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Adsense and other ads on WRT


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Testing using Adsense at the moment. 
the forum is currently costing me IRO £250/mth to run now and the last payment from eBay ads was £77 so as you can see it’s making a significant dent in my back pocket

you might ask why £250 when you can get cheap hosting accounts anywhere. Tried that last month. Disaster (you may have noticed performance issues and outages for a day or two).  Moved back to a cloud system. Currently we are at 50gig of user uploaded data  (images and such), this is backed up on Amazon cloud and Digital Ocean Cloud for failover and I have to pay for an 80 GB NVME SSD storage plan to get the performance we need.  and as well as that the system sends almost 50,000 email notifications per month - for this I have to use a separate transactional email service.  Bandwidth is not too bad as I use a lot of caching. 

but it all adds up unfortunately. 

I can’t afford to keep paying this every month. 

adsense has been a little encouraging. The past two days it made £4.50. So if that and eBay ads pan out then I will be able to comfortably continue with the project. 

I am also looking at making a theme for moderators and paying members where ads will not be served. Hopefully have this done in the next couple of days

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  • 1 month later...

@Mark Just chipping in here - I'm a software engineer in my day job and I've worked on a few projects that touched billions of users.

To be fair, 250 doesn't seem too bad (but it obviously depends what you get out of it). It's hard to know without knowing the actual traffic patterns and usage, but here are a few suggestions that come from the top of my mind:

It would probably make sense to limit the upload size of media to this forum (especially videos) -> most can probably be uploaded to youtube and shared here via a link. This way you'd defer the storage cost to youtube for the small sacrifice of ergonomics (I'll let you judge if that's appropriate and something you'd consider)

Similarly with images, once they get uploaded to the forum, I would recommend trying to compress them somehow (using lossless compression could still save you ~20% of the original photo without sacrificing any quality). A common practice is to assign images a unique name based on their content and cache it for a very long time.

Regarding the email provider -> I would quickly compare the pricing, see if anything has changed since the last time it was setup. Most software as a service products have massive margins and often times just asking for a discount could be enough (or if you are comfortable commiting to a 1-2 year deal or something is always something that will make the sales folks very happy and make them offer that discount)

Last but not least, I would actually check how many of the 50k emails are being replied/opened. If majority of them are idle or inactive accounts, I would probably proceed and maybe send everyone an email with and honest email with a fair question of asking them if they still use their account and if they want to unsubscribe 🤷🏼‍♂️

As a quick question, regarding the 80GB SSD, is that because of the database size or is that separated? If that is so, it may make sense to clean/vacuum some database tables that have accumulated over time (session tables for example) and reclaim some disk space.

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I made sure to bump up a tier in my patreon subscription. Sorry to see that current algorithms and subs don't create conversions that scale long term. 

Maybe a little extra might help you develop things how you see fit. If a handful of us do the same hopefully it will ease your expense column a bit 

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  • 4 months later...

Hello Mark. I'm completely new to you, your site, and a complete novice as well. Not enrolled yet.

I like the content of your site and the friendliness of the members.

I ran a site of my own for many years and installed Adsense.

Members, be aware that Mark receives and income from the 'clicking' of the adverts. Be very careful about causing Mark a problem. Don't click every advert each time you visit. If there is something that may interest you, by all means 'click'. 

Adsense keep a record of 'Clicks'. Some of my members tried to help and give me more income. They 'clicked' every advert, every time a visit. Asdsense stopped my 'click' income for 3 month.

When it came back on, members did 'click' each visit, but limited 'clicks' allowed the income to grow.

Let's help Mark. 

I know the cost of running a site.

Regards to all

Keep well. keep safe




Edited by rossjackson01
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  • 5 months later...
On 5/31/2021 at 5:56 AM, oldhippy said:

don't see ads as I use adblock plus for all my websites I use. 

if you don't see the advertisement does the advertisement company know that? If Mark has gone to all the trouble to try to get advertisement to keep the message board afloat does blocking the advertisements caused a problem?

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Usually ads work by clicks. If you see the ad and don't click I'd imagine it's the same as if you don't see the ad and don't click. I'm seeing ads and not clicking.

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