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One way to make consistent, passive income from your blog or website is to sign up for a display ad network.
If you’re not already familiar with them, display ads are the visual advertisements you see on websites, usually placed between paragraphs, or in the sidebar or at the bottom of the page.
If you sign up with an ad network you’ll be paid money for letting advertisers serve their ads to your website’s readers. The most common way of measuring advertising earnings is using RPM (revenue per mille), which is the earnings accrued per 1,000 units (usually sessions/pageviews/visitors).
Mediavine is used by lots of bloggers and gives you the potential to earn decent income from your blog traffic. It’s one of the best performing ad networks with some of the highest RPMs in the industry. But what are the Mediavine requirements and how do you get approved so you can start making money?
Read on as I delve deeper into how to qualify for Mediavine…
What are the Mediavine requirements?
The basic Mediavine requirements are as follows:
- 50,000 sessions per month
- Real traffic (don’t pay for traffic!)
- Original, quality content in any vertical
- Good standing with Google AdSense and Google AdExchange
- Visitors coming from the U.S, Canada and the UK
Originally Mediavine required 25,000 sessions but this figure increased in 2020. These days to qualify for Mediavine your site needs to receive 50,000 sessions per month.
Don’t get this confused with page views. Your site needs to hit 50,000 sessions per month, so make sure you login to Google Analytics to check if you qualify.
If you look in your Google Analytics dashboard you’d need to be getting roughly 65,000-70,000 pageviews each month to be getting 50,000 sessions with your blog.
When you apply to Mediavine you’ll give them a PDF of your Google Analytics report for the last 30 days. They’ll check this to make sure you’re getting REAL human traffic and not paid, non-human traffic.
So while it could be tempting to pay for traffic to get onto Mediavine, don’t do it! You’ll most likely get caught. Mediavine says its ad partners have third-party tools that can verify the quality of your traffic.
Another point to remember is that while it’s OK to have some traffic coming from social media sites like Pinterest, Mediavine is preferably looking for stable organic traffic that’s coming from Google.
In addition to sessions, Mediavine also looks at the quality of content. They’re looking for long-form content that readers will engage with. The more engaged your readers are, the more they’re going to be engaged with Mediavine ads.
Lastly, your site needs to be in good standing with Google AdSense and Google AdExchange because Mediavine is a Google Certified Publisher Partner.
Does Mediavine accept all niches?
Mediavine says it accepts all verticals however the most common niches that are accepted to Mediavine include
- lifestyle and fashion
- food and drink
- DIY and crafts
- health and fitness
What about the requirements for a second website?
Prior to 2020 your second site needed just 10,000 sessions to be accepted to Mediavine. Now they’ve scrapped that requirement and any second, third, fourth sites etc will need to also have 50,000 sessions.
This means there’s no fast track to getting onto Mediavine, you have to work on increasing your website traffic.
How to reach 50,000 sessions on your blog
In order to increase your traffic to 50,000 sessions you’ll need to put in some hard work. You’ll need to spend time creating killer content and promoting it.
So how to get to 50,000 sessions fast? Here are my top tips:
Write long, detailed posts
Google is favoring long, detailed content these days. The blog posts that rank on the 1st page of google tend to be 3,000 words or more.
If you want to be seen as an authority on the topic you’re writing about, you need to make sure you’re writing super informative content. Remember to include subheadings and bullet points to break things up where possible.
Note: This doesn’t mean you should just drivel on just to make sure your blog posts are long. What you’re saying needs to be engaging and valuable too.
If you’re trying to rank for a particular search term, look at the content that ranks top and then see what you can do better. Can you include more statistics to back things up? Can you provide extra detail the other person might have missed?
Focus on SEO
Mediavine is looking for organic Google traffic, so the best thing to do is spend most of your time working on SEO. Forget wasting hours on Instagram; work on your own platform first.
I can’t stress this enough. Sign up for Keysearch. This tool is an essential SEO tool that every new blogger should be using. Use this tool to research keywords that people are searching for in Google, then write your articles around these keywords.
Using Keysearch you can get keyword suggestions and see the volume of people that are searching for particular search terms. You can also see the keyword difficulty score, meaning you can see how competitive it is to rank for.
Keysearch also lets you research your competitors to see what organic keywords they’re ranking for. This tool is great for coming up with ideas for topics to write about.
In addition to Keysearch, you’ll want to make sure you have the Yoast SEO plugin installed on your website.
Always add meta descriptions, SEO titles and keywords to your posts. Make sure you use appropriate HTML header tags such as <h2></h2> within your posts too.
This way you’re more likely to rank in Google.
Optimize your images
Where possible, always try to use original imagery that hasn’t been used anywhere else. Google loves unique images, so make sure you brush up on your photography skills and try to take your own photos where possible.
When you upload each image, make sure you give it a proper keyworded name and a descriptive alt tag. This will make it more likely for your images to rank in Google image search and help people discover your blog posts!
Build links to your blog posts
Another factor that helps determine Google ranking is the number of links pointing to your blog post from sites around the web.
Always submit your blog posts to social media sites such as Twitter and Facebook. You can also submit them to sites like Reddit or forums to get backlinks.
If you mention a particular individual, company or brand in your blog post, reach out to them via email and tell them you featured them. The company might share the post too or even link to it from their own website.
