Stream SEO is known for writing reviews of different advertising platforms for every niche and country available out there. It has been our focus for many years because we know, no ad platform fits every website or blog in this world. Adsense can be great, but working with other networks can be a better choice. You just need to know how to chose them based on your niche, geos and other factors.
While we have reviewed several smaller alternatives in the past who deliver ads in various ad formats such as banners, interstitials, mobile ads, pop ups, etc. Today, we’re going to review one of the top competitors in this space – Media.net (sign up here).
Media.net is one of the Best Adsense Alternatives
Media.net is a contextual Ad Network which powers the Yahoo!-Bing contextual ad platform and guarantees not only high quality but also high paying ads. It gives publishers access to over $5bn of advertiser’s search demand. So it’s rightfully known as one of the Best Adsense Alternatives.
If you want to run with the top networks, you’ve got to work with Google, Facebook or Bing/Yahoo, and we have covered a lot about Adsense and some of Facebook Audience network recently, so it was only time to write and show media.net works.
For those who don’t know what a contextual ad platform is, it means that the advertisements are based on the context of the page. This means if your website content is about yoga, your visitors will be shown ads related to the yoga industry such as yoga pants, yoga mats, yoga online courses, etc.The performance of contextual ads is usually better as compared to other kinds of ads because when an user lands on a website, and sees ads that are in sync with the webpage he is more likely to click on them rather than something that is completely random and unrelated.
As a high-quality ad network Media.net only accepts websites that have premium content, irrespective of the scale and size of the blog. The returns that publishers can expect with Media.net are as good as with Adsense, in fact, sometimes it’s even higher. If you are looking for an alternative to Google Adsense, I’d say without a doubt, Media.net is your answer.
Media.net Review – Publisher Requirements
As mentioned before, Media.net (sign up for a free account here) is a high paying contextual ad network and one of the Best Adsense Alternatives. Media.net looks for high-quality publishers and only allows websites with premium content. If you are looking to make money fast with your low-quality blog, well Media.net is not for you.
MediaNet has several guidelines in order to approve publishers to their program, they only allow websites with premium content. If you are looking to make money fast with your low-quality blog, Medianet is not for you. As one of the Best Adsense Alternatives, MediaNet looks for high-quality websites but when you are approved you’ll enjoy the benefits of it.
The following guidelines will help you understand and determine whether your website is suitable for Media.net or not. We have included this information because we always receive specific questions about what a particular advertisement network allows and what it doesn’t.
The Media.net program is currently only open to websites that:
- Have content in English
- Receive majority of their traffic from United States, United Kingdom or Canada
- Contain mainly original content
- Have content that is updated regularly
- Does not infringe any third party intellectual property rights
- Have reasonable volume of visitors already using the website.
- Does not contain excessive advertising
- Have a reasonable amount of content
- Have navigation-friendly website design
You are likely to get rejected by Media.net if your websites contains one or more of the following:
- Software Piracy such as warez, torrentz, cracking, hacking, phreaking or similar illegal downloads
- Free hosted pages
- Hidden links and text
- Under construction, parked pages or pages without content
- Deceptive or manipulative content or construction of sites to improve search engine ranking
- Sites that redirect traffic to another site other than ones specifically approved on the Program
- Promote activities generally understood as Internet abuse such as sending of unsolicited bulk electronic mail or the use of spyware
Media.net will not approve websites that promote, contain or link directly to:
- Adult, Pornographic or any illegal content.
- Tabacco, alcohol, ammunition, hazardous substances, illegal drugs, gore, violence, gambling and racism content.
- Pages containing profanity or content that and/or discriminates or is offensive to any section of people.
- Hate, violence, racial intolerance, or advocate against any individual, group, or organization.
- Sale of counterfeit products, imitations of designer or other goods, stolen items or any products that infringe intellectual property rights of other parties.
- Programs which promote invalid click activity by paying users to click on ads, browse websites, read email etc.
- Websites that contain forums, discussion boards, chat rooms, or any content area that is open to public updates without adequate moderation.
- Sites with content that has been generated using computer programs and hence may not be comprehendible.
- Sites with fake news.
- High performance contextual ads
- High Paying native Ads
- Approval takes 2 business days or even sooner
- Dedicated Account Manager
- No specific Minimum Traffic Required
How to Sign Up/Registration Progress
Applying to Media.net is easy and fast, the approval process can take some hours to a maximum of 2 business days on an average.
Go to Media.net (click here to register). You’ll be asked for:
- Your Website URL
- Full Name
Shortly after signing up, you will receive an automated response by email informing that Media.net has received your application.
After this, you just need to wait for your website to get assessed. If your website doesn’t comply with the program guidelines, you’ll receive a rejection email. We actually submitted an alternative website (not Stream SEO) that we knew most probably wouldn’t get accepted to gather more information for this article.
This means their team personally checks every website manually. This helps them get the best quality of websites and therefore get best advertisers with high paying CPCs/CPMs without putting their reputation in danger.
On the other hand, if your website is suitable for the Media.net publisher partnership program, you’ll receive a welcome email which would not only contain your login credentials but also some ad codes to get you started right away!
In this email, you’ll also receive the codes of the most popular banners to put it on your website right away.
You’ll also be assigned a PERSONAL Account Manager who will constantly monitor your account and will give you the best suggestions to help you make the most of your blog.
Once you are approved, you can log in and find that the dashboard is very friendly and easy to use. But first, you need to add your account details such as Name, Address, Telephone Number and at the bottom you must accept the terms and conditions of Media.net in order to proceed.
The next step is to configure your preferred payout method.
