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Making Your Adsense Earnings Grow – Exponential Blogging

EarningsI’ve had a number of emails from readers in the last few days who are disillusioned with their earnings with Adsense. I can perhaps take some of the blame for their mood having posted my reality check post last week and by publishing the poll that we have running that highlights that the majority of bloggers using Adsense are only making a dollar (or three) per day.

So I thought I’d offer some words of encouragement to combat the gloom that is going around at present.

I can relate to the depression about lack of results from Adsense – my early days on the system were similarly gloomy to say the least. Growth in daily earnings from month to month was pretty insignificant. I remember looking at my Adsense statistics numerous times over the first 6 months and wondering if it was worth all the hard work for the few dollars that came in each day.

You’ll notice the graph above (click to enlarge) which graphs my earnings from Adsense (without actual figures included) since October 2003. Notice the first few months earnings – hardly a discernible rise and something that got me down a little and led me to consider stopping my use of Adsense.

But one day I noticed something that grabbed my attention – and inspired me to keep using Adsense.

Each month my income was going up. Between my first and second month it went up just over 100%. The second month it did it again. In fact my monthly rises over the first 9 months of using the Program went something like this:

My First Nine Months Growth in Adsense Earnings:

• 1st to 2nd month – 126%
• 2nd to 3rd month- 93%
• 3rd to 4th month – 39%
• 4th to 5th month- 3.5%
• 5th to 6th month – 65%
• 6th to 7th month – 50%
• 7th to 8th month – 51%
• 8th to 9th month – 45%
• 9th to 10th mont – 96%

Now the total monetary increases didn’t seem much (I mean a 100% increase when you’re only earning $1 per day doesn’t seem that exciting) – but the amazing thing about percentages is that there comes a time when things begin to exponentially rise.

Hypothetically Speaking

Here’s a little exercise for you to illustrate the power of exponential growth. Grab a calculator, or fire up the arithmetic section of your brain. What would happen if your blog that is earning $1 per day were to increase its daily earnings by 100% each month for a year? How much would you be earning this time next year?

• After 1 month it would be earning $2 per day… not even a good coffee!
• After 2 months it would be earning $4 per day….
• After 3 months it would be earning $8 per day…. yawn…
• After 4 months it would be earning $16 per day…
• After 5 months it would be earning $32 per day….

>> Fast Forward >>

After 12 months it would be earning $4096 per day… coffees for everyone!

Ok that is a pretty unrealistic example – I don’t know many bloggers who are sustaining 100% growth every month – but the principle is the same no matter what the sustained increased percentage of growth. It takes a bit longer for the power of the % to kick in but it eventually does.

• If you can sustain 50% growth per month and start at $1 per day you end up earning $129 per day (and $16,834 per day after 24 months!)
• If you can sustain 40% growth per month and start at $1 per day you end up earning $57 per day (and $3214 per day after 24 months!)
• If you can sustain 30% growth per month and start at $1 per day you end up earning $23 per day (and $542 per day after 24 months!)

You get the picture. Of course its not quite that simple – sustaining large percentage increase month after month is difficult – but from my personal experience its definitely possible to keep your earnings pointing in an upward direction….most months.

My Graph

Ok I can hear the questions already. ‘Nice theory Darren – but look at your graph – the growth didn’t last!’ – ‘What happened last December and January?’

Let me walk you through what happened and where the ‘exponential growth’ theory gets messy.

December and January Crash – This hurt. Up until 16 December it was looking like I was going to have a massive month – breaking the record I’d set for myself in November. I put a lot of the increase down to pre Christmas research people were doing on the topics that I write about. But then on 17 December things went horribly wrong.

Long term readers of this blog might remember the six weeks during December and January where I was on the receiving end of two thirds less traffic than normal as a result of Google doing a pretty major update to their algorithm. This is where my exponential growth of the previous year all came undone and I found myself wondering if I might be about to find out what exponential loss is like.

February Recovery – Early in February Google did another update and my traffic returned. It wasn’t quite at the heights of the end of November and start of December’s Christmas rush, but it did improve and has again this month significantly again.

So – the exponential growth theory does have its bumps – quite often as a result external forces but in my experience exponential growth in earnings is quite possible – at least for a period of times.

But Wait there’s More

Tomorrow I’ll write more on this and give some ways that bloggers can help sustain exponential growth in their blogs. You see it doesn’t just happen – it takes work, time and a little strategy, but I’ll leave that to tomorrow. update: read it here

About Darren Rowse

Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.

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Comments

  1. Alex says:

    I’m looking forward to the day I’ll be making 2 dollers a day. Maybe hopefully, sigh.

  2. Allie says:

    Why won’t you tell us your actual figures? That graph could represent anything at all! At its lowest it could be 1 cent per day and at its highest a few dollars or it could be thousands or millions of dollars.

