FindWhat Broadens Network

FindWhat.com has opened its ad network to more publishers, hoping to grow its AdSense alternative with promises of flexibility.

The company is working to make its network more attractive to pay-per-click (PPC) advertisers at a time when competition for quality publishers is expected to heat up.

Publisher participation in AdRevenue Xpress (ARX), which launched in September, was originally limited to the company’s advertisers. That requirement has now been waived, but the program still includes an incentive for reinvesting earnings into a FindWhat advertising account.

The company is not limiting publishers based on traffic, hoping to court the smaller businesses that currently use Google AdSense. It’s also offering payments to publishers by check or PayPal or by transferring funds into the publisher’s FindWhat ad account. Publishers choosing to reinvest their earnings into their ad spend will be rewarded with a 10 percent bonus payment.

“We listened carefully to what publishers said they needed to be successful,” said Phillip Thune, president and COO for FindWhat. “As a result, ARX gives Web publishers more control and flexibility on how listings appear. Publishers select how they want relevant ads to appear rather than being limited to an automated contextual solution. With ARX, Web publishers also have the choice on whether or not to use FindWhat.com branding.”

The distribution method is similar to Google’s AdSense, but it uses category- or keyword-targeting rather than contextual targeting. The program allows smaller partners, through a step-by-step setup process, to add a search box that returns ads from the FindWhat.com Network. Alternatively, publishers who want to display ads on their sites directly, rather than via a search results page, can choose a FindWhat category and display ads from that category.

Yahoo has been rumored to be entering the fray with plans for a self-service component to its network, but industry watchers speculate it may be more strict with publisher requirements to maintain the network’s quality.

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