Running ads brings in a huge chunk of my income; it feels like a fair trade when I share a free pattern or tutorial! I love that ads are completely passive, earning me money on things I’ve already done, without any extra work. I switched in the middle of last year to Mediavine Publisher Network and have absolutely loved working with them; they don’t have an affiliate program, I’m just sharing in the hopes of spreading the love to fellow bloggers!
I set up Google Adsense from the very beginning, earning pennies each month for at least a year. Later on, I bumped into the concept of “waterfalling” ads, which you can see explained here under the first tip for full-time blogging, and added Amazon CPM ads, finally making more than pennies. Ad networks do all the work of “waterfalling” and running auctions for you, but I thought they were only for huge bloggers. When I heard about Mediavine a few months later, I signed up right away, receiving my first payment in June 2016. It was triple what I had been making; you can always see my quarterly income reports, all linked here! The next two months earned at even a higher level as my site got settled in at the network, and have consistently earned me 3-5 times as much as I would’ve been making with Adsense/Amazon CPM.
I love that Mediavine gives you a lot of control; there is no required set of ads so you can pick and choose to balance between user experience and revenue as you see fit. As of right now, I hover somewhere in the middle, skipping some of the more aggressive options, and haven’t heard any complaints (but it’s hard not to feel like you’re leaving money on the table!).
There is an easy to use interface where you can see your earnings and what ad spots are performing better than others. They have an awesome loyalty bonus just for staying with them, and some “site health” tips for increasing revenue by different site design tweaks.
They’ve always answered my questions quickly and in language I can understand and I have really loved working with them. I have convinced a few blogging friends to switch and heard nothing but “thank you”s so I thought I’d spread the word here too! Please note, their application says “MPN requires at least 25k sessions/ month and ideally 100k sessions/ month to get you approved with all of our ad partners. PLEASE NOTE WE’RE ASKING FOR SESSIONS, NOT PAGEVIEWS.” So, not for brand-new bloggers but a more attainable minimum than some of the other big ad networks.
You can find them online here, and see the ‘apply here’ button up at the top right! Let me know if you have any questions!