Is my Ezoic setup optimized?

Modified on: Tue, 16 Feb, 2021

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Monetization:

1. Ad Placeholder Setup

2. Ad Tester Settings

3. Ads.txt

4. Adsense Mediation

5. Sellers.JSON

6. Check for Ad Restrictions


Settings:

7. Integration Method

8. Traffic Settings


Speed:

9. Ezoic Caching


Content:

10. Objectionable Content

11. BONUS (Big Data Analytics Reports to check)


Ezoic is a platform to help in multiple aspects of running an online publishing business. That includes, but is not limited to, using machine learning to automatically place ad locations and sizes, advanced analytics, caching, site speed, video and much more! Each area can be quite overwhelming to understand fully at first glance, but in reality there’s only a few things you need to manually change for optimizing your setup.


This guide is to help take you through the steps to ensure your Ezoic setup is perfectly optimized. We compiled this list based on the thousands of sites we see on a daily basis, and these are the action items we recommend that publishers should take. Not every site will need to go through each step, but most sites will have at least one thing on this list that could be better utilized. We hope you'll consider looking into these recommendations below, as we've seen them consistently help improve earnings in the long run for Ezoic publishers.


1. Ad Placeholder Setup


The most important aspect of monetization with Ezoic is to ensure that your ad placeholder setup is optimal. To do this we recommend using our Chrome Extension. With the chrome extension installed, you can go to your site and turn it on by pressing the “Activate placeholders” button. Now you can see where the placeholders are.


Placeholders are potential ad locations that allow the system to test different ad combinations, placements and sizes.


When reviewing your placeholder setup you want to look out for a few things. If your placeholder setup has major gaps, or there are too few placeholders, then you will want to add more. We recommend having at least one placeholder within view on the screen as the user scrolls down the page - so ideally every few paragraphs, or one every viewport on mobile for most posts. The ideal Ezoic setup will be ordered like so: top of page, under page title, under first paragraph, under second paragraph, in-content 1, in-content 2, and so on. Then you should have a bottom of page placeholder when you get to the end of the article. If your site has a sidebar, then make sure there is a sidebar top, middle and bottom/floating.


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Once you have ensured that there are enough placeholders (look at your longest page and ensure full placeholder coverage), then you can review the existing placeholders. Using the chrome extension on your site, you can “edit” each placeholder and see their various settings (This can also be done via the Ad Tester settings in the dashboard). Make sure features such as Adaptive Sizing (23% uplift), and Fluid Sizing are enabled. 


More in depth best practices can be found here.


2. Ad Tester Settings


Each setting in Ad Tester (under the Monetization tab) can directly result in additional revenue and higher EPMV. 


  1. Anchor Ads: Anchor ads on all devices can uplift EPMV by 60%
  2. A.I. Placeholders: A.I. placeholders can uplift EPMV by 20%
  3. Sidebar Floating/Sticky Ad: The sidebar floating placeholder on average increases EPMV by 10%. You will need to turn on the setting, and add a sidebar floating ad placeholder on your site via the chrome extension. More instructions can be found here.
  4. Native Ads: Native ads can increase EPMV up to 10%. You will need to turn on the setting, and implement native ad placeholders on your site.
  5. Other Ad Types: In-image, Vignette, and Interstitial can all increase EPMV by 10% all together, with Vignette having the highest increase. However these ad formats should be tested and UX should be monitored. More information can be found here.

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3. Ads.txt


Ads.txt is a way that allows sites to select which demand partners can place bids for their inventory. For example, if the ads.txt file has only one entry then only that partner can show ads. Ezoic runs through Google Ad Exchange, and various other header bidding partners. We add/remove partners consistently, and some of our partners require an ads.txt entry to even bid on your content. Thus, it is extremely important to make sure that file is up to date with our full list of advertisers.


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Ezoic makes this easy for you, since we can automatically update the file to ensure no revenue is lost. If you are using an ads.txt file through ads.txt manager, or are integrated through DNS with an existing file, then you are all set.

But, if you do not have an ads.txt file or manage the file on your own, then you could be missing out on revenue. 


You can learn more about ads.txt here


4. Adsense Mediation


Adsense Mediation is an easy two part process that can provide a small increase to EPMV. The increase can range from 1% up to 10%, but depends greatly on the site, and traffic.


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  1. Link Adsense with Ezoic
  2. Turn on Mediation, and re-enter credentials for Adsense Mediation


Full guide here.


