What. A. Year. How many times have you stopped and thought that to yourself?
Too many to count? You’re not alone.
We’ve all come out the other side of 2020 a little bit (or a lot bit!) different than we went into it.
There were struggles and difficulties but also a lot of hope and growth.
Today, we want to highlight how much our AdThrive community helped the world get through 2020 with skill and agility.
More people than ever turned to AdThrive publishers in 2020
In 2020, more than 170 million monthly unique visitors enjoyed AdThrive publishers’ content — a whopping 3 in 5 people on the internet. That makes our community’s readership the equivalent of the 9th largest country in the world!
AdThrive publishers acquired over 23 million new readers in 2020. To put that in perspective, that’s enough people to qualify as the 4th largest city in the world!
Not only did a lot of people visit your sites, but they also found your content incredibly valuable. In 2020, people spent 50% more time on your content than in 2019 — the equivalent of over 876 MILLION collective hours on AdThrive publishers’ sites!
AdThrive publishers were a lifeline for many in 2020
During one of the toughest years, you provided inspiration, motivation, and support for your readers as they processed their phases of grief, anxiety, adaptation, and optimism.
You provided support through pandemic fears, lockdowns, and shortages
Given 2020’s shortages and supply chain issues, people needed to take things into their own hands and sought out DIY solutions on AdThrive publishers’ sites.
You provided more than 22,000 new DIY and how-to articles in 2020, with germ-proofing solutions rising to the top of the charts. AdThrivers added almost 1,500 new articles for DIY face masks and homemade sanitizer recipes which around 17.5 million people referenced as they struggled to access these essential items in-store.
People were craving comfort and finding it in the kitchen, especially with baked goods! AdThrivers saw a 282% increase in interest for cookies, cakes, brownies, cupcakes, and other sweet treat recipes.
And there was a 244% increase in interest in bread recipes, with many people learning how to make their own sourdough or yeastless bread when they couldn’t get yeast in stores.
With many schools transitioning to remote learning, parents and teachers alike desperately needed at-home education tips and resources!
In 2020, education resources saw a 2.2x increase in pageviews. And with many parents taking on new teaching responsibilities, they turned to you for guidance. In 2020, 85% of parents in the U.S. read your content: 9 in 10 moms and 3 in 5 dads!
Searches for home office ideas went up as many people transitioned to working from home. Interest in home office content basically doubled in 2020! You helped your readers by creating 60% more new content for home office resources, tips, and ideas.
Employees, teachers, and students working from home needed solutions like video conferencing and messaging and you helped provide twice as much content in 2020 for online tech solutions — with a 10x increase in pageviews!
You helped us find ways to adapt to “the new normal”
So many aspects of our lives moved to different locations in 2020.
As your readers spent more and more time in the home in the spring of 2020, they found the motivation to tackle home improvement projects they had been putting off. Compared to 2019, home and decor content saw a 33% increase in pageviews!
The summer was all about spending time outside. Seeking to escape the same four walls, readers threw themselves into outdoor spaces. Pageviews to gardening content more than doubled, with interest in outdoor decor and improvement projects increasing by 3.7x.
Due to travel limitations and restrictions, many people opted for short trips, local getaways, and outdoor recreation, with camping and RV trip content seeing 3x the typical interest!
Later in the year when the initial demand for comfort died down and people adapted to their new at-home lifestyles, your readers became more invested in taking control of their health. 2020 saw a 43% increase in interest in health, fitness, and clean eating content (which is a trend we expect to see continue into 2021!).
You made 2020’s holidays extra special
If there was one major, overarching trend we saw in 2020 it was that when times get tough, people look to counterbalance hardships by pulling together and finding reasons to celebrate.
Our data team’s Holiday Study showed that people were extra excited for the 2020 holidays, getting into the festive mood even earlier than normal and going all out.
Compared to 2019, we saw increases in interest across content for all major holidays:
AdThrive publishers provided creative solutions for social distancing (like trick-or-treating hacks), ideas for turning traditional events into virtual celebrations (like Zoom parties), and lots of special recipes and decor adapted to the year’s specific needs.
You were also incredibly generous: through the AdThrive Holiday Gift program, our community donated over $14,000 to charity in December 2020!
And you helped tackle the truly important topics of 2020
1. Racial and social justice
You brought attention to systemic and pervasive racism, and provided ways for readers to take action.
In 2020, the AdThrive community of publishers, their readers, and AdThrive team members raised $74,806 for charities fighting for racial justice, opportunity, and reconciliation, and our Community Matching Fund brought the combined total to $174,806!
There’s still so much work to be done — and we’re excited to continue to show up and work on this together in 2021.
2. Election season
You created over 3,000 articles to help people get out and vote, sharing ways to register, early voting tips, and leading by example by exercising your civic rights!
3. Providing support for natural disasters
From sharing ways to support the Australian bushfire relief efforts to sharing ways to provide aid to those who were experiencing and/or dealing with the aftermath of an unprecedented U.S. hurricane and wildfire season, you helped us all be there for each other through a very challenging year.
