Thursday, 26 April 2007

New Look for the AdSense Home Page

I just went to log into my AdSense account and noticed a new design for the home page. I'd noticed the design a few days ago but it then reverted to the old look. Below is a screenshot.

Interestingly enough, after logging out and going back to the home page, I got the old style page again. I wonder if this page will completely replace the old one soon!

Update: This new design has now permanently replaced the old AdSense home page


Wednesday, 25 April 2007

MoneyTies' New Logo

If you've visited this blog on the web (rather than just reading the feed), you may have noticed our new logo, which was revealed today.

The basic logo was initially designed by (Rogue Media). However, the designer was unable to complete the work following a serious car accident.

The design was then amended and completed by Michelle of, a graphic design studio based in the beautiful Yorkshire Dales, England.

Michelle did a great job at a great price. If you're looking for a superb, value-for-money logo, contact Design2Go for a quote (and don't forget to mention MoneyTies!).

Tuesday, 24 April 2007

Issues with Michael Cheney's AdSense Videos Affiliate Program

I am an affiliate for Michael Cheney's AdSense Videos. This is a pretty decent affiliate program and I like Michael Cheney. However a slight problem with this particular affiliate program came to light over the weekend.

Whenever someone purchases the AdSense Videos via my web site(s), I am emailed a confirmation to let me know a sale has taken place. Between Friday 20th and Sunday 22nd April, I received X of these emails. I also checked my stats via Michael's own web site, which also indicated X sales. However, when I checked my stats on Clickbank, through whom the sales were made, I was only credited with exactly half X sales.

I contacted both Clickbank and Michael Cheney's support desk and received some interesting replies.

First, Clickbank assured me their stats were correct (despite opinion across the web that Clickbank is understating sales). Surprisingly enough, Michael's reply read as follows:

Thanks for letting me know. I can assure you that ClickBank is 100% accurate - the discrepancy lies at fault with the tracking software we use unfortunately.

For the definitive sales figures always refer to ClickBank.


Michael Cheney
So, at least Michael Cheney is speaking up for Clickbank. However, if you're also promoting his products don't be surprised if you end up getting inconsistent sales stats.

Tags: , clickbank

Saturday, 21 April 2007

Policy Change Hurting U.K. eBayers

A change in the way eBay lists items entered on has wrought havoc to many U.K sellers.

Until recently, items listed on were automatically returned in product searches on (the U.S. site). However, with little notice being given, U.K. products are now only returned on if searchers use the advanced search option to include U.K. products.

This has caused a dramatic reduction in sales for many British ebayers who have also had to deal with ludicrous fee increases earlier this year. Some sellers have reported reductions of as much as 90% in sales since the change was introduced in Feburary this year.

eBay has formally apologized to British sellers for the lack of notice. Well, "Thanks eBay . . . for nothing."

Source: "eBay 'sorry' over policy change"


Friday, 20 April 2007

Blog Review: NetBizAsia

I happened across the NetBizAsia blog when the title of a recent post caught my eye in my Google Reader. The post was entitled "Why Most People Fail In Affiliate Marketing With Adwords." I enjoyed reading the posts on this blog so I thought I'd review it. Besides, a little "link love" never did anyone any harm!

This blog, which is authored by Cheryl Goh out of Malaysia is subtitled both "All About AdWords and Affiliate Marketing" and "How I Quit My Day Job & Made Money On The Internet From Scratch…"

I'm sure many readers of this blog are interested in quitting their day jobs too, so this seemed like a perfect blog to review, given that its author has done just that.

Cheryl is predominantly using AdWords to promote affiliate marketing campaigns and has been pretty successful at it. She may not be one of those Internet gurus you regularly read about, she is just a regular person who has made a success of what many of us dream about.

The thing I like most about this blog is that she details many of the steps she's taken to get to where she's at. This involves reviews of many products that I'm sure many of you have seen but wouldn't risk buying because of the uncertainty of their claims.

I also particularly enjoyed the "Why Most People Fail" post because it clearly details the steps that Cheryl is taking to ensure her campaigns are successful. What's more, she plans to go into even more detail in her follow-up post.

If you're an affiliate marketer or are considering becoming one, I thoroughly recommend that you keep an eye on the NetBizAsia blog, especially if you are based in Asia yourself.

Tags: ,

Thursday, 19 April 2007

Pre-Populating AdSense Search Box Queries

I've often seen people asking in AdSense discussion boards whether they are allowed to pre-populate the search box when using AdSense for search. In case you don't know what that means, it simply means putting some predefined text in the text box that you would normally type in before clicking the "Search" button.

