Paid by the keystroke

From this Technorati survey, The Wall Street Journal jumps to a conclusion:

It takes about 100,000 unique visitors a month to generate an income of $75,000 a year.

Yeah, right, says Robert Stacy McCain:

I’m doing G*o*o*g*l*e A*d*s*e*n*s*e (you’re not actually supposed to mention it on your blog) which threw me a whopping $153.25 for 243,000 page impressions in March.

Maybe Dr. Joyner (who’s also a member of the BlogAds network I’m not allowed to join) can do the math and tell me how many page impressions per month I’d have to get in order to gross $75,000 a year from Google. Short answer: A freaking lot.

Well, yeah. I have no idea what the scale is at G*A*, but inasmuch as $153.25 for a month is about 1/40 what it would take to make $75k a year, I’m guessing somewhere around 9.9 million page impressions per month. Which is indeed a freaking lot.

For myself, I’m delighted to be running at less than a triple-digit loss each year.



  1. fillyjonk »

    21 April 2009 · 7:00 pm

    I suppose someone could write a program to troll the web and somehow generate a bunch of “unique hits” on the sites, thus “stuffing the ballot box” so to speak. Or, I suppose the company in question, being an arm of The Search Engine that Must Not Be Named has probably figured that out already, and written a counter program to explode the websites of anyone who tried it.

  2. CGHill »

    21 April 2009 · 7:07 pm

    The Big G is constantly tweaking its methodology. I’ve noticed that my PageRank, which climbed up to 6 (out of a possible 10) for a few years, is back down to 5. This isn’t perturbing, exactly, and traffic is actually down a hair from its peak, but it does cut down on one’s braggadocio.

  3. Lisa Paul »

    21 April 2009 · 7:59 pm

    The Search Engine Formerly Known as G**gle is indeed stacking the deck. They do have the software to determine if you are cheating. And despite my blog doubling its modest traffic every month since I started posting regularly, it’s gone DOWN from its former Page Rank. In fact every blogger I know has seen their Page Rank go down. Which I think is TSEFKAG’s way of “grading on a curve”.

    Most bloggers who actually EARN don’t make their money from GA. Some comes from other ad networks. Most revenue comes from writing assignments, paid guest blogging gigs and, in extremely rare cases, from book deals.

  4. CGHill »

    21 April 2009 · 8:20 pm

    There’s that other system, BlogAds, but I have no idea how that’s supposed to work either.

    To be perfectly honest, I don’t know how I could make a living off this place unless I had the time to spend 40 hours on it. And that’s not 40 hours a week: that’s 40 hours a day.

  5. Jeff Brokaw »

    22 April 2009 · 10:14 am

    So, in other words, my careful plan to avoid hits at my own site was pure genius!

  6. The Other McCain »

    25 April 2009 · 9:38 am

    Foolishness Makes Janeane Really Annoying…

    Envy is just not my strong suit. Which might explain why I’m not politically on the left. Dustbury isn’t raking the blog loot, either: “I’m delighted to be running at less than a triple-digit loss each year.”…

  7. CGHill »

    25 April 2009 · 8:18 pm

    Meanwhile, brazen careerist Penelope Trunk says, flat-out, “You’re not going to make money from your blog.”

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