Which is Better with Google AdSense, Forums or Blogs?

Last Updated on by Michael Brockbank

When it comes to making money with AdSense, you need to drive a lot of traffic to your website. But, what kind of a site does better for generating income? Today, we’ll take a look at which is better, a forum or a blog.

No matter how you slice it though, it all comes down to how many people you can bring in.

How AdSense Works

AdSense works by paying website owners a percentage of the advertisement revenue Google accumulates. Ads are shown on a site, and if they are clicked, the website owner makes a bit of money.

Some ads will pay just for showing them without interaction from the visitor. However, most of your money will be made from actual clicks.

To make any significant amount of money on AdSense, you need a lot of people visiting the site. Depending on how much you want to make per month, this could be a significant number of visitors.

To put this into perspective, all four of my major blogs have an average RPM of $2.72. This means I make $2.72 for every 1000 visitors to my sites. If I want to make $1000 in a month, I would need 367,648 visitors.

I’ve heard of people having an RPM of more than $35. However, I have yet to see those kinds of numbers in person. And none of my clients have an RPM that high.

But for the sake of argument, let’s say you do manage to get a $35 RPM. You would still need 28,572 visitors to hit the $1000 mark.

At any rate, you will still need a lot of visitors to make a significant amount of money if you’re strictly using AdSense.

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Comparing Forums and Blogs for Driving Traffic

Now that we established that it takes tens of thousands of visitors to make a bit of money, let’s compare forums and blogs.

Because the two are incredibly different in terms of the overall design, generating traffic, and maintenance. 

How Do Forums Work?

If you’ve ever researched answers to any question on the Internet, chances are you’ve come across a forum. These websites are where people go to find answers often from peers sharing a similar interest.

Think of them as free forms of technical support for just about anything you can think of. If there is a popular niche or topic, it’s a virtual guarantee there is a forum centered around it.

In fact, I don’t think there is a week that goes by that I don’t read through at least one forum of some kind.

How a forum works is that a visitor asks a question while providing a bit of backstory information. Then, others try to help that visitor by answering his or her question.

Some forums are also set up as more of a hangout where people share experiences and interests.

With the right topic and niche, forums can be exceptionally popular. Especially if they’re frequented by experts and highly knowledgeable helpers.

On the other hand, I’ve seen forums go from extremely popular to virtually abandoned in a very short amount of time.

What makes forums so immensely popular is the fact that many people may need answers to the same questions. As such, a popular topic or niche can drive an incredible number of people to the site.

Things to Consider When Building a Forum

  • Successful forums require constant activity
  • Needs a degree of expertise to answer questions
  • May need several “primer” questions to get people’s attention
  • Need to be quick with the responses to keep people coming back
  • Answering the right questions can bring in a ton of traffic
  • Forums can die off quickly if not constantly updated

Creating Content on a Blog

Blogs are some of the most popular websites on the Internet today. In fact, you’re reading one right now. They can be full of information and/or entertainment, depending on the niche and the creator.

Like forums, a blog can be used to provide answers to questions or general information regarding any topic. Sometimes, people will follow one simply because they like how a certain author presents that information.

How blogs work is by breaking down a topic to provide a great deal of detail. Instead of a short answer, readers can go deeper into understanding while absorbing a lot of insight.

Take this post, for example. I could have just created a three line answer to which method was better. Instead, we’re looking at how each work and the logistics behind choosing the best one for you.

And like the method above, blogs can be exceptionally popular depending on niche and topics the creator covers.

The biggest difference is perhaps in the content itself. While a forum can quickly die off with obsolete information and a lack of participation, a blog’s post can continue to generate traffic for decades with the right topic.

Things to Consider When Building a Blog

  • Blogs don’t need input from more than one person
  • Needs a degree of expertise to engage the audience
  • Some of the best performing blogs posts need between 1200 and 2500 words
  • A routine publishing schedule can keep people coming back
  • Covering the right topics with keyphrases can bring in a lot of visitors everyday
  • Can take up to 6 months before you start to see a large amount of traffic

It All Comes Down to You

In the grand scheme of things, both forums and blogs rely on providing information that someone is seeking.

Both require constant vigilance and content updates to drive more visitors. And both rely heavily on niche and topic popularity.

A forum requires less content writing, but you’ll invest more time to quickly answer someone’s question. At least until the forum starts attracting a regular group of experts to help.

Creating a blog is more about detailed content and SEO writing. It takes more time to crank out a post, but you can be successful with publishing a few well-written pieces of content each week.

In many instances, it’s easier to market a blog on things like social media. However, the right questions in a forum can drive a lot of people, so marketing may not be necessary.

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So, Which are Better, Forums or Blogs?

In reality, either method can do well when it comes to making money with AdSense. In the end, it really depends on what you’re most comfortable creating.

For example, I rather enjoying writing longer posts. And I really don’t have the time to answer every question that would come my way if I set up a forum. So, in my situation, blogging is much easier to manage.

It all comes down to what you can create that will drive a lot of traffic.

If you can get the ball rolling with a forum, visitors can help keep the site active. This involves setting up moderators as well. It’s a bit more work to build momentum with a forum, but it could be self-sustaining after a while.

A blog will rely solely on how much content you’re capable of publishing. You could hire writers and offer guest blogging to help generate that content. But it will still take quite a while to start seeing some major traffic.

Both have their benefits and drawbacks. But they both rely on massive visitation to make a lot of money with AdSense.

So, in short, the answer to which is better, forums or blogs is…it depends on what you set up that will drive your target audience. Either of these methods has great potential.

If you have the time, I say do both. There’s nothing wrong with adding a blog to a forum. It may help you tap both types of readers and expand your reach.

Connect with Your Audience

All content on the Internet relies on how you connect with your audience. Whether you set up a forum, blog, YouTube channel, or podcast, it comes down to offering something people want to consume.

And when you include AdSense into the mix, you’ll need a lot of them.

Focus more on the audience and what you’re providing. The rest will fall into place.

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Michael Brockbank

Michael has been a freelance writer since January of 2012. He has completed more than 8,000 jobs for a variety of clients ranging from animals to travel. Currently, he is the Content Marketing Team Lead of GreenGeeks Web Hosting.

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