A great question that’s come up a few times in recent weeks is “how do I monetise my website?”
There are a couple of ways to do this. The first and most obvious being to sell through the website. For example, I have one client who has built a website to allocate Real Estate listings on it and to make some money from it.
The other way is for people or businesses to pay you for advertising their products or services on your website.
I want to keep this really simple. It can get overly complicated, but there are 3 different things you want to keep in mind if you’re looking to monetise your website:
Firstly, you want to make sure that you maintain the integrity of your website by being strategic in who you allow to advertise on it. This is assuming you’ve got a valuable site, that the integrity of your website is important to you, and that you haven’t just built a site to put a whole bunch of Adsense on it. Just to explain what Adsense is. It’s the Google Ads Network: if you want to put a display ad on the Internet you typically go through Google Adwords, then display Campaigns and then you choose. There’s a bunch of websites that have Adsense.
But this is about strategic placement of advertising and partnerships on your website. If someone has approached you wanting to advertise on your site, ask these questions: Who is the brand that wants to advertise? What do they want to advertise? How do they want to advertise?
Basically, take the time to have a chat with them and assess their goals. You can ask them “What are you looking to get out of this partnership?” “What are your objectives for your Campaigns?” and so on.
Work with them and say: “Hey, I want to help you get the most out of your advertisements, presuming your content and your objectives are aligned with our values as a business, how can we help you do that?”
The second consideration is the value. How do you attribute a price to this?
The pricing can be a bit complicated but again, I want to keep it simple. You need to understand how your site is performing, because that channel will be evaluated by your potential client or by this partnership.
They’re going to evaluate that spend (whatever that price is that you put on it) against other options they have. So, if you came up with a large sum per month, let’s say AUD $10,000 – sure, that could be fine, IF your site is reaching millions of people in their target audience that are interested and engaged.
However, maybe you’ve got an average traffic website because you’re reaching a niche audience. You’re still providing an important service because it is important to your audience but it doesn’t get large amounts of visitors. Depending on the stats, you might find that a more reasonable sum is something starting out at AUD $300 a month or $500 per month.
The best way to calculate a reasonable figure is to take your traffic (unique users and unique views on your website, either per month, per week or per day) and divide it by the particular investment, and you might find that may cost, say 50 cents per view or 30 cents per view or $1 per view, and that may be a reasonable sum for the client.
The third thing that you should consider (and it’s a bit of food for thought) is figuring out how you can integrate their brand or their message into your website, in a way that’s valuable.
By curating the ads that appear on your site, rather than using the Adsense network, you can keep the content relevant and aligned with your business. You can be helping another business, while providing links that you know will be of interest to your customer base.
You might have them sponsor a particular page on your site, such as the Booking Form or the Shopping Cart. There could also be parts of your site that are aligned with their business and you have a way to integrate their brand into a Sponsorship Model.
Again, it goes back to the objectives.
Who is their target audience? How much value are you adding? What’s your traffic like? Once you’ve answered these questions, you can create an equation that provides value for that, either cost per eyeball, or cost per view.
As your website grows, you can develop the relationship with the advertiser over time. Then you can potentially work at changing the model, based on the amount of traffic and how hard you’re working to bring that traffic to your website which is ultimately benefiting their business.
As always, if you have any further questions drop me a line.