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What is Page RPM? It Signals Chance for Revenue Growth

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Website page RPM
Copyright 2016 Scott Bateman

Page RPM or revenue per thousand page impressions is a publisher metric that measures revenue the way that CPM measures cost for advertisers.

The metric is a simple formula that divides the amount of website revenue by the number of impressions, which also are divided by 1,000.

Site publishers who use, Google AdSense or other major remnant networks will find the number in their daily, weekly and monthly reports.

How the Page RPM Formula Works

The value of the formula becomes clear with a simple example.

A good remnant network report will show the RPM for the site as well as each page.

For example, a site receives $1,000 a month from 500,000 page views. The page RPM is $2 or $1,000 / (500,000 / 1,000). In other words, the RPM is $2 because the total of $1,000 is divided by 500 blocks of 100 page views apiece.

Over time, site publishers will want to increase the total site RPM above $2 because it will lead to higher profits and the ability to invest more resources in the site.

Site RPM is the average of all pages on the site. Some pages will have a higher number and others will have a lower number than the average.

So a deeper look at the report may show the ratio on a page by page basis.

Page A produces $10 from 1,000 page views has an RPM of $10. Page B produces $10 from 10,000 page views and has an RPM of $1.

Which page has the better opportunity for growth?

Page A offers a great opportunity. Here is why.

Page RPM Opportunity

If Page A is receiving only 1,000 page views a month and delivers a $10 RPM, it stands to reason that the opportunity lies with viewer growth, which in turn will drive more revenue.

Maybe the page is buried somewhere on the site. Why not link to it from the home page and other pages to drive more clicks?

Maybe the page is ranked No. 5 in search engine results. Why not focus on improving its SEO and rank in the search engines by adding more quality content to it?

Does the site have an email newsletter? Promote the page in the email.

Does the site have excess advertising inventory? Promote the page via a house ad.

Some pages resist growth because their topics are narrow and have a small audience. The effort to promote those pages should go as far as the growth permits.

Once the viewer growth begins to slow, ease off on the promotion effort. If viewership keeps growing and the page RPM begins to decline, keep promoting it as long as the total revenue continues to grow. Once total revenue flattens, then move on to the next page.

Growth One Page at a Time

It is far better to do five things well than 50 things badly. Growing 50 pages at a time is cumbersome and inefficient with time and other resources.

Instead, concentrate on just a few of the pages with the highest RPM. Once they hit a plateau, move on to the next handful of pages.

At first glance, it might make sense to ignore pages that have an RPM below the site average. It is true in some cases and not true in others.

A page with a $1 RPM and 10,000 views a month like the example above may have a revenue problem and not a viewership problem. The page might not have good optimization and lack high-value keywords that signal to or Google AdSense what kind of ads to show.

Sometimes a page can have HTML errors that signal a problem to the networks, which in turn might not show high-value ads.

Are the ads buried on the page and force a visitor to scroll? Is the page loaded with heavy graphics that make it respond slowly to browsers? In that case, the ads might not appear at all or in time for someone to click.

Site publishers will find that focusing on page RPM a few pages at a time will likely increase site revenue. But it also has the added benefit of possibly increasing site audience as well.

What site publisher doesn’t want more audience and revenue?

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