I recently had an email chat with Alden DoRosario from Chitika about the recent rapid growth of their ad network. They have been aggressively signing up bloggers and other independent publishers, and are now getting over 2 billion monthly impressions, with their behaviorally targeted Premium ads getting hundreds of millions of monthly search driven impressions, putting their search distribution network on par with Ask.com.
How their premium ad network works is they target the ads to be relevant to search query that sent traffic to the publisher's site, thus even if the ads are not shown on a search page they still are seen by searchers right after they search and click through to the site.
Alden gave me a link for a $75 bonus code for any publisher that makes $75 in commissions before the end of October. Publishers are paid 60% of the ad click value, with the house getting 40%. I just added their ads to my mom's weight loss blog. It looks like their ad network is not quite as deep as Google's but they do well for higher volume search queries.
Most search engines are a backbone for an ad network, but it is hard to build query volume for a new search engine. Just look at how few people have used Wikia Search in spite of endless hype. Wikia Search got a couple million lifetime searches whereas Chitika gets billions of monthly ad impressions.
Most people do not feel they have a search problem, but many publishers feel their content could be monetized better. If you didn't have huge search distribution how would you create a search ad network? If an ad network grows big enough do you think they could do it the other way around, using their ad network distribution as a backbone to start a search engine?
Disclaimer: The free $75 bonus is an affiliate link, but when I chatted with Chitika I pushed hard to get publishers the best payout bonus and longest payout bonus period possible rather than focusing on trying to maximize my commissions.
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