WordPress Announces Launch Of WordAds – An Alternative To Google Adsense!

On November, 29th 2011, Jon burke of wordpress.com announced the introduction of a monetization option for wordpress.com users – WordAds, an alternative to Google’s adsense.

In the blog post announcing WordAds, Jon Burke did not mince words on his feelings about Google Adsense,

“We’ve resisted advertising so far because most of it we had seen wasn’t terribly tasteful, and it seemed like Google’s AdSense was the state-of-the-art, which was sad. You pour a lot of time and effort into your blog and you deserve better.”

Of course, if you’re running Google Adsense on your blog as an option to make money with your blog, you definitely know that one of the disincentives of Google Adsense is the payout. With payouts of some times $0.03, monetizing your blog with Adsense is not really that interesting!

But, Can WordAds Rival Google Adsense?

The first question that came to my mind when I heard of the announcement was, can WordAds really become an alternative to Google Adsense?

Indeed, as Jon put it, “You pour a lot of time and effort into your blog and you deserve better,” definitely a reference to Google Adsense payout. But will WordAds give the blogging community the deserved compensation for all the work?

We do know that there a thousand other adsense alternatives already in the market but Google Adsense has remained at the top because of its operational ease. So it will take more than rhetoric to out-play Google adsense in the market.

With the conditions already in place for WordAds, it does show that it is not going to be in any way as popular as Google Adsense. The fact that not all wordpress.com users are eligible for the program clearly tells of this fact.

Here are some of the requirements for participating in the program:

1. Blog must be publicly visible and have a custom domain

Jon Burke puts it this way: “Creative minds aren’t satisfied being digital sharecroppers on someone else’s domain, and you want to carve out your own piece of the internet and have a space that you’re proud of because it’s so… you.” So if you have just a subdomain on wordpress.com like http://YOU.wordpress.com, you’re not eligible.

2. Blog must be written in English language

Even when you meet these requirements, you will still need to apply and be assessed before you can be approved for the program. And from all indication, choosing participants will be based on the type of content, and traffic/engagement levels of the blogs.

I would have loved trying out WordAds as the payout sounds enticing, at least, from the announcement.  However, as one running a self-hosted wordpress blog, I’m already technically knocked out of the program. But, I indeed look forward to the time, when maybe WordAds will be extended to the blogging community as a whole.

Let’s have your take on this: Are you on wordpress.com? Would you be applying for the WordAds program? If you’re a self-hosted wordpress blogger would you love to for the program to be extended to all wordpress bloggers? Share your thoughts with us in the comments below.


Chadrack Irobogo is a web entrepreneur, blogger, business coach and author. He's a vastly experienced online marketer and runs a digital marketing agency where he helps local businesses drive valuable online leads. On this blog he shares business strategies and proven marketing tactics that delivers tangible results for SMBs and enterprise bloggers.


33 Responses to “WordPress Announces Launch Of WordAds – An Alternative To Google Adsense!”

  1. jim syyap

    Dec 06. 2011

    My blog is with blogger.com, and even so, I don’t use AdSense. I find that advertising on my site is distracting for the readers. I get better returns from clients that sign up for the service that I offer.

  2. Adrienne

    Dec 06. 2011

    Hey Chadrack,

    I was curious when I read your title to find out what this was all about. I’m not on wordpress.com and don’t intend to be. I also don’t even care for Google Adsense so I know I wouldn’t find this anymore intriguing. It doesn’t pay enough to have the people who land on my blog taken away so I can make a few cents. That’s something that just never interested me so I guess my answer would have to be no. This is something I’ll never use.

    Thanks for sharing it though Chadrack. My question has been answered.

    • Chadrack

      Dec 06. 2011


      You’re not alone on that. Not many bloggers really want to send their hard earned traffic to someone else site for a meagre payout. We only wait to see how this one turn out!

  3. Edward

    Dec 06. 2011

    I don’t think that it can compete to Google Adsense. It’s too early to tell. Having known that Adsense is the most reputable ad network of all times.

