Nearly one in four (22%) US online publishers say that generating revenue has been harder than expected, but only 36% have someone to help them with the performance and monetisation of their sites.

The findings arrive courtesy of a new survey which shows that only 32% of publishers have found earning money from their blogs or websites “somewhat” or “much” faster or easier than anticipated.

One quarter say their income was as expected, with 42% declaring some issues with getting up to speed. Yet with just 36% enlisting the help of a company or professional to help them monetise their businesses, plenty are looking to solve these issues on their own.

Bottom-line boosters

The survey, conducted by the California-based Adaptive Medias, reveals some of the most commonly used methods in the pursuit of earnings.

Content-targeted ads are proving popular, utilised by 66%, while mobile ads are being deployed by 54% of sites. 

Affiliate ads are still used by 42% of the group, above the fast-growing medium of video (42%) and recommended content (36%).

As for the least-popular methods of site monetisation, there wasn’t much at all in the voting for custom sponsorship ops and better ad placement, voted for by 5.53% and 5.54% respectively. 

Catch 22

The next step for publishers could be to bring in a monetisation partner to help them along. But with only 32% of the group declaring ease over getting their earnings on track, there’s a chance that their finances may not accommodate such a luxury. 

Still, should they choose to veer down this route, publishers have a clear idea of what they want to see from their partners. Quality traffic was cited as a must-have by 70% of the group, with a high cost-per-milli voted for by 60%.

Over half of the group (52%) said that being able to call upon a strong list of advertisers would also be of interest.