page!
This is the page where you can really go all out with your balls out to sell your advertising.
What You Should Include
You should provide all of the information the potential advertiser needs to make a decision upfront before getting into the nitty gritty.
Ideally you just want to write this once and never have to update it again ever.
Straight away I highlight my audiences interests – insert relevant keywords here to get picked up by people that scrape for new opportunities ;)
Then I breakdown my traffic by country – this is key information for any advertiser.
As you can see now is a good time to establish some credibility so I grasp onto those awards like there is no tomorrow.
Live Traffic Stats
I decided to go the extra mile on this page and add live traffic stats that update automatically so advertisers can get a live view of things.
That also means I don’t have to update the page, the less work for me the better!
This is done with the 100% free SeeTheStats.com service and I tweaked the colours to match my blog a little.
Now they are hooked, this is the time to start talking about banner advertising options.
I clearly define each of the ad zones on the blog and how many other ads will be in rotation.
With the sponsored blog post I go into a lot of detail because, well if you read it you’ll see why that is important to state upfront.
Frequently Asked Questions
In order to make this as self serving (and as little work for us) as possible we need to answer potential questions upfront.
Just put together a short FAQ which will hopefully answer any questions the advertiser has on the spot and save them from emailing you.
Links To Buy
At this point we haven’t mentioned price or availability, this is all done on the self serve OIOPublisher page.
But make sure you have scattered a bunch of ‘Click Here To Advertise’ links throughout the page.
Putting It All Together
So now you have OIOPublisher taking the hard work out of the technical side.
And an advertise here page that tells people everything they need to know about advertising on the site.
Now all you need to do is sell that banner advertising space and there are a couple of different approaches to that.
Personally all I have done is add it to my navigation bar up top and mention it on social media channels.
You could however take advantage of the OIOPublisher marketplace which automatically finds advertisers for you or you can reach out to people directly.
Don’t be scared of using Scrapebox to find a list of potential publishers that may want to advertise on your site, use the foundation technique taught in this tutorial to contact them all.
It is also worth checking out who is advertising on your competitors sites/blogs. If they are already advertising there, you can be sure they have the budget to advertise on your site as well!
OIOPublisher also allows you to setup an affiliate program so affiliates can sell your ad space for you!
I created recurring revenue out of thin air in less than an hour this weekend with banner advertising, so what are you waiting for?