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RPM Is Not Meant to Optimize AdSense Revenue

RPM Is Not Meant to Optimize AdSense Revenue

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Better Ways To Optimize AdSense Revenue

A lot of publishers worry about RPM — which is the Google AdSense measurement for revenue per mille (revenue per thousand page views). That’s normal because it’s a metric that everyone has been using for a long time. Unfortunately, it’s not really the best metric for publishers who want to optimize AdSense revenue. Let me explain…

While RPM has been somewhat useful in the past, it’s no longer sufficient in an age of testing ad positions and page layouts to see what the users respond to best.

optimize adsense revenue - rpm - epmv

Don’t be fixated on getting your Page RPM ‘up’

You need to improve usability AND ad income together.  We see sites all the time where the publisher adds more and more ads to their pages in the (mistaken) belief that more ads = higher RPM = more money.

This is totally wrong.

Even though adding one or two ads might earn you more per page, those extra ads might be driving your users away.

Driving users away pushes your bounce rate up, your pageviews down and time on site down.  This causes fewer pages to be viewed overall and actually lowers your earnings!!!

Here’s the math behind this and it’s very easy to follow:

Let’s say you have a site and it gets 100,000 visits a day (nice!) Which scenario would you choose? The $5 RPM or $4 RPM?

     Scenario One

RPM = $5.00

Page View Per Visit: 1.5

100,000 visits * 1.5 pv/v

= 150,000 page views

150,000 pv @ $5.00 rpm

= $750

Scenario Two

RPM: $4.00

Page View Per Visit: 2.5

100,000 visits * 2.5 pv/v

= 250,000 page views

250,000 pv & $4.00 rpm

= $1,000

I think everyone would opt for the $1,000 a day over the $750/day.

Does that mean that you want to then convert all of your traffic to gallery style pages?  No – you don’t want to do that either because you could kill your bounce rate too (making the content too hard to access).

How to optimize AdSense Revenue

The lesson here is that earnings per thousand visits (EPMV) is the best metric for publishers that want to optimize AdSense revenue; not RPM. RPMs don’t tell the entire story. As we saw in the example above, lower RPMs are okay – so long as the UX is improving.

You cannot optimize for revenue without optimizing for user experience as well.

More info on ad testing can be found here.

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