Awesome to see great community input and feedback with some very interesting new ideas/concepts.
Before I give my comments about each ad type, let me emphasize that it’s about the TOTAL user experience. You know too many ads and ad types can be too overwhelming and annoying.
For example, the #1 spot place (on top of the first search result) can be used for “any” ad type such as a Bing Ad, display (banner) ad, keyword (staking) ad, or affiliate ad.
You can place several ads above each other at the top (either the same ad type or different ad types), mix them up in the search results, and/or place them at the bottom.
So, you have to make decisions about how many ads and ad types you want to place and where.
Keyword Staking Ads
I already made several comment here… Keyword staking and consumptive model
In short, I think the current quality of these ads is poor from a user’s perspective. Often the ads are irrelevant and annoying. The main reasons are that these ads are “free”, placed by “wannabe” affiliates (and not by professional advertisers), there is low “competition” among PRE keyword stakers, and no incentive to create effective ads (as there is no “Quality Score” mechanism that takes notice of CTR, keyword relevance, and quality of landing page… to get lower CPC).
For me, the ultimate solution is to “model/mimic” the Google/Bing advertising platforms where professional advertisers get all the needed tools to effectively and efficiently place their keyword ads.
Think about easy management of keyword campaigns for thousands of keywords, relevant stats to find relevant/interesting keywords, Quality Score is used, where actual to be paid PPC is based on the #2 bidder (his CPC + $0.01), payments can be done in fiat, professional support and documentation, tax invoicing, etc.
Especially, don’t underestimate the “fact” that professional advertisers don’t want to pay with cryptocurrencies (and unwanted token price volatility), and need reporting tools to evaluate their advertising campaigns.
Of course, it will take some time to develop our “own” professional keyword advertising platform. And we can’t expect that the Presearch keyword advertising will soon attract the same number of (professional) advertisers as Bing (or Google) (this will take years),.
So, the expected income from a consumptive model in the beginning will be (much) lower in comparison to what Google and Bing are earning.
But keep in mind that keyword advertising is significantly more effective in comparison to display ads that do not target the specific keyword phrase.
Also, as the text ads do perfectly fit into the search results (they should mimic the style and have the same maximum text and description seizes)… these ads have relatively high CTRs, and advertisers are willing to pay more in comparison to display (banner) ads (focused on branding).
So, use this knowledge and prioritize keyword ads at the #1 spot in the search results.
So, for now, let’s look at just a single Bing keyword (external) ad at the #1 spot… and use this as the benchmark.
By definition, this ad is placed by the most effective bidder on Bing (i.e. earning the Bing platform the most). And we can assume that this ad is targeted the best and is less intrusive (as it has high CTR, high quality, and an effective landing page).
So, the #1 Bing Ad PPC (Pay per click) is the benchmark for each keyword (phrase).
You know, there are keywords where the advertiser pays “cents per click” and keywords where they have to pay “dollars per click”. It’s all a matter of branch, user intent, and competition between advertisers.
But on average, for Google Ads (formerly known as Google Adwords), the CPC is between $1 and $2.
But without sufficient competition and in the start-up phase, it will be difficult to achieve these dollar values.
So, just to give an example… suppose the top advertiser on Bing pays $1 for a specific keyword, and this ad is shown on the Presearch platform, how much will Presearch get?
Well, as Presearch is using a ”middleman” and Bing also will take its “commission”, let’s assume that Presearch will get 30% of this $1.
Hence, the benchmark PPC will be $0.30.
It just doesn’t make sense to show an “internal” keyword ad where the platform advertiser will pay less than this amount, assuming that you only want to show one #1 spot ad.
So, we can introduce some form of consumptive keyword staking/advertising, but if the platform charges/earns a lower PPC (less than $0.30)… you better show the Bing ad.
So, we should introduce a minimum CPC price (also to ensure better ad quality)
Ideal LT solution
We also know that the PPC that advertisers do want to pay (at a maximum) is different for each keyword.
In the ideal situation, the Presearch platform develops a system where it scrapes the Bing PPC price for the top bid, and it will automatically determine the minimum PPC for advertisers (30% of the Bing PPC price).
Note that you can attract advertisers to join our platform as they can advertise for 30% of the costs they are paying at Bing.
Now, I know this sounds all rather theoretical and maybe not easy to implement. Still, it’s good to understand the mechanism that each keyword has its own (based on competition) PPC price and potential (maximum) ad income… and that we should aim to reach that maximum.
Hence, my simple solution for the new consumptive model for the time being…
The new system is based on competing advertisers who set their CPC for each keyword. The highest bidder wins and pays his set PPC (No adjustments for Quality Score, Ad relevance, or quality of landing page… these are difficult to develop, and should be added later).
And we introduce a minimum PPC of $0.30 (for all keywords).
Please, don’t make the “mistake” of introducing a consumptive model without having a minimum CPC (or very low minimum) as for most keywords the competition is too small, and as a result, the CPC will be low and the current wannabe affiliates will continue with placing irrelevant and annoying ads, resulting in poorer user experience.
Start with PRE as the “payment method”, but add later fiat payment options (the sooner the better).
And use this ordering (and only show one ad)…
- Overrule Ad (see below).
- Winning Presearch platform ad, and if no bids
- Show the Bing Ad.
An alternative is to show 2 (or more) ads (or place the second/third ad lower in the search results).
The overrule ad is used by the team for either:
- A PTA advertiser who selects a limited number of keyword ads to support his campaign.
- A promo ad by the team. You know, for example, the recent airdrop campaign to attract new users… by using the keyword “Airdrop”, you can refer potential new users by saying “Use the platform and search for Airdrop and select the first (ad) result”… this can also be very effective for affiliates who can use this search query (with their own Presearch affiliate link) to share among their friends or social networks.
