View Full Version : Best ad network for my sites... and any other advice

08-07-2010, 09:21 PM

I manage a bunch of sites that each get almost 1 million visits a month. (managing sites is what I do, so I’m getting more of these niche sites every month.) To date the sites have zero advertising on them. I have now been tasked to get some advertising going on them. I’m in way over my head at this point, so I’m starting to do my due diligence….

The advertising needs to be clean, no adult, gambling, alcohol, dating, etc… VERY VERY strict on this.

The sites are very age group and user focused. So my questions are:

Am I better off going with finding individual advertisers, an ad network, or running a combination of both?

Any advice on getting in with individual advertisers? (ie how, who, and what do I need)

CPM is going to be the way I want to go on this, how do I determine what my sites are worth, the basic searches say I should get somewhere between $0.1 and $30 per CPM. Even if I go with some of the chatter I have heard in my segment it is $3 to $10, that is quite the range when you are talking this many impression per month.

What are the top ad networks that I should consider? (Advertising.com, tribalfusion.com, etc…)

What ad serving software is best? I've been looking at OpenX and adbutler, but I have also seen that some of the ad networks have their own.

Is it bad to go with an ad networks ad serving if you want multiple sources?

Thanks and all advice welcome…..


10-12-2010, 03:04 PM
Hi. A couple of quick tips:

Ad networks that I have worked with that have good controls for previewing and approving / disapproving ads are: BurstMedia, ValueClick, and Casale.

For ad serving, if you aren't selling your own ads, an easy way to start is using the ad networks and making a "chain." In other words if you get into Burst's network, you add their ad code into your site template where you want the ad to go. Then you setup Burst to send any ad impressions it can't fill to your next best ad network using a "default" tag. You setup your last network in the chain to default to AdSense or an affiliate campaign that you know will handle 100% of any impressions it gets.

If you are doing a mix of selling your own ads and ad networks then an ad server is a must. I used OpenX for awhile. I moved to Google's AdManager (now DFP) because it reduced server load, includes geo targeting without me having to set it up, and I don't have to install regular updates. I think OpenX has a hosted solution now though that may take care of some of those issues. I've also heard of people who use AdShuffle.

Regarding CPM, my experience is it fluctuates a lot depending on time of month and year. It also has a lot to do with your industry and demographic. And of course there is ad size (728x90, 300x250, and 160x600 are the best performers). Ads you sell yourself will always have a higher CPM. My good ad networks range between $1 and $2 / CPM. My end of the chain networks range from .20 to .50/CPM.

Hope this helps,