Many times with a web site or weblog ( blog ), there comes a time when you will want to start generating money from all your hard work of maintaining your site. One form of monetizing is selling advertising on your site, such as in the form of selling text links on your site.

You have a few options to chose from, but by far the most popular services are Google Adsense, Adbrite, and Text Link Ads. All three services have a large following of use, and provide excellent documentation to get you started in the process of signing up, adding your code, and collecting your revenue. These are excellent choices for those of you that write niche content that people love to read, and want nothing more than a 1..2..3 approach to making some passive income from your site with no real thought to your future.

Now, don’t get me wrong.. I think all these services are great. They are run by some fantastic people, have loyal advertisers, have a great reputation, and provide an excellent service to those looking to make easy some money with their site traffic.

The real money comes from NOT using these services.. I know I will get flamed for this, but hear me out for a minute.

Just like you, these services are looking to make money. Many of these services are set up to take away a percentage of what your earning with the click-throughs you generate. These click-through happen because of YOU and your site, not because of Adsense or anyone else.. so why should you share your income with them?

Plus, do you pay attention to those ads as a reader when you visit a site? I think just about everyone has seen the many models of Google Adsense and how they are displayed. When I visit a site with Adwords, I don’t even look at them. I am almost immune to them by now. Studies with eye tracking software have shown this to be true as well on Google’s own search site. Don’t get me wrong, I think you can make money with Adsense, but you can make a lot more money with out them as well.

Simply put, if your getting 100 clicks a day on an ad or text link you set up with a service like Adsense, Adbrite, or Text Link Ads.. you could be losing up to half of your revenue for their share of the pie. Say those 100
clicks a day were making you $450 a month.. if your only getting the $450 from those clicks and are losing half to a service that brokers the links for you.. you could have actually made up to $900 ( at half ) for the same ad spot with the same clicks during that same time period.

Sure those services find the buyers for you, set up the transaction, and even keep stats for you and the buyer.. but who says you can’t do the same thing? What happens when their service goes down for XYZ reason and ads stop displaying on your site? You wanted to make money from you site, so you need to start thinking like a business… and sometimes the greater return comes to those willing to put a little effort into their ‘business’.

You spent a lot of time making/building your site, getting it perfect.. then you spent a lot of time marketing your site to get all that traffic that clicks on your site and returns daily to view your site, and you spend a lot of time writing your content or getting the content right.. you may even spend a good deal of time staying on top of your subject matter to make sure your content is good…. so why spend just 20 minutes on monetizing your site to make yourself only half the revenue you should be getting?

You could even be getting your money upfront, not waiting up to 3 months to get a check cut to you.. or meeting some minimum payment for a check to be sent out. Get your money upfront and stop waiting for a deadline or minimum payout.

You can set up an advertising kit on your site that explains you sell advertising on your site, where you sell it, what advertising you take, your traffic stats, your pricing, and other relevant information an advertiser would want to know before buying from your site. You need to be honest here, no making up false stats on your site or claiming you have several thousand visitors a day when you just have a handful. You can ask around at other sites that sell advertising like the BlogHerald and download a marketing kit to see what kind of information advertisers are looking for

For those already using Adsense, Adbrite, or Text Link Ads, you have an edge on what you could be charging as these services can give you a clue on what the relevant ads on your site would be making you. Text Link Ads even offers a free tool here on what you can expect for payment on text links in your site. The only real way to know though, would be see how many clicks you are currently generating from your ads and the revenue you make from those clicks and then double that because many services that broker your advertising are getting half before you even see your cut.

Being on your own ( not using a brokering service ) may not get you as many ‘clients’ for your advertising, but since your charging more ( which would be close to the same price advertisers would pay for the broker on their end ) you would still be coming out even if you got only half of the number of clients you had with a brokering service. Plus you get full discretion of who you actually work with, what kind of ads go on your site ( concerning what you want to do with them and how they are displayed ), full control of packaging ’specials’ on your site, not worrying about the broker’s service being down or when they will sent their check, and many of the other hassles that may come with using a broker service.

As soon as word spreads you are taking on advertising, your client list should grow each month as more and more people see that advertisers are spending money with you. Even if you reach the number of potential clients you once had with a broker service, you will be making up to double your income without having to rely on the brokering service and their rules.

If your advertising clients demand stats on their ad campaigns, don’t worry.. you can always swing a few dollars to a custom programmer to fix something up for you, or you can grab phpAdsNew and have it installed and manage your ads with that. Its free and one of the best open source ad management scripts around.

Need someone to process the payment? Well, there is always Paypal and many other online merchant services like 2checkout and Worldpay that will easily walk you through taking online payments. Paypal almost does all the work for you and you can be set up in less than an hour.

If you need a way to find clients for your advertising, you can always promote yourself on your site, RSS feeds, networking with others, and good old fashion word of mouth. A lot of brokering services got their start this way and rely on search engines, word of mouth, and postings on forums, blogs, and other sites for their traffic and clients.. again why can’t you do the same?

Putting some extra time into making money with your blog can yield great results. You already put a lot of time into building a great site, put the same effort into building a revenue stream you have full control of.

Any suggestions, ideas? Feel free to comment on this article!

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