Ad-free WordPress

I’ve been away from WordPress for a few weeks and on my return I’ve noticed a little box that has appeared at the bottom of my posts.

About these adsNow, I know there has been debate about the ads previously, but it now seems WordPress give us the option of paying so our visitors don’t see the adverts when they browse our sites.

In case you we wondering, YOU don’t see adverts on yours or someone else’s blog when you are signed in to WordPress. If you operate a free blog hosted at the .wordpress.com site and someone finds you through Google or other medium and they are not registered or signed in to WordPress they can see the adverts.

Question is: Do you pay or not?

For a year of ad-free posting it will cost you $30 or about Β£18.70 on current exchange rates.

I’d be interested in your views, whether you currently pay for hosting anyway so it wouldn’t affect you or whether you think $30 is a reasonable price to pay per year so your visitors are not subjected to ads.

I do appreciate that for me, WordPress is a free service and in the ways of the world, they need to make their money somewhere. I’m just not sure whether all blogs would benefit and $30 a year is a cost not everyone will be able to pay.

Have you noticed these? What do you think?

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About Pete Denton

I'm a writer working my way through the redrafts of a British crime novel. I also write short stories, flash fiction and some screen writing. Check out my blog for more.
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50 Responses to Ad-free WordPress

  1. Interesting question. I haven’t gone with the pay-to–make-it-ad-free option yet because I already pay for my main website and other services and there are limits to what I am prepared to fork out. But it’s possible I may need to; I don’t know what adverts get served up – I presume they are appropriate. Or maybe not. I spotted some on another blog which included moving graphics – a bandwidth and speed soaker. It’s a question for which I suppose there is no ‘right’ answer.

    • Pete Denton says:

      Thanks, Matthew. I think the adverts are targeted to the browsing habits of the viewer. I’ve logged out of WordPress and gone in my blog previously and the adverts were for the handbags my wife had been browsing!

      A few people have commented how slow my blog is sometimes and this might be the reason.

  2. EllaDee says:

    I noticed, and checked it out as well. For me it’s fine, as blogging is a pastime and most people who read my blog are other WP bloggers. As for anyone else, I don’t care if they see ads, and I agree WP provide a free service. and quite a good one so fair enough. If however, I was blogging for promotional or commercial reasons to generate hits and readers, I’d want to choose any ads linked to my site, so I’d pay the fee. I like that WP provide a range of options at a range of costs, which seem reasonable to me πŸ™‚

    • Pete Denton says:

      Good point. And, they do provide a decent range of options to suit everyone. Maybe only a problem for commercial bloggers and checking my comments most are from wordpress anyway so they won’t see the ads.

  3. I hated them on mine, I didn’t like the busy look of the ads and I wanted them gone. WP offered a bundle package that I took advantage of and one of the features was ad removal. I don’t want anything on my blog that I didn’t put there, so to me, it was worth every dollar spent.

  4. karengadient says:

    Being an artist with original visuals on my blog posts, I didn’t want ads to distract from that, so I tried no-ads. But being a personal/freelance blog, it may not be in my budget next year. Probably a better option for blogs that generate money. No regrets, though.

  5. Laura Hogan says:

    I noticed this too and thought it was quite sneaky. But like you said, WordPress provides a free service and they need to make their money somehow. Personally I don’t want to pay to have my blog ad-free, but I can understand why others would pay

  6. davidprosser says:

    Since I don’t use my blog to generate hits or money I’ve no objection to an advert being placed there.It’s fairly unobtrusive and in exchange for this I’m hosted free by WordPress. I’m pretty sure I still get the best end of the deal.

    • Pete Denton says:

      That’s the thing that keeps me ok about the ads. Using a free service I don’t feel fully able to complain about it!

      I guess as we’re usually logged in, we don’t see the ads anyway. πŸ™‚

  7. Like others, most of my followers are other WordPress bloggers so they wouldn’t see the ads if they’re logged in, so I’m not worried about it. Given a choice I’d prefer not to have them, but I’m not going to pay to not have them. I already pay to have my own domain name without the .wordpress bit on it, and that’s enough paying for me! Some people choose to have the ads and then make a commission from them don’t they, and in those cases everyone sees them even if they’re logged in to WordPress don’t they. Lots of different options depending on what we want, so I’m not complaining!

  8. billgncs says:

    if I was more popular, I think I would try to register to generate revenue for myself. But we are using a free service and they have a right to try to monetize what they give us.

