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Thesis: Blog Networks should NOT rely on Text Link Ads or Google AdSense

Aaron Brazell, our technology manager at b5media confirmed a suspicion I’ve kept to myself. A few weeks ago, Cellphone9.com dropped from a solid Google PageRank 6 to a 5 and then today, a 4. Darren Rowse’s ProBlogger also dropped from a towering 7 to a measly 4. Same goes for Brian Clark’s Copyblogger. Must be disappointing to admit it, but A Bugged Life, though not linked to the network dropped in PR from a 5 to a 4 a few weeks before Google declared jihad on blog networks. Funny though, because as soon as my personal blog’s PR dropped, it made Technorati front page.

At b5media, we are weighing how we want to respond to this. Either we give in to Google and let them dictate what we do and have the unenviable position of losing pagerank and possibly advertising dollars, or we take the stand that quality content is quality content regardless of Google and that our content will speak for itself. We still produce millions of pages of content per month. We still have respect in the community. We still have advertisers recognizing that these sites are valuable assets to leverage to get their campaigns out on. [Technosailor]


Aaron presents the content is king argument, which is how it was during the times of print and which I assume will always be the case in any forms of publishing. But as PR drops, its almost similar to saying that “oh our magazine lost its prime space in the magazine stand and third party surveys are saying that we’re only doing so and so circulation – when in fact, we’re doing so much more.”

I’m not sure how this affects smaller and more niche publishing networks like our very own Bayanihan Blog Network here in the Philippines. Maybe they aren’t affected as the Google PR algorithm only directly affects high caliber sites like ProBlogger and other PR 6 and 7 sites.

Does this mean, therefore, that if I had an independent PR 6 site, joining a blog network to expand my reach would result in an incremental traffic boost but a sacrifice in PageRank. This would be a bad move as this would directly affect my fixed TLA earnings.

Should blog networks rely on AdSense and TLA on the long term? I guess not. Direct advertising seems, and from history, will always be the way to go?

By Jayvee Fernandez

Jayvee Fernandez is a tech enthusiast, EAN certified SCUBA Diver and underwater photographer based in Metro Manila, Philippines. His photos and videos have appeared in various international and local publications including Random House Germany, Discovery Channel Canada, and CNN.

8 replies on “Thesis: Blog Networks should NOT rely on Text Link Ads or Google AdSense”

Well, we’ve already dropped AdSense, and were planning on dropping TLA anyways, so not sure much has changed for b5, other than this little warning from Google (and that’s all it is, check your blog stats and you’ll see there’s no dip in traffic).

Juned: LOL @ “jihad,” that caused quite a storm at TechCrunch!

Well for the rest of us who can’t/won’t get direct advertisers… ads that don’t involve link selling the way to go!

@jeremy – which is a good thing. i guess relying on ad brokers in the long term doesn’t fulfill the vision of what b5media is supposed to be to its readers ๐Ÿ™‚

as for blog stats, there’s nowhere to go but up! ๐Ÿ™‚

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