    • Chadrack

      Dec 06. 2011


      I want to agree with you there. One thing I’ve come to admire about Google is that they definitely know what they are doing. they have built a system that runs perfectly well marketing online. I think if any one wants to beat that then they must have a really big target to beat!

      • Edward

        Dec 07. 2011

        @Chadrack, I couldn’t agree more. Even Yahoo, one of it’s biggest rivals didn’t manage to scratch the current standing of Google Adsense.

        • Chadrack

          Dec 07. 2011


          A good example there. And I for one, I have great respect for Google!

  4. I think that there shouldn’t be many ads on a site, because there will be an opportunity to loose many readers and visitors. Ad as about WP innovations, then in my opinion WordPress can be an excellent competitor for Google

    • Chadrack

      Dec 07. 2011


      As much as I want to agree with on not having too many ads on a site because of loosing readers and visitors, we must also understand that it all depends on site owner. If it’s a blogger that have no other way of making money with the blog except through google ads then loosing that visitor while earning the little cents matters, or don’t you think so? :)

      On being able to compete with Google, yes, WordAds may compete in terms of payout. If the payout is really good many more bloggers may want to go for it. But with the restriction of users to wordpress.com and a dedicated domain, it surely will not be like Google adsense.

      You know adsense can be used just by any content publisher whether a static site, blogger, wordpress, just any platform. And the entering barrier is not just there. The reach is so wide that WordAds can never reach that level, except wordpress decides to allow more freedom for it to be used in any platform.

      • Well,Chadrack, you are right! But still none of us knows what else WordPress will offer us and who knows maybe it will give more freedom. We’ll see)

        • Chadrack

          Dec 09. 2011


          Frankly, I’ve thought of that. In fact, in one of his answers to a question to that effect, Jon burke replied that something may be done in that line later on.

          However, I’m only looking at this with an open mind. Having watched Google for some time and seen how they have been going on in the market, it will take a formidable force to compete with google in this area. For Jon burke to have taken a swipe at Google Adsense in his post is really something I think was premature. Of course he may have done that to draw the attention of wordpress.com users, but he should understand that other more formidable competitors like Yahoo! couldn’t stand the game with Google!

  5. Leonor Miller

    Dec 07. 2011

    I think Wordads is not as flexible as google adsense. When applying for google adsense we just need to create new account. Ofcourse, they also assess our blog before approving but there is no need for self hosted blog. I feel it will not be very successful.

    • Chadrack

      Dec 09. 2011

      @Leonor Miller,

      You’re definitely correct there. Well, I’m also thinking that WordPress is trying to do something in the area of CPA! You know these services have very stringent requirements to enter. But I don’t know why Jon burke specifically referred to Google Adsense in his post. All the same we will need to wait and see what will be coming next!

  6. bjohn

    Dec 09. 2011

    I think Google adsense is really good and this is too early to predict about Wordads.

    • Chadrack

      Dec 12. 2011


      A good stand there! All you’re saying therefore is, no need to take sides yet, right?

  7. DiNaRa

    Dec 11. 2011

    I will apply as soon as i understand that it is going to be more beneficial than Google Adsense for example. I agree that Google Adsense payouts are so small and hard to get that sometimes you don’t even want to join it.

    • Chadrack

      Dec 12. 2011


      If you’re already on wordpress.com I think it’s really a good thing to try wordads. I believe that though it might be popular like google adsense, the payout may compensate for that. So, I agree with your stand. See how the thing goes and if it come out good, go for it!

  8. jeffkgross

    Dec 14. 2011

    That is good news. Hope they’ll follow AdSense standards regarding relevancy and payments. Is this beginning of first real AdSense alternative?

    • Chadrack

      Dec 16. 2011


      Frankly, that is something we have to think of, the relevancy of the ads. I know there were other Adsense alternatives in the market before now who did not compare when it comes to displaying relevant ads. Since those at WordPress have not come out to tell us how they will do this, I think we still have to wait for them. Thanks for the comment.

