How to Price Banners on your Site/Blog

Banner PricingHow do you price banners on your blog or site? This is a complicated question and there isn’t a straightforward answer. However, let me attempt to answer it with certain examples and cases which can provide a useful guideline to get started. If you have an idea of how much banners cost on other sites, you might get an idea how to price banners on your own blog or site.

I have previously written about how to sell banners on your blog and it gives a useful guide to know how you can find advertisers and how you can get started. In this post, I attempt to answer another important question – how to price the banners. Once you have selected a list of companies, businesses or websites whom you wish to contact for an offer for banner, the next step is to let them know the price. Here are a few guidelines to follow -

Tip-1: Try to Find Similar Sites

This is a simple advice which actually helps a lot. If you can find sites that are similar to you and see how much they charge for a banner, you can get a fair estimate of how much you might want to charge.

This of course depends on the niche, traffic, Alexa rank and a host of other factors, but it still gives you a fair idea.

In the niche of internet marketing and blogging, here are a couple of banner advertising prices that I could find:

1. Wassup Blog: This blog charges $30/month for a 125×125 banner. The site has an Alexa of 67k at the time of writing this. No idea about other stats.

2. John Chow: John Chow is one of the best known bloggers in this niche and it shouldn’t surprise you that it will be very expensive to advertise on his blog. For the same 125×125 banner, he charges $500/month. There are several other banners available with his blog as well. At the time of writing this, his Alexa is 5711 and his RSS followers are 100,000+ !

This of course is just for an idea.

Tip-2: It is all about the Niche

Yes, it is all about the niche. On my Penny Auction Blog, I sell several banner advertisements (somehow I started with 250×250 and stuck with it ever since). My traffic stats are far less impressive: 373k Alexa, ~350UV/day. However, I charge a minimum of $50/month for advertising on my blog (that is for old advertisers. For new ones, I charge higher).

So why is that? The first reason is, it is all about the niche. I write about entertainment auctions and it is generally a niche with not too many bloggers. A banner from my blog will give the sites a very regular highly interested stream of potential members. If the niche is lucrative, you should charge higher.

Tip-3: Look to Provide Value

Advertising is all about value. If you are John Chow, you can charge money simply for an advertiser to connect to your brand. However, not all of us are that lucky to have such a huge branding. So what do you do? You should provide value in other ways. I give my advertisers an option for featured blog posts to reach my readers. This provides them with great value.

Also, when a new site opens, by advertising on my blog, they are able to reach out to a very interested group of people who might want to join their site. Even if they get 100 interested visitors from my blog, the price I charge is justified (they get more). It is all about how your blog can provide value.

Tip-4: Let Advertisers Come to You

You won’t find this on my blog but this is something which you should know. It helps to have an “Advertise Here” link which advertisers can click and then reach a page that lists your pricing. This is a good strategy to let advertisers come to you. Chances are, several of your potential advertisers have at least visited your blog once. By giving them an option to advertise, you are looking for conversions. Also, make the process easy for them.

Tip-5: Learn and Adapt

Pricing advertising banners is not straightforward and you and the advertiser will seldom agree to the value of your blog or site. This is why you need to learn and change with your experience. If you get feedback from an advertiser you wrote to, learn from the feedback. Perhaps you charged too much. Or may be you should have offered a better space for the banner.

As you write out to more and more advertisers and get feedback, you will start to learn how to charge the right price for the banners on your blog.

Do you have experience selling banner space on your own site? Do you plan to do so in the future? I would love to hear from you!

Photo Credit: Peter Blanchard

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4 Comments

  1. Joseph says:

    Hi Sid,

    How do you charge different rates to new vs established advertisers? Also, what if your previous advertising came from unsolicited product reviews i.e. a company sends you a product and you then write an unbiased review about it, but then charge other companies for product reviews?

    • Sid says:

      It’s about individual relationships and how comfortable I would be advertising them on my blog. If I have had a long relationship with an advertiser and suddenly I see an increase in traffic to my blog, I am not going to double my rates. However, if I am scouting for new advertisers, I might.

  2. Gametrender says:

    John Chow what a legend! Just adding up the figures I saw quoted on his site gives about 16K a month and I’m sure he’s got a lot more fingers in pies. But what really struck me about him and others is that it all seems so do-able! Look at a Blockbuster movie-I couldn’t do that-not without some mega-funding. Write a few articles : We can all do that! Watch your back Mr. Chow!

    • Sid says:

      That’s true. I think one of the reasons some bloggers got really popular was that they were one of the first in the game. And that compounded their popularity. I doubt John Chow or even some of the other famous dot-com bloggers earn half as much as they did in their hayday, although even today I am sure they earn a good amount of money from their blog. You mentioned the reason already – people want more value than simply writing a few articles on your blog! They were able to do it a decade ago because there were so few of them. Now, it seems almost impossible to replicate their successes.

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