Tech entrepreneurs have done it again, this time infusing money-making opportunities into Web 2.0 widgets.
My friend, Jim Kukral mentioned that WidgetBucks will have a launch at Tuesday midnight EST. But who can really make money out of this?
Before you rush out and install on your blog, I’d do some due diligence to make sure you’ll earn something decent and that you’ll get paid.
From WidgetBuck’s website: “WidgetBucks comes to you from the folks at Mpire Corporation, the award-winning meta-shopping service. Mpire’s extensive shopping data experience, including its proprietary contextual, analytics and relevancy algorithms, power WidgetBucks. Founded in 2005, Mpire is backed by Ignition Partners and former eBay executive and Pay Pal angel investor Richard Rock.”
What is WidgetBucks?
It works on a PayPerClick basis, so it’s similar to adsense, though at $3-6 eCPM ($3-6 per 1,000 visitors), it’s claimed to pay much higher than the industry average of $1-2 eCPM.
Of course compared to affiliate marketing, where I earn about $10-$100 per customer, WidgetBucks and AdSense will seem like chump change.
As has been mentioned before in this blog, affiliate marketing requires that you have some marketing skills, know how to present offers, convert leads into sales.
If on the other hand, you’re happy to blog about xbox360s or scrapbooking or weight management (what some bloggers label “pure blogging”), then the folks at WidgetBucks will take care of the moneymaking element for you.
WidgetBucks has some intelligent contextual features- their MerchSense technology:
“MerchSenseÃ¢â€žÂ¢ is Mpire’s patent-pending contextual algorithm engine. It detects and analyzes the content of your website or blog to determine what product offers are most relevant to your audience. If you choose the MerchSense option when creating a new widget, simply place the code on your site and let MerchSense automatically provide the most appropriate ad content. MerchSense evaluates your editorial information daily, so, as your content changes, WidgetBucks will dynamically offer the highest-yielding products.”
Who’s like to benefit from WidgetBucks?
I’d hazard a guess to say that consumer-related sites would benefit the most.
You could have a blog or content website (and I’m guessing you should be able to insert the code into a Joomla CMS or a vBulletin forum pretty easily too) focused on:
- electronic gadgets
- computer games
to benefit from this. I would guess that Internet marketers would try to hock ebooks on this, but I don’t think it’ll be that effective.
I don’t really fancy buying my ebooks from a comparison engine, or one of those eBay widgets, do you?
A couple of grouses I have with WidgetBucks:
Slow Load Time
I visited Jim Kukral’s blog and the widget took about 10 seconds to load (the content came up instantly). I’m using a pretty powerful machine on a 12mbps cable modem connection, so I think it might be WidgetBucks’ server trying to serve up an offer?
If your content is pretty sticky to keep the reader reading for that 5-10 seconds, you should be ok.
Large Banners/Ad Sizes
As the comparison engine needs quite a bit of on-screen real estate, the widgets are pretty large at sizes of 160×600, 300×250, 728×90, 468×60 and 660×330.
By virtue of its sheer size, it will become one of your dominant monetization strategies if you display it on your blog or website.
WidgetBucks Sign-Up Bonus
As a bonus to early adopters, new WidgetBucks members get a $25 credit in their account. Once you’ve earned $25, you’ll received $50 ($25 credit + $25 of your own earnings).
Payouts are made on the first of every month for all revenue earned during the previous month (subject to a minimum of $50.)
Although payments are available either via check or paypal, I’d advise Europe and Asia-based subscribers to receive paypal payments, as check clearing fees for US-drawn checks can get pretty horrendous. (unless it’s in the neighbourhood of $500 or $1,000).
The answer is that it doesn’t really matter…
See, any monetization strategy is workable…if you work at it.
I could have a niche blog generating $0.05 per adsense click, but if I brought sufficient volume, it would be a lucrative business.
With WidgetBuck’s $3-6 eCPM, it isn’t anything to shout about.
If you’d like higher payouts, you’d probably have to get more involved with affiliate marketing or develop your own products.
WidgetBucks IS a fairly passive source of income generation and would be good for those with static content sites or would like to focus solely on their blogging efforts.