Successful AdSense website [Jon Gales' blog]

Wed Dec 22, 2004 7:06 am

In an article about Google and the price of its shares, Fortune magazine describes a website which is generating very useful revenue from AdSense.

It's 19-year-old Jon Gales' Mobiletracker.net, a compendium of news and reviews about cellphones. The site attracts about 200,000 users a month, Fortune reports.

You'd need to be a Fortune subscriber to read the full article, but the section describing this successful AdSense website is online here...

http://www.fortune.com/fortune/investin ... 44,00.html

Please remember, folks, Google's frustrating rules don't allow us to discuss AdSense click-through rates, earnings figures etc, so please don't do that after reading the article.
Last edited by AllanGardyne on Sun Jan 30, 2005 8:15 pm, edited 2 times in total.
AllanGardyne
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Couple of observations

Wed Dec 22, 2004 3:19 pm

I quickly glanced at the guy's site and a couple of things immediately struck me.

One, it's very simple and clean, layout-wise. It almost has the appearance of a blog. There's a sparseness to the look that I'm aiming for with my current site but can't seem to quite achieve.

Two, the AdSense ads are not placed very prominently, at least on the pages I checked. They are even "below the fold" on my screen.

Besides a touch of envy :x , this gives me the feeling that maybe it really isn't that hard to become successful with AdSense/Affiliate Marketing.
StephenNC
 
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Wed Dec 22, 2004 4:15 pm

I wonder if he got permission from Google to be quoted in the article? Seems like a blatant violation of the rules, doesn't it? It's very inspiring, but can you imagine how many people will be trying to recreate his site with his keywords, content and style? He would have been smarter not to let them tell his website.
MinniePauz
 
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Thu Dec 23, 2004 5:15 am

If anyone disagrees with me, please post, but I'm a bit skeptical of the figures in the article - particularly the 200,000 visitors per month.

First, I've read articles where reporters just flat got the information wrong for one reason or another and it's made me a bit cynical.

Second, if you pay attention to his home page content, it's something that only a cell phone industry insider geek would want to come back to more than once. It's certainly not a "blog" that I'll put on my daily reading list.

Third, I know people who operate "blogs" that have a much wider prospective audience base because of the content and they don't get 200,000 monthly visitors.

Fourth - I thought maybe his numbers were people coming to his site for reviews of cell phones before a purchase. I did a Google search for "cell phone reviews" and didn't find any of his pages before position #33 - that's on the third page of results.

Is that monthly statistic realistic?

On the other hand, I divided the numbers provided to find out how much he was earning per visitor. When you consider that not all visitors click on AdSense ads and consider the bid amounts for "cell phone" at Overture, the monthly income figure seems realistic IF he is getting that many visitors.

Thoughts?


Bobby
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Thu Dec 23, 2004 5:18 am

MinniePauz wrote:...but can you imagine how many people will be trying to recreate his site with his keywords, content and style? He would have been smarter not to let them tell his website.


I agree.

Allan - did the full article indicate how the reporter found out about this AdSense publisher?

Bobby
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Thu Dec 23, 2004 11:18 am

Bobby wrote:Second, if you pay attention to his home page content, it's something that only a cell phone industry insider geek would want to come back to more than once. It's certainly not a "blog" that I'll put on my daily reading list.

It's not my cup of tea either, but it's fair to say we're "analysts" (who are trying to see if we can learn anything) rather than real, targeted visitors (interested in phones).

In his position, I'd rely on a survey of the latter (preferably their actions) if I wanted to make any changes.

Besides, this month his traffic will be at least 200,005 (judging my this thread alone). Maybe even more. :wink:

Cheers,
Charlie.
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Thu Dec 23, 2004 3:01 pm

Bobby wrote:If anyone disagrees with me, please post, but I'm a bit skeptical of the figures in the article - particularly the 200,000 visitors per month.


I'd say the article got it right. All he'd need is between 6,000 to 7,000 visitors a day. It's not the easiest to get, but it's certainly not impossible.

And as for the Google earnings, to get $5000 a month would require about $160 a day, which is VERY obtainable.

And after the article being published, I bet that was not a problem.

I've actually came across this site before, for one reason or another.
robertb
 
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Thu Dec 23, 2004 3:55 pm

Also, if you look at the number of pages spidered by google:6,800 yahoo:1,510 msn:986, he has enough pages spidered with content on them to do the job...


As for one to the earlier comments, reference clean simple sites, I have done the same with my sites, and have seen a drastic increase in the clickthrough, though no actual increase in page hits/visits, I'm thinking clean simple is the new way to go...
Dinky
 
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Thu Dec 23, 2004 4:30 pm

robertb wrote:I'd say the article got it right. All he'd need is between 6,000 to 7,000 visitors a day. It's not the easiest to get, but it's certainly not impossible.


