Scribd is the world’s largest digital library of original writings and documents. Scribd has made it easy to share and discover entertaining, informative and original written content across the web and mobile devices. A top 100 website with more than 90M monthly users,Scribd’s mission is to transform reading and publishing in the 21st century.
Scribd was seeking a monetization solution that did not affect user experience negatively. The Infolinks InSearch unit delivers both the value of a high performing ad unit as well as SEO and user navigation benefits. It leverages an inbound search query to generate a highly targeted ad tailored to a particular user’s intent at that moment. “We had been approached by numerous companies offering ad unit solutions in the past but it was Infolinks that had the best solution to meet our challenges,” said Scribd’ s Ad Operations Manager, Matt Alecock. The InSearch unit provided a way to add incremental revenue to our page visits without cannibalizing existing display revenue,” explained Matt Alecock.
The InSearch ad unit delivered impressive yield, and within a few weeks it was deployed across all Scribd pages globally. “In many cases, the InSearch unit is the most valuable ad unit on the page,” said Alecock. The unit also turned Scribd search queries into a significant source of revenue in countries where this was not always possible, thanks to the fact that Infolinks operates in 128 countries. “The InSearch product continues to be a huge win for us,” added Matt.
Players in the advertising industry often target Europe as one geographical market for online campaigns. Infolinks’ latest study provides deeper insight on this notion. Over Q3 and Q4 of 2012, Infolinks analyzed CTR (click through rates) of European countries, based on a sample of 1 trillion impressions from their 100K publisher network.
The study reveals a correlation between European regions and online engagement. Western European countries displayed higher clicking rates than Eastern European countries, with Portugal, Spain and Greece in the forefront. Scandinavian countries showed the lowest CTRs of all European regions with Denmark, Iceland and Finland at bottom.
With online advertising constantly evolving, advertisers may need to take a closer look at regional engagement trends when targeting the European market.
Selecting the right niche for website owners and bloggers can be challenging. While the right subject can bring success, the wrong choice won’t get the website off the ground. The Infolinks real-time bidding system allows trending categories to fluctuate with events. Infolinks reviewed the categories in its database according to impressions and revenue to see which categories shine through November 2012 and what the contributing factors might be.
The top five earning categories in Infolinks’ database for November are Home & Garden, Books & Literature, Finance, Real Estate and News. Each of these categories increased at least 150% over their earnings in the last month. From the Presidential elections to Hurricane Sandy and everything in between, these varying events stirred up the numbers in November.
This Month’s Top Niche Topics
Home & Garden is 215% more profitable this November than it was one month ago. This may be due to the ever-nearing holiday season. Thanksgiving preparations came and went. Books & Literature increases profitability by 213% this month. Again, with the holidays fast approaching more and more people are starting to look for ways to give and purchase gifts. Tablets are hot on the market right now with a new one being introduced almost weekly. This means an increase in online magazines and e-books.
There is hardly a time when finance is not on everyone’s mind but this is especially true in the US right now after the elections. Voters are thinking about America’s debt and increased spending which may be the reason why Finance surges up to 192% this month versus last month. Unfortunately Hurricane Sandy brought with her a high demand for relocation, refurbishing and the purchasing of new homes. Real Estate sees 182% growth in profit comparatively.
Trends are created by events which are reported by the news. The category News is 172% more gainful than last month. There has been a lot going on in America over the past two months and its showing up on the web and showing up in increased earnings. November brings these increases but next month is a whole new ball game.
Trends Are Always Changing
Overall, each category from Home & Garden to News saw significant gains because of current events in America. Some of them historical, the elections and Hurricane Sandy, and some of them annual, like holiday shopping. Either way, the numbers prove that there is a direct link between news, culture and online earnings, which is ever changing.
Bloggers use plugins for everything from adding monetization platforms, social network correlation and RSS feeds. There are plugins for almost anything a website owner might want. Infolinks examined its top 200 earning websites to learn what the most popular plugins are and find out the cause. Google Analytics, the Facebook Social plugin, and Quantcast are the top three plugins running on the reviewed sites.
Google Analytics is a top choice for website owners looking to glean more infolinks about their visitors. 67% of the websites reviewed in this study currently use Google Analytics to study the visitors on their site. Interestingly, 48% of the top websites use Quantcast, another analytics software program that measures and organizes visitor data.
The power social media has over the making or breaking a website or story is well known. Facebook’s plugin, the Facebook Social Plugin, allows stories and sites to go viral and increase their popularity. This is probably why the Facebook plugin is on 71% of the websites in this study.
Website owners and bloggers gain insight into how visitors arrive to their pages via search, referrals, link-backs and more with Google Analytics and Quantcast. This invaluable information makes it possible to create content that your visitors want. The overlapping of two analytic systems may be due to the fact that neither of these programs claim to be 100% accurate and website owners want different perspectives.
