Blog Monetization using OpenX

I have recently been getting more into doing media buys.  I think its a great way to open the floodgates of traffic, and you can go barter a deal with ANYONE who has space on their site.

One thing that has bugged me is the fact that all the 3rd party ad servers are quite expensive, like $500/month to rent.  I wanted a solution so that I could still do professional media buys, but by hosting the ad server platform myself.

After doing just a bit of research and asking around, I came to the conclusion that OpenX would be the best route to take.  OpenX is a free open source project so you don’t have to worry about any hard hitting costs when starting fresh with this stuff.

I dug through OpenX the last few days playing around with it and I would have to say its a pretty powerful script.  One of the things I wondered was if it could handle tracking pixels, which I was a bit surprised to see that it does.  This will help me automate some of the things I’m doing right now even more.

I decided to test out OpenX a little bit by adding some "zones" to a few of my websites.  One of the sites I integrated this into is this blog.  The reason I added this ad section was to start to do some testing with AdSense and some of its competitors for a case study that I will be conducting.  The adserver will keep track of all the data and optimize the ads according to the best performer.  I will be testing quite a few different things, but I had to get started so I got the adserver setup and two different companies in rotation: Google AdSense and Bidvertiser.

If you use OpenX and have any good resources or tips, please post a comment and let me know!  If there are any companies similar to Google’s Adsense that you would like me to include in this monetization study, please also comment here with the company name and any other info!

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  1. Mr X

    Hey Trev:

    Good stuff. I recently applied for Google Ad Manager. They have a free beta, which is based on Double Click’s technology. Apply for it – it has robust features; most importantly it integrates with adsense!


  2. Terry Middleton


    Glad to find your post. Tell me what your thoughts are on OpenX? I am very seriously considering deploying it and was looking for people who have worked with it and have used many of it’s functionality.

    Is there anything it can’t do? Would you recommend it?

    How do you use it? Do you run your ads on other sites that you have made arrangements with. (excellent by the way)

    Let me know if you have some time,

    Thanks a million,

    [email protected]

  3. I think OpenX is a great platform to use when starting out.

    When I was looking into ad servers it was primarily for running ads on other sites like you are wondering about. I also decided to test out OpenX as an ad server for some of my own sites and this blog.

    So far I would say it has been able to do anything I’ve needed and its FREE since its open source. If you look at most of the other ad servers out there they require quite a bit of money to get started and continue to use these services.

    With OpenX all you need is your own server/hosting and you are good to go!

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