Recently, we received a fascinating case study from one of our publishers. He runs a news website about cricket — and shared some insightful information about his monetization efforts and results.
It inspired us to gather everything we know about cricket-related websites and ways how to make money from it — and combine it all in a big cricket article.
So, if ‘gully’ or ‘crease’ sound familiar to you, you might be a step away from monetizing your next big cricket website.
Let’s see how you can do it?
To start, what is so special about cricket, and why might it become your next favorite monetization idea? We found a whopping three facts making cricket stand out from the rest of the sports disciplines.
First, cricket is popular. Even more popular than you might have thought before — it’s the second most widespread sport worldwide after soccer, with more than 2,5 billion fans. For a publisher, it means a great and very involved audience, ready to come over to your website and not minding some ads.
Who watches cricket most of all? Here is the top ranking of countries having the biggest cricket fanbases:
|1. India |
3. Sri Lanka
6. United Arab Emirates
8. Trinidad and Tobago
9. South Africa
10. New Zealand
11. United Kingdom
Another great thing about cricket is that it doesn’t depend on any season and offers plenty of events for all audiences. With three game formats around, a single International team can play more than 150 matches per year, so there will never be a lack of content: highlights, forecasts, best moments, etc.
Akshay Gopinath, Sales Manager at Notix, one of the leading push notification services: Cricket as a sport has various versions (short and long forms), so it has matches and tournaments all year round in India and worldwide. Thus, cricket websites enjoy the luxury of always having content across formats, teams, tournaments, matches, players, and regions. It all results in higher CPMs than many other niches can offer.
Of course, the top popular cricket content is related to matches: the upcoming games, previous games overviews, or predictions for the biggest tournaments. If you want to do something with it, here are the top popular tournaments that always draw much attention:
However, cricket fans are not just about that — and here are some content ideas we found at the top popular cricket websites:
Akshay Gopinath: Fantasy Cricket is also very popular in India and a range of other countries — the Cricket Fantasy league generates tons of traffic during the 2-month duration of the Indian Premier League. Besides, with the affordable 4G and 5G data, watching cricket games online have become very accessible among users of all Tiers.
Overall, there is an immense number of topics, so you’ll barely run out of content ideas. Even explaining every single rule of cricket might be worth a separate blog!
So you are ready to go — but what websites are the best to monetize with cricket content, and what formats will help you do it the most efficiently?
Here are some ideas:
There is no universal recipe for exactly cricket — but we know that sports-related news sites are greatly monetized with OnClick (Popunder), Vignette, and Interstitials.
If you post much of the written content, you can try going with Push ads. However, Vignette and OnClick might also make a good match with your sports blog.
We have almost the same recommendations for media sites: the best formats to use are Popunder (OnClick), Vignette Banners, and Interstitial. Not sure what ads your users will like the most? Try MultiTag — it will find the most attractive ad formats and offers for every particular visitor automatically.
By the way, media site visitors are the most tolerant of ads, so you can permit yourself to show a little bit more of the advertising content.
OnClick is the king format for a sports site — but checking the other formats or activating MultiTag is also worth trying. And don’t forget about Direct Link, which is almost universal for most websites — here is an example of Direct Link stats of another cricket publisher:
And, during the biggest finals like the ICC Men’s Cricket World Cup, your CPM rates might rise 5-6 times compared to regular games, so don’t miss the schedules!
Besides these formats, we have special In-Page Push templates for cricket websites that will definitely attract your audience. To learn details and get templates — ask your Monetag manager.
We began by mentioning a case study — and finally, here it is!
Shahid Iqbal owns a cricket news website and monetizes it with Monetag. We asked him a couple of questions about how he monetizes his traffic, tracks the site’s performance, and — the most exciting part — how much he earns.
— What kind of website do you have, and how do you attract traffic?
My website covers cricket news in the Urdu language, and I highlight the Pakistan cricket team, Pakistan Super League, Indian Premier League, and the Indian Cricket team. Here is how it looks:
My main source of traffic is Facebook — and this is why it’s very important for me to have clean ads that don’t break any Facebook rules regarding links.
To keep users engaged, I pay much attention to content: I believe it’s the key to attracting the audience and making people come over and over — and it’s not just about earnings. Big volumes of traffic allow you to gather crucial behavioral data and get a hint of how to develop your website further.
For example, I can check which pages are the highest-converting ones and inspire people to click on my ads. Armed with this knowledge, I get an idea of what content I should produce more often. Besides, I pay much attention to bounce rate: a percentage of visitors who leave very quickly without interacting with a page. My bounce rate is not very stable yet, but I keep working on my content to fix it:
Another example: some audience insights help to segment users and create marketing campaigns with very precise targeting. Overall, there is much you can find in Google Analytics, so I strongly recommend checking it regularly and making conclusions.
— It seems you are really working hard on your website. Does it pay off revenue-wise?
Yes, thanks to Monetag, I manage to generate regular profit. I have been searching for a good monetization platform for quite a long time and tried several networks — but only Monetag brought me the result I wanted.
Here are my results with Monetag for the first two months of my work with it:
— A nice result for a start! Which formats do you use? What would you recommend to publishers running a similar website?
My experience showed that a cricket news website targeting Pakistan brings the best results with Interstitials and gives the highest CPM. However, I can also recommend testing OnClick (PopUnder) or Direct Link.
As I have already said, I am currently stuck to Interstitials — and here are the CPM rates I usually get with them:
As you see, monetizing cricket events doesn’t require any specific knowledge — but can bring huge volumes of traffic compared to many other niches. It seems an evergreen niche if you are targeting countries with the most cricket fans — and will never leave you idling for a long off-season.
And while you were reading this, there was at least one cricket event somewhere in the world. And you could have monetized it — so why not start now?