Back in 2014, we were introduced to ad blockers. Honestly, it was and still is a good concept. Things like Adblock give users the ability to block unwanted ads. The problem is, if you are a content creator or run a WordPress website, then more than likely you are counting on these ads displaying as part of your revenue stream.
That being said, there are some really great ways bypass adblock blockers and still make more money in WordPress. So, how much of your income is being affected by ad blockers? More importantly, how can you get around this?
What Exactly are Ad Blockers?
Simply put, an ad blocker is a piece of software, a browser extension, or a mobile app that blocks ads from being loaded onto a page you are viewing online. More often than not, you will simply see a blank space on the web page where the ad should be running.
The idea is that these ad blockers remove clutter and slow load times from websites when you are trying to view them. They also give you control over being able to block out ads that you will never click on.
The concept, while good in theory, can have devastating consequences for content creators and website owners who rely on advertisements to make money. Ad blockers stop any ad impressions and you won’t get credit for showing the ad.
Are Ad Blockers Hurting Your Business?
At this point in time, at least 40% of Internet users in the United States have some sort of ad blocker installed. You can take that data, and even consider that Chrome comes pre-packaged with ad blocking capabilities, and you can see why content creators are nervous.
As a matter of fact, ad blockers are so popular these days that it seems like everyone is making use of them. Adblock Plus has become so relevant that the company has registered 500 million downloads since it first busted on the scene in 2014.
So, do you think ad blockers are hurting businesses, including yours? The answer is yes, they are. Most all of the popular online magazines and brands you see make all of their income via advertisements.
If things continue at this rate, it is estimated that the major brands online will lose a total of $35 billion by 2020.
Why Do People Block Ads?
As a content creator, you can’t imagine why someone would block ads, especially if they understand what it means to you. Try taking a few steps in their shoes, though. There are a number of reasons why website users want to block ads. It could be something as simple as the way you display ads that convinces someone to use an ad blocker.
There are usually three main reasons why users are now using ad blockers. They are all straightforward and easy to understand. The three main reasons people are blocking your ads are:
- You Have too Many
- They are too Annoying or Placed Poorly
- They are Affecting Your Website Speed
So, you can see the way a lot of websites display ads these days, it is not a huge stretch to understand why someone would want to block ads on your site.
How to Stop Ad Blockers from Hurting Your Business
Before we talk about monetization options to make more money on WordPress, let’s look at a few ways to bypass Ad Block. Please remember, these solutions will not totally stop ad blockers from working, but they will slow them down some and give site readers some options.
Ad Blocker Notify
Ad Blocker Notify detects ad blockers coming from visitors to your website. The plugin allows you to display a notification to the site user and customize it to your liking.
You can use three notification types with this plugin. They include a popup, a redirect, or a custom message asking people to deactivate ad blockers. Basically, you hope people disable the adblock detected and allow your site to show ads.
Admiral comes with even more solutions built-in that will help content creators save at least part of their ad revenue. The product is free and it helps you get the word out to users who are blocking your ads and causing you to lose revenue.
The premium version of Admiral will help you recover bits and pieces of ad revenue that you may have lost out on otherwise.
BlockAdblock gives you an easy to use system that will help you recover lost revenue from your website or blog. It uses a set of filters to detect ad blockers coming from site users.
This is a free tool that adds a script to your website that provides you with easy-to-use popup boxes for relaying messages to site readers. You will also be able to see how many people actually disable their ad blocker after reading the message you put together.
These three tools will at least help you try to recover some revenue. While nothing can totally stop an ad blocker, it is important to slow them down when appropriate.
Ways to Generate Revenue on a WordPress Website Without Ads
Another option is simply looking for other ways to generate revenue on your WordPress website outside of ads. Let’s look at seven ways to get around ad blockers and generate revenue on a WordPress website.
1. Sell an eBook or Digital Download
Since selling eBooks is wildly popular, it is an excellent way to bypass adblock and generate revenue for your website. You can use any number of eBook creation tools, and if you put a good one together, you can sell it to your site visitors.
