Mid-day more than midway to success

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Mid-day.com is a newspaper website for readers in Mumbai, India which has been in the AdSense program since 2005. According to Gauri Daswani, who was the Mid-day.com Assistant Manager at the time, 50% of the site's revenue is generated through AdSense. "Monetization has become much easier with the AdSense model," she says. "To ensure good results from AdSense, it is imperative that we create compelling content which in turn accounts for a good user experience and definitely benefits Google's advertisers."

Initially, Gauri and her team relied on fixed ad colors and placements. They noticed that the site was earning a similar amount of revenue each month. "We had a problem choosing color codes and ad placements, which we didn't know could actually impact our revenue so drastically," she remembers. But she soon found the benefits of testing with custom channels.

"We placed channels on the ad units and changed the ad positions to understand the performance of each unit, resulting in much higher revenue," she says. For example, Gauri added a 300x250 medium rectangle to the bottom of each article and moved her link unit from the right sidebar to the left. In addition, she updated the colors of her ad and link units to match the look and feel of the rest of her site. Together, all of these changes resulted in a 60% increase in revenue.

"It is now easy to optimize the site's performance with custom channels. They give us a complete picture of how different ads are performing on our site, and help us to compare all ad units and pages," Gauri comments. Even now, her team continues to experiment with other changes to find what will perform best for Mid-day.com. "We have learned that subtle changes can produce significant results."

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