UPDATE: I have found a cool anti-adblock plugin for WordPress that seems to work like a charm, for now at least! :)
"I installed ADblockPlus as I was getting tired of all the silly banners and annoying popup ads that hinder my web surfing experience. However, a few days later when I visited my own MFA site I could not see the Adsense ads! WTF??" ;)
As silly and ironic it sounds, I am sure it is the running thought of at least some ADBlockPlus users who also happen to be Adsense publishers! Honestly, this was also the very first thought I had when I could not find my Adsense ads (although I don’t have MFA sites, I do have sites where I put Adsense alongside other ads to supplement my income). A little search into Google and I dug this article up which will explain the whole issue a lot better than I could!
Clarification: Just to repeat, the addon itself does NOT block any ads unless you subscribe to one of the "filters".
Stuff blocked by Adblockplus+easylist filter:
a) Adsense™ ads-Text ads, image and flash ads, Custom Search Engine, etc: Yep, believe it or not, the big G is losing big time thanks to the popularity of AdBlockPlus (in fact, last time I checked it was the officially recommended addon for Firefox, so you can imagine the impact it is having on web publishers). Is a lawsuit by Google against the adblockplus devs in the offing? ;)
Fortunately I also use a php-based web stats program alongside these two big giants and it is immune to the adblocker; the flip side is that it does not offer you any more information than the list of keywords and the referrer domains which lead people to your website.
[Note to Self: Hmm, so this is why I see such crazy stats over at analytics and Statcounter, and such a huge drop in my Adsense income! Hmm hmm :D ]
How to verify my statement:
Test#1: Okay, if you have got a Firefox browser, and a Adsense site, then just install the ADBlockplus addon, subscribe to one of the lists (in my case it is "easylist"), restart Firefox and visit your site. Can you still see the ads, or just "empty white pages"?
Test#2: Here is another test I tried personally. I use a Google custom search form on my fatlossplr.com site. Check these screenshots for yourself (you can also check it live by going to my site, provided that you have AdBlockplus installed and enabled):
Screenshot of Fatlossplr.com Search Page with AdBlockplus Enabled:
Hmm, 100% clean page with no ads! How sweet! ;)
Screenshot of Fatlossplr.com Search Page With AdBlockPlus Disabled:
Yuk, soo many ads! :D
Is it fair: Yes and no. Ethically speaking, a person who installs such an addon is someone who does not want to see ads, either out of disgust or because the ads slow down/hinder his web surfing experience. If we put ourselves in the shoes of such a visitor who is paranoid of all ads, then it seems fair that he won’t see the Adsense ads either! On the other hand, it does not seem to be too fair to web publishers, especially those who heavily depend on Adsense for their sustenance.
Now, I am not taking about ezinearticles, much less the cr*ppy MFA sites and spammy blogs. I am talking about the large number of good, informative websites where webmasters take great pains to put high quality content and hope to make a few dimes from Adsense! In a sense, I feel (and so do others) that the more people install and use this addon, the narrower will the "world of free content" become!
Yes I don’t use Adsense on THIS blog but I do use it on a couple of other blogs. My aims and aspirations with this blog are quite different and I don’t want to throw them all down the drain by putting Adsense ad codes all over it. But a lot of blogs, some way better than mine in terms of content quality, rely heavily on Adsense income. Now just imagine the fate of these publishers. Maybe they would have to go back to their old rude bosses who they fired with such enthusiasm in the hope of being able to earn dimes and dollars in their shorts aand dollars in their shorts and G-strings! ;)
On another note, if web surfers want, they can whitelist your domain so that AdBlockplus does not block ads from your site. But tell me, why on earth would any AdBlockplus user do this when they hate ads so much that they went as far as to installing an adblocker? :D
So, what could you do to save yourself?
Solution#1: Well, if you are a programmer you can probably whip up a script that blocks all Firefox users with the addon enabled; this way they would be able to access your content only after disabling the addon.
Solution#2: Restrict access to your content to paying members only.
Solution#3: Giveaway only half of your content free and charge for the rest!
Solution#4: Stop using Adsense™.
Solution#5: Show different ads to the AdBlockplus users.
Solution#6: Stop worrying about it and focus on multiple streams of income. Use Adsense, but at the same time, don’t put all your eggs in this basket alone! If one site is monetized with Adsense, another could be earning revenue with plain text/HTML affiliate ads, yet another can be monetized using plain image ads!
Personally this is what I do. At the end of the day you will discover that not many ad networks pay as good as Adsense and even if they do, most of them either display ads that are out-of-context (and hence a huge waste of your real estate), offensive, or stuff that would terribly slow down the loading time of your webpages!
I would suggest you look for smaller ad networks as they are less likely to be blocked by adblockplus and more likely to give you a better payout than the big giants. Ultimately, you would need to test, test and test each ad network and pick what works best for you!
Another thing you can do is to build your own ad network. This can be done in two ways:
a) Install a free script such as Openx (expect a big leaning curve here, although they also offer a hosted solution for a monthly fee), Oasis (no personal experience and I don’t even know if it is supported or not), ADMP (it sounds cool and is free, but I am yet to use it), or a commercial script of your choice on your server. All of them would work on a typical LAMP (Linux/Apache/MySQL/PHP) server!
b) If you are inexperienced in installing/maintaining scripts then you can get a hosted solution. Only difference is that instead of your server, the ads would be served by a third party server, and you pay a monthly fee! A quick Google search took me to Bitads (again, no personal experience with them, so please do your due diligence); they seem to offer a free account for small websites.
Three big differences between using a hosted solution and one that is installed on your server are that:
1) If the folks behind the hosted solution go out of business, change their terms and conditions, or face an extended downtime/DDOS attack, it might result in a loss of revenue for you. Not saying that these things cannot happen with your own server, but when you OWN a server, you usually have much more control over it!
2) You also need to make sure that the ad server is displaying your ads only and not inserting some third party (porno) ads in between! :D I remember having such an issue with a hosted ad serving solution I joined years ago. I cannot remember anything else about that company except that I abandoned it once they started showing ads which DO NOT belong to me!
Of course, if you open the gates of your ad server to the public then its fate won’t be any different than that of the hosted ad serving solution. :D
Solution#7: Oh, by the way, you have another option: you can beat the Adblockplus devs black and blue for coming up with such an addon and making you poorer! :D (kidding)
What Others Are Saying about Adblockplus and Adsense:
HOT tip: If you hate Ezinearticles or for that matter, Google, using Adblockplus is the perfect "protest" tool! ;)
I can understand that after reading all these you are feeling terribly unhappy (and bored)! Still, I request that you leave a nice comment on my blog if you can! :D