James Taylor SEO

Ezoic Review – Platform Analysis With 2021 Blog Earnings

Ezoic Review Image

I’ve used Ezoic for over 12 months – here’s my honest review

June 2021 Update – Ezoic have introduced ‘Ezoic Access Now’, which means you can sign up without needing to reach any traffic requirements, such as the 10,000 visits per month minimum set previously. Note however, your site will still be subject to review. 

If you’re a blogger or a publisher then you may already be aware of using ad networks to further monetise your traffic. There is somewhat a stigma with some ad networks, and I can completely understand why you may worry. However, I’d place Ezoic in the ‘premium’ category, and after working with them for over 12 months I certainly don’t have any issues.

But, my love of this platform aside, just how good is it? How does it benefit bloggers? And more importantly, how much can you make?

I’ve put together a bit of a breakdown of the platform in terms of its features and some common questions I’ve been asked, and also you can see a breakdown of the revenue of the portion of my affiliate sites that have been running Ezoic. You can jump to each section or settle down with a brew and make your way through this full review! For any further questions please drop a comment below and I’ll do my best to respond.

Below is my link to Ezoic. If you click on it and sign up I get an incentive for sending you through to the site. If you enjoy this review and are thinking of signing up, a click via the banner below (or the other ones throughout this guide) would be much appreciated (and will mean I can continue doing long-form reviews in the future). 

What is Ezoic and why is it great for bloggers?

In a nutshell, Ezoic is a a platform for website owners which focuses on setting up and delivering ads to your visitors. It is however a little more involved than something like a standard affiliate network like Affiliate Window, as it’s an intelligent platform that is constantly evolving that ways in which your site displays ads, what advertisers you work with and ultimately how your ads can be served without disrupting user experience.

You can see more on the homepage of the site prior to signing up, but in terms of important features to be aware of these include:

  • Ads bespoke to your site based on relevant advertisers that your audience will expect to see
  • Automated integrations which tweak your ad output, tweaking based on performance data
  • The platform actively works in order to maximise your revenue unlike other ad networks which accept smaller publishers
  • Internal tools for addressing page speed concerns
  • Ad testing options (a fantastic feature)
  • You get access to Google’s Ad Exchange so that you can target specific ad networks related to your audiences

It’s great for bloggers in particular as it’s very user friendly. You can add websites to your profile, test how ads are displayed, and also the minimum traffic levels are lower than other platforms like MediaVine and AdThrive. Just to break this down quickly in terms of the minimum traffic levels to be accepted onto these platforms, you’re looking at:

Ezoic minimum traffic requirements vs Mediavine & AdThrive

  • Ezoic – 10,000 visits per month
  • Mediavine – 50,000 sessions per month
  • AdThrive – 100,000 pageviews per month

Also, I’ve actually had a site accepted onto Ezoic which came under the minimum traffic amount (not too far off, but still encouraging). This means that if your site is legitimate and is logical for Ezoic to work with, then you may be able to get onto the network sooner than you think.

In terms of being accepted, I’ve had emails as back as 2018 asking me to join (so you may find that Ezoic reach out to you), or you can simply enquire directly to see if they want to take your site on to the platform.

 

Is Ezoic good for SEO?

I wouldn’t correlate any ad network with SEO success, if anything it can be argued that flooding your site with ads will negatively affect your page speed and overall usability, and therefore your SEO will suffer.

Having said that, I love that Ezoic have thought about this in the way that you as the publisher have the option to choose the number of ads that are displayed to users via the Ad Tester. Not only does this mean that you can test how the ads look for mobile, tablet and desktop users, but you can also use tools like Page Speed Insights and GTmetrix to see if an increase in ads are causing a nightmare for page speed.

Ezoic Ad Tester Image

Personally, I’ve never had an issue, but then again I’ve taken all my sites away from cheap shared hosting packages and on to dedicated servers. I also don’t flood my affiliate websites and blogs with tons of ads, so I can still work with Ezoic as a publisher without providing a poor user experience for anyone landing on the sites. And the fact that testing is even an option is simply fantastic. Does that mean I’m not making as much as I could be doing? Yes. But, I want any blog I own to work for the long-term with a legitimate audience, so it’s not just about spamming your visitor with as many ads as you can cram onto the page.

