Wednesday, June 04, 2008

Should I take ads on this blog?

I've had several approaches to take ads on this blog over the last few months. A couple of estate agents, a fashion retailer, and some other people whose details I forget now.

I've always said no without really thinking too much about it, my general principle being that blogging is free. I do it simply because I like doing it, and if I want a break from blogging, I just take one, like I did last autumn after Mum died. The charity ads and campaign stuff you see are things that I choose to host, much as I might put up a poster in my window or sport a bumper sticker (if I had a car) for a worthy cause. But I wouldn't like to have a big billboard on the side of my flat and I don't tend to wear ostentatiously branded clothing for similar reasons.

Anyway, it occurred to me that rather than just say no outright all the time, I might as well ask you what you think, dear readers. So over to you. If you think this blog would be improved by the appearance of ads then do let me know.


Blogger dc007 said...

Hi Rachel,

I don't think any blog is ever "improved by the appearance of ads", however if it's gonna give you some significant financial reward for entertaining us then go for it.

June 04, 2008 5:54 pm  
Blogger Peach said...

yes take the cash!! Just make sure there are no pop ups and that we don't have to scroll through years of rubbish before we get to the blog!


June 04, 2008 5:54 pm  
Blogger Vanessa said...

If the ads are going to make serious cash then I'd think about it but if it's fairly trivial (and trivial's obviously sujective) then I'd think twice. When I visit a blog I generally think ads cheapen it and I'm aware that I tend to give less credence to blogs that have ads.

That might be a problem if you're writing about campaigning issues whether that's the plight of Iraqi interpreters or less political issues such as the mistreatment of furry mammals. You might be seen as less independent of opinion.

But hey, all that's just my opinion and it's your blog so do what you like with it. My blog is about our bookshop and publishing company so I suppose it's all an ad in its way!

June 04, 2008 6:31 pm  
Blogger Rachel said...

I didn't even ask what they'd pay. But I doubt it would be much on a click through basis as I think we're all a bit too web-savvy and anti-corporate to bother.

I think it's too much hassle to be honest, given my novice html ability. Ads online generally annoy me, especially the floating ones. I also think the people contacting me haven't done their homework - why advertise ladies fashion here? I never write about it, and over half my readers are blokes.

June 04, 2008 6:44 pm  
Blogger dc007 said...

Didn't ask what they'd pay? Hmmm, I think you need to find that out before you make your mind up...

June 04, 2008 6:50 pm  
Anonymous Dan said...

One thing - I set up a website for this purpose. I have sent you a PM for obvious reasons. All the ads are directly relevant, linking to regional estate agents. In fact, they are more like resources than ads in some ways.

Rather than going for Google AdSense, these ads are directly paid for. In other words, the estate agents were approached, and the ads sold for x quid for 6 months. In this case, something terribly low like 50! No stats were provided or requested. The site has already generated something like 1000 pounds in advertising, and of course, once it gets off the ground, the prices could be revised.

I would certainly recommend doing this if you are happy with the advertisers and feel that you both benefit, although clearly, some sites are more obviously suited than others. In your case, I'd suggest provision of stats would be appropriate, but so long as you don't have gambling and porn ads all over your blog (which clearly you won't!) then I'd say go for it.

June 04, 2008 7:31 pm  
Blogger Clare Sudbery said...

I bloody hate ads on blogs. I get bombarded by ads enough in life as it is without it spoiling my favourite blogs.

Also the income they generate is, I understand, absolutely minimal. Not worth the spoilage.

June 04, 2008 9:32 pm  
Blogger Brennig said...

Rachel, I think you'll do what you feel is right The only thing I'd ask is that you maintain the quality of output that I come here for.

June 04, 2008 9:34 pm  
Blogger Clare Sudbery said...

"more like resources than ads in some ways"

Sorry, but this is absolute bollocks. If I need an estate-agent-finding resource, I will go and find one. A resource is only useful if it's specifically sought out. Otherwise it's intrusive and annoying. Much like the people who cold-call me on my bloody phone in the privacy of my own home and then claim to be offering a service. If I wanted their services I'd go and seek them out, thank you very much.

Sorry for being so vociferous but, well. I feel strongly about it. Their aim is to make money, not to help people.

June 04, 2008 9:36 pm  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Avoid! Avoid!

I pay for my Livejournal account to avoid the appearance of ads. There's other reasons why I pay for it, but the non-appearance of ads is a big, big part of it.

I hate advertising in just about any size, shape or form - it's intrusive and annoying.

That said, I read your blog via an RSS feed on my own blog, so I don't see ads anyway, unless I drop by to comment...

June 04, 2008 10:07 pm  
Blogger Rachel said...

My friend has a technique for cold callers.

When they phone him up and start rabbiting on about double glazing or whatever, he says, 'Really? Now that IS fascinating. Tell you what, give me your mobile number and I'll call you about 10pm tonight and we can have a good long chat about it.

