The growth of the World Wide Web naturally led to the creation of a world of classified websites. While Craigslist was one of the first websites of this kind, many others emerged over the years. Some of these popular names include eBay Classifieds, Olx, Hoobly, Locanto, Adpost and Free Classifieds among others. These platforms have made it easy for anyone to post ads for free, with the option to upgrade and increase visibility. There are, however, many who want to find out How to monetize a free classifieds website.
Many strategies have been developed over the years on How to monetize a free classifieds website.
The Use of Featured Ads
Modern classified websites can have tens of thousands of listings in each category. Using featured ads is an excellent way on How to monetize a free classifieds website. When asked about this strategy, an expert on the subject revealed, “Featured ads allow users to highlight their ads on the website by getting featured on the homepage.”
It helps ads to stand out from others and get noticed. They may be highlighted with unique colors and special captions.
Upgraded Paid Membership
This is a common strategy used by classified websites to monetize their model. Experts agree that that is one of the most reliable ways of generating recurring revenue.
According to one industry expert, “If you can provide something more than what an ordinary account offers, ask users for membership. Some additional functions can be allowed, including posting of more information and multiple ads.”
The goal here is to make the premium members feel special and generate more traction from their ads.
The online classified industry has been working on different advertising models for ways on How to monetize a free classifieds website.
Google Ads is an excellent example of ads originating from a display network. Such networks can add custom tags to each user’s profile. This helps in generating customized ads for each user, which helps in improving leads and conversion rates.
“Another area where classified sites can generate revenue is from contracted brand advertisers. In such scenarios, websites can generate higher CPC revenues,” says an expert in online advertising solutions with a leading digital marketing firm.
There are even more advertising scenarios for classified sites to generate revenues.
This has been a traditional way for websites, including classified sites to monetize the platform. However, reputed sites pay special attention not to overdo it. There has been an increasing amount of emphasis on banners associated with Pay to Action or Pay Per Click models.
If a classified website has a huge following, it shouldn’t have any difficulty in molding this advertising model to its advantage. A digital marketing expert elaborated on the new changes in the model, “brands now seek their ROI even before paying for their banner ads. This ROI is measured in terms of the clicks and actions taken by users.”
Showing Ads on Top
This may be similar to the Featured Ads strategy, but many classified sites can also use it as a separate one. The ad can remain on top for a given period of time. This feature is quite popular on car classified sites, but is followed by general classified websites too.
It is a solution for advertisers to stand out from the crowd. It is also a big revenue-generating strategy for these sites, as it creates competition between advertisers who are ready to get on top in a category.
Affiliate marketing may seem to have been the domain of individuals and bloggers for generating revenues. This feature has also been used for How to monetize a free classifieds ads site.
There are no fixed rules here, as a marketing expert explains, “websites can work with a brand that wants to leverage the traffic and sell its products and share a commission. Another one is a rental model where the link stays on the classified site and generates monthly fees.”
While Amazon and eBay have powerful affiliate programs for this feature, there are even more platforms that can help classified sites generate big commissions.
The online classified industry continues to thrive even when the Internet is undergoing many changes. It also seems to have found its place in the age of smartphone browsing. As it evolves and adapts to these changes, more ways are emerging on How to monetize a free classifieds website.