In my recent posts, I wrote how Orkut (Google’s social network) and Kontera (in-text advertising network) are planning to cash out coming holiday season! If planned well you can also squeeze some juice for your blogs/websites. 🙂
From my more than 2 years experience of blogging, I know few things about these holiday seasons which can be used to make some extra bucks. So here I am posting part of my TO-DO lists, of-course in more organized manner.
Two major changes during holiday season…
- Traffic: A tech-blog like this gets higher traffic. We are expecting 2-3 time more unique visitor in last week of December. Unless you are blogging about investments or stock markets, you can expect more or little rise in your blogs traffic.
- Advertising: As more people come online for shopping, advertisers compete more to grab ad-slots. Obvious result is direct increase in revenue. Keep watching your AdSense eCPM over next 2 weeks and you will see the difference!
How to handle rise in traffic!
Its time to put your best foot forward! Find what posts are getting maximum traffic from search engine. When you discover them…
- Update them to make them more relevant, more readable.
- Try to stuff links to other posts which you think your visitors will find useful.
- Also check if you have any unanswered comments. Its better if you answer them.
Above TO-DO list is for individual blog posts. There are things you can do blog-wide…
- Add prominent email as well as feed subscription options.
- Make your most popular, favorite posts, etc easily accessible.
- Use caching plugins/techniques to sustain rise in traffic. WordPress users can go for wp-super-cache plugin!
If you want to analyze your traffic, nothing beats Google Analytics. Even if you don’t use it, its better to start using it right now. You will gather enough data before Christmas and that will help you optimize your website for last week of December, when traffic will be at peak!
How to make those extra bucks…
As its holiday season, you will need some extra bucks to party hard! Thankfully advertisers spend extra on advertising during season as people do a lot of online shopping.
If you are running a travel or products blog you should go for as many affiliate program as possible. Not a single product should be referred for free! 😉
Try following tricks for AdSense
- Keep only one single ad-unit on a page, above the fold.
- Do not surround AdSense block with anything. Not even feed subscription box, etc.
- No matter how ugly it will make your theme, go for one of rectangle ad-format like 336×280, 300×250.
- Also follow usual AdSense tips like blending ads with your site, using section-targeting, etc.
There are reason for each of above tactic but I will explain them in detail some other day. For time being note that, above all highlight AdSense block in ways that will attract more clicks! Why???
- You get more new visitors in holiday season. They are also in hurry!
- When you visit a site quite often, you develop ad-blindness for it. So you almost never follow ads. But a new visitor, that’s too in hurry, if find himself on wrong site, will give AdSense links a try in attempt to find next direction.
- You can notice whitespace beside AdSense block on top of post pages which I can reduce by using ad-format 468×80. But that will make AdSense less prominent and will expose main content too early to a visitor. Thou shall never expose more than needed! 😉
Of course, all of above are based on my personal observations. I am following these things myself. For example, there was a box listing related, most-popular posts & recent posts on top of every post. That was pushing my dear AdSense block little-down. Now I moved that box below the post to give AdSense more room!
Different things works for different blogs. The best way to get best for you is to keep trying! So go on trying and let us know your findings! 🙂
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(Image credit: iStockPhoto)