2020: a year of growth and agility for AdThrive publishers
Even while AdThrive publishers were serving up tons of new content perfectly suited to the needs of their audiences, they were also intently focused on adapting and growing.
- Published best-selling books
- Launched second (and third, fourth… and fifteenth!) additional sites and brought them to AdThrive
- Were featured in magazines
- Diversified revenue streams with new products, both digital and physical
- Hired and grew their teams
- Pitched TV shows — and landed them!
From the scary (but rewarding) transition to living their dream full-time:
“After working an office job for 22 years, taking the leap to do my blog full-time was one of the best decisions I’ve ever made. And being with AdThrive has made it possible.
As with most bloggers, my site started small, and more or less as a hobby. Sure there were a few bucks to be made, but when I finally grew enough to have AdThrive as my ad partner, that’s when everything changed. Immediately, my earnings saw a very significant increase that I couldn’t have imagined. As the months went on, my website earnings began to eclipse the earnings from my regular job. Then in January of 2020 I gave notice at my job. It was scary, but I was confident it was the right move.
Sure enough, right after I go full-time as a self-employed blogger, the world starts to turn upside down with the pandemic. During this time, AdThrive has gone above and beyond what I ever could have expected. Their communication via emails, newsletters and social media has been extraordinary. And best of all, my blog and my earnings continue to grow. It’s almost beyond comprehension that I’ve been able to take this journey, and AdThrive has been the perfect ad partner.”
— Jason W. Norris, RecipeTeacher.com
To juggling their own at-home schooling and childcare, while also building their businesses:
Despite having no more than two hours in the day to work, I made some changes based on taking Matt Molen’s Email Kickstart Mastermind course. I am posting less to my blog but my traffic is up thanks to an average of 70 new email subscribers a day.
— Ashley Langston, Frugal Coupon Living
Your content output is awe-inspiring
In 2020, AdThrive publishers put out an average of 33,000 new posts each month, but you didn’t stop there…
You knew the value of evergreen content, updating approximately 69,000 posts per month to continue driving valuable search traffic.
AdThrivers also fully embraced the power of high-earning video, uploading over 47,000 videos in 2020 and garnering over 8 billion video views for a collective playtime of more than 136 million hours!
You put in the work to learn and apply insights
Hundreds of you attended and engaged with AdThrive’s annual Summer Camp, showed up for our webinar series that helped you pivot your content for COVID, and followed along with educational series like Creativity & Data and training on how to use the RPM by Page dashboard feature to grow your revenue!
You hung out here on the AdThrive blog quite a bit, with your favorite blog posts of 2020 including:
- Our first big analysis of how the Coronavirus affected digital media industry trends in March
- The AdThrive Payment Guarantee, making you get paid even if advertisers don’t pay us
- Details on the upcoming “death of the cookie”, what that means for publishers, and what we’re doing about it
- Trends and SEO strategies for the 2020 holidays (published all the way back in July to help you get a head start)
- Our data insights for 2021, including a free downloadable content planning calendar that you should definitely grab today!
You also spent a lot of time in the AdThrive Help Center, building your knowledge on topics like:
- Growing your revenue with AdThrive video players
- All the things that make up your site’s unique ad earning patterns
- This guide to improving earnings from recipe ads
- Getting ready for tax season and understanding 1099s with a simple tax prep checklist
And all that hard work really paid off
Besides growing our overall community to the #12 property on the entire internet… the average AdThrive site saw about a 30% increase in traffic in 2020!
Let’s keep that momentum going!
In 2020, we celebrated AdThrive’s 7th birthday — and every day, we’re still amazed and humbled by our community of publishers.
Our family of publishers grew — a lot!
We welcomed hundreds of high-traffic professional publishers into the AdThrive family in 2020, with an average RPM increase of 99% within the first two weeks for those joining from other major ad providers.
We all had to do some quick pivoting in March 2020
After our 2019 AdThrive Accelerate Summit, we had big dreams for multiple in-person get-togethers in 2020 across the US, but quickly had to pivot our focus to supporting publishers in other ways.
We kicked off our digital media industry trends blog post series to keep you informed as things quickly changed from week-to-week and adapt to the whiplash of 2020 trends.
Despite 2020’s challenges, we were committed to bringing AdThrive publishers the highest ad revenue
With all the unknowns of 2020 especially among advertisers, our AdThrive revenue and sales teams worked overtime to keep revenue flowing for our publishers! 27% of our advertisers in 2020 were brand new partnerships, and 56% of active deals were new to 2020. We brought on 15 new programmatic bidder partners in 2020, made hundreds of improvements to our ad code, and saw a 73% increase in ad impressions served, which means more money in your pocket.
We also kept our eyes on the horizon…
While 2020 was tricky, we knew the real challenge was still coming with the imminent Google Chrome sunsetting of third-party cookies up ahead. We’ve been preparing for the future from all angles to make sure AdThrive publishers are well-positioned to weather any storm.
2020 taught us all a lot, but one of the most important things is that our community can pull together to tackle huge challenges and come out stronger on the other side!
From the entire AdThrive team to all of you, we wish you the happiest of new years.
Thank you for making 2020 a year to remember, and here’s to 2021!