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Punished by Facebook for being too slow on the phone

Facebook recently posted on its official blog, that more than 40% of people left a mobile site just seconds after a click, because they were frustrated by slow loading times. They are looking to improve the user experience of viewing content in the Facebook in-app browser.

Since mobile is a relatively new channel, many businesses haven’t optimized their website for mobile yet. This can lead to negative experiences for people, and problems for businesses such as site abandonment, missed business objectives and inaccurate measurement.

Facebook will begin considering factors such as landing-page speeds when deciding what ads to show users. Advertisers who do not speed up their page load times will have their ads pushed back to the back of the line.

Facebook is encouraging brands and their partners to better optimize their mobile sites. The company is also expanding its “Help Center” for advertisers to offer tips on how to make their mobile sites faster.  Suggestions include minimizing landing page redirects, plug-ins and link shorteners. Also they can compress files to decrease mobile rendering time; and improving server response times with multi-region hosting.

Facebook will now start to “prefetch” (pre-load) brands’ mobile sites before people actually click on them. “This shortens mobile site load time by as much as 30%, improving user experience and decreasing the risk of site abandonment,” Facebook said. Pre-fetching will start in a phases, beginning now and completing by the end of September.  This boosts the overall performance of ads and increases the number of ad clicks that lead to site visits.

Mobile advertising will account for more than 80% of Facebook’s expected $22 billion in ad revenue for this year.

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Should I pay for traffic?

They are generally two ways of getting website traffic to your website – paid and unpaid.

What is paid traffic?

Paid traffic is when a publisher buys traffic from a third party. They pay for companies to send visitors to their website. This can be done through legitimate means, such as through AdWords, Facebook and content recommenders such as Outbrain and Taboola.  There are shady companies that can send low quality, and/or fraudulent traffic. These shady sources of traffic can get you blacklisted from Google.

Why would someone pay for traffic?

Paying for traffic is utilized in arbitrage. The goal of arbitrage is to make more money from the traffic coming to your website than it cost to purchase that traffic. If it cost $X to buy a given visitor, and that visitor earns you more than $X on the page, then the arbitrage model can be profitable for you.

Arbitrage can also be very risky. Paid traffic provides lower CPMs than unpaid traffic, so it might not always be profitable. Also, fraudulent traffic will get flagged by Google or other revenue sources and can be refunded to the advertisers for their money spent. Therefore, your site ends up with less money earned.

What is unpaid traffic?

Organic traffic is unpaid traffic. Direct traffic is another form of unpaid traffic. Direct traffic is when users go to your website directly by typing the url. Unpaid traffic also includes getting referred traffic from other websites. Search engine traffic often makes up the largest amount of unpaid traffic. It comes from people searching on sites like Google or Bing.

Unpaid traffic is more likely to get recurring visits, and is more beneficial in long run, due to consistent monetization of the website.

In Summary

Organic traffic is the best way to create more profit from your website, especially in the long run.  Buying traffic in small amounts from legitimate sources can be can be profitable, but needs to be monitored carefully.

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Facebook starting to use Header Bidding

Facebook’s Audience Network is testing header bidding technology.

This enables ad exchanges to compete against each other for ad space on other websites. Facebook is testing header bidding on both mobile and video ads.

Some publishers, such as USA Today Sports Media Group are already working with Facebook’s Audience Network to implement the technology.

Facebook is looking to expand its Audience Network, which lets brands extend their Facebook ad campaigns outside of Facebook. Audience Network generated $1 billion in sales last year.

For more info on monetization, see this article.

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Monetization, Let’s Start From The Beginning