I have officially given up on Google ads as a serious income source. December was remarkable in that I set a new record for low income. The month is never great (who gardens or clicks on garden ads in December?) but this year was outstandingly bad.
Update: Saturday October 21/17 57 clicks netted $0.16. That’s not a typo – that’s really 16 cents for 57 clicks.
So bad that there’s no point in even getting upset about it bad.
So I sat back and thought about why I do this garden writing stuff – and decided if I wasn’t making a lot of money with the website, I was going to make it fun for me to do and I was going to make the website one of the best around.
And with that thought, I was off like a herd of turtles to rebuild and restructure the site.
Some folks are going to really love it – and some folks will be so annoyed (unfortunately) they’ll write unhappy letters. Also, I expect to lose a bunch of readers.
Then Why Do This?
I have always enjoyed the interaction with gardeners. Gardeners are – for the most part- good folks. We may be a bit quirky, a bit opinionated (well, a lot opinionated actually) but when push comes to shove, good gardeners will always help a fellow gardener.
I want to increase the interaction with gardeners but this means decreasing the traffic on the site. (Hey, if I’m not making money with thousands of visitors a day, why not have fun with a few hundred?)
The reality is there are hundreds of “drive-by browsers” who only want to ask a question – get an answer and never, ever visit again. This new system will discourage them from doing that.
Stay tuned for this one – it’s going to blow the minds of fellow garden writers.
And With That Thought
I’ll point out that I’m willing to take risks, to turn on a dime (this isn’t the first time I’ve had to pivot as a writer) when the situation doesn’t look good and I can’t see it getting better.
The point I’d make in all of this is that every creative person has to be prepared to abandon the tried and true at some point in their career. Whether it happens to be Adsense in this case, or a too-used paint color or story theme.
Artistic and creative juices demand a continual evaluation, renewal and pushing against boundaries.
It’s the old “Hardening of the Attitudes” issue I so dearly want to avoid. (Easy to say by the way – but tough to do.)