I like to try out services and get a feel for them before recommending them to clients. One of the services I have been testing recently is Text Link Ads. I have been hesitant to try Text Link Ads, even though I have read many good reviews of the company and how effective it can be at placing links for advertisers and selling links for publishers.
Here are some things you need to know as a publisher before diving right in.
- Server Requirements: Your site and server need to be running PHP. This is not a great difficulty, since any decent host offers PHP. But it is something to be aware of before you sign up.
- Site Acceptance: Getting a website accepted as a publisher can be a little more tricky than some other programs. I tried submitting several sites, and from what I can tell website acceptance is based mainly on PageRank and Alexa rank. If your website is not at least a PageRank 4 you might want to hold off on joining.
- Ad Acceptance: Once you have a website approved and have added the PHP code you can choose how the links are approved for your website. The default when I signed up was to allow Text Link Ads to approve the ads. I changed it to having me approve the ads. This way you will get an email when a new advertiser purchases a link and you can approve or deny the link. If you don’t do anything in 24 hours Text Link Ads will review the ad.
- Payment: Text Link Ads pay be check or PayPal with a minimum payout of $25.00 for check payments. They pay promptly which is nice. You are paid no matter what so you don’t need to be paranoid about whether or not anyone will click on your ads to make you money.
- Ad Pricing: Publishers receive 50% of the price of the links sold, with Text Link Ads keeping the other 50%. If ads are sold mid-month the cost is prorated for the month. Just be aware of that when you check your stats.
- Other Ad Systems: Text Link Ads can be run with all other ad systems becuase the Text Link Ads are not contextual. This mainly applies to Google Adsense publishers and Yahoo Publisher Network. This could always change in the future so make sure you know your terms of service from the other networks.
I was sceptical about the service at the start, but after 48 hours I had my first advertiser, and within five days I had sold out my site. I initially only offered 4 spots. I increased that to eight after I sold out. It is nice having a revenue source to help cover hosting bills that I don’t have to worry about getting clicks on, or click fraud and all the other nasty things that can happen with other network ads. I plan on sticking with Text Link Ads for a few more months and I would recommend the service to those of you looking to add a relatively stable income source to your website without much work.