With page speed at the forefront of the SEO-savvy bloggers mind (now more than ever with Google’s Core Web Vitals update), Ezoic also have the Site Speed App and the Caching App to allow you to track page speed development within the platform, and actively make changes with static assets e.g. caching and the serving of ads in an optimised process.

They’ve even introduced ‘Leap’, which is an internal optimisation feature specifically for addressing issues related to the Core Web Vitals update:

ezoic leap screenshot

 

Features of the platform for publishers

If you’re looking at ways to make some passive income from your website or blog, there’s few better options than display advertising. With the hard work of creating your content already done, display advertising allows you to monetise sites and pages that garner attention from visitors. If that sounds too simple, it’s because it actually is. It really is a case in which you can let your site work for you. Services such as the ad technology and networking that Ezoic offers, sit on your site quietly accruing advertising revenue, allowing you to concentrate on the myriad other tasks that running a website entails instead.

There’s a number of different ad networks that publishers can look to utilise for their sites. To describe Ezoic as merely an ad network however, is a bit of a misnomer. Ezoic is actually a whole suite of different digital services designed to help make sites more successful in a number of different ways. Their ad technology and network is just one of the services that Ezoic has built their business around. They also provide access to analytical software, layout testers, AMP converters and a site speed accelerator.

Some of these services require a subscription in order to gain access to them, but Ezoic’s offerings within their free tier still provide a considerable amount of benefits to digital publishers. Below are just a few features that I consider to be of interest to site owners. By no means is this an exhaustive list, however. It’s well worth taking a look around their site to check out what features may be the most useful for your particular site. A 30-day free trial of their premium services is available too, allowing you to see first-hand if they’re worth implementing on your site.

 

Powerful Ad Tech

The main draw for most site owners considering Ezoic is undoubtedly its capacity for generating advertising revenue. With so many competitors in the same market though, what does Ezoic offer that’s in any way different?

The answer is in their approach to advertising. Ezoic realises that a website visitor’s experience has a knock-on effect on how they respond to advertising. We’ve all come across websites that are practically unreadable thanks to a constant barrage of banners and pop-ups. In these circumstances, advertising becomes an obstacle and an annoyance. Not an effective advertising strategy for any site. For this reason, Ezoic tends to steer clear of bombarding pages with ads upon ads.

Beyond that, their AI actually improves the distribution and deployment of ads on your site over time. It smartly measures session durations, bounce rates and other metrics to help it decide how best to place ads for different visitors. In essence, this means that you can rest assured that ad placement will never get to the point of those annoying and unusable websites, because Ezoic is always measuring your users’ experiences against its ad deployment.

 

Big Data Analytics

Ezoic grants easy access to all the metrics you could ever need via its Big Data Analytics Dashboard. Once you’ve got the hang of deciphering what you’re looking at, this can be a real boon for anyone hoping to maximise their site’s earning potential. The Big Data Analytics Dashboard allows you to break your ad revenue down to different pages, devices, traffic sources and even countries.

If your statistics show that particular pages or traffic sources seem to generate more revenue than others, you can start to plan your future content and marketing accordingly in order to capitalise on this. You may find that a traffic source that you spend a lot of time and money gathering might not be lucrative enough to continue devoting that much energy to. Alternatively your research may show that one of your writers seems to bring in more revenue than the others. If either of these scenarios are the case for you, you may find that a quick reshuffle of your marketing or job allocation can yield some quick wins.

 

Control over ads

Despite boasting an in-built ad tester that uses artificial intelligence to determine where best to place your ads over time, some users might not be comfortable in handing over the reins completely. For anyone wanting more control over ad placement, Ezoic allows its users more of a hand in such affairs than other competitors.

