I have been building my own blogging platform and a content management system for almost two years now.
As a software developer I wanted to start blogging and I didn’t see myself using any of the existing content management systems. I started building my own blogging platform and after about a year of building it I decided to start creating content with it.
That first blog is now almost a year old in a very small niche. I had been running ads on it for almost the entire time but after hearing about Google’s Core Web Vitals update recently, I decided to improve the overall performance and quality of the system and also wanted to experiment how removing AdSense on-page ads would affect the now quite stable analytics data I had already gathered.
As the primary reason for building my own blogging platform was to create a system that would have close to zero unnecessary code and functionalities for the best possible performance and user-experience it seemed quite illogical to be running ads that were destroying the sole purpose of my efforts of trying to build a good system, just for the sake of getting some extra money.
Now after running the experiment of removing AdSense on-page ads for a whole month, I am pretty confident that I won’t be turning on ads ever again.
Here are all the key data points I gathered for the experiment.
PageSpeed Insights is a tool built by Google to measure website performance. PageSpeed Insights runs an experiment against a specific URL and returns a score from 1 to 100 on how well the website performs. Results also include improvement suggestions.
Google AdSense negatively impact on the PageSpeed Insights score by a stunning 17 points.
Without AdSense ads my articles scored 100/100 and with ads on the score was 83/100.
Total number of page views
Total number of page views is a metric which tells how many times a page has been loaded during a specific timeframe.
The total number of page views increased a stunning 189% in one month with no on-page ads on.
Total number of users
Total number of users is a metric that measures how many users have loaded any number of pages during a specific timeframe.
The total number of users visiting my site after removing on-page ads completely grew by 53%.
Average number of pages per session
Average number of pages per session is a metric which tells how many pages users have visited during a session on average.
The average number of pages per session grew by 76% by removing on-page ads from my site completely.
Average session duration
Average session duration is a metric that that measures how much time users spend on a website on average.
My site grew it’s average session duration by 64% by simply removing on-page ads completely.
Total number of custom events
The total number of custom tracked events grew by 167% in one month by not running on-page ads on my website at all.
I ran this experiment during May 2021 when I disabled all AdSense on-page ads completely.
Basically all user experience metrics increased a lot while the AdSense revenue metric went down significantly.
AdSense revenue was down.
These findings cannot be directly pointed to running AdSense on-page ads since there is no sure way to put all the blame on ads. There were no sudden spikes compared to any previous timeframes in traffic and everything seemed stable enough to make these conclusions.
I for sure won’t be putting on-page ads on my sites any time sure after seeing these metrics because user engagement increases so dramatically without annoying ads.