Monetizing your blog or website

February 15th, 2009

Even though I am still in the process of adding plugins, designing, and monetizing this site, without content it is worthless, so I thought I would take a minute to explain the process I am going through in turning this new blog into a potential money maker.

If you are want to make some i-money (internet money, real money made from the Internet) then soon after you have your website or blog designed, you should plan on monitizing. Yes, first design, then monetize(even though monetization can be apart of the design). Monitizing is inserting ads or other means to earn revenue into your blog or website. Here are some key points to remember regarding website monetization, all of which are equally important.

Placement of your ads.

Location is key. My absolute favorite place to insert an ad is in the loop of blogs (like WordPress) and forums (like phpBB) so that they appear after the first post, which I have done here. I’ll explain more on that later. Sidebars or navigation panes are ideal places for ads as visitors look for places to click there, which I have also done here. Lastly, ads placed towards the top of the page (without having to scroll to see them, also called above the fold) seem to get more clicks, again another strategy I have employed here.

The design of the ads

I have found that text ads seem to work best, especially when they are blended with fonts and styles that match the rest of the page. The big flashy banners that have been used since the Internet was created are easily tuned out by visitors.

Ad Relevancy
The last thing to consider is the type of ads to promote. You want to have ads that will appeal to your target audience and / or products you feel would be useful to your readers. Many ad providers, like
Google’s Adsense, provide ads based on the content of your site, which work great. Other useful ads would be for products your readers would be interested in that you could personally recommend.

To sum it up, Monitizing your blog or website is really quite simple. Just remember to consider the following:

  • Location for Optimum Click Throughs
  • Ad Design Blended to Match Your Layout
  • Relavant Ads that Your Audience Will Find Useful

One more thing, it is ok to experiment and try different things, then go with what works best for you.

Now that a few ads have been optimally placed, I can continue on with adding pluggins and finishing the design.

Website Design – The Importance of Screen Resolution

February 6th, 2009

This is my first attempt at creating my own unique wordpress theme. You can download it here if you like it. It’s basically the default Kubrick theme with a different color scheme and resized columns. Speaking of resizing columns, it posed my first dilemma and a good topic for the first post here. I originally went with a total page width of around 960 pixels (px). I wanted a wider sidebar than usual, thinking I would eventually optimize this for AdSense or monetize this blog with other advertisements or promotions. But then realized that many people still use a screen resolution (maximum pixels displayed on your monitor listed as horizontal pixels by vertical pixels) of 800 by 600 which would create annoying (at least annoying to me) sidewards scroll bars to view the entire page. So I reworked the page size to 760 px and shrunk the sidebar to a modest 250 px, which I wanted at the minimum, for the very productive 250 by 250 ad. I didn’t really like that and having already worked the header image and really wanting the sidebar larger without having the posting column excessively narrow, back to 960 px wide it went. 

As a website designer or publisher it is important (and often overlooked) to have a your website optimized for the most common screen resolution for the intended target audience. For instance a website geared to an older generation would be best suited under 800 px wide as they probably prefer the larger appearance of the 800 by 600 resolution, while a website intended for gamers could probably utilize more screen area as screen resolution is probably pretty high for someone interested in online gaming.

So how do you determine your target audience and determine your optimum website resolution? You could always just ask.

So I am curious …

What screen resolution do you use?

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I have not really determined a target audience nor have any idea who would be reading this or their screen resolution settings. I went with the wider format based on my assumption that the most common resolution is 1024 x 768 and the logic of, if you are still using the 800 by 600 resolution then you are used to scrolling sideways to see all the content.  Besides, I didn’t want to spend the time reworking the graphics  just yet, who knows, as I do a lot of tweaking with website themes and templates, maybe I will change this, but for now, if you have to scroll, hope you are used to it and it doesn’t keep you from coming back again.

Comments are welcome below.

Hello world!

January 24th, 2009

Welcome to WordPress. This is your first post. Edit or delete it, then start blogging!

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