Ezoic allows you to place ads in the exact positions that you choose. This is brilliant for site owners who may have previously found success with a particular spot on their website. If you’ve already done some ad testing of your own, you can skip past the time it would take for Ezoic to identify the most lucrative areas of your pages, and pick up where you left off. Of course, you may be tempted to see if Ezoic’s AI-aided ad tester can find an even better location for your ads instead. Unless you’re absolutely certain of your own ad placement though, you may as well let it run and just adjust the odd one here and there if you wish.

This control over ads also allows you to ensure that a glib advert doesn’t appear in the middle of a serious or sensitive post whilst Ezoic’s AI is finding its feet. Even if your content doesn’t deal with any sensitive issues, there may still be occasions where the awkward placing of an ad might otherwise break up the message you’re trying to convey.

 

Privacy and consent are easily taken care of

Keeping your site compliant with GDPR and CCPA regulations is obviously a primary concern for any site owner. Where to start with it all however, can seem a little daunting for many tackling it for the first time.

Luckily, Ezoic offers the means to generate and configure both consent management and privacy policies in a fuss-free manner. With the legal landscape constantly moving, it’s a real bonus to have the ability to make changes quickly and easily.

You can choose to use your own privacy policy, and display it automatically to website visitors if you want to. Similarly, Ezoic makes it easy to create a custom prompt for visitors to consent to the use of cookies. This saves all the time and effort you’d perhaps otherwise need when hunting around for a suitable website plug-in or similar service. For anyone unsure what they need to include to comply with GDPR and other legislation, Ezoic guides you through all the essentials you need in order to meet any required standards.

 

Ezoic Premium – Is it worth it?

In a word… yes. Once I upgraded to Ezoic premium I immediately noticed that the quality of publishers improved, the types of ads were more visually appealing and ultimately my earnings increased (to the point that it covers the premium fee). I haven’t been part of Ezoic Premium for too long so I don’t have much to report back on, but my advice is that if your site is growing and you’re motivated to keep working on it, then upgrading to premium makes sense.

In terms of benefits these include:

  • You’re essentially paying more for access to larger advertisers with huge budgets (hence you’ll see the benefits in their spend on your site)
  • Cost starts at $500 per 5,000 of monthly ad revenue. Essentially, it’s an amount that you’re not going to miss based on the overall improvement in revenue and quality compared to if you don’t have premium ads

My blog earnings for 2020-2021 with Ezoic

I’m usually very open when it comes to sharing my affiliate project and sites, but in this case the sites I’m working on with Ezoic are still growing in very specific niches, and I don’t want to upset that by displaying the sites and potentially opening up any negative SEO attacks. Not that it has ever happened with the ones I have shared, but for now I’m keeping these to myself!

Still, I feel to make this review as legit as possible that you need to see I’m a user and not just a random blogger promoting the platform. So, here are my earnings from April 1st 2020 to April 30th 2021, split between all sites and their traffic levels:

All Sites – 12 month earnings overview by month 

Ezoic Revenue - All Sites 12 months screenshot

Revenue stats & website insights – All Sites

  • $2,286.74 total earnings
  • Estimated earning per thousand visitors – $9.29
  • 289,938 pageviews
  • The bulk of traffic and earnings come from one site which averages 16,000 visitors per month
  • Two of the websites are being used as a test for expired domains, one of which was hit heavily by Google around Christmas 2020
  • In 2021 I’ve been focusing 70% of my affiliate website efforts on a new site that is testing private affiliate programmes (essentially alternatives to the Amazon Associates programme), so for now it isn’t on Ezoic. Admittedly, I haven’t addressed the traffic dips for the sites currently on Ezoic, so they haven’t grown as much as they could’ve done in this 12 month period
  • The site that performs the best has a niche audience and steady traffic. Niche audiences can play into your success as much as traffic can (this is why affiliate websites in the hobby niches work incredibly well, as advertisers can target specific subsets of a sector with tailored, bespoke ads).

12 month revenue & data – Site #1

  • Site Niche – Music
  • 12 month Ezoic revenue – $1,834.20
  • 12 month pageviews – 194,920
  • Top performer out of all of my sites currently running Ezoic. The site target FAQ-lead content, and gets relevant traffic by providing long-form answers to very specific searches.

