How many ads should I run per page

This article was modified on 2011-12-30 18:28:04

Right from the start I used Google Adsense for monetizing my websites. I`ve read hundreds of articles regarding optimization, ad placement, ad rules, what to do and what`s best to avoid when running Google ads on a website. Not to mention over 4 years on several websites.

Since the very beginning I wanted to use only 2 block of ads / page. The ad format is tied with the website design. My main website was using Leaderboard (728 x 90) ad block. It was the best format for my website and I will explain.

I always hated websites that runs a lot of ads. If you insert many ads, your website will look ugly and there is a high chance to lose visitors but this is somehow another story.

How can you afford to lose visitors ? Google algorithm has evolved and it is going to improve so time spent on a website will count. That`s a good reason to keep the number of ads at a decent level.

What about earnings ? If we run more ads are we going to earn more money ? Maybe but ``more money`` could also mean a couple of dollars / week / month / year at what costs ? It`s true and I will explain.

Let`s say that you`re going to insert 3 different ads on a page and there are 3 advertisers.

The first block of ads will attract the highest paying advertiser so there are 2 other blocks which are going to show ads based on which advertiser will pay more.

1 ad block = 0.50 cents
2 ad block = 0.10 cents
3 ad block = 0.2 cents

The problem is that we don`t know on which ad will be the highest amount. Maybe most of your visitors will click on the third ad block, the one with the lowest earnings.

This is what I would do. I would identify the ad block format with the highest CTR ( the ad that has the most clicks ) and I would leave only 1 ad / page. Not to mention the speed as theoretically should increase ( less ads, faster page load ).

Why ? When 2,5,10 advertisers will compete on ads from your website, theoretically, visitors should see only the best paid ads. I also suspect that Google will implement ( if not already ) another algorithm that will display ads based on quality. How would you define quality of an website ? There are a lot of methods.

As I said, I`ve never had more than 2 ads / page and I guess I will run only 1 ad/page soon. I`ve seen websites running Google Adsense, Kontera, Chitika and others. There were 5-6-7 ads / page and I really don`t believe that this is a good strategy on a long term.

Maybe, you’re thinking that it’s not a good idea to run only 1 ad / page but as I said, it depends a lot on your website design ( template ).  I would be willing to run only 1 ad and instead to increase my website speed and not to mention the CPC ( cost-per-click )

At the time that I wrote this article, the best example of an website that runs and implements ads would be HowToGeek. I know that I keep talking about the theory with running only 1 ad / page but this website had only 1 ad / page 2-3 years ago. Now they run 3 ads ( probably due to economical crisis ) but they are not intrusive. They complement the website looking like a part of it. I guess this is another good idea but it`s a different story.

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