Traffic revenue comes from 4 factors, improving any will improve revenue:
1) traffic volume (obvious one to start with)
I couldn't agree more. Traffic is king on the internet.
My initial thought on monetizing existing traffic.
Exit pops & Pop Unders
(this might draw some flames :shy: )
We've seen that a domain holder can earn as high as 65% of what they earn from the initial landing page with pop-unders and exit-pop ups. (I.e. for every $1 earned from the initial landing page, $.65 will be earned from exit pops & pop unders). It's probably much more then 65% with some.
The arguement we most commonly get when advising a domain holder to take advantage of this potential is that they'll lose repeat traffic or annoy the user or it will hurt their brand. (I'm also well aware of the potential problems when a udrp case arises, but for the sake of discussion, lets not go there).
I'm not advocating that pop* doesn't annoy a user, but I do feel that for a small domain holder, the main focus is land acquisition - making money from that land through the highest sale price or per entrance fee. An entrance fee being the advertising or affiliate income through a single type-in or visitor.
A big empty piece of land by itself is not attractive and trying to draw a user to that land more than once is very difficult and expensive, and will require that you charge a much lower entrance fee.
For the beginner domain developer, I feel that charging the highest entrance fee possible and earning more money to acquire more land and tools is the best route. Just my $.02.
4) reliability of partner - actually converting the "on paper" stats to real money. there are some bad companies out there who don't pay on time (or at all in some cases). [/B]
We've had some affiliates come to us and use our program ONLY because they've seen our pages used on other sites. I'm not saying that we don't pay or that we pay late (quite the contrary), but what I am saying is that it's often not enough. Ask on all the webmaster forums you know of about that company...the same way a potential employer does reference checks on a prospective employee, you should do the same with your sponsor.
I know many who have been burned by companies who appeared legitimate because they saw the company's ads in prominent locations. There are some companies who will burn the little guys and some that will burn the big guys.
I'll stop my ramblings now.