Friday, January 27, 2006

Adsense Heresy: Revealing The Lies You're Fed Every Day And How You Could Be Eating Caviar Instead

What I am about to reveal may be regarded by many as heresy. But I will expose evidence to prove that the Adsense strategies of 2005 are dying fast - and reveal what will *really* be the driving force in Adsense profits over the coming months and years.

Today's trend with most Adsense publishers is to exploit the latest software and search engine trickery to draw free traffic. They aim to build hundreds of "minisites" often using auto-generator software to create thousands of pages at a time whilst barely lifting a finger.

Due to the nature of the this process, these pages generally consist of "scraped" (a polite word for "stolen") content or legitimately reproduced articles from article directories or private label membership sites. Oh, and as many Adsense ad units as humanly possible.

They argue that if you build just one of these poor quality, cookie- cutter sites a day that brings in just $1 a day, by the end of the year you'll be earning over $10,000 a month. Whilst I can't fault their math, as we'll see this method is ill thought out and at best a short-term solution.

Without easy, free sources of traffic, you're never going to make much money with Adsense, and this is the first major stumbling block of the minisite concept. By their very definition these auto-generated sites use junk content. You couldn't physically create a high quality site filled with useful, original information in a day.

And the search engines are getting more and more trigger-happy when it comes to deleting duplicate and/or poor quality content.

Google's own advice (found at http://www.google.com/intl/en/webmasters/guidelines.html) states:

- Don't create multiple... domains with substantially duplicate content. - Create a useful, information-rich site.

And where Google leads, others follow.

Even if in the short term you manage to avoid the search engine spam- filters you're not going to have a lot of luck with the directories.

Just a few guidelines from DMOZ (http://www.dmoz.org/guidelines/include.html):

- A site should not mirror content available at other sites. - Sites... whose sole purpose is to drive traffic to another site for the purpose of commission sales provide no unique content and are not appropriate for inclusion - If the... content is poor, minimal, or copied from some other site, then the site is not a good candidate.

And Yahoo's (help.yahoo.com/help/us/submit/submit-18.html) minimum requirements include:

- Site contains substantively unique content.

So it would be fair to say that the days of generating free traffic to minisites from search engines and directories are limited at best.

But what about other forms of free traffic such as links from other websites, word of mouth and repeat visitors?

Certainly there's a chance when a visitor arrives at an auto- generated site for the first time that they'll click an Adsense ad and make you a few cents, but unless you provide a real, useful site with plenty of content they're unlikely to return ever again.

Why should they? What does the site offer that nobody elses does? Answer: nothing.

And let's be honest here - would you recommend a site to others that simply contained page after page of automatically generated garbage? I know I sure wouldn't. And so it follows that very few webmasters worth their salt will consider linking to these websites.

Without these links from other sites you're missing out on more free traffic. They're also one of the biggest factors in how sites are ranked in the search engines, so even if you can get listed in the short term, decent listings for anything but the least competitive keywords are going to be almost impossible.

Lets not forget that whilst there are still keywords out there that have no listings and so you should easily gain number one listings, these are severely limited and provide minimal traffic.

Whats more, as competition increases these minisites will soon be pushed out by other, better designed sites (with more links and original content).

But if that weren't enough to suggest that the Adsense minisite strategy is stacking the odds against you, lets consider a second vital factor: leverage.

Increasingly search engines and directories are charging for listings. If you create thousands of sites and want to market them effectively you'll have to pay these listing fees thousands of times which soon adds up to some serious change.

Or about about domain names for your sites? Sure they can be bought for under 10 bucks each, but if you build a website a day you'll spend over $3000 on domains in your first year.

Another leverage technique is having visitors sign up for a free newsletter. You can email them informative articles each month and gently lead them back to your sites. A good quality newsletter leads to repeat visits so one visitor can earn you commissions numerous times.

Unfortunately it takes several days to put together a decent newsletter issue and if you've got dozens (or hundreds) of minites it's simply not going to be possible to do it for each one. No leverage.

And so it goes on.

The moral of the story is simple. The old ways of building an Adsense empire which are still being used by the majority of marketers out there simply won't work in the long term.

What I am proposing is a complete about-face - the creation of a small number of large sites, filled with original quality content, that is genuinely useful to visitors, and as a result generates numerous links to help in search engine placement.

It's this simple model that I believe, provides the best long-term and highly leveraged Adsense vehicle available.

Copyright 2006 Richard Adams

About The Author

Richard Adams is the founder of Merchant Account Forum, one of the net's most popular merchant account advice sites. Click Here Now => http://www.MerchantAccountForum.com.

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