Robert,

Yes, that's a good point.

You've convinced me Robert. :)

Bobby
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Thu Dec 23, 2004 4:38 pm

Dinky wrote:As for one to the earlier comments, reference clean simple sites, I have done the same with my sites, and have seen a drastic increase in the clickthrough, though no actual increase in page hits/visits, I'm thinking clean simple is the new way to go...


I've been trying to practice this for some time now.

Whether you want visitors to click on an AdSense ad, follow an affiliate link, or whatever, I've found it easier if you "funnel" them in that direction by offering few distractions from the primary goal.

Bobby
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Thu Dec 23, 2004 11:27 pm

Jon's success was reported by Business 2.0 magazine in November.

Here's a JPEG (1.2MB) copy of the article:
http://www.jongales.com/b20/B2Article.JPG

Also, here's a quote from "trc4949" on the WordPress blog:

that site makes about ... per month and places a string of 4 google ads under each post item that is targeted to that item.

that site has the best google ad placement strategy i have seen yet.

ALSO, note that the site uses a javascript RSS press release feed for greater reach..

you must create a javascript feed option so other sites can put your blog on their sites and bring you traffic in!


(I did a search of Google for "Mobiletracker.net" +adsense to find this stuff.)

I don't know if Mobiletracker .net is syndicating stuff to other sites, but it is offering an RSS feed. (As you probably know, RSS feeds can pop up little boxes containing the latest headlines on your computer, encouraging you to revisit a site.)

I subscribed to his MobileTracker RSS feed to see what he's doing. In recent days he has often sent out three or four messages a day on his RSS feed. People with highly successful blogs usually add to them at least once a day.

Mobiletrcker.net site has a very useful 25,400 sites linking to it, according to Yahoo.

(I searched at Yahoo for:
linkdomain:www.mobiletracker.net -site:www.mobiletracker.net -site:mobiletracker.net )

Jon is very good at getting free publicity. See his bio here -
http://www.jongales.com/bio/ - which has a long list of press mentions.

I think the reported revenue is probably accurate, given the site's PageRank of 6, reliable content, promenent placement of AdSense ads, the use of RSS, the frequent posts, the free publicity and high value keywords.

I haven't tried searches, but the site probably ranks well for a large number of phrases, many including brand names and model names.

Jon has posted some info on his traffic here:
http://www.bloggerforum.com/modules/new ... =10&jump=1

He says he's spent under $1,000 on Adwords advertising, none in the past five to six months. He doesn't chase reciprocal links. He made more than 100 posts on his blog in October.

"...I've been at it since late Feb 2003. This is another one of the 2 year overnight success stories you're always hearing about," he says.

"I put a lot of work into the site, I take a real pride in what I do. For me it's great--I really do love it--but for some people it would not work."

Jon is also the co-founder of http://www.carbwire.com (PageRank 7) and the webmaster at http://www.macmerc.com (PageRank 7).

This search shows how Jon is using PRWeb to promote Carbwire:
http://www.prweb.com/cgi-bin/search/sea ... mit=Search
AllanGardyne
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Wow

Fri Dec 24, 2004 7:24 pm

All I can say is wow. I wish I had it together at age 19 as that Johnathon kid.

All the more power to him!

Thanks for posting the links to the articles, Allan. Very interesting to be able to look over his sites. It's amazing he's generating that kind of revenue with the Adsense ads placed in banner format and buried way at the bottom (at least on the mobilenet site).

Dan
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Corect Data

Sun Dec 26, 2004 3:51 pm

For those of you who don't believe the figures: You can check them at

http://sm5.sitemeter.com/stats.asp?site=sm5remarkable

Visits:
Total 1,151,746
Average Per Day 6,012
Average Visit Length 1:03
Last Hour 125
Today 1,215
This Week 42,081

Pageviews:

Total 2,361,620
Average Per Day 11,281
Average Per Visit 1.9
Last Hour 206
Today 2,299
This Week 78,968


It's amazing :-)

Fab
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Re: Corect Data

Sun Dec 26, 2004 4:09 pm

Fab wrote:Average Visit Length 1:03

Average Per Visit 1.9


Question for the group - If this site owner contacted you and offered to pay you for advice on how to increase his average visit length (currently 1 minute 3 seconds) and/or how to increase the average page views per visit (currently 1.9), what advice would you offer him?

Bobby
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Sun Dec 26, 2004 6:11 pm

In this case I don't know if there's a reason to increase pageviews per visit. If visitors click on google ads just after 1.9 pageviews that's just fine, isn't it? :)

Fab
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