Part 6 - Portfolio Optimisation - Traffic Domains

Part 6 - Portfolio Optimisation - Traffic Domains

If you remember from previous articles the normalised RPM allows us to precisely compare one monetisation provider versus another.

This metric is VERY different from the traditional RPM that is often used more as a marketing tool than an actual unit of measurement. The normalised RPM is the revenue from every monetisation source divided by the raw unfiltered traffic, times by one thousand.

nRPM = Revenue / (Raw Traffic) x 1000

Escrow.com

The chart below is one that shared at Domaining Europe and highlights a number of opportunities for domain investors. The first is on average, direct advertisers pay considerably more for traffic compared to Google based sources.

Normalised RPM chart

This should be no surprise but one of the problems that many domain owners have is they don't have the scale to access these larger payouts. In addition, the majority of monetisation sources are obligated to send the traffic to a potentially sub-optimal solution (eg. Google) so the traffic never gets exposed to the direct advertising networks.

What the chart also displays is each of the parking providers in the sample have massive swings in their average payout levels each day. This is contrary to what many people would expect.

The second chart shows what percentage of the traffic each company is winning over time for the portfolio being measured. The first thing you will notice is that although direct advertising networks pay more, they only pay more for a small amount of the traffic. The reason for this is they don’t have the breadth of advertisers that Google has…..but this is beginning to change.

Percentage of Traffic Won

What can be seen is no company wins more than 35% of the traffic on any particular day. This means the best case scenario that you have with leaving all of your domains with one company is 65% of the time the traffic could perform better elsewhere. Remember, that’s the BEST case scenario. The reality is typically much worse.

Both these two charts also show that every company wins some traffic. So moving all of your domains away from every company is a bad idea. The best thing to do is to drive the right traffic to the right company at the right time. For whatever reason, each of the parking companies being tested performed really well on a subset of domains….the challenge is the subset is often a moving target.

The third chart shows how a typical domain’s traffic could be routed across an eighteen-day period of time. Each row in the chart represents three days. What it shows is how the traffic is routed based upon the normalised RPM being generated for three parking companies. This is a sample of one domain and it should not be construed that one company is better for ALL domains. As can be seen, at the domain level the swings in who is winning is quite dramatic.

Traffic Routing For a Domain

The case for routing your traffic with a technically proficient company is incontrovertible. Building systems, yourself is an enormous undertaking and I would highly recommend against pursing the investment in time and money so that you can focus on other endeavours.

The fact is if you wish to extract the maximum amount of return from your traffic then you need to pursue a course of action that leads to intelligently routing your traffic across multiple monetisation solutions. If you don't do this then you're leaving money on the table.

In the next article I will begin unpacking how to run a properly constructed traffic test as part of your overall portfolio optimisation strategy.

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The Hidden Value of Optimisation

The Hidden Value of Optimisation

Many domain portfolio owners get so focused on their parking statistics that they forget about other factors that impact the overall performance of their portfolio. In this article I would like to unpack the effect the Euro/US exchange rate has had on a portfolio and to illustrate that all is not as it seems.

Escrow.com

I was recently looking into the performance of a particular portfolio that does a little over $20,000 per month in revenue. Given the size, I was confident that it was statistically significant for my analysis.

What I was investigating was the RPM (Revenue Per Thousand Visitors) trend so that I could try and understand what is going on with the overall performance. The reason why I was interested in the RPM is because the measurement effectively removes the impact of any fluctuations in traffic.

Since Sept 2014 the RPM for the account had dropped 6.5% from 13.85 to 13.00. Many portfolio owners have experienced some downturn across this period of time but I thought that further investigation was warranted. It just so happened that the portfolio had a large amount of European traffic and this got me thinking.

It wasn’t long before I had the below graph of the Euro/US exchange rate for the same period of time. The Euro had effectively depreciated by around 20% and this is what had contributed to the adverse results.

USD to Euro

 

There was some good news in the all of this analysis. Even though the Euro/US exchange rate had dropped by 20% the overall impact on the client’s portfolio was only 6.5%. The reason for this is that as the Euro dropped versus the $US the ParkLogic systems automatically migrated the traffic to higher paying European monetisation providers. As the client was being paid in Euros this effectively meant they were being paid more.

Any traffic that was being highly paid by US companies remained with them as long as they were paying more than the impact of the exchange devaluation.

I know that this all sounds a little complicated but it clearly illustrates why systems like the one developed by ParkLogic are so effective in reducing external factors that impact the revenue line. We've found that if you leave all of your traffic with a single provider for longer than about a week, then you will be affected by things such as the exchange rate.

If you leave all of your traffic with one monetisation company and there is a crash in the exchange rate, then you will be in for a rough ride. On the other hand, think of a service like ParkLogic’s as being like a “stop loss”. If things go bad, then the traffic is automatically moved for your benefit.

Full disclosure dictates that I declare that I’m one of the founders of ParkLogic. It’s not often that I openly discuss some of the hidden benefits like the one above we provide our clients. It just so happens that the exchange example is a clear case of why traffic optimisation really does work.

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Michael Gilmour has been in business for over 32 years and has both a BSC in Electronics and Computer Science and an MBA. He was the former vice-chairman of the Internet Industry Association in Australia and is in demand as a speaker at Internet conferences the world over. He has also recently published his first science fiction book, Battleframe.

Michael is passionate about working with online entrepreneurs to help them navigate their new ventures around the many pitfalls that all businesses face. Due to demands on his time, Michael may be contacted by clicking here for limited consulting assignments.

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