Adding the Facebook Social plugin is the simplest way to have your content shared on Facebook. A click of a button instantly shares your work with a whole new crowd and wider variety of people than might visit your site on their own.
Speaking of plugins, Infolinks recently launched its newest WordPress plugin (Infolinks also has a plugin for Blogger, Joomla and Drupal). The plugin makes it even simpler and faster to add Infolinks ads to websites with a few clicks of the mouse. The new and improved Infolinks WordPress plugin is even better than the last with improved user ability and time-saving qualities.
A well maintained website is one that is able to keep track of its readers and promote its content all at the same time. The top 200 highest earning websites have that in common with high numbers using Google Analytics and the Facebook Social plugin. Get the most out of your time and start earning instantly with the Infolinks Integration plugin, adding high quality ads with ease.
Intelligent website design is imperative when creating a website or blog with a strong brand. This will intrigue visitors and keep them surfing through your pages and not just bouncing away after seeing the homepage. Infolinks reviewed its top 200 earning websites to compare fonts, background colors and graphics. The results are not only interesting but useful to take note of if you’re looking to create a spectacular design and layout.
After examining the data, Infolinks discovered more similarities appear throughout each category than differences. For example, out of the top 200 highest earning websites Infolinks reviewed, 167 have a white background. Of those 167, 83.5% have a white background and a grey border and 14.5% are entirely white. Only 2% of the websites are entirely black including background and border color.
While fonts are fun to play around with, from the numbers it seems that the safer the font the better. After all, cursive fonts are harder to read. “Web safe fonts” as they’re called, are generic fonts that work across all browsers and are used across all major operating systems. 78% of the 200 sites examined are written in web safe fonts. This leaves only 12% of all fonts accounted for as non-traditional fonts (think Droid Sans or Cherry Cream Soda).
A website needs to be beautifully crafted in terms of brand design and user engagement, but it also needs to display eye-catching images. Within 2-3 seconds a visitor has already decided whether to stay on your site or not. Learning from the data, it looks like having pictures above the fold is one way to lure your readers into staying on your site. 89% of the websites reviewed in this study have images above the fold.
The data reveals that simple colors, worthy photos and traditional, web safe fonts do the trick for the top 200 highest paid websites on Infolinks. A whole lot of flash may be too much for your readers (take a cue from Infolinks’ rebranding).
Online publishers are on a constant hunt to find the strongest advertising services in order to best monetize their websites. Each website experiments with different combinations of ads in order to get the highest engagement, stay relevant for their visitors and earn the most income.
Infolinks studied the 100,000+ websites in its database spanning 128 countries to discover which advertising platforms publishers choose for their sites, and if these combinations truly monetize. It reveals that a whopping 64% of all Infolinks publishers implement AdSense ad units on their sites.
This isn’t a huge surprise as Infolinks has been called a top AdSense supplement. While AdSense pioneered the ads field with conventional and display ads, Infolinks focused on monetizing unconventional website assets. Infolinks’ advanced ad placement delivers ads in between the lines, outside of a site’s frame and more. It’s important to note that AdSense and Infolinks are both similar and distinct from each other. Similarities include high paying, quality ads and the ability to reach the visitor. A few distinctions between the two include product choices and ad locations.
Online advertising has evolved tenfold since its conception and continues to do so. Choosing the right ad combination is an important step for maintaining a positive user experience while gaining the highest income possible. A considerable amount of Infolinks publishers have chosen Infolinks paired with AdSense, so it seems like this match can give you both.
Infolinks data reveals that states with a predominantly Republican population have a 6% higher CTR than states with a Democratic majority. See the infographic below for state by state results of CTR according to Infolinks network of over 100,000 sites.
Election Day in the United States is right around the corner and the media frenzy is at a fever pitch as pundits, talking heads and campaigners alike are hustling to get their messages out hoping to sway Americans’ decision on November 6th. Barack Obama changed the game in 2008 with his groundbreaking campaign strategy including innovative technology, native advertising and Social Media. Now both Obama and Romney are relying heavily on the internet to reach the White House in 2012.
Infolinks measured the CTR of each state to investigate a possible correlation between the political leaning of states and the average CTR. Click through rate or CTR is a way to measure user engagement with online ads, it quantifies the average amount of times users click on ads. When strategizing any online campaign (especially political), discerning the behavior of voters can assist in understanding which vehicles are most effective in reaching them.
