Gaming Site Monetization -How I increase my Ad Revenue with Ezoic [2020]

This post contains affiliate links. If you sign up on a service that I mentioned in this post, I will receive a commission from the company that offers the program.

This is a long post, as I want to stuff in as much detail as possible for you to refer to. While it is generally on how a website can make money and a review on Ezoic, it is more toward the Gaming Niche.

There is also a TL;DR section near the end of the post.


What is website monetization?


I have planned to write this post for a long time. This post is primarily about why I created this website, and how did I earn money from it. While you can easily set up a website on the internet in just a few clicks nowadays, to make it last is completely another story.

This website has been around for nearly 3 years now – and manage to give me a small income that can pay my rent and then some, so I guess I do have something to share on the process to get to this point.

Website Monetization Methods


When it comes to the online content monetization, it is either one of the three things below:

  • Contextual Advertisement – Showing ad on your content, either video or post.
  • Affiliate Marketing – Selling other people’s products via your referral.
  • Selling your own products – This is straightforward, you have a product that can be sold online.

In today’s post, I will mainly discuss the first monetization method – Putting advertisements on your website and earning money from it. This is often referred to as Ad Revenue.

Basically, when a visitor visits your website, they will see an advertisement base on their recent interest or potentially may align with their interest.

The Adnetwork Market


When it comes to Advertisement Program, you only have a handful of options. The biggest and most popular is undeniably Adsense, which is super easy to integrate and you can almost see it anywhere on the internet.

An integration with Adsense is simple. If you don’t know how to do it, just perform a quick search on “Adsense applying process” and you are good to go. The typical process involving setting sense account, submit some technical requirement to google, and voila, you are up.

NOTES – That does sound simple, but I have been rejected from Adsense before they approved my site.

This is completely normal, Adsense does have several criteria before they can give you the full access to all those fancy advertising. It can vary from the tone of your website, the stage, or even the content!

adsense apply process
Simple as it looks, and the approval result is even faster!

Adsense does come with some issues though, while it is easy to integrate and show ad on your website, the earning is often very low. Many content creators may gear toward other methods like Affiliate Marketing as soon as they find out how much they can earn with putting ads on their site.

There are a couple of other well-known ones, but if you take a closer look, there is only a handful of them with the term A Google Certified Publishing Partner. The main reason lies in the way their ad is served, some of the programs offer you very ambiguous products, sometimes fishy, and occasionally put in some disturbing images in the middle of your content.

What I used on this site


Over the last three years of building this website, I have experienced some well-known ad networks out there. Right now, I used both Adsense and Ezoic for the ad you are seeing right now.

Normally, people will apply for Adsense for some quick income, and later change for another one, for me myself, I got Adsense approval after I applied with Ezoic.

Before that, I was struggling with other programs where I earn only pennies and receive some not relevant ads to my site.

Ezoic approved my web site since July 2017, at that time, my site has around 14,000 pageviews a month. This is also the typical requirement when Ezoic reviews a new website application to their program.

What is Ezoic?


Quick DescriptionEzoic is an ad network program and they provide ad inventory for websites that are eligible to display it.

Similar to Adsense, Ezoic provides its publisher (Website Owner) with the inventory of advertisements that they have. These inventories come from businesses that want to promote their products.

These advertisement banners (or any other relevant format) are then put up in to an “inventory” and the network will organize it to distribute it to websites that they seem the audience will potentially interest in it.

When you apply for Ezoic, you will be assigned to a support representative – which is your point of contact for setting things up and starting on the program. The time between applying for Ezoic and going live is typically around one week.

Ezoic primary stat revolves around EPMV – Earning Per Thousand Visitors – While they have a full article explaining this stat. A quick way to understand it is to perform a simple math formula.

For a quick example, my site’s earning for January was 250$ with 45,000 visitors – meaning my EPMV is 250$ / (45,000/1,000) ~ 5.5 $. This means I will earn 5.5$ if the site got 1000 visitors.

Base on this metric, I can estimate the earning of a month base on the number of visitors on my site on a daily basis.

The bottom line for this stat is it is similar to CPM (Cost Per 1000 Impression) but is on a deeper level. This number is varied depending on your niche – There is also reports of 30$ – 50$ EPMV on a niche like Health or Fitness. Ezoic made a compilation of the best niche in this post.

