Placing Ads for Profit

Although paid programming is undoubtedly growing on the Web, it's not the only game in town. In fact, content is being used to sustain another tried-and-true Web business model: advertising. When you attract enough visitors to your Web site by providing marketable content, you can place advertisements and earn money from advertisers.

Looking at sites that sell

We know that you recognize the online billboard model of providing content, attracting visitors, and then selling advertising space on the site (thus, the term billboard). In this model, the content is typically good quality and free. The articles, tips, videos (or whatever type of content you choose to offer) are used to draw visitors to a Web site. The more eyeballs the content attracts, the more money that can be earned by selling ad space. Just like that, free content is turned into money in the bank! Several popular types of sites support earning revenues from ad dollars:

  • Portal: This model was one of the original Web business models. This type of site provides a host of information on a specific area of interest. Sites such as The Knot (www.theknot.com) and iVillage (www.ivilliage.com) are examples of information portals. In each case, the sites offer a collection of information targeted toward a specific audience.
  • Search engine: Google and Yahoo! might have the market cornered, but niche search engines are making headway. These types of specialty search engine sites narrow the search process ...

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