Advertisements Can Drive Away Visitors And Cannibalize Your Business
Placing adverts on the sidebar of your blog seems a good way to earn some extra pounds. But the disadvantages can outweigh the advantages.
We all know that the key to a successful SEO campaign is relevant authoritative content, and that a great way to achieve this is through fresh, engaging blogs relating to the issues of the day.
For many, the idea of some ads on the sidebar seems a no-brainer. What can be the downside to generating some additional revenue?
The answer is that the downsides can easily outweigh the moderate financial advantages that advertising might bring, for a number of reasons.
Creating The Right Image
Building a successful business and associated blog is all about developing a trusting relationship with readers who will become repeat visitors, and first impressions are all-important. Being greeted with a sidebar full of advertisements can be off-putting. If visitors are given the impression that you are just trying to sell them something through in-the-face advertising, they are less likely to see you as an authoritative source on the subject matter in hand.
First impressions can also be damaged just by the presence of ads – having spent so much time creating the perfect design for your site, does it still create the image you want to project when it has advertisements plastered all over it?
Many visitors assume that because an advertisement appears on your blog, you are personally endorsing the product or service being advertised. This can also compromise how visitors perceive your site and potentially your integrity.
Speed And Agility
There is no doubt that the speed at which a webpage loads is a key factor in attracting visitors. Research has shown that the majority will give a site three seconds to load before giving up, pressing the “back” button and going elsewhere.
Reducing traffic in this way can ultimately affect SERP rankings too.
A Dangerous Distraction
Consider the underlying purpose of your blog. By providing relevant, engaging content on your subject of choice, you aim to generate a response from the reader – whether it is to read on, to click a link or to share content via social media.
The problem with advertisements is that they work in direct competition with that underlying aim. Their whole purpose is to draw the reader's attention away from what they were doing. Thus, adverts can have a devastating effect on conversion rates for your business. And the better the advertisements, the more damage they can do.
Blog adverts can be an unwelcome distraction for you too. The time spent managing and monitoring the advertisements could almost certainly be better spent in other ways that enhance conversion rates rather than damage them.
Finding Another Way
Clearly, there are disadvantages to blog advertisements, and the very limited revenue they bring leads most industry experts to the conclusion that they are more trouble than they are worth. So, what better methods are there to monetize your blog?
The best way is to make the blog itself work for you. Original, engaging business blog content linked back to your site will generate more traffic, increase conversions and ultimately improve sales. Make sure your blog posts are not only relevant, but actively help promote your products and services.
Each new blog post must have a purpose. Many businesses, on being told that they must write a blog, fail to properly plan and strategize their blog writing. Rather than just writing whatever is on your mind, make a content plan based on your most important products and seasonal events. Are there always end-of-season products you need to shift? Write a few promotional blogs in the month before and push out to your social followers and email subscribers. Have your content ready for major events such as Christmas and other national holidays – read up on tent-pole marketing.
This way, blogging can create a virtuous circle rather than the cycle of destruction that advertising can bring about. The bottom line is, don’t give away your valuable traffic to advertising unless you are sure that it will not convert to a sale.