Saturday, January 12, 2008

Who clicks on ads?

I keep reading about how pay-per-click is the way to make money online these days. My only question is, who on earth clicks on those things?

If I want to buy something on the internet, I'll probably go to amazon or ebay. If I want some sort of information, I'd search google or wikipedia. Note that nowhere in this model am I clicking on random links that I see on a whim. I can't remember clicking on an ad in the last 3 months, even the ad sense ones that are meant to predict what I'll like.

My working hypothesis to explain this is that most people are less experienced on the internet, and don't know what they're doing when they click on these ads. If this is true, then ad-based revenue might be in for a downturn as the public in general becomes more net-savvy over time.

Will advertisers counter by becoming more invasive? Let's hope not.