    Its useless to us and a waste of time. Where is the transparency that bloggers talk about? I think your blog is just a front, its all just spin and bullshit.

  3. owen says:

    OK – so I would be happy to be making a dollar a day – I’d be happy to be making ten dollars a YEAR! Of course it would help if Google’s algorithms had enough sense to place anything other than generic garbage into my highly topic specific (and advertiser friendly) pages. It would also help if anyone ever visited my site….but – al that said, this isn’t a pyramid scheme – the advertiser dollars do NOT grow to match the traffic therefore there CANNOT be exponential growth

  4. Allie says:

    what a load of shit. His graph is probably just made up anyway.

  5. Rick says:

    Interesting don’t you think that the nay-sayers never leave a URL or email address? Cowards.

  6. Glen says:

    this piece leaves me with hope that the small growth that I have seen each month will be thru the roof within a year

  7. Sadly, 1$/day is just about what I’m making now off of AdSense. When I can sell ads on my blog for 300$/month each…

    I wish I didn’t have to sell my own ads though, it’s such a pain and a hassle.

  8. Great article Darren. My question is this. Is your exponential growth theory and graph based on a single blog or multiple blogs? I’m trying to zone in on your growth as it relates to the growth of content from a single blog/site or the growth across multiple blogs/sites that each have ever increasing content. Plus what about Adsense positioning?

    I do enough adsense that way more than pays for the hosting on my blogs and that is zero strategy for optimizing Adsense for revenue but pennies compare to what you and others are making.

    Can you share some light on this please? Thanks!

    Pakii

  9. John Campea says:

    Hey Allie… What’s your point?

    The Dolallar amount isn’t what’s important. If you think it is… then you’re missing the point.

    The important thing is the percentage increases. Who cares if your first month is 3 cents or 30 bucks. What’s important is growth rate.

  10. Ken Musante says:

    “the majority of bloggers using Adsense are only making a dollar (or three) per day”

    That’s awesome for a hobby. Maybe I should sign up w/ adsense.

  11. Ken Musante says:

    “the majority of bloggers using Adsense are only making a dollar (or three) per day”

    That’s awesome for a hobby. Maybe I should sign up w/ adsense.

  12. Rachel C says:

    Good article Darren – thanks for all the advice you give out to other bloggers – while receiving a fair share of criticism/personal attack.

    Allie – I know for a fact that this blog isn’t just a “front”, and it’s certainly not “spin and bullshit”. And his graph isn’t made up.

    Darren, my graph shows something very similar to yours – except no dip over Dec/Jan. The lowest % increase I have had in a month over the past 6 months is 17%, the highest 142%.

  13. Audrey says:

    Somebody always has to come along and show their ass. Allie, who complained the graph was fake and left a fake name. ;) Good grief.

    My friend earns over $400 a month with his small tech site. It can happen.

  14. Darren says:

    Ok – thanks for the comments all. Let me make a few more comments of clarrification:

    - Allie I have released a lot of my earnings figures previously on this blog. Whilst I haven’t given specifics of my Adsense earnings I have previously said that I earn a six figure income from my blogging and in another post that Adsense is the largest of my income streams. If that’s not good enough for you then I’m sorry.

    T.L – the graph is all of my blogs added together and not just one. However all of my individual blogs are pretty similar in shape.

    Hope some of that helps – thanks to all for your comments and experiences.

  15. Michael says:

    Very well written Darren. I always appreciate your insights. In the end, however I think pretty much every paper (white or otherwise) I have read on blogging says the same thing…Don’t get it in for the money!

    You need to find your own voice…I lurked on lots of blogs for a long time before leaving comments and now even venturing into my own blog (gratuitous plug), but ad revenue was not and is not the driving force. I will use AdSense in the hope it covers hosting…if it does more than its just a bonus.

  16. Jon says:

    I think you can only have exponential growth in earnings if you keep adding new content in an exponential rate. Only exponential bloggers can have exponential earnings. Hurry EXPONENTIALBLOGGING.COM is still available. See you in cashville.

  17. Micheal – Welcome to the blogosphere. You certainly are off to a good start. Ad revenue wasn’t my driving for on my blogs either and still really isn’t but I am now looking into optimizing adsense for better adsense revenues since my blogs already do that anyway and I’m putting up more content. Your blog is very nicely done. Nicely done.

    Darren – Thanks for answering. Can you shed light on Google adsense placement results or would that be tipping your hand too much? :-)

    Thanks again,

    TL

  18. Darren says:

    Sure T.L – check out this mini series of posts on positioning Adsense which starts here.

