Ezoic vs Carbon Ads: The better developer Ad network

As a developer blogger, I was searching for an ad network that will help monetize my site. And I came across Carbon Ads vs Ezoic. Which one is better and why?

And I chose Ezoic as the better ad network for a blog developer.

Since mid November 2020, linguinecode.com was running ad free. It was never in my head to monetize the the site with ads.

But as linguinecode.com grew month over month, so did the expenses of this site. So I decided that it’s time for this site to start making revenue on its own and support itself.

One of the easiest methods to make revenue was to implement an ad network onto the site.

When Googling around for ad networks, I came across Ezoic, and Carbon Ads also known as BuySellAds.

Disclaimer: Some of the links are affiliate links, which I may receive a small commission for at no cost to you if you purchase one of them with my link. Please know that I have experience with all of the companies below and recommend them because I’ve used them myself. I also really appreciate my readers using these links as they allow me to run this blog and provide free content to my readers.

TLDR; Pros and cons

Ezoic

pros:

  • Low barrier to entry
  • Good RPM’s
  • Great customer support
  • Publisher focus
  • Excellent dashboard analytics

Cons:

  • Ads slow site
  • Intrusive ads

Get started with Ezoic.

Carbon Ads

Pros:

  • Low barrier to entry
  • Ads are developer & designer oriented
  • Single ad user experience

Cons:

  • RPM is very low
  • Customer support can be better
  • Dashboard analytics is very limited in data

Get started with Carbon Ads.

Entry requirements

For ad networks to provide top dollar for the publisher, and give their advertisers comfort about showing their ad on top quality sites, entry requirements are added.

These 2 ad networks require Google Analytic reports. The way to check is to visit the audience review in your Google Analytic dashboard.

The next step is to filter the date range to the last 30 days and click apply.

You can then see the result on the chart.

Ezoic

Ezoic requires the site to have a minimum of 10,000 pageviews per month in your Google Analytic report before they even consider accepting your blog site.

Ezoic is very lenient about eligibility requirements. On top of the minimum pageviews requirement, Ezoic just asks that your content is original, have a good standing term with Google AdSense, and that you have a good track record of identifiable traffic.

Carbon Ads

Carbon Ads requires the site to have a minimum of 10,000 pageviews per month in your Google Analytic report before they even consider accepting your blog site.

Carbon Ads also checks if your audience will be relevant to their advertisers, and is the site actively maintained.

Their advertisers are more on the tech niche, so your developer blog doesn’t have anything to worry about.

Winner – Tie

For me, this category results to a tie. Since we’re building developer blogs, relevancy is not an issue for both ad networks.

And both ad networks have the same requirement for traffic.

Setup process

After being approved, both ad networks will contact you via email. The person contacting you will give you a step by step process to setup their ad network with your developer blog site.

Ezoic

The setup process for Ezoic is very simple and fast. It’s more configuration then coding.

They ask you to integrate your Google AdSense account, and to change the Nameserver for your domain to point to, and to turn on Ezoic.

And that’s it. Ezoic ads will start to display in minutes on your blog site.

Carbon Ads

The setup process for Carbon Ads is fairly simple, but requires you to do some coding.

After you get reached by a Carbon Ads employee, they will send you a link that gets you to their dashboard.

You will select the site that was created for you and on the top right corner click Get Ad Tags.

You will be given a snippet of a JS script tag. You must insert that script tag in the place where you want to display your Carbon Ad.


<script async type="text/javascript" src="//cdn.carbonads.com/carbon.js?serve=${code}&placement${site_domain}=" id="_carbonads_js"></script>

You will also be provided with a snippet of CSS code to make the ad look nice.


