Media Whiz, better known as the owners of Text Link Ads, just released a new product to the public – Shopping Ads. The first thing that comes to mind when you visit the Shopping Ads site is – damn, this sure looks familiar. The interface is nearly identical to that of the Auction Ads website. That’s not to say it doesn’t look nice, just that it’s completely unoriginal.
What is Shopping Ads?
Shopping Ads is a CPC ( cost per click ) based ad network, unlike the CPA ( cost per action ) based Auction Ads. That means, of course, that you get paid anytime someone clicks on one of the ads. It doesn’t matter if the merchant is able to convert that click into a signup or a sale, you get paid regardless. Patrick Gavin from Text Link Ads says that the CPC’s are in the $.20 range, which could be good or bad for you, depending on how your site performs with other ad networks. There are plenty of ad formats available, including the popular 468×60, 336×280, 300×250, 125×125 and plenty more. Pretty much all the ad sizes you’re used to with Adsense and Auction Ads are available.
How do I get paid?
Paypal is currently the only available payment method. They are planning on adding some additional options – likely check and direct deposit. Since the company is owned by Media Whiz, there’s no reason to think that payments won’t be exactly on time as they always are. I wasn’t able to find a minimum payout listed on the site though – hopefully they’ll add that information soon.
Can you use Shopping Ads with Adsense?
Absolutely. Not only are Shopping Ads not contextual ( you set the keywords ), Google doesn’t even care about that anymore. As long as the ads can’t be confused for Google Ads, you’re in the clear.
Does Shopping Ads have any potential?
It’s way too soon to tell. I never jumped on the Auction Ads bandwagon, mainly because I didn’t like the CPA model they use. Since Shopping Ads uses a CPC model instead, I am tempted to give them a go at least, and see what happens. Perhaps a week of testing wouldn’t hurt. For all I know, they may perform better than Adsense Ads, and help me move away from my heavy reliance on Google at the same time.
Shopping Ads also has an affiliate program, but the user has to sign up by clicking the “Ads by Shopping Ads” link on the actual ad unit. How about some banners / button ads / regular old affiliate links? I’m sure these are in the works, and will be out soon. I can’t help but think that Media Whiz rushed Shopping Ads to market a little bit with the recent scare over Google and their hatred for paid links. So do you plan on trying Shopping Ads or are you going to sit this one out?