If that particular eBook becomes a popular item, then you could be looking at some serious income. If you have a good story to tell, or if you are very knowledgeable in your niche, then this is definitely a good option for generating revenue outside of the traditional ad only space.
This is just one of several types of digital downloads you can sell online.
2. Develop an Online Course
The market for online courses is huge right now. It is basically untapped and growing pretty rapidly. In fact, it is expected to generate $325 billion by the year 2025. Why not take advantage of this?
Setting up an online course is not difficult. Most of your work will come from actually putting the course together, not setting it up. With WordPress themes available that give you the tools to automatically set up the course, this is a really good way to generate revenue on your website.
The size of your email list will also help with this as you can blast the course out to everyone on your list.
3. Offer Premium Memberships
Membership sites are usually not an overnight money maker. However, if you have some patience over the long run, then you may be looking at some very generous recurring revenue numbers.
A membership site is any website that charges a recurring fee for its member to access the content. This is usually charged monthly or annually, depending on the site. In this sense, you are providing exclusive materials that people are excited about but need to pay.
Membership sites will usually have a good deal of content, most of which is very interesting to a specific niche. It will include downloads, videos, podcasts, and more.
Remember, a membership site may not be the best fit for you. If you are pumping out tons of articles and unique content though, putting something like this together is definitely worth the time.
4. Allow Sponsored Content
Perhaps the most popular and easy to accomplish a way of generating income is to allow sponsored content. This helps put you outside of the standard ad only set up on your site. Sponsored content is basically content (usually in the form of well-written articles) that talks about something specific that a client wants to be linked to.
Basically, you are saying yes, you can write an article to certain standards and make it relevant to the website. However, we will link to a product, service, or outside website as part of the deal. The content will remain on your site forever.
Some site owners allow sponsored content for a one-time fee. Other site owners set up recurring fees that need to be paid to keep the post up. Either way, this is a really good revenue generator that is easy to manage and handle.
5. Affiliate Marketing Income Streams
If you are losing a lot of revenue due to ad blockers, then why not look at affiliate marketing streams as an alternative? Simply put, this is a type of marketing where you receive a commission payment every time you sell a product or service that someone else provides.
You can set affiliate marketing streams up in several different ways. Oftentimes, it is a simple link that gets clicked. If the service or product is purchased through that link, then you make a commission.
A product or service does not have to be purchased right away for you to receive commission payments. There is usually a window of 30-60 days where the link click remains active. Usually, this is done with a tracking cookie from the affiliated company.
If you are able to set up several different affiliate marketing income streams, then this could be a solid source of revenue for your website.
6. Off-Site Ads
Yes, you want to be able to place advertisements directly on your website. Of course, this is the most ideal. That being said, your WordPress website is not the only place that you can put advertisements up.
It all boils down to setting up a good off-site ad campaign.
Place ads in areas like social media platforms, newsletters, video game websites, and other blog-related communities. Remember, these are not totally block-proof either. However, they are really good alternatives to make sure you are getting paid for ad clicks.
7. Ask for Financial Support on Your Website
This may seem like something that you don’t want to do at first. To be honest, though, it is a really good way to generate alternative revenue when your ads are being blocked by ad blockers.
You can have a contact form and payment submission that allows people to easily support your efforts. Or, you can utilize a tip jar style plugin that lets site visitors quickly and easily donate to you and your business.
Asking for financial support in one of the above ways is also a good idea if you want to keep all your content free and open to the public. Think of it as your readers buying a newspaper or book from you.
Ad blockers are a great tool for users who are constantly bombarded with ads that cause them all sorts of trouble. The flip side, though, is that they are really hurting content creators. This is because these tools are causing needed ad revenue to disappear.
Luckily, there are some great solutions to deal with this. Although you may need to switch up your style of content creation, it’ll be worth it in the long run. Creating different types of revenue streams is a valuable tool to have in your back pocket anyway.
Use some of the suggestions above to get around ad blockers and keep your revenue stream intact.