Well, in a post entitled "If it ain't broke..." on the official AdSense blog, this question was definitively answered earlier today:

our program policies strictly prohibit altering the layout, behavior, targeting, or delivery of Google ads or AdSense for search boxes . . . includ[ing] . . . [p]re-populating the AdSense for search box with specific queries.
So, there we have it. Don't pre-populate your AdSense for search text boxes or you could find yourself banned from AdSense.


Wednesday, 18 April 2007

Bidvertiser Introduces a New Pricing Structure for Referrals

Bidvertiser recently announced a new pricing structure for its referral program, as follows:

Advertiser Referrals

When one of your referrals registers as an advertiser, you will earn $5 when the advertiser first spends $10. When the advertiser spends $50 you will receive an additional $20.

Publisher Referrals

When your referrals sign up as a publisher, you will earn $10 when the publisher first earns $10. When the publisher earns $50 you will receive an additional $40.


Thus, advertiser referrals can earn a maximum of $30 whereas publisher referrals can earn a maximum of $50. In addition, this new pricing structure applies to existing referrals for which you haven't already been paid as well as future referrals. This new pricing structure also means that affiliates will start earning money more quickly, which has been an issue with Bidvertiser's affiliate program until now.


Tuesday, 17 April 2007

March's Most Popular Posts

I've just been away on vacation for 2 weeks and didn't have time to outline last month's most popular posts until now:

  1. How to Tell If You Are Getting CPM AdSense Ads - Gave step-by-step detailed instructions to determine if you are getting CPM ads on your site, or just CPC ads.

  2. Joel Comm's Monthly Templates Violate AdSense Program Policies? - Discusses the reasons why AdSense guru Joel Comm's monthly templates breach AdSense's rules.

  3. Kontera Doesn't Support New Blogger - This post outlined problems getting Kontera to work under the new blogger. [Kontera is now working on this blog, as you may have noticed!]

  4. Why It's Not Worth Putting Competing PPC Ads Alongside AdSense Ads - Discusses why I don't think it is generally a good idea to put ads from other PPC programs on the same page as AdSense ads.

  5. Alternatives to AdSense: Kontera. - My review on in-text AdSense competitor, Kontera.

Friday, 13 April 2007

Agloco: Will It Or Won't It?

As I've wrote on March 22nd, according to the Agloco blog, "the Viewbar release is currently scheduled for between Monday April 2 and Monday, April 16."

Well, it's now April 13th, only one working day away from the magical April 16th. So, will the Viewbar be released on or before Magic Monday? Somehow, I suspect it won't, but I'm sure there'll be a really good excuse . . . I mean, er, "reason."

In fact, surprise! surprise! The latest Agloco blog post tells us that

while the Viewbar is still on track for release this month, making the April 2nd to 16th window is getting more difficult [even though] the Shanghai team has been working seven days a week for quite a while now.
It's also interesting to note that the issue that is still outstanding is that of integrating the Viewbar with the ad servers. Isn't that pretty basic to the whole functionality of the Viewbar?


Text Link Ads Affiliate Program - Even More Unhappy

As I've written about here and here, I'm pretty convinced that something major is wrong with Text Link Ads' affiliate program.

As of today, I have now sent 410 referrals to Text Link Ads and not one of them has converted. You would definitely think that at least one out of 410 would have "place[d] an order with us or . . . [become] a publisher and install[ed] the ad script on their site."

So, even if referral number 411 does finally convert (which I doubt, somehow), that would be a conversion rate of 0.2433%. Pretty crap, doncha think?!?!?


Blend Your Ads for Higher Click Thru Rates

A recent study by, "How Matching Ad Design to Context Improved Conversion by 127%" (available as an online Web Clinic in Windows Media and Real Player formats) has established what AdSense users have generally believed to be true, that blended ads generally perform better than ads that stand out from the site's content.

"Blended ads" are ads that use the same font, color scheme, etc. to the site's main native content. The study showed that blended ads "performed significantly better" than non-blended ads in both CTR and conversion rates.

The authors also suggested that the main reason for the increased performance is the effect of "ad blindness" when non-blended ads are used. As well as matching fonts and colors, the authors also suggested that, for maximum performance, any logos etc. used in the ads should be "small enough not to shout 'advertisement' so loudly as to be blocked by the subconscious 'ad filters' of content site visitors."

This study isn't exactly breaking new ground since blending ads has been recommended by Google and authors such as Joel Comm for a long time now. However, it's good to see some empirical data to support this. It's also important not just for AdSense (etc.) publishers but for advertisers who place their ads on handpicked sites - including advertisers using image ads. Thus, if you are advertising on site, make sure that your ad is designed in such a way that it blends into the site's native content for maximum performance.