Everyone who is interested in working with Media.net should know that:
- Media.net Pays on a Net-30 Basis
- Earning Threshold is $100 USD
- Available Payment Methods: “Payoneer”
In order to select a payout method, do the following:
- At the top right you’ll find your website name and a drop.down menu. Click on it and select “Payout Settings“.
- Select your preferred payout method. You’ll be shown the available payout methods, which are currently “Paypal” and “Wire Transfer“. Update: Unfortunately, Media.net only pays via Payoneer as of 2019.
- You’ll be asked to fill out information depending on the payout method you choose.
- Click on “Update Information” to save changes.
Media.net Review – Features
Every time you log, (click to sign up) you’ll be shown your dashboard with the estimated revenue and impressions. You can select the date range directly in the drop-down menu located at the top left of your revenue report.
At the top you’ll find 5 tabs:
- Ad Units
- Site Management
At the top right, you’ll find a drop-down menu with the name of your website. When you click on it you’ll find:
- Account Settings
- Payout Settings
In the Reports section, you’ll be able to see reports:
- By Account
- By Website
- By Ad Unit
You can see these reports using the available date ranges:
- This Week
- Last 7 days
- Last Week
- This Month
- Last 30 Days
- Last Month
Or you can select a specific day or date range in the calendar.
In the Ad Unit section, you can create, edit and manage all your ad units.
On the right side of every ad unit you’ll find some useful information like size, last modified date, ad ID and some useful shortcuts:
- “Get Code“
- “View report“
By default, you’ll be shown your active ad units. You can also select and view your hidden ad units or if you’d like you can also view both of these together. In the drop-down menu below “Ad Units”, you can select the ads you’d like to show.
If you click on the “Plus Icon” at the left of each side unit you’ll be shown your ad unit preview.
Create New Ad Unit
In order to create a new ad unit:
- Click on the “Ad Unit” Tab.
- Click on the blue button “Create Ad Unit“.
You’ll be shown the available ad sizes and the most popular sizes:
- Type a “Name” for your new Ad Unit.
- Select your “Preferred Ad Skin” from the available ad skins and then customize it according to your site design and colors. you can see here at the Stream SEO’s sidebar that I’ve put one as an example for you with the colors of my website.
- In the “Color Customization” section, you can select specific colors for your ad elements.
- If you want to see how your ad looks before saving, click on “Preview” at the bottom.
- Once you are done, click on the blue button “Save & Get Code“.
- You’ll be shown your ad code in order to paste it in your website. Copy the code.
- Paste the code in your website, for example, in the sidebar.
- Your ad unit will be displayed immediately on your website.
As you may have noticed, the format and design of Media.net ads, are different and quite unique. Media.net primarily has contextual ads, which are specially designed and customized in order to give users a consistent user experience.
Media.net ads are basically keyword blocks with several neatly placed keywords that link to the advertiser’s page. You can select a “skin” or a format and customize it and make an ad unit that blends in with your website and gives you the best results.
Media.net analyzes your website for a couple of days and decides which keywords should be displayed and accordingly displays keywords that are most relevant to your website’s content. This is precisely the reason, it takes time for the ads to optimize for your website. Over time, Media.net learns about the keywords that work for you the best i.e. the ones that receive more clicks and drive revenue for you. Media. Net’s best practices suggest that you must run their ads on your website for at least 15 days in order to give their system sometime to get familiar with your website, so that it can automatically optimize and display ads that’ll help you maximize your revenue.
Media.net displays several ad sizes, featuring the most popular sizes for bloggers:
As you can see, the format is focused on keywords, in every size – some of them suit perfectly in the sidebar of a blog, while some of them are suitable between the blog posts and some can be placed below the article. It’s up to you to test different ad sizes in order to find which ad spot performs the best for you.
In the “Site Management” section you can add other websites that you’d like to monetize with Media.net and submit the same for approval.
In the “FAQs” section you’ll find knowledge based with tutorials and the answers of frequently asked questions.
Media.Net Review – Results and Payments
As we’ve covered the sign-up and configuration process, we also wanted to test Media.net right away on a particular website in order to let the system learn and optimize for better performance.
We left the system running a little bit more than 30 days in a young website that receives less than 100 visits per day just to see how it performed. The following report shows the last 30 days for this particular website:
As you can see, even small and fairly new websites can monetize their traffic with reliable ad networks such as Media.net. It’s also interesting to see the live impressions (blue box in image above) where it shows you the impressions of the last 60 minutes, and we did a small test and sent around 50 visitors from social media and it seemed to work well and update every hour.
Also, Media.net is extremely particular when it comes to payouts. We’ve got our payment regularly every single time:
We’re now making more than $2,500-$3,000+ per month with Media.net. Can’t complain about them.
Media.net Best Practices and Conclusions
After you put your ad in your website, Media.net recommends waiting for 15 days in order to allow the system to gather data, learn and optimize each of your ad units for maximum performance.
In order to improve your ad performance, place it in positions that receive good visibility. e.g. In the blog posts between paragraphs or below the post. The sidebar is normally one of the most common places to put ads but it won’t perform as well as inside the content because the CTR will be lower.
Since the ad units require engagement, the placement is crucial but the quantity also matters. That’s why you should place 3 ad units on each page of your website.
Customize the ads in order to make it look integrated into your website and try to use the most attractive colors from your website’s color palette. As you are displaying text, use a background color that allows your visitors to read your ads properly.
Remember, you must be patient and wait until you can see better results. We noticed an increase in revenue and clicks after a couple weeks of working with them, and this is something I recommend doing with every ad network you test.
For us, they are truly one of the best alternatives to Google Adsense. So, if you want to maximize your revenue and minimize your effort sign up and get started now. Their approval rate is fast and easy, so start testing media net or if you’re already working with them – please leave a comment below, we’d love to know how your experience has been so far. I hope you enjoyed this Media net review.