  19. Awesome. Thanks Darren!

    TL

  20. colbert says:

    hi…just to tell you guys some good news…

    I’ve tinkle with my ads after the looking at the Eyetrack article and success has cometh. I made around USD 5 in a single day yesterday. Up from USD 2 previously. Thanks Problogger

  21. Jason says:

    Unrealistic to think you’ll have that kind of growth curve….unless you’re doing pr0n or something. :-)

    The truth is every vertical has a natural audience…. if you’re doing well you will hit 20-30% of it in 12-30 months. No one gets more then 20-30% of an audience so you can’t expect the growth you’re talknig about above. I think after a couple of months of 100% growth look for 5-35% growth… which kills the numbers above.

  22. Darren says:

    Yep – you’re totally right Jason – the high increases won’t be sustained forever – however I have to say even at 5-35% growth per month (after a 9 months of 50% to 126% growth like we had) the growth continues to be pretty exponential looking at my latest figures. I’d be happy with 5% to 35% increases per month from here on in :-)

  23. Ella says:

    Very funny, Jon. But it is at least true that visitor count and earnings tend to raise most months. We should all stick in there! Post, post, post!

    I just can’t believe how successful Manolo is when I read your info. It’s exceptional success. And I feel so wee. (I’m a fashion blogger.)

  24. Christina says:

    Thanks Darren! Niche blogs probably shouldn’t expect that kind of exponential growth, but at least I saw 100% growth from my first month to my second, on a blog that isn’t easily categorized.

    How concerned should bloggers be with keying entries to marketing? I suppose I could write an article about Fisher Price or some other well-known brand and manipulate my ads that way. But mostly I get ads for grants for single mothers!

    Sigh. Something to ponder. Marketing versus pure content.

  25. Alex Mielus says:

    Darren, I’m making now about $100/month now only from AdSense and it DID grow exponentially for the last, let’s say, 6 months. I also have about 20 sites (not all blogging).

    And it started to grow faster than ever 1 month ago when I switched from XOOPS to WordPress on my main site (which is indeed a niche one) All ROmanian Crews – Graffiti Site.

    So … my question is: if I’m blogging on a really tight niche would it be most likely to have a greater income in the future?

    Thanks,
    Alex

  26. DW Wood says:

    Well, here’s to starting out! Thanks for the advice. I’ve only just begun my blog, so if you have any suggestions for my site please let me know: http://www.greenlid.blogspot.com/

  27. charles says:

    Nice idea darren.

    I might try to force myself too to gain exponential growth.

    can this blog: http://www.resourcesandmoney.blogspot.com gain the theorY

  28. Felix says:

    I think what really can increase one’s Adsense earnings is to maintain the frequency of posts and also have quality content. One needs to feed visitors with what they want to read.

  29. Wim Scrooby says:

    I bought a book to help me do what you and millions other people are doing to make some extra cash. As i am a pensioner, not comp littirate and can’t find a person to sit down with me and either educate me or help me, i don’t even know how to start. The name of the book is “No Website Required” written by Avril Harper. I live in South Africa, any suggestions on a book title that will explain to me in English and in such a way that an old dummy can understand?

Trackbacks

  1. feedbuzzard says:


    Problogger Darren Rowse writes about the growth curve in earnings attainable from blogging with Adsense ads to generate income. He writes-
    I’ve had a number of emails from readers in the last few days who are disillusioned with their earnings with …

  2. [...] Dothose figures with the figure of 30% growth per month and the figureafter 12 months is $232.98 per month, after two years its $5428.00 andafter three years it’s $126,462 per month! You get the picture. Now Idon’t want to promise you 30% growth per month for three years straightbut as I’ve written before,the power of exponential growth in conjunction with hard work and luckis possible – it’s my story. I see each post I write as an investmentin the future and something that has the potential to earn money for menot just today but over the long term. [...]

  3. [...] December saw daily earnings hit $6 per day, January $9, Feb $10 and March $15. Hardly big dollars but I began to wonder what would happen if I saw the same sorts of increases in income over a longer period of time. By that I don’t mean adding $2-$3 to the daily average per month but what would happen if I could sustain 30%, 40% or even 50% growth each month. I began to think in terms of exponential growth. [...]

  4. [...] Making Your Adsense Earnings Grow – Exponential Blogging [...]

  5. [...] I talked about this graph and exponential growth in previous posts here and here. [...]

  6. [...] Do those figures with the figure of 30% growth per month and the figure after 12 months is $232.98 per month, after two years its $5428.00 and after three years it’s $126,462 per month! You get the picture. Now I don’t want to promise you 30% growth per month for three years straight but as I’ve written before, the power of exponential growth in conjunction with hard work and luck is possible – it’s my story. I see each post I write as an investment in the future and something that has the potential to earn money for me not just today but over the long term. [...]