Good to see that Microsoft’s Adsense competitor is doing well in beta

Techcrunch reports today that Microsoft’s Adsense competitor Pubcenter is getting good reviews from it’s beta testers:

PubCenter is being tested by a small subset of web publishers. Our tipster says that he is receiving from four times more in revenue from Microsoft than Google AdSense. And the money isn’t the only advantage PubCenter has over AdSense. The advertisements themselves are are higher quality than Google’s ads

That is encouraging news for web publishers and those of us that would like to see more effective competition for Google.

It strikes me that Adsense is a good area for Microsoft to go after.  Most publishers can be easily persuaded to switch to the service which offers them the best eCPMs which I think will make it much easier for Microsoft to take market share than in search advertising where they first have to convince the consumer to switch away from Google.

On top of that according to Techcrunch they are doing a decent job of product quality as well – this covers customisation of how the ad units look, effectiveness of targeting and ease of setup.  Having just installed Adsense on this blog I can say that Google is ok in this area, but could certainly be bettered.

The final weapon that Microsoft has at its disposal is the revenue split with publishers, and obviously any concessions in this area show up directly in publisher eCPMs – so this could be a pretty powerful tool for gaining market share.  Google has some of the highest margins in corporate history and over time you can almost guarantee that competition will bring them down to more normal levels – leaving more money in the ecosystem for other participants (in this case small web publishers).  Hopefully Microsoft’s Pubcenter will make this theory a reality.

  • The problem has been a virtual monopoly on contextual advertising outside the US where Yahoo! Publisher Network is simply not available to people (been in beta for 3 years) and other networks just don’t have the scale to be viable.

    Simply put there is a gigantic number of publishers who will jump at the chance of a viable Microsoft option. The simple act of competition (non-existent previously) will spur huge rewards for web publishers worldwide. I only hope Microsoft moves quickly to offer this to those outside the US.

    This is good news.

  • Exactly

  • I agree, Nic. AdSense for me is about revenue, pure and simple. If I can get more from Microsoft (and the ads aren't ridiculously irrelevant), I'll switch in a heartbeat. Adsense is, for a publisher, incredibly unsticky – I can change everything over in a couple of minutes.

    Adwords, the other side of the coin, is more sticky, because it integrates so neatly into Analytics, so you can see that works.
    For me however, a net advertising recipient, I'll switch just to get a higher CPM

  • Microsoft pays more that google adsense… publishers from india are eagerly waiting for microsoft publisher acess.

    itz better to shift from google adsense to microsoft because.. google adsense closes your account without paying a single penny.. who ever is the cause of fake clicks, ultimately the looser is the publisher..

    hope this type of incidents wont be in microsoft

  • Welcome Microsoft…. bye bye google adsense

  • Microsoft pays more that google adsense… publishers from india are eagerly waiting for microsoft publisher acess.

    itz better to shift from google adsense to microsoft because.. google adsense closes your account without paying a single penny.. who ever is the cause of fake clicks, ultimately the looser is the publisher..

    hope this type of incidents wont be in microsoft

  • Welcome Microsoft…. bye bye google adsense

  • Today is Saturday, January 22 of 2011, and Microsoft PubCenter is still not available for the average web publisher in the U.S. PubCenter is still in beta and only a small select group of publishers were invited into the advertising program. It’s almost 2 years and we are still waiting to join the program. I hope PubCenter doesn’t suffer the same ill fate as Yahoo Publisher Network.

  • Mmm, that doesn’t bode well for either MSFT or the market generally. Thanks for the comment.