 

12 month revenue & data – Site #2

  • Site Niche – Home Hobbies
  • 12 month Ezoic revenue – $398.73
  • 12 month pageviews – 22,971
  • Built on an expired domain with the majority of revenue coming from a private affiliate and Amazon split. This is much more commercial in nature e.g. target ‘best x for x’ keywords. Ezoic revenue has been immediately put back into content growth for the site.
  • The site was hit around December 2020, which was expected due to the nature of the expired domain not being 100% relevant to the keywords the site is targeting. Still, it is slowly recovering and the fact it is still making revenue from multiple sources is a win in my books, with very little time personally spent on it (particularly so in the last 6 months).

 

12 month revenue & data – Site #3

  • Site Niche – Education
  • 12 month Ezoic revenue – $53.81
  • 12 month pageviews – 72,039
  • Another expired domain test, this time on a much more generic site. Main monetisation is via private affiliates, however in general it’s very new and still low in comparison to the other two sites. This is a slow burner!

To summarise this section, and as you’ll see in the following paragraph, my switch from AdSense to Ezoic meant that my initial growth in revenue immediately increased by 30%. It really does make sense for any blogger or website owners looking for a quick jump in revenue (perfect for funding copywriting services as you grow). 

 

Ezoic versus Google AdSense

When I first started blogging, I was only really aware of Google AdSense. To be honest, I’ve never been a huge fan, as the payouts are just ridiculously low. I’ve found that I’ve been able to get at least 30% higher monthly profits by simply switching over to Ezoic, and you get way better to support than you otherwise would with Google AdSense too.

Yes, Google AdSense is another very easy to use platform for beginners, but let’s not forget why we’re doing this… monaaaaaay! It’s just no secret that you’ll get more from Ezoic and it’s not like 10,000 visits per month is unattainable. Yes, Google AdSense has a lower traffic requirement of 100 visit per day, but still… it’s highly unlikely you’re going to make a fortune unless your traffic levels are in the six and seven figures (at which case you’d be crushing it with Ezoic or another premium platform anyway).

Ultimately, Ezoic is still a partner with Google, so you’re still going to have to ensure that your blog or site conforms with Google’s publishing guidelines. To be honest, if it doesn’t, then you’re probably not going to get onto any legitimate platform in the first place.

 

Common questions

If there are any questions you have please leave them below in the comments and I’ll get back to you. Below are some of the common questions other bloggers have asked me in the past, and also just ones I had when starting out with Ezoic:

How much traffic do you need to get accepted onto Ezoic?

10,000 page views per month is the minimum requirements you need to get accepted.

Is Ezoic premium worth it?

Yes. You get access to better advertisers that have larger budgets, and will be more specific (or at least more well-known) to your audience.

How do I get paid?

Ezoic pay you each month direct to your Paypal account. Simple!

 

Conclusion

In case you didn’t already guess it, I really do like Ezoic. It’s simple to use, they offer great to support (whether you directly request it or just on an ongoing basis via emails), and there’s scope to grow and increase your earnings as your site gathers traction.

With internal SEO tools and a clear emphasis on ensuring that your site doesn’t destroy its speed, it’s good that they’re not just thinking about making a bit of money out of you.

If I had to list the cons, the biggest one for me is that the 10k traffic minimum may be a little too high for beginners, and I think it should be reduced to 5k as some blogs have such a specific audience that even websites with low traffic levels can still make a bit of money. If I had that option, I would’ve been able to spend money on outsourcing content sooner, so essentially it’s a win for Ezoic too.

Also, another con is that any ad network is going to somewhat add to the ‘bloat’ of your site in the form of banners ads and general ad space. If you’re a stickler for page speed, don’t forget that you can test your ads before you go live. Just be aware that, with any form of added files, imagery, banners etc that there is naturally a payoff with optimisation. I recommend going light with the ads and testing growth as your user base and monthly traffic levels start to grow.

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