A common complaint about PerformancingAds is that the site navigation is very confusing, and the documentation isn’t much good either. The end result is that it’s quite hard to tell what the best way is to set up and manage your ads. So I thought I’d run through what I know in the hope that it’ll help a fellow blogger (and if I’ve got it all wrong, you all can correct me!).
Apart from paid advertisements, there are several other ways in which ads can be displayed on your site, which is kind of nice as it gives you the option of promoting your own or affiliate products in empty slots, or even on other sites in the network. But the trade-off is increased complexity, which is compounded by the confusing manner in which the PerformancingAds site is laid out.
To start, I’ll run through the various ways adverts can be set up, with a brief explanation of each, and how they interact:
These are the ads you joined the network for – ones in which someone pays you for the privilege of displaying their advert on your site for a period of time. Ads can only be booked if you have free slots available, so setting your price correctly is the key to maximising your earnings; too high and you won’t get many bookings, too low and you’ll sell yourself short. A good strategy is to set a lowish price to start, then gradually adjust it to regulate demand.
PerformancingAds allows you to book your own ads into any available slots, and will serve them for you for free. The only thing to bear in mind is that paying customers will not be able to book the slot as long as your self-booked ad occupies it.
These are similar to self-booked ads, except they only show up in free slots, and have the advantage of leaving the slots available to be booked by paying customers whenever they come along. This is a very good way of ensuring full utilization of your slots.
Similar to alternate ads, these are displayed in free slots, but with the difference that they are shown on other sites in the network – a great way to get a bit of free exposure for your ads. It works on a points system, where you earn credits by displaying others’ exchange ads, and also for selling ads on your site. In the past I’ve had some fairly dodgy and untargeted stuff showing up, so use with care. But it’s still worthwhile setting up your own exchange ads to be displayed on other sites (assuming you are earning credits from selling ads).
The order in which I’ve placed the ad types is significant, as, to the best of my knowledge, this is the way the different ad types are prioritised for display. So paid-for and self-booked ads take precedence over alternates, which in turn take precedence over exchange ads.
This is the configuration I consider to be optimal from a Publisher point-of-view:
- Set up the ads you wish to use as alternates, using the Advertisers tab.
- Under the Publishers tab, select which of your alternates you wish to display in each of your regions.
- I don’t tend to use the self-booking feature because, as I explained above, this prevents paying customers from being able to book slots.
- As far as I can tell, the only way to utilize exchange ads is to set them up seperately in the Exchange Ads section, which is a bit of a pain since it means you have to configure the same ad twice if you want it to show up both as an alternate on your site and an exchange ad on someone else’s. It would be far better, in my opinion, to set up the ad once, then designate it as both an exchange and an alternate ad. If anyone knows a better way of doing this, please let me know.
And that’s it: my recipe for a setup that requires minimal manual intervention. Please feel free to share your own tips or suggestions.