The real impact of AdBlock (in my experience)

Ever since AdBlock was released in 2010 more and more internet users have started using it virtually blocking all internet ads.

These people claim ads that were shown to them were intrusive, annoying, even scary sometimes when the ads literally could read their minds and showed them offers on that new camera they wanted to buy but hadn’t told anyone yet (except Google of course, but that doesn’t count, still creepy). I’m guessing the real trouble would’ve come when it wasn’t cameras they were searching for…

It was obvious to all webmasters whose websites rely entirely or partly on advertising that we were losing some business because of users using AdBlock, but it was incredibly hard to estimate how much was actually being lost, until recently in 2013 PageFair launched allowing any webmaster to place a little tracking code on their website to learn how many of our users were actually not seeing our ads.

In my case, for an architecture website with content in Spanish, English and French and roughly 10K visits per day its 16%. 16% of people who visit the site are blocking ads and there for producing cero revenue. This numbers has grown by 2 points in just a month and one can only expect it will keep growing, which means soon enough we won’t make enough to keep generating new content (for free) and at one point maybe not even enough to keep our servers going, which means the site will go down and users will have to go and find their content elsewhere.

I do agree some website’s ads are intrusive and annoying, but to be honest when they are it’s because you are looking at arguably illegal websites anyways such as torrent downloads or similar. 98% of legal, decent, serious websites who rely on ads to survive actually show them in a very reasonable non-intrusive way.

Just a thought, we’ll see were this ends. I’ll keep updating if that 16% changes significantly.

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