It is now three months since the introduction of AdSense for content in Bulgarian and it sounds like a good time for an overview of the effect it had on the market.
Before AdSense came to the scene there were two PPC contextual networks in Bulgaria: Easytrader.bg and Neogen.bg. The first one is an entirely Bulgarian undertaking, started by three associates. It offers Pay-Per-Click, Pay-Per-Lead and Pay-Per-Sale advertising platform on which advertisers and publishers connect. It currently has 850 websites and 50 active affiliate programs in it’s network and processes around 50 000 000 impressions per day.
Neogen.bg has a much smaller penetration, fewer advertisers and fewer partners – 170 only. It is a Romanian owned website offering a lot of different services.
Those systems were adopted by a number of small and medium websites but they failed to get to the larger websites who sold their advertising space through agencies.
Then came AdSense
With Google’s popularity behind and the adoption AdSense has in the English Internet AdSense for content was actually waited for by many webmasters in Bulgaria. They’ve all seen AdSense blocks on international websites and have heard about the nice income you can get from it. So, when a representative of the Bulgarian AdSense team made an announced the start of AdSense for content in Bulgarian on the most-popular Bulgarian webmaster forum there were reactions like, quote: “I’m going to the nearest bar to celebrate!”.
Critisism followed immediately about the ads not being targeted enough (quite a number of humorous situations were spotted), about the annoynment of the ads, etc. Nevertheless there was a quick and widespread adoption of AdSense for content. Many blogs and small websites quickly put the ad blocks on their pages. A bit suprisingly – many of the largest and most established websites turned to AdSense for part of their income, for example Dnevnik.bg, Investor.bg, Snimka.bg, Aha.bg, Elmaz.com, Vbox7.com, Ibox.bg, Sportni.bg, Netinfo.bg and others.
Additionally, many new projects were started, especially in the social bookmarking vertical which rely solely on AdSense revenue as of this moment.
This is happening despite the small number of advertisers involved so far and also despite the poor relevance of the ads. It appears that AdSense proves to be, so far, a real energizer for the Bulgarian internet.