The aim is to build natural links to your blog post to give it a boost in Google search.
When your blog becomes more well known you’ll often find that people reach out to you asking for backlinks. You could suggest a link exchange, where they link to one of your posts and you link to one of theirs in return.
Many SEO experts also recommend looking for similar blog posts to yours that have broken links (links that no longer work) in them. Once you’ve found a suitable post, reach out to the website owner via email and suggest that they replace the broken link with a link to your article instead.
Use Pinterest to generate traffic
Think of Pinterest like a search engine, only visual. Whenever you create a blog post, make a Pinterest “Pin” (image with text overlay) and insert it into your post so people can pin your article. Most bloggers use Canva to create pretty images for Pinterest.
Every time you hit publish on a new post, pin this image to your own Pinterest boards. You can also schedule multiple pins per day using an app like Tailwind, so that you’re regularly publishing your new and old content to Pinterest boards.
Pinterest has proved to be a very useful tool for a lot of bloggers and many have seen a lot of traffic resulting from it.
Guest post and promote yourself
One way to increase your visibility and in turn get a nice traffic boost is by guest posting. Look for other blogs in your niche that accept guest posts and pitch your idea. Always make sure that the idea fits with their content and guidelines so you won’t be rejected straight off the bat.
Guest posting on a website that’s more established than yours and gets a ton of web traffic can bring a nice trickle of traffic to your site too.
In addition to guest posting you can promote yourself by putting out press releases and also reaching out to news sites like The Daily Mail or entrepreneur sites like Business Insider. These sites often publish roundups featuring quotes from top bloggers or they run features interviewing successful bloggers about their own entrepreneurial journeys.
This is how a lot of the top bloggers and influencers got their names out to a wider audience. Look for articles featuring bloggers in your niche and then reach out to the journalist who wrote the article.
As an example:
Johnny Ward, One Step4ward, “How travel blogger Johnny Ward became a millionaire on the go”: https://www.cnn.com/travel/article/million-dollar-travel-blogger/index.html
Kierstin Rich, The Blonde Abroad, “”How the Blonde Abroad built a million dollar travel empire” https://www.forbes.com/sites/alexandratalty/2019/10/16/how-the-blonde-abroad-built-a-million-dollar-travel-empire/?sh=3980b4b425e3
Kristin Addis, Be My Travel Muse, “Kristin Addis Feels Richer Earning 40% of Old Salary”: https://www.businessinsider.com/why-kristin-addis-feels-richer-earning-just-40-of-her-old-salary-2016-5
Those are just a few ways you can increase your blog traffic to qualify for Mediavine. If you want to learn more, check out my list of 30+ blogging tips for new bloggers.
How to increase Mediavine RPM
Use larger font and break up your paragraphs
In order to increase time spent on your site, Mediavine suggests increasing your font size and writing shorter paragraphs. This allows them to display more ads on your site and it also increases the length of time the reader spends in scrolling through your post.
Using a larger font size and writing shorter paragraphs also makes things easier to read. Mobile users don’t have to squint at small fonts or struggle to read through large chunks of text.
Shorten your sidebar
When I signed up for Mediavine they had to make some adjustments to my sidebar. The sticky sidebar (bottom of the sidebar that sticks with users as they scroll) is one of the most valuable ad units, so the shorter your sidebar, the quicker the reader can get to it.
Mediavine says that the longer the ads are in view, the more they have a chance to refresh, meaning you in turn make more money.
If you don’t get enough traffic to qualify for Mediavine, don’t fret! There are other networks you can join that have lower entry requirements. If your site is only getting 10,000 or 25,000 hits then there are other options for you.
Google AdSense – There’s no official minimum traffic requirement to be approved for Google Adsense but your content must be high-quality and original. Your site must also comply with the google AdSense Program policies. Google works on a pay-per-click and revenue-sharing basis, which is why it won’t generate as much money as a program that pays per view.
Ezoic – Most bloggers start off with Ezoic before progressing to Mediavine. Ezoic requires 10,000 pageviews per month to be accepted to its platform. One of my sites uses Ezoic for display ads and the income I earn from it is lower than it would be on Mediavine. However, it’s one of the best options if your traffic isn’t high enough for Mediavine.
Monumetric – Monumetric also requires a minimum of 10,000 pageviews per month and there are different program tiers depending on the amount of traffic you get. The only downside is that if you’re getting 10,000-80,000 pageviews per month there’s a $99 one-time setup fee. Something to consider when signing up.
A final word
Getting accepted to Mediavine is a major milestone for most newbie bloggers. It’s the best display ad network for blogs with 50,000 sessions and up.
Once they reach 100,000 pageviews then a lot of bloggers switch to AdThrive, but Mediavine is still a great ad network that pays well.
You can expect to make around $15 per 1,000 pageviews with Mediavine. So if you had 100,000 pageviews you could expect to make around $1500 per month in passive income! Not too shabby.
I’ve found it to be FAR better than Google Ads and Ezoic. If you’re looking for passive income that pays for your rent while you sleep, then Mediavine is the way to go. So keep writing, keep pumping out content and challenge yourself to get to 50,000 sessions!
Have questions about the Mediavine requirements? Know any good tips for getting accepted? Leave a comment below!