  9. Rochelle

    Dec 15. 2011

    Thanks for sharing this inspiring and useful post..I really learn a lot on it..

    • Chadrack

      Dec 16. 2011


      Glad to hear that! :)

  10. BB

    Dec 16. 2011

    Hi Chadrack

    I think the deciding factor for most people will be how profitable WordAds is compared to Adsense and how it impacts on their readers viewing experience. Adsense payouts seem to have dipped for a lot of people over the last few years, so for some WordAds may be a welcome alternative.

    • Chadrack

      Dec 16. 2011


      It does appear that these are the two areas Wordads wants to address. Jon burke was very specific about these areas in his blog and so we have to look forward to seeing some improvement in pay out and viewers experience.

  11. This is interesting. The first I’ve heard of it and I always find it a little bit exciting when someone takes on Google. I’m not against Google but I love the idea of the free market, especially online.

    My guess would be that it’s just a matter of time until they open it up to the blogging community as a whole. It’s also interesting to read the comments and see how many bloggers are just not into sending traffic away for a few cents…makes sense!

    • Chadrack

      Dec 19. 2011


      You love it when someone takes it up against Google? Anyway, life is always like that, when one is a leader others will always want to edge him out. And as you put it, it is a free market!

      But frankly, I also see wordads being opened up to the market. But it all depends on how successful the trial with wordpress.com users comes out. If it doesn’t make any mark with the exclusive users, I don’t see much use for it.

  12. I do not quite get you, your domain is not a subdomain on another website like http://YOU.wordpress.com and yet, you say you are not eligible, why is that?

    • Chadrack

      Dec 21. 2011


      Hi, such a long time! Glad to see you around once more :)

      Yes, I’m not eligible because I’m running a self-hosted blog but the program for now is only open to those who are hosted on WordPress.com but with a custom domain. What that means is, you should not just have a http://You.wordpress.com but a custom domain like http://www.webincomejournal.com pointing to your blog hosted on wordpress.com. This is why many wordpress.org users (where most of us fall in) are technically knocked out!

      I’m sure you’re self-hosted too or are you not?

      P.S. Hey, have you seen the Christmas appreciation post? Check it out in the commentluv link below and claim your Christmas gift! :)

      • @Chadrack, Now, I get it and thanks for the welcome message…I lost inspiration but am back now…to ready get my feet wet!
        I would go through the post, thanks.

  13. diane

    Dec 22. 2011

    There are a lot of other programs that are similar to Ad Sense. Unfortunately, none of them pays as much as Google does. The reason for this is simple, Google owns both the Ad Sense and Google search engine. Combined advertising on the world’s most popular search engine and various web sites will always be more attractive than just advertising on our blogs. That is why other programs must lower their prices in order to attract advertisers and at the same time, this means lower payment to publishers – that is us.

  14. Dele

    Dec 26. 2011

    I think the payout from Google Adsense is not necessarily bad. It is the nature of the sector. For example, any PTC site that is not a scammer cannot afford to pay more than a certain amount which is a subset of the pay they also get from their advertisers.

    Similarly, i think Google Adsense pays out about 60% (if i can recollect correctly ) of advertisers pay.

    It is now incumbent on publishers to deploy skill in identifying niches whose payout is highest and produce content relevant to those niches for more payout. It is not unusual for example to see payouts of $30 – $50 per ad click in some niches. Also within any niche, a publisher can identify high paying topics and optimize his content for this, for higher payout.

  15. What about the rules and regulations.
    WordAds also have the same rules or it has different set of rules for running the WordAds Acount.

  16. Saikrishna

    Feb 20. 2012

    Good to know that wordpress i going to launch this because we deadly need a good alternative for adsense.

  17. Hursh

    Feb 20. 2012

    it will be very helpful for those who are getting banned in adsense.