This election is providing interesting statistics for online publishers and advertisers as well. According to Infolinks data from their network of over 100,000 websites which deliver over 1 trillion impressions per month, Republican states average 6% higher CTR overall than states with a predominantly Democrat population over quarters 1 thru 3 of 2012. An overwhelming 75% of the 20 highest CTR states are red. Of the top ten states with the highest CTR rates, eight are Republican and only two Democratic, and the top four CTR states are all located in the Southern part of the United States, including Mississippi, South Carolina, Alabama and Louisiana.
On the opposite side of the spectrum, the 10 states that had the lowest CTR rates were split down the middle, five states to the Republicans and five to the Democrats. These states were equally diverse according to their geographical location.
The statistics found in this study reveal which states are most worthy of an allotted online advertising budget to reach voters who are more prone to click and engage with this format of political strategizing. It may also reveal economic factors to different areas of the country, since some areas are less technologically advanced on account of low economies and would therefore respond better to different advertising media.
See this interesting infographic also on Pando Daily.
Banner blindness is a phenomenon that all online advertisers struggle with. Website users around the world have developed a skill to ignore ads that appear in traditional ad spaces. It’s this kind of user behavior that shapes the creativity of marketers and forces outward thinking. Infolinks took this mission to battle this reality and for months planned and tested a set of ads units to serve highly relevant ads and receive more attention from online visitors.
When the first online banner ad debuted on HotWired in 1994 it took the internet by storm with a 78% click through rate. Nowadays the average banner ad reels in .09% CTR. In 1997 Jakob Nielson, the leading web usability guru, studied the eye pattern of internet users with the help of heatmaps. He discovered what he called banner blindness. Internet users have been programmed to subconsciously ignore the presence of online ads, not even glancing in the physical space on the page where assumed ads are located.
“Heatmaps from eyetracking studies: The areas where users looked the most are colored red; the yellow areas indicate fewer views, followed by the least-viewed blue areas. Gray areas didn’t attract any fixations. Green boxes were drawn on top of the images after the study to highlight the advertisements.”
Nielson confessed he was reluctant to admit the following: ads that mirror the original website content are the most effective, aka native advertising. With native advertising, ads are placed within the context of a site where readers are already focused.
The Infolinks Solution
Infolinks has been striving to harness Nielson’s chi and think outside the box with its latest ad products; less conventional ads with more relevancy. Infolinks ad products are the very essence of visibility and native advertising combined. InTag and InText are two products created for this purpose – delivering and displaying relevant ads true to your web content.
Infolinks monitored ad clicks from over 100,000 websites in their network to determine these results. InTag revealed a CTR 8 times higher than the average of banner ads while InText came in at 10 times higher.
Search ads are another way to beat banner blindness. This kind of advertising works with the reader, leading to ads of interest relevant to their original searches. Infolinks InSearch has a an incredible CTR rate 30 times higher than typical banner ads.
Banner blindness is a serious phenomenon that both advertisers and publishers should be aware of. Infolinks ad options contrast banner blindness and satisfy all parties involved.
Neil Armstrong Dies at 82
American hero Neil Armstrong will forever be remembered as the first man on the moon. He commandeered the Apollo 11 space ship, slowly walked down its stairs, and placed his left foot on the white, powdery surface. His famous line, “That’s one small step for man, one giant leap for mankind” gave the world hope in a desperate time. His death was caused by complications of a bypass heart surgery he underwent earlier in the month. Social media again rose to the occasion as NBC shared the news on Twitter. Advertisers all over the world have been eager to place their ads on this international breaking story.
Keywords: Man on the Moon, Neil Armstrong, JFK, Leap for Mankind, astronauts
Victory for Apple
It’s been over a year since Apple filed the patent infringement lawsuit in April 2011 against their biggest rival Samsung. The long-awaited outcome is in: Apple proved victorious. Samsung now owes $1.05 billion dollars to the parent company of the iPhone, whose design was infringed upon by the Samsung Galaxy/S. Jurors found that Samsung copied several ideas from the iPhone and Apple claimed they were able to do so without taking any of the risk. There’s no doubt that the iPhone changed the way we communicate today. This is one story that advertisers don’t want to miss placing their ads on.
Keywords: iPhone, Samsung, Apple, Galaxy, technology
Lance Living Too Strong
Lance Armstrong is once again being accused of performance enhancing drug use, this time by the US Anti-Doping Agency. The cancer surviving, seven-time cycling champion of the Tour de France has been accused of drug use for most of his victorious career. This time around, Lance won’t be fighting the allegations that have caused him and his family so much stress as he has in the past. “Enough is enough” he stated in a press release. The USADA will decide upon a sentence to hand down, which may be as grand as to strip Lance of his seven Tour titles. His fans haven’t jumped on the band wagon and are supporting him publicly on Twitter at #Armstrong. This is a big story that should trend for a while – a great opportunity for any advertiser.
Keywords: Livestrong, Lance Armstrong, Tour de France, cycling, performance-enhancing