Some of my most popular posts are those in my make money online series that discuss how to avoid Adsense smart pricing by displaying Adsense only to search engine visitors. Now I’ve found the most complete solution to the problem of smart pricing, over on the Blog associated with RT’s backlinks service (more below).
What Is Smart Pricing?
I’ve explained this many times before, but here’s the short answer again:
Smart Pricing is a penalty that Google applies to Adsense accounts (yes the entire account) that don’t convert well for the advertiser. This can result in a penalty of up to 90% of what you earn for a click. Pretty significant hey!
To avoid smart pricing, you need to provide the advertisers with targeted traffic. This traffic will convert well for the advertiser and ensure that you don’t attract the smart pricing penalty. Search engine visitors provide targeted traffic (no problem). Regular readers and social networks visitors provide untargeted traffic (problem). Many bloggers are smart priced without even knowing it.
If you need any further information, see Grizzly’s authorative explanation of smart pricing. This explains the intricacies of smart pricing far better than I can. If you’re trying to make money online, then you need to understand this.
How To Prevent Smart Pricing – My Solutions
As I said, I’ve written quite a few posts about how to prevent smart pricing. These all centre around displaying Adsense to only search visitors (targeted), not to your regular visitors or social media visitors (both untargeted).
I started with a hack to the Shylock Adsense Plugin (for WordPress) so that only search engine visitors would see ads (regular visitor wouldn’t see them). This could also be used for showing Adsense directly, without using Shylock.
This solution only displayed Adsense ad units on the first page that a visitor landed on. If they navigated to another page on your site, Adsense wouldn’t appear, as they no longer came immediately from a search engine. Therefore, I followed up with an improved solution that shows ads to search traffic on subsequent pages as well (by setting a cookie).
Later, I converted this solution to work on the Blogger platform, so now you can filter out non-search visitors on Blogger as well.
The Most Complete Solution To Smart Pricing
RT’s post on filtering out non search engine visitors in WordPress is amazing. Not only does his solution filter out non-search traffic, it also filters out certain search terms that are unlikely to convert well and posts from categories and tags that are not likely to convert because they aren’t targeted for Adsense,
This is the most complete solution I’ve seen. If you follow RT’s advice, then you are very unlikely to get smart priced by Google.
The only caveats are:
- It only works for the first page, not subsequent pages. I know RT will say that the vast majority of clicks come from the first page and there’s no point showing ads on subsequent pages.
- It won’t work with PHP caching solutions, such as WP Super Cache (neither does mine). RT is working on a solution to this, although as he points out, the whole point is to get search traffic rather than loads of social traffic, so this may not be needed anyway.
Following this technique should ensure that you are earning the maximum amount possible via Adsense.
What Is ConnectContent?
Before wrapping up, I’ll take the chance to explain what ConnectContent is. Chances are, if you’re interested in avoiding smart pricing, then you’ll be interested in ConnectContent as it can help you earn more money online.
RT founded ConnectContent to help members get relevant links, with relevant anchor text. Getting such links is the most important thing to do if you want to improve your rankings in the search engines. If you want to dominate your niche, relevant links are essential.
More information from the ConnectContent site:
ConnectContent is a managed network, designed to promote relevancy between websites. Search engine quality guidelines are followed and reciprocal linking is discouraged while one-way linking is encouraged.
The service is not free, but is very reasonably priced: USD$12.00 per month (or USD$120.00 for a year). There is no restriction on how many links you can get, except for any self imposed limits on how many links you can give. The more you give, the more you receive.
There’s an affiliate program that pays 50 percent of subscription fees as residual referral commissions. That means if two people sign up through your affiliate link, you break even. That’s leaving aside the extra money you can earn through improved rankings! Easy AdSense money.
If you really want to make money with Adsense, then make sure you’re not smart priced. Many people are only earning a fraction of what they could be. There is no guaranteed way of avoiding smart pricing, but RT’s solution is as close to a guarantee as you’ll find.
Last updated on August 18th, 2011