Why the advertising revenue drops during the year?

Factors affecting the performance of the CPMs over the year

There are multiple factorors affecting the performance of the advertising during the year.

Generally, on a macro level, we can recognize 4 different quarters.

  • 1st quarter: January – March
  • 2nd quarter: April – June
  • 3rd quarter: July – September
  • 4th quarter: October – December

Every time that a quarter ends we have a drop in advertising revenue. But at the end of each semester we can see the biggest drops.

The main reason for revenue drops is that companies usually set advertising budgets quarterly and campaigns end at the end of the quarter, reducing demand come the first of the following month.

A focus on the big revenue drops

January, what a huge drop!

November and December are the best months for the publishers with holidays, Christmas gifts, Amazon and eBay promotions. In January we have at the same time the end of a quarter and a semester. Moreover, people are less inclined to buy online and spend money. So you can imagine the huge drop in advertising revenue. From our experience, the drop is between 30% and 60% depending on the niche. The worst days are between 1st and 7th January. Then employees of big companies will come back to the office, study a new business plan for the year and start spending on ads again.


July, another drop, but not for everybody

Also in July we have both the end of a quarter and the end of a semester. This means the end of another spending cycle. Why this drop is less sharp than the previous one? Because June is not exactly the best month for advertising demand with the beginning of summer, holidays, and a general decrease in online spending. Moreover not all niches are affected by this drop. For example publishers in the tourism niche will probably see an increase in revenue.

Advertising revenue drops for all websites?

The short answer is yes. But each niche is affected by multiple factors. Gaming niche for example will see best CPM close to Christmas and Black Friday events. Tourism niche will probably see good CPM near summer, when most tourists are booking their holidays.

How should publishers adapt their strategy considering revenue drops?

When CPMs are higher, focus on ads optimization and revenue maximization. Since the demand is higher, publishers can increase the number of ads or the refresh frequency keeping high the fill rate.

When CPMs are lower, keep calm. Making frequent changes and trying to change partners to push the revenue to the top again is not the right approach. Focus instead on SEO and user experience. Use fewer ads, produce valuable content and increase organic traffic. Do everything necessary to arrive prepared for the top season. You will reap what you sow.

How PapayAds will support the publishers?

We will remind you about these periods during the year in order to be prepared and adopt the right strategy. You will receive emails from us and messages in your personal dashboard.

Remember that we are your partners and we are always available to reply to any question. It is in our interest to help all the publishers to maximize their revenue. When you win, we win.

Does your website receive more than 400.000 monthly pageviews? Then you should focus on your content and traffic and let our dedicated team take care of your advertising performance. You are eligible for a pro account.

Does your website receive less than 400.000 monthly pageviews? Then you are not eligible for a PRO account but you can access the self-service area where you can take the banners codes and implement yourself.

Calculate your ads revenue

*Calculation based on estimated website traffic from tier 1 and 2 countries using 3 display banners per page and good ads viewability.

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Due to the large number of requests and our policy to dedicate our best service to all customers we are able to accept in the Premium Service only websites with a minimum traffic of 400.000 monthly pageviews. If your business is smaller, please apply to the Self Service. We currently provide support in English, Spanish and Italian language.