'Oh, but, I can't do that,'they say, 'I'll be at home...'

'EXACTLY' shouts my friend. 'Exactly! How would you like it? Eh?'

and puts the phone down.

June 05, 2008 12:31 am  
Blogger Andy Ramblings said...

Ads? I haven't seen any since I use adblock on firefox.

Another idea for cold callers..

Answer the phone, let them yak a bit.. Then say, Oh, Hold the line a moment... put the phone on speaker and continue to do other tasks... see how long it takes them to hang up.

June 05, 2008 12:45 am  
Blogger Slow Learner said...

The only reason to accept advertising would be if it paid you handsomely, but I see no further advantages for any of us.

I get very, VERY irritated by the intrusiveness of advertising and can't wait for the day when a machine is marketed that will record TV programmes and automatically exclude the adverts. And the arrogance of ISPs who assume that I'll put up with 'Phorm' and will only be allowed (perhaps) to opt out is breathtaking. As others have said, if I want something I'll research it for myself, thank you very much.

As for 'cold calling' the solution is to register with the telephone Preference Service at: You can stop most of your junk mail at: and you can stop Phorm in its tracks by using Dephormation -

It's your blog and it would be unfair for those of us who really enjoy reading it to impose on you. However, I sense that you're disinclined to accept advertising, so I'd encourage you to stick to your guns ..... unless they're prepared to pay *heavily* ;o)

June 05, 2008 9:08 am  
Anonymous Dan said...

Dan said...

Anonymous said...

Phew! Clare, the only thing I can say is that if you are reading a lengthy article about buying property in the Algarve for instance, ads for Algarvian Agents are - SURELY - not unwelcome.

Having said that, I sympathise with your comment about cold-calling, but then that is a completely different matter

June 05, 2008 9:22 am  
Blogger JonnyB said...

I have a very clear policy on ads - I politely turn advertisers down, being fiercely protective of my 'idiot in the countryside' brand, whilst reserving the right to plaster the entire f-ing blog with them and scream 'make your own bloody free entertainment' the minute somebody turns to me and tells me that ads are evil and that I shouldn't.

So my vote goes for 'do whatever YOU want'.

June 05, 2008 10:41 am  
Blogger Geoff said...

Take the money! Especially if its a useful amount. I read your blog on Google Reader anyway :-) and as someone else said the ads can always be stripped outby using Firefox and the adblock plug in.

June 05, 2008 11:15 am  
Blogger Gridlock said...

Rachel, I'm afraid your friend is ripping off Seinfeld :)

I too use adblock (along with the FilterSet.G updater) and to be honest I wouldn't be able to tell you which blogs have ads and which don't, so from my point of view I'd say go with it. The only thing you might have to consider is explicitly disclaiming any endorsement of the ads, especially if they're automatically inserted by an AdSense-type system.

June 05, 2008 11:27 am  
Blogger Rachel said...

Tsk at friend for ripping off Seinfeld.

Well, after reviewing all your feedback I think I will go with my original impulse and say no to ads.

I don't think it will pay very well and it will annoy me and quite a few of you, and I have inflicted enough advertising on the planet in my career as it is so this blog will remain estate agent and shoe sale free for now. Unless someone turns up and offers me a suitcase full of tenners, or a free house. I'm not fussed about free shoes. Shoes bore me.

June 05, 2008 2:11 pm  
Anonymous Matt Wardman said...

And there was me putting a few thoughts together. Serves me right for

Sticking my neck out, I think you should be able to make £100-£200 a month, but I respect your decision.

June 06, 2008 1:02 am  
Anonymous Matt Wardman said...

Oooops. Serves me right for not reading the whole thread.

June 06, 2008 1:03 am  
Blogger Rachel said...

I would be really surprised if I could make £100- £200 a month...hmmmm. How did you get tot hose figures ( if I can ask?)

It is tempting, but I still think the annoyance factor would be very high.

June 06, 2008 2:36 pm  
Anonymous Matt Wardman said...

I'm keen on advertising because I want to see people getting a bit more income to let them spend more time to do quality indy blogging without having to do it off the back of another career.

On the numbers, I'll drop you an email.

Quite open to posting about it, but not in a comments box - deserves more detail.

June 06, 2008 3:24 pm  
Blogger MarkF said...

I dont think adverts add a lot to a blog. I think most people now read blogs via their RSS feeds and if you use full content in the feed then there is no reason to visit the site.

Also, you need to have targeted ads for it to really work - not sure how that would work here given your content and the diversity of your readers interests...

June 10, 2008 10:39 am  
Blogger Cookiemouse said...

I've taken Adsense off my blog. A lot of the ads never made any sense and hardly anyone clicks on them anyway. Your blog is great just as it is.

June 10, 2008 2:21 pm  

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