Festive Money Makers

I wish all of my readers a very Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays.

It has been a very busy month for me, hence there's only a couple of entries so far this month. To conclude the year I thought I would summarise some of the key money makers I have talked about earlier.

1. Text Link Ads (Tom's rating = 4/5)
TLA has proved a steady and dependable source of income. For the first three quarters of 2007 I was making between $40 and $50 per month from TLA without fail. At the end of the month my referral earnings ($25 per approved publisher or advertiser sign up) and publisher earnings would land in my PayPal account with no effort at all. It might be to do with my efforts promoting TLA - if you Google 'Text Link Ads' now you'll see that AdSense4Dummies comes on the second page of results which is not bad at all considering the wide coverage it gets.

Sadly, since my PageRank was hammered by Google (from PR4 to PR0), I get much less per link I sell with TLA. If you have a PR3 or better site it's definitely worth signing up to this great money spinner.

Text Link Ads

2. ExoClick (Tom's rating = 2/5)
Obviously having a blog called AdSense4Dummies I'm unable to directly promote AdSense on it. I looked for alternatives and ExoClick, a fairly new Spanish venture, was one of the first I considered mainly because of the hype (at the time) it was getting over at Digital Point forums. Things started off very promisingly for ExoClick, with most clicks earning around the 20 cent mark. I remember one day I had the best part of $800 in my account, but sadly that was a mistake which they quickly rectified!

The shine has come off ExoClick now I'm only making a couple of cents per click. Even though they aren't paying that much they have a couple of real advantages: firstly, they pay by PayPal on a weekly basis and secondly, the payout level is a very modest $10 minimum which is easily within reach of most publishers. Another bonus is that ExoClick can be used on pretty much any site - adult, gambling, pharmacy all included. Their ad units have thumbnail images which help with the CTR. They also have a referral program where you earn 5% lifetime on your referral's earnings.

If you're an advertiser you can also get 1 cent clicks from ExoClick - they get you traffic but the quality isn't great. If you pay peanuts you get monkeys as they say.

What I've started saying now is that ExoClick is a good space filler - if you've got some empty spaces to fill stick in a couple of ExoClick units and see what you get. It is not a great money maker by it self, but isn't to be dismissed because of the advantages I mentioned before.

Try ExoClick Now!

3. AdBrite (Tom's rating = 5/5)
AdBrite is the main source of revenue I'm getting from this blog. It is making me a cool $10 nearly every day. Their inlines are proving particularly profitable and I've even managed $1 clicks in the past (very rare, admittedly). Most clicks fall in the range of 10-15 cents, but you don't need too many of those to make it worthwhile. I also get a sizable chunk of cash (maybe 50% of my total AdBrite earnings) from their referral program, which pays 50% of AdBrite's profit on any of your referral's earnings for 6 months.

On the downside they only pay by USD check and on a NET45 basis. This means you can have a considerable wait for your earnings to arrive. AdBrite also operate an adult PPC called Black Label Ads which is well regarded by adult webmasters.

AdBrite is by far the best program I have reviewed in 2007.

4. WidgetBucks (Tom's rating = 3/5)
WidgetBucks came to life back in October and has had a rocky ride ever since. Publishers display shopping widgets on their site which pay on a PPC basis. Initial earnings were good, with many publishers making hundreds of dollars in the first month. WidgetBucks have since made it harder to earn by only counting US/Canadian traffic clicks because these convert best for their advertisers. Earnings per click, those clicks they do actually count, are very good at around 25-30 cents.

To calm the international uproar from publishers who don't get much US/Canadian traffic WidgetBucks have recently introduced CPM ad units. These CPM units seem to pay around 5-10 cents CPM, which is only worthwhile if you have huge traffic. Still, it's better than nothing I suppose.

Despite it's numerous teething problems, and it's still very new remember, WidgetBucks has some real advantages:
  • Each new publisher receives $25 credit towards their first payout just for signing up.
  • Their referral program pays 10% of your referral's earnings for 12 months.
  • They pay by PayPal.
I'm still hopeful that WidgetBucks will prove profitable in the long run.

Earn $$ with WidgetBucks!

More Sitelinks

Those clever people at Google - they never fail to impress me with their innovative ideas and attention to detail. Recently they've been playing around with their search algorithms again but this time it's their image results that have been under the spotlight. Several sites are reporting a surge in their image result referrals over the past week or so. It just goes to show that it isn't just anchor text and flowery words that make a difference in the search engine results pages.

Another thing they've done is added more sitelinks to the top sites thrown up in text search results. If you don't know what I'm talking about you're by no means alone, but hopefully the images below will enlighten you:


Now if they'd just give us all our PageRank back.