There are many reasons to keep ads off your blog. You may not want to stunt your blog’s growth, annoy your users, slow down page loading times, or maybe you’re like HarpzOn and you’re planning on selling ebooks and information instead?
That’s all well and good, but what if you DO want advertising on your blog, yet you also want your blog to keep growing. When is the time right to add advertising into the mix? And how much?
It depends a bit on what your goals are, but I think in general a good time to add advertising to your site is when you have enough traffic in a month to meet the minimum payout of an ad network. Most ad networks will make a payment when you reach $25 or $50 in revenue. Let’s assume $25 in a month is the magic number. Let’s also assume a conservative effective CPM of $0.50, which means you make $0.50 for every 1,000 ad impressions. We’ll assume a conservative two ad units on a page which means you’ll get two impressions for every page view.
Based on that math, you’ll need 50,000 ad impressions in a month to reach $25.00. Since most blogs don’t create large numbers of page views per unique visitor, I’d say this means most bloggers need 1,000 unique visitors a day to to reach 50,000 ad impressions. Most blogs I’ve seen statistics for have between 1 and 2 page views per visitor.
You don’t need as much traffic if you have more ad units per page, or if you can reach a CPM higher than $0.50, which is highly likely on a good focused blog.
Another factor is that if even with a low traffic blog, if your topic is niche enough, you could find advertisers who may agree to advertise directly on your blog. If you can get this, take it at any traffic level.
There are also some who will argue that you should put ads on your blog from day one. The reasons for doing this would be so that ads can give the appearance of making a site seem more complete and legitimate opposed to a sparse blog that looks really new. It also can condition your users to get used to ads to avoid a future backlash from them when you introduce advertising in the future. Additionally, you may want to start testing ad locations as early as possible to get to your perfect ad positioning before you have a ton of traffic. You will have a ton of traffic right?