And concerning the current (free) keyword staking…
Use it as it is right now. So, for the highest staker, his ad will always be shown at the bottom of the search results.
I’m sure these measurements will lead to a higher user experience with better-targeted and more professional ads with optimal monetization.
Presearch Takeover Ads
In November, I already explained to this Community what the current problems are with the PTAs… Takeover Ads Improvements and how to solve them.
Just skip the whole full-page background image ad idea, and replace it with the common often used fixed-sized banner ads that are strategically placed on the homepage and search result pages and don’t overlap any (Presearch platform) content but integrate these into the platform (homepage and search results) content.
Just as other blogs and content providers do…
And please make adjustments to the homepage and use it for our branding/promoting instead of “selling our soul/identity”.
This also means that the default background image should not be an image at all… but just the current (restful for the eyes) background color that users will see when they toggle off “Show backgrounds”, and only use the background if selected in the settings by the user.
Also, don’t experiment any further with “clickable” zones without showing clear buttons.
A user should not click by “accident” on an ad. It happened to me yesterday 3 times… it’s just too annoying. And yes, I do know now about this… but first-time users won’t, and their first impression is “poor”.
If you don’t know where to place the button effectively and need annoying floating buttons… and now want to solve this with clickable areas, you should go back to the drawing table and create fixed-sized ads where users are used to clicking on the banner…
Tile Buttons (or Site Suggests)
The idea is to add additional site suggestions “besides” the current (regular) 10 “Site Search” icons that can be changed by the user in the settings section.
Of course, these site suggestions are affiliate links and are used as monetization tools.
But what is the main difference between the “Metasearch” icons and these tiles?
The Meta search icons will use the same search query as entered in the search box, if you click the icon, you will visit the suggested site with this search query already entered in the URL and visit the proper URL based on the search query.
This is a huge time saver as you don’t have to (re)enter the same search query.
But with these new tiles… the search query is not used, and you will always end up on the homepage of the suggested site… So, less effective and less user-friendly.
But what’s most important…
There is no relationship between the search query and the suggested tiles sites.
So, what tiles icons/sites are you seeing?
Well, believe it or not (as it’s difficult to prove, but test it out yourself)…
The external tool used, is looking at your cookies… can it find cookies from earlier visited sites (and supported sites)… you’ll see these irrelevant site suggestions most of the time.
The service used is Siteplug.com which is “famous” for integrations with key tracking platforms (just look at their website to find the names).
So, although Presearch is not using cookies and Siteplug is not placing (third-party) cookies on our platform… the algorithm to select the suggested sites is using your cookies to stimulate you to revisit these sites… but as said… no relationship at all with the actual search query.
And you know, Siteplug makes it possible to effectively use these terms for selecting the site suggestions.
For me, it’s a big question why our platform has chosen to show irrelevant site suggestions and accepts this kind of cookie tracking.
Maybe, there is/was a conflict with the other tool for the autocomplete monetization (as in the search bar when you enter your query).
Also, very annoying… on mobiles… you used to have the regular Site Search icons… but these have been placed behind the “+” menu and been replaced by these less functional and irrelevant for the search query tile buttons.
So, Tim first cried victory in the AMA, that we improved the mobile user experience with less “clutter”, followed by later replacement of real clutter. Plus, as you can imagine… often overlaps the PTA image/content.
So, my advice… stop with these tiles immediately or replace them with real site suggestions based on actual keywords with redirects to the proper place using the keywords (and yes if the user has not entered any keyword yet… you may show “general” site suggestions).
Sorry, for my cynical words… but this makes me mad.
(Bing) Keyword Ads
I have no problems with these ads. As explained, it’s probably the best replacement for as long as we don’t have our professional keyword advertising platform.
In July 2023, I reported here about the low-hanging fruit for affiliate income and gave 3 examples (placements and usages).
So, yes, as the “inventor”, I like the idea, and I’m glad the team took action… but again… it’s all about execution.
This was my first post in July 2023… New User Incentives (scroll down to see my image with 3 colored buttons).
I think I don’t have to repeat what went wrong concerning the redirect links and other annoying user experiences.
For the Sponsor Link…
The idea that a user can (voluntarily) select the Presearch affiliate link to support the project is still good.
Maybe the easiest way is to add the blue sponsor link that by default goes to the default “affiliate page”, usually the home page but sometimes a specific landing page.
And make it clear (for example with a hover over) that users will “Support us and visit our sponsor homepage”. So, making it clear that they won’t always end up on the specific deep link as shown in the organic search results.
For the Tiles (Site Suggestions)…
(See above) I think it’s possible to use Siteplug properly and come up with site suggestions based on search queries.
For the possible Keyword Ad…
Select a range of affiliate programs that keyword stakers/advertisers are not allowed to use themselves but are being used by Presearch itself.
This way, you can ensure the ad copy quality but also earn a significant amount of affiliate income (exceeding the potential keyword ad income).
You know, think about all CEXs, trading platforms and tools, crypto projects, etc. as we do have a crypto-minded audience.
I’m sure that users will appreciate sponsored keyword ads by Presearch itself as this ensures quality and validity and will be trusted more. So, much higher CTRs if used by Presearch itself.
Elsewhere in this community, I even proposed to “ban” all affiliate programs for keyword staking/advertising, just as Google also bans most of them.
But maybe start “banning” affiliate programs for the main current “direct” affiliate programs and partnerships the team has already spent time and energy to set up a relationship with.
So, overall, the initial execution was sometimes “horrible”, I still think there is much to win from both a user experience and monetization viewpoint.