Media.net is one of the largest contextual advertising networks on the Internet. That fact makes it one of the most popular Google AdSense alternatives, but it’s also just plain a quality ad network for publishers and bloggers in its own right.
You can automatically serve up both text and display ads, including an option to dynamically let Media.net figure out the optimal sizes for your site. Media.net also has a programmatic platform that you can use if you prefer that approach.
The minimum payout at Media.net is $100.
Monumetric is a publisher-friendly ad network that helps you monetize your site without harming your user experience.
In a nutshell, you sign up with Monumetric and list the ad inventory that you have available. Then, Monumetric will help you fill out the inventory with the highest CPM offers available. If you don’t want to display ads from a certain company or industry, Monumetric will also make sure that content doesn’t show up on your site.
To get started with Monumetric, you’ll only need 10,000 page views per month. But if your site is under 80,000 monthly page views, Monumetric will charge you a one-time $99 setup fee (this fee is waived if your site has above 80,000 page views).
AdThrive is an ad network that focuses primarily on bloggers and publishers in lifestyle areas such as food, home, travel, parenting, DIY, etc. While you don’t have to be in those niches to join, those are the types of advertisers that will thrive with AdThrive.
AdThrive offers all the popular display ad dimensions and even guarantees payouts — so even if AdThrive doesn’t get paid by an advertiser, they’ll still pay you. This is part of their “creator-first” mission.
AdThrive is looking primarily for US-based traffic, so it might not be the best option if you have a lot of global visitors. Additionally, you’ll need Google Analytics installed and at least 100,000 monthly page views to apply.
Like AdThrive, Mediavine is another well-regarded ad network that’s popular with lifestyle content creators such as those in niches like food, home, travel, parenting, etc. Again, you aren’t necessarily required to be in those niches to join, but those are the types of sites that do well with Mediavine.
Also like AdThrive, Mediavine wants to build a “creator first” approach. In fact, the team behind Mediavine is also a popular publisher with properties such as The Hollywood Gossip and Food Fanatic.
Mediavine is slightly easier to get into than AdThrive – the minimum traffic requirement is just 50,000 visits per month.
Ezoic brands itself as “an intelligent platform for publishers”. What makes it “intelligent”? In a nutshell, Ezoic uses machine learning to constantly test different ads, placements, etc. to find the highest-earning configurations.
You can use drag-and-drop to set up testing locations. Then, you can choose goals and run your tests (e.g. maximizing revenue vs improving user experience, or striking the perfect balance).
In terms of ads themselves, you can actually connect to some of the other ad networks on this list to test ads from different sources – for example, Media.net or Google AdSense (the next option on our list).
Ezoic is quite accessible to join – you only need 10,000 sessions per month and Ezoic works with all content verticals. The minimum payout is also just $20.
- Google AdSense
Google AdSense probably needs no introduction – it’s the most popular and well-known display advertising program on the Internet.
However, we’re still including it because no list of the best ad networks for publishers could be complete without mentioning AdSense.
All you do is add AdSense to your site and Google will serve up contextual ads – you can even let Google experiment to find the most optimal ad placement locations on your site without you lifting a finger.
The minimum payout at AdSense is $100.
- Amazon Associates
Amazon Associates is Amazon’s popular affiliate marketing program.
While one way to use Amazon Associates is to manually place product links in your content, Amazon also has its own contextual advertising feature called Native Shopping Ads that lets you take a more hands-off approach.
If you use Native Shopping Ads, you’ll be able to automatically display contextual products from Amazon on your site. If visitors click on those products, you’ll earn a commission if they complete their purchase.
The downside is that you only get paid if they check out. But the upside is that you can also earn commissions on other products that they add to their carts after clicking through from your site – not just the product that was in the ad.
Amazon Associates has a very low payout threshold – $10. Just make sure to understand the Amazon Associates rules and policies, as they can be stricter than some other ad networks.
Note: You will need to sign up as an affiliate for each store you want commissions from. E.g. Amazon.co.uk, Amazon.com, etc. You will find a dropdown menu on the top right of the Amazon Associates website that allows you to switch between the affiliate site for each location. From there, you can sign up to as many as you’d like.