Why I'm ditching AdBuff on Songsear.ch

20 July 2017   0 comments   Web development

I'm a performance nerd and if something isn't as fast as it can be it hurts my soul.
I have this side project called SongSear.ch. It's a lyrics search engine with over 2 million songs.

To try to make a buck to pay for the hosting cost, I put in ads. The only one I could find that does NOT use document.write is AdBuff . But their technical implementation, pardon my French, sucks! It's redirects upon redirects in an iframe over HTTP. Granted, it loads async but it's still dragging down performance for people on low-end devices and on mobile networks.

Today I decided to take the AdBuff ads off. Let's see if it made a difference performance-wise:

Before

Load waterfall WITH ads

After

Load waterfall WITHOUT ads

Basically, 2.7 seconds (on LTE) instead of 14.3 seconds. And 211Kb of data instead of 1Mb .

So how much money do I stand to lose for ditching these ads? Well, I've earned a grand total of $10.82 in total for 1,214,072 impressions. That's what I spend on hosting this project every 6 days. Clearly this isn't working out.

UPDATE

Adversal.com emailed me that they rolled out some new features including "Blazing fast ad code". Sure. Let's try it then.
Elements of it might be fast but nothing is fast when it needs some ~80 extra requests.

Adversal downloads a LOT of stuff

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