Key Points

  • There's a big difference between monetizing with ads and monetizing with ads effectively.
  • Whether you want to monetize your website with ads or earn ad revenue with mobile app monetization, how you approach this task will directly affect your revenue.
  • By learning the basics first, building your audience, incorporating quality demand, tracking key performance metrics, and working with the right partner or solutions, you can set yourself up for long-term success within the ad space.

If you're going to monetize with ads, expect a lot of work. It isn't easy, and, really, it's only worth doing if you're going to do it effectively. Otherwise, you're wasting a lot of time and effort for little to no ROI. As a busy publisher or app developer, you don't have time to do things that aren't going to work.

So, it's well worth your time to learn not just how to monetize with ads, but how to do it effectively. Like many things in ad tech, there are a lot of considerations here. We dive into many of the most important considerations in the article below. Read on to learn everything you need to know.

Monetizing a blog with ads shouldn't be this hard, but because of relatively high technical thresholds and countless factors and considerations, many publishers feel that they're in the dark when it comes to ad monetization. We can fix that and maximize your ad revenue. Contact us to learn how.

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The Complete Guide to Ad Monetization

Guide to the Complete Guide to Ad Monetization

Start with the Basics

If you're looking to monetize your blog with ads and you only have a few thousand website visitors per week, you're not going to need a dedicated server and a complicated header bidding build. You're probably just going to need Google ads for a while.

That's what most publishers do when they're starting out with monetization, and there's a great reason for it. Google AdSense makes monetizing with ads easy - you don't have to deal with too much technical stuff, and you can set up a nice revenue stream with relatively little effort. 

So, don't go overboard when you're just starting out with ad monetization. Until you're in the millions of users, you probably can use Google and be just fine. But remember - that's just the starting point. There's plenty of room to grow your revenue and expand your web and/or app advertising efforts.

Related: The Evolution of the Publisher Ad Tech Stack

Focus on Audience Growth

We like a shiny new piece of ad tech as much as anybody, but you can't let the tools and vanity metrics get in the way of what really matters when it comes to ad monetization: your audience.

While you can certainly configure your digital advertising strategy to make more revenue per user, at the end of the day, having more users is only going to be good for your revenue. Grow your audience, and you grow your revenue.

In other words, yes, all the tech and tools are important, but your audience and a positive user experience are key. Focus on them first.

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Ad Monetization Resource Center

The Complete Ad Monetization Resource Center

Diversify Demand

You can't monetize a website or blog with ads if there's no demand for your ads. That's probably a given, but what might not be a given is that you need more than one source of demand - especially as you grow.

Google's demand is some of the largest and broadest in the world, but even that is not going to be enough when you hit the enterprise level. You want a healthy mix of quantity and quality when it comes to demand for your inventory.

If you're doing programmatic advertising - and you should be if you aren't already - then adding other sources of demand is as simple as wiring a new exchange, SSP, or header bidder into your current programmatic rig.

It's not simple, exactly, but once you know how to do it or partner with someone who does, it's no big deal. From there, play around with the different demand sources to see which combination is best for your revenue.

Track Obsessively

You don't have to be a numbers person to understand the importance of data, metrics, and active tracking when monetizing with ads. There's no other way to gauge your performance over time or understand how your ad strategy is impacting, for example, the user experience.

So, set it all up so you can track everything easily. Many ad servers, exchanges, and SSPs offer decent built-in tracking with relatively user-friendly dashboards, but be sure you're able to track your ad performance across all sources rather than just one at a time. The holistic look will yield the most important information for your long-term strategy.


And don't forget: The data you gather about your users and their behavior and preferences has real monetary value. If you have a lot of user data, it's worth the time, effort, and expense to set yourself up with a data management platform (DMP) to help you effectively monetize it.

The Best Way to Monetize with Ads

The good news is that there's more than one way to effectively monetize with ads. But what's the best way? It's Playwire

That's because we evolve publishers from struggling content creators to revenue machines with massive and engaged audiences. We do it with proprietary programmatic technology, decades of collective ad tech experience, and dedicated yield ops, ad ops, and technical solutions professionals. We can do it for you, too.

To learn more about monetizing with Playwire, reach out to us online.

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