Monetization vs. Creation

Shane Pike tackles a fun question in this post at ProBlogger: How do you become a professional blogger in half the time? His answer is smart, simple and useful: Double the revenue you receive from your current content.

What percentage of your readers performs a revenue-generating action? 1%?…

Now, how easy would it be to raise that 1% to 2%? That’s not a very big jump by any means. Quite likely, you could jump to 2% or even 3% by doing nothing more than tweaking your AdSense colors, ad size and/or placement. Little tweaks. Tiny tweaks. Nothing major at all.

Let’s say you make a few tweaks and get to 2%. What just happened to your revenue? Well, if you go from 1% to 2%, you’ve doubled your revenue—just that easy. Twice the revenue from the same amount of traffic in maybe 30 minutes’ worth of work.

The stock answer to the question ‘How do I make more money with my site’ has long been ‘Add quality content’. But this isn’t always the answer. As the monetization makeover series has (hopefully) shown, many bloggers are not monetizing their current content to anywhere near its potential. Thus a day spent with the Adsense heat map (and MM series?) can potentially double or triple your profits — not bad for a day of work.

That said, I think there’s a delicate balance that a successful professional blogger will strike. If you spend an hour every day tweaking ad colors and placement, over time this will mean adding less quality content to your blog. I suppose what it comes down to is a tradeoff between maximizing current revenue vs. maximizing long term revenue potential. What is the sweet spot? How much time do you spend tweaking monetization vs. writing content and marketing your blog?