#carbonads {
  font-family: -apple-system, BlinkMacSystemFont, "Segoe UI", Roboto, Oxygen-Sans, Ubuntu,
  Cantarell, "Helvetica Neue", Helvetica, Arial, sans-serif;
}

#carbonads {
  display: flex;
  max-width: 330px;
  background-color: hsl(0, 0%, 98%);
  box-shadow: 0 1px 4px 1px hsla(0, 0%, 0%, .1);
}

#carbonads a {
  color: inherit;
  text-decoration: none;
}

#carbonads a:hover {
  color: inherit;
}

#carbonads span {
  position: relative;
  display: block;
  overflow: hidden;
}

#carbonads .carbon-wrap {
  display: flex;
}

.carbon-img {
  display: block;
  margin: 0;
  line-height: 1;
}

.carbon-img img {
  display: block;
}

.carbon-text {
  font-size: 13px;
  padding: 10px;
  line-height: 1.5;
  text-align: left;
}

.carbon-poweredby {
  display: block;
  padding: 8px 10px;
  background: repeating-linear-gradient(-45deg, transparent, transparent 5px, hsla(0, 0%, 0%, .025) 5px, hsla(0, 0%, 0%, .025) 10px) hsla(203, 11%, 95%, .4);
  text-align: center;
  text-transform: uppercase;
  letter-spacing: .5px;
  font-weight: 600;
  font-size: 9px;
  line-height: 1;
}

Winner – Ezoic

When it comes to ease of implementation, Ezoic is the winner.

Quality of ads

You want to make sure that the ads being displayed to your readers are relevant to them.

Ezoic

The type of ads coming out of Ezoic, can really vary. They can be anywhere from technical companies, all the way to travel, banking, consumer goods, etc.

According to Ezoic, they pride themselves on their machine learning algorithm. They say that over the few weeks, they will learn to provide the best quality ad content for your readeres.

When I look at linguinecode.com traffic, pageviews, and session duration, I have not seen it drop since implementing Ezoic. This gives me comfort that my site will not underperform with implementing them.

Carbon Ads

The type of ads coming out of Carbon are very developer, and designer focus.

Winner – Carbon Ads

Carbon is the clear winner in this category. Relevancy for your developer blog is important. Knowing that they are designer, and developer focus gives me comfort knowing that my readers will always get relevant advertising.

RPM’s

This is obviously the most important category of them all. This will probably make or break your decision on which ad network you want to work with.

This may differ for you, but I’ll give you numbers of what linguinecode.com is doing, given that it’s very front-end focus.

Carbon Ads

Carbon Ads is $2 RPM max. When I consulted with one of their sales people, they said I would get $1.50 per 1,000 page views.

The reality is that I was getting between $0.94 – $1.20 per 1,000 pageviews.

The first 2 weeks of November 2020, Linguine Code displayed ads from Carbon 30,000+ times and earned a total of $34.54.

This made me happy, but sad at the same time. This site would barely be able to cover it’s total expenses for the month.

Ezoic

From day 1, my RPM increased by 200%.

It went from $1 to $2 RPM. The following week it went to $10 per 1,000 pageviews. And that number keeps on increasing. My highest RPM for my developer blog has been $15 per 1,000 pageviews.

Winner – Ezoic

Ezoic is the clear winner in this category.

When I do the math, Carbon Ads would have given my $74 for the month of November.

(74,000 pageviews / 1,000 RPM) times $1 = $74

Let’s say that Ezoic averages at $12 RPM.

(74,000 pageviews / 1,000 RPM) times $12 = $888

That is a 1,200% difference between Ezoic and Carbon.

Biggest Con

Ezoic

My biggest complaint with Ezoic is that it feels intrusive. The nature of Ezoic is to add multiple ads in a page which is a reason why the RPM is about 12,000% higher than Carbon.

This may also cause a slow down on your site because of all the stuff it’s loading.

Carbon Ads

My biggest complaint is that they’re not publisher focus. They are more worried about their advertisers then they are with their publishers.

I tried working with them to see how my site can earn more revenue through them, and they just didn’t want to budge.

They we’re more in the mindset of “it is what is it.”

If you want to make any life changing money ($1,000 minimum) with Carbon you would need to pull 1,000,000 page views per month.

Winner – Carbon Ads

Carbon Ads is the winner with the biggest con.

Overall winner – Ezoic

The bottom line is that you want to work with an ad network that gives your site the best dollar value, and that will give your readers ads that are relevant for them.

If you’re interested in starting a blog and make some passive income, then give this article a read, “How to start a developer blog: Ultimate Guide to Start Blogging Today“.

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