PostHeaderIcon Getting Your Blog Ready For Prospective Advertisers

Direct ads are one of the most reliable ways to make money off your website, but also one of the most competitive. There are hundreds of interesting blogs out there, but an advertiser will only tie up with a handful. Therefore, it’s all about standing out. It’s a lot harder than it seems, but it’s not impossible. If you’re having trouble holding on to advertisers, here are some ways you can make your site more attractive.

Make information accessible: Interested advertisers are just like any other user: if they don’t find what they need in five seconds, they’re off to the website next door. Put up an “advertise here” page and link to it somewhere visible—at the top of your menu or a prominent spot on your sidebar. On the page, put in everything they need to make up their minds, as well as contact information in case they want to get in touch.

Show, don’t tell: Not everyone knows how big a 125×125 ad is in real life. If you have spare placements, use them as displays for potential advertisers, showing them how big a banner ad is and how it would look on your site. You can also put up house ads—ads for products you sell on that website or another one you own. Offering free ads or a trial period can also increase interest.

Boast your site stats: By the time you’re ready for direct ad sales, your site stats will probably be worth showing off. Use it to attract advertisers. The first thing they usually look for is site visits: more unique hits means that more people will get to see their ad. You can put it up on your sidebar, and go into more detail on your advertiser info page—at the very least, provide data on readers’ gender, age, and location.

Have a niche. Use your site stats to create content that targets your readers. This will not only keep the same readers coming and build a loyal reader base, but also tell advertisers that they’re speaking to the right people. You can go off on a tangent once in a while, but keep the bulk of your content on the same general topic.

Look professional. Free blog templates are a good start, but if you can afford it, hire a web designer to make your site look professional. This builds credibility both from your readers and your advertisers. Readers want to know that you know what you’re doing, and advertisers want to know that you have a good relationship with your readers. It takes time and a bit of money, but good design is well worth it.

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