Ezoic Review


Ezoic Integration process

Ezoic currently offer two types of integration once you decide to join their programs

  • Name Server Integration – Changing your DNS Name Server to Ezoic DNS
  • WordPress Ezoic Integration – A plugin to let you integrate your website to Ezoic (WordPress only website)

They often recommend the prior over the latter as it offers them more flexibility on your website – basically they will also handle stuff like Asset Management, some DNS magic.

For a more technical oriented person – It may be a red flag, but to put things in one sentence, this approach let them put some more script to control the advertisement on your website.

Ezoic Tools

A quick look at all Ezoic Tools and Solutions can be found here.

As soon as you join the program, you will get access to the Publisher Dashboard. This provides you with a quick glance at your daily earning, traffic, and other metrics on your content and your audience.

As of 2020 – They have launched a new publisher dashboard – which is more eye-pleasing and organize applications and statistics in an easier to read format.

ezoic review 2020 for gaming website
Ezoic Dashboard for earning report

If you want some deeper insight, Ezoic offers a powerful tool called the Big Data Analytics – which is an in-depth dashboard on how your website performs. This provides you with more reports on how your content performs, and what pages currently produce the most money.

The main way of Ezoic Advertisement work is the Ad Tester Application – which is available via the dashboard. This app allows you to put ads in several places on the website/ content and Ezoic will automatically perform testing to determine the best locations.

BONUS – Ezoic has another thing up their sleeves – The Ad Network Index – This graph shows the up and down trend of Ad Revenue over a period of time, which can explain why your earning of a month is lower than the previous while your traffic is steadily growing.

Ezoic review Ad Revenue Index

The Ad Index can be accessed here

Ezoic Review – Case Study [2020]


Nothing is better than the proof, here is my actual income while I applying for Ezoic. This is divided into three periods (with the latest earning is from February 2020)

Ezoic Earning – Checkpoint #1 [Gaming Website]

Period: 6 Months
Average Monthly Traffic: 14,600 Pageviews

Ezoic Review - 6 months earning

For the first 6 months with Ezoic, I managed to earn a total of 68.34$ – Which is not something to brag about 🙁 However, to put in consideration, before July 2018 – I manage to earn around 2 – 3$ with another ad network.

A couple of things to note on this period

  • I used a bad hosting plan around this time – which slow down my site and occasionally the site is inaccessible (Yes, I suck at finding the right provider) The stability regain on October 2018
  • I write content without much of researching on Keyword, mostly randomly playing the game and put out content base on my experience. This took a lot of time and sometimes people don’t even bother reading my 3,000 words post.
  • This eventually leads to burn out, and I stopped writing for a while for other tasks.

But of course, minus the expense of hosting (~4$/ month at that time) I have around 2 cups of coffees for the whole month… Let’s move on to the next checkpoint.

Ezoic Earning – Checkpoint #2 [Gaming Website]

Period: 6 Months
Average Monthly Traffic: 22,600 Pageviews/ Month
EPMV: 1.05$ ~ 1.3$


For the next three months (February 2019 – April 2019) I didn’t write much and don’t even bother to touch on the site, the earning slowly decline to peanuts – literally.

Feeling that things are near the end, I write some more and revise my old posts a little. This managed to get me the first spike in May – which is from 9,900 pageviews from April to 24,130 pageviews in May.

The earning go with this trend and triple to 27.64$ in May. In June 2019, this number makes another leap (2.4 times) to 65.08$ while my traffic is still around 25,000 Pageviews/ Month.

This is also one of the factors to put in when estimating and planning for your content. The difference this time is mainly to EPMV, some post I wrote has a higher EPMV than usual.

Again, there are several changes from my side on this period as well:

  • In May 2019, My posts now contain some keywords that people actually search for. From this point, I focus on only writing the content that can rank.
  • The process of writing the post is now shorter as I gather information from different sources and try to write it in a simpler tone. While I still play the game, I write faster
  • After June 2019, The search volumes for the topic I wrote slowly decline, so does the earning.
  • EPMV is somehow correlated with the traffic, as more traffic, the EPMV tend to move to a higher value.

Ezoic Earning – Checkpoint #3 [Gaming Website]

Period: 6 Months
Average Monthly Traffic: 67,700 Pageviews/ Month
EPMV: 1.45$ ~ 6.5$


This is probably where I am now. As of August 2019, I was struggling with new content ideas and didn’t put out much content. However, as this is approaching the holiday season, the EPMV went up, and I managed to earn 2.5 times in November with less traffic than September (On November, I only around 15,000 Pageviews while on September it is around 23,000)

It is also in November I was invited by Ezoic to join their Ezoic Premium Program – which let website access to higher bidding advertisements. The greener section of the above graph highlight this earning – which is around 15% of my total earning. As this premium program does have a lot to talk about, we will put that in discussion later on.

