Using ad networking platforms like AdSense to monetize a website used to be one of the best ways to make money from a blog.
However, with the arrival of AdBlock software, advertising became more of a challenge and a massive blow for most bloggers.
When developing a blog, you’re practically giving away your experience and valuable information for free. All you ask in return is the ability to show a couple of ads on your blog hoping to get a few clicks to cover the expenses of website and hosting. It’s not too much to ask.
AdBlock software brutally stripped away bloggers’ right to monetize a website with ad networks. Well, now you have a chance to fight back.
In this guide, we’ll show you how to detect users who use AdBlock software and encourage them to disable the software to support your website or blog.
What Is An AdBlocker?
An AdBlock software is a browser extension that can be installed on Chrome, Firefox, and other popular browsers to detect advertising related code and disable them to prevent ads from appearing on the browser.
Simply put, AdBlock software blocks ads on websites from rendering on the user’s browser window.
AdBlock Plus and uBlock Origin are two of the most popular AdBlocking extensions available today. They carefully scan each web page a user visits for the scripts and code used by ad networks like AdSense and instantly disables them.
This can be a good thing in many ways. For example, disabling ads will help users save their data and even protect them from malicious websites that use ads to deliver malware. But, for legitimate bloggers and businesses, AdBlock software is a nightmare.
Why AdBlockers Are Bad For Blogs
AdBlock software is not just about disabling ads on a website. It also prevents other types code, scripts, and cookies from loading on a user’s browser.
But, if a user has an AdBlocking software installed on the browser, the plugin won’t function properly. In fact, it may not even be able to show the popup message to that user at all.
As you can imagine, even if your website doesn’t use advertising, AdBlockers can still harm your business in many ways.
Try installing an AdBlock extension and loading your website to see how badly it affects your own website.
Best Ways To Fight AdBlockers
There are several different ways you can fight AdBlockers.
One of the easiest options is to get rid of all advertising and marketing systems on your blog and switch to an ad-free experience. BrainPickings is a popular blog that uses this strategy and still makes a profit by asking for donations in exchange for offering an ad-free website experience.
Another method you can use is to create image-based ads. For this method to work, you’ll still have to get rid of ad networks like AdSense and switch to promoting affiliate products. When promoting these products, you can use images with direct links instead of using scripts.
Or, a more professional approach would be to turn your blog into a premium content website and show website content only to paid users. This way, you can earn recurring revenue without having to worry about AdBlockers.
How ‘NOT’ To Fight AdBlockers
Whatever you do, you shouldn’t fight AdBlockers as aggressive as sites like Forbes does.
Forbes uses a very aggressive strategy to basically force users to disable their adblockers in order to access the website. This is a very bad practice that could harm your website and even affect your website traffic count.
A better way is to show a friendly message asking users to support your blog by disabling AdBlock or whitelisting your website. If you can, allow users to continue browsing the website even with the AdBlocker enabled. PCGamer does this pretty well.
How To Detect AdBlockers In WordPress
You can use a simple free WordPress plugin to setup a similar system to detect AdBlockers and ask users to disable the software by showing them a friendly message.
Ad Blocker Notify Lite is a great free plugin you can use for this job. This plugin uses random selectors to make it much more difficult for AdBlockers to detect the plugin.
Here’s how you can set it up.
Step 1: Install Ad Blocker Notify Lite Plugin
Login to your WordPress admin dashboard and go to Plugins >> Add New.
Search for the Ad Blocker Notify Lite plugin. Click Install and then Activate the plugin.
Step 2: Configure The Settings
After installing the plugin, go to the plugin page to customize the settings.
First, choose Modal Box to enable the plugin and show a popup box to AdBlock users.
Switch over to the Modal Visual Options tab to customize the design of the modal window and write a custom message to show to your visitors. You can also customize the colors and opacity of the message to your preference.
From the Modal Box Settings section, you can choose whether to allow users to close the message and browse your website without disabling AdBlocker software.
You can also set a custom page to redirect users or use the Advanced Settings tab to make more changes to how the plugin works.
Remember to click Save after making any changes.
Step 3: Test The Plugin
Install an AdBlock extension and load your website to see if the plugin works.
Note: You might need to clear your browser and website cache for the plugin to function properly. Also, the plugin may not work well with some WordPress themes.
One thing you should keep in mind is that most AdBlock software is being developed and updated very rapidly thanks to their active community of users. This means they are constantly working on finding ways to bypass anti-AdBlock software.
The developers behind the WordPress plugins are also fighting back with their own updates to counteract the adblock updates. So remember to keep your plugin updated. In the meantime, it’s probably a good time for you to consider switching your blog monetization strategy to future-proof your business.