5. Sellers.JSON


Sellers.JSON is somewhat similar to ads.txt, but the impact is still hard to gauge as it is a newer technology. It's recommended to have the field in your Ezoic Monetization settings filled in. This can be either with the domain name, your name, business name, etc. Whatever you are comfortable with. The idea is that having a sellers.JSON will help the confidence in advertiser bidding so EPMV has the potential to go up.


Full break down here.


6. Check for Ad Restrictions


Ezoic monetization is run by machine learning, this uses tons of data points to optimize the ad layout for each type of user. Those giving the system more flexibility will result in better optimization and higher EPMV.


The following settings can heavily impact earnings, check and see if any restrictions are in place in your Monetization settings:


  1. Max ads per page
  2. Ad Categories
  3. Disable Ads per page


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7. Integration Method


Integration method is one of the most important things when it comes to an optimized Ezoic setup. On average sites using name servers or Cloudflare integration see an improvement of 30% EPMV, and 25% improvement on site speed metrics such as time to interactive (TTI) and time to first byte (TTFB).


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DNS integration provides access to our global CDN, which allows publishers to leverage our free caching app. With proper Ezoic caching set up, we’ve seen improved revenue, site speed, and a faster optimization process of our machine learning.

Name server integration benefits here.


8. Traffic Settings


Check under Settings to see if the Ezoic traffic is set to 100% on all devices. Ezoic is unique with its ability to allow split testing; however, after testing Ezoic vs another provider and ensuring Ezoic is “winning” for that portion of traffic, it’s worth turning up traffic settings so that you don’t miss out on revenue.

We’ll give a quick breakdown below to explain why:


Let's say example.com has 10,000 monthly visits and $10 EPMV on Ezoic and $5 EPMV on its other setup. The revenue comes out to be.

$10 epmv on 90% Ezoic Traffic = $90 Revenue
$5 epmv on 10% Non-Ezoic Traffic = $5 Revenue
-> Total Revenue = $95

If the site switched to 100% Ezoic traffic then total revenue can increase.

$10 epmv on 100% Traffic = $100 Revenue

This results in an overall EPMV increase of 5%


9. Ezoic Caching


This next area only applies to sites that are integrated via DNS. The Ezoic caching app is turned on by default, but there’s often additional steps to get it working properly on your site. To see if Ezoic caching is working, head over to Ezoic’s Big Data Analytics and run the following report:


Site Speed -> Caching -> Ezoic caching

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This report will show you the percentage of pageviews that register a Cache Hit versus a Cache Miss


  • Cache Hits vs Misses: The goal here is to see what percentage of pageviews are cache “hits” compared to a cache “miss.” A good goal to shoot for is at least 75% cache “hits.” Here is a complete guide to help you optimize our caching here.


If you are currently using a 3rd party caching and want to stay with it, that’s fine. But we recommend at least testing our caching and checking if time to first byte (TTFB), time to interactive (TTI) and page RPM improve. This data can all be found in the Big Data Analytics report above. We recommend sticking with the caching configuration that wins according to these metrics.


10. Objectionable Content


Ezoic has a built in objectionable content filter that lets you see what keywords get flagged, and the corresponding pages in which ad serving is disabled. You can check the objectionable content filter by going to the Content tab in your Ezoic dashboard. If you see pages and words being flagged, we recommend investigating the pages and amending where needed. We will proactively block ad serving on all pages flagged, since it is against Google policy to monetize such words. As a result, revenue can be affected until the words are edited or whitelisted by us. You can check this report for traffic metrics of these pages.


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Further reading here.


11. BONUS (Big Data Analytics Reports to check)


Some additional things to check involve using our analytics tool to discover opportunities that can increase EPMV. Ezoic has one of the most advanced analytics on the market that combines revenue with traffic reports. Here are some examples of what reports to check.


Report Technology -> Framework:


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This report allows you to see revenue and EPMV by device. Historically, mobile EPMV will be lower compared to desktop, and this report will show the difference. You can also use this report to see if AMP pages are correctly set up. It’s a red flag if you see $0 or near $0 EPMV for the AMP framework. If this is the case, you will need to check the placeholders as soon as possible on the AMP pages. Go to the site on an AMP URL, then in the mobile version turn on the Chrome Extension and see where the placeholders are. If you see no placeholders, that means no ads will show. 


Report Content -> Landing Pages:


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This report shows you the top pages users first visit when coming to your site. In addition, you can see the EPMV corresponding to each page and notice if some pages have higher EPMV than others (you’ll find the EPMV column on the very right hand side). As a result, you can use this information to make actionable insights into what content works best. Lower EPMV pages could mean that there are issues with the placeholder setup on that page. This report provides insight to make the appropriate adjustments.



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