At the end of November, I perform a round-check on my highest earning pages (This can be done with Ezoic Big Data Analytic >> Landing Pages Report) After this, I managed to have an idea on what my audience wants, and create a writing plan base on this.

Stick to this, I wrote around 25 Posts with the right keywords and stick to a relevance topic. This turns out to be the right move on my side, as in January my traffic went from 29,000 pageviews on Dec to a whooping 68,000 Pageviews in January.

This again doubles my earning (From 118$ to 224$) This trend continues toward the end of February.

Notes on this period:

  • Again, research before writing your post is crucial. Make sure to know which content resonance with the audience and planning on that.
  • I moved to another hosting provider. This time, using my knowledge in technical, I picked one of the cloud providers on the market. This site now faster, more reliable, and can even handle more requests.
  • EPMV can grow over time while you are on Ezoic.
  • Use those tools, they are created for a reason! Ezoic provides Big Data Analytic which presents insight into all the data of your website. I have used this to determine what is the highest EPMV site.

Ezoic Review – The Roundup


  • Does Ezoic increase ad revenue?

Over the period of 18 Months. My earning went from 6$/ Month to 230$/ Month – which is more than the promise Increase ad revenue 50-250% with Ezoic they claimed 🙂 and I am happy with this.

Of course, this involves the efforts on your side. Ezoic only offers their tools and advertisement testing. I have briefly listed out what I did in my above case study. Let me know if you want to know more!

  • Does it slow down your site?

The thing to clear out is integrating with an Ad Network does impact your site speed, regardless of the provider. This is due to the fact that there are scripts that require to load for these advertisements to load correctly. What I like about Ezoic on this front is they offer their own tool for this matter – The Site Speed Application.

What this does is simply implement best practices on website optimization for you (stuff like caching and using a CDN – Content Delivery Network) Ezoic Site Speed tool also shows you a quick statistic on how your site performs as well.

  • A quick summary of Ezoic Pros & Cons
ProsCons
– Healthy Advertisements.
– Easy to integrate.
– High-Quality support services.
– Powerful Analytic and other site optimizations Tools.
– Active and friendly Community.
– Name Server Integration may turn down some publishers.

Should you use Ezoic?


Well, the answer is it depends. If you are currently only using Adsense for monetization, then I would recommend trying out Ezoic. As it surely as they promised – improving your earning on Ad revenue. In my case, the earning consistently went up on a period of 18 months.

Another factor that you should consider is the main monetization method on your website, if you are planning to focus more on Affiliate Marketing instead of an ad, then you may not want to join for the program. While most of the Ezoic advertisements are automatically served, it may become obtrusive for your affiliate content if you want to promote those.

You can register for Ezoic at this link.

TL;DR


  • This site is currently monetized with an Advertisement Network.
  • This Ad Network is Ezoic – A Google Certified Publishing Partner.
  • Ezoic did help me to Increase ad revenue For this site, it is from 6$ to 250$ a month.
  • If you are only using Adsense at the moment, try out Ezoic.
  • If you are in the Gaming Niche, your EPMV can vary from $2 to $15. Mine is around $7 in the last few months.

BONUS TIPS

  • If you just starting out a website/ blog, make sure to be in the right community. This is to help yourself expose to best practices, and not repeat any mistakes
  • Have some budget for setting things up. If you are planning to earn on your website, you will spend money at some steps along the way, whether it is the domain, theme or later hire someone to write for you.
  • Pick the right hosting provider, make some research on communities like Reddit to get unbias reviews. The right hosting provider will save you a lot of time from frustration.
  • Planning your content base on users, not just your interest.

Conclusion


When it comes to having your own website and expose yourself on the internet, you probably want to earn some side income.

The idea is that it is not a passive income idea. You need to “actively” put in the effort for it, research on what makes people tick, and how you can put your content to the audience.

Knowing how to use your tools and which program/ offers is the right one for you is also crucial during this journey.

If you can jump through all of these hoops, then I would say, it is totally worth it in the end.

Extra Bonus!

If you also have a gaming website and want to discuss more on monetization, feel free to drop a comment, I am happy to provide you the experience on this site!

About ethugamer

A gaming enthusiast at heart, I grew up playing video games since the 90s. I am not a pro gamer at any means but video games have been a part of my life now. I currently writing and publishing content on the gaming world on this site with my second language (That's why ethugamer sounds a little awkward!)

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