eCPM, or effective cost per thousand impressions, is a figure used to represent how well monetized your websites is. If your eCPM is $1 that means that your revenue is $1 per 1000 impressions – $1 is a low eCPM. If your eCPM is $60 that means that your revenue is $60 per 1000 impressions – $60 is a high eCPM. For Adsense, eCPM depends on two factors; the CTR (Click Through Rate) and the CPC (Cost Per Click). In this article I will discuss my 5 step process to achieving a high eCPM.
- Write about high paying topics The CPC your ad clicks provide depends mainly on the topic you write about. For example, ads about finance pay far higher than ads about MySpace so if you can achieve equal traffic to a finance and a MySpace website the finance site will be more profitable, although MySpace websites may be easier to build traffic to. If you have already created a website on a specific topic you can still write about high paying topics within your niche. For example, if you were writing an article on web hosting using the keywords ‘paid web hosting’ will display higher paying ads than the keywords ‘free web hosting’. Small changes like this in your content can create big changes to your CPC and in turn, your eCPM.
- Improve ad placement (CTR)
The easiest way to increase CTR is to improve your ad placement to make your ads more visible. According to the Google Heatmap fr maximum visibility your ads should be placed front and center, at the top of your main content. Here is the Google Heatmap –
Placing your ads according to the Google Heatmap does have great effect, in my experience the CTR is generally between 10% and 40%. One page where I place my ads like in the method above is Free Letterhead Templates which you can see in the following screenshot or by following the link. As you can see, the ad block is in the middle of the content near to the top and it does convert well.
- Decrease bounce rates
Bounce rate is the percentage of visitors who leave without visiting more than one page of your site, so they reach a single page then bounce away from your site without reading more. If your bounce rate is high then your visitors are likely closing the browser window or tab holding your website, if this is the case they aren’t clicking ads! Decreasing your website’s bounce rate will increase your CTR and eCPM. The bounce rate does get skewed depending on your traffic sources though, for example, search engine visitors bounce less than StumbleUpon visitors. Here is some bounce rates to target –
- Sales page: 75%
- Article website: 50%
- Wallpaper website: 25%
- Focus on targeted traffic I just mentioned that search engine visitors bounce less than StumbleUpon visitors, well they also click more ads! A huge spike of traffic from social bookmarking websites can be nice but if you want to achieve a high eCPM you should focus on building search engine traffic or traffic from related websites. The reason StumbleUpon visitors bounce a lot and don’t click ads is because they are not very interested in your content, whereas a visitor coming from Google searched for exactly what you are offering them so they are less likely to immediately leave and more likely to click ads (or make a purchase).
- Avoid being smart priced If you send mostly rubbish traffic who don’t convert to sales for the Adwords advertisers your Adsense account can be smart priced, which means that your CPC drops dramatically to increase the advertisers’ ROI. Luckily, avoiding smart pricing is not difficult, just make sure not to trick your visitors into clicking and stay within the Google terms of service, such as not asking people to click your ads.