    • has this ad thing only been implemented recently? i thought it was allready there all the time, because that is how these websites make money. i thought the fact i did not see any ads is because, if u log on, you dont see any ads on your own blog, but presumably others can.
      i thought if u are a paid up subscriber to wordpress, you get a share of the revenue from the ads that your readers click on. is that so? bill do u anyone who has got paid by this method? is that why so many want to promote traffic to their blog? hoping increased traffic means more clicks on the ads and so more money for them?
      i used to wonder why people keep wanting more traffic to their blog, and it seems this maybe the reason why.

      • Pete Denton says:

        I think the ads have been there for a while, but I’ve only just seen the option to pay the $30 to remove them.

        I believe you can opt to have paid ads so that if someone clicks a link, picture etc you get paid. Under these current circumstances it is WordPress who’d earn the money.

        I agree that blogs who are being paid for the ads are going to want to generate more hits to earn more money.

    • Pete Denton says:

      Seems to be the favoured response so far. Less of an issue for us when logged in anyway. πŸ™‚

  9. Interesting one this.

    A few weeks ago I was reading Egyptian Streets (http://egyptianstreets.com/), a superb blog from someone living in Egypt.

    On their site ‘Wonga.com. was advertised. This is a payday company that causes misery buy loaning, at outrageous rates of interest, to those that have enough financial problems. Wonga has received a lot of negative publicity here in Britain. I mentioned this to Egyptian Streets, saying that such a company on her blog does her no favours. She replied saying she would contact WordPress. I don’t know if she ever did.

  10. Kate is says:

    I wonder how many non wordpress uses I get stopping by.

    • Pete Denton says:

      I know, I’ve been thinking the same. The numbers are probably small and from Twitter or Google searches. That’ll be the next area of the stats we get. We get everything else already!

  11. Rosie Amber says:

    I saw it and didn’t like the feeling it gave me, I didn’t know who saw the adverts and who didn’t, thanks for this post.

    • Pete Denton says:

      No problem Rosie. I know when I’ve been logged out and clicked on email notifications to new posts and seen adverts on other people’s posts. I tried my own blog and the same thing. Mainly adverts for Marks and Spencers!

  12. Jemima Pett says:

    I’m glad you asked this question. I’ve been trying to find space on my blog’s schedule to ask it myself. I also logged out of wordpress to see what the ads looked like. Not too bad…. but still, do I want ads on my blog?

    Pro: it keeps it free.
    Con: it looks… cheaper, I suppose.
    Also con: I don’t have just one blog. So $30 a blog adds up. Of course the answer to that is to be selective, but I’m not sure which to select.

    Another con: $30 is currently what the cost of going to WP hosted site would be (I think). So what’s the difference? You’d have fewer restrictions e.g. on scripts and plug-ins (like rafflecopter)

    So I’m going to be very interested to see what your followers think!

  13. kford2007 says:

    I don’t like them at all. I think they make the blog look unprofessional. i chose WordPress over Blogger because it looked classy. As a reader and a writer, I want to be able to have control of what goes on my blog and what doesn’t. When I signed up with WordPress, I liked it because there were no ads. I understand they have to make money but being sneaky this way is not the way to do it. I don’t have $30 a year to keep my blog ad free. I might have to look at transferring over to Blogger. At least I have more flexibility about what I can put on there and what I can’t and there are hundreds of free layouts to pick from.

    • Pete Denton says:

      Does Blogger not have ads?

      Other than when the A to Z Challenge was on, I don’t tend to look at many sites on Blogger. I thought I’d seen ads on there as well though the bloggers might have chosen to advertise.

  14. Jade Reyner says:

    I’m not too keen on the adverts it has to be said as we are trying to project a professional image and the adverts can take that away. I didn’t realise that it was only outside traffic that saw them though which is somewhat of a relief as I have not paid to have them removed… however, if my non WordPress traffic did increase, then I would definitely think about getting them removed. It’s the same everywhere, it’s another way of getting money. Thank you for highlighting this. πŸ™‚

  15. I’m not paying. I have trained myself not to even see the ads when I go to blogs and websites.

  16. Since I want focus to be on the writing, I do pay to not have ads on my blog. I rarely stay on pages populated by advertising – I find them too distracting and I resent having to sort out what I want to read on a site.

  17. Amy Keeley says:

    I don’t like them, but I also don’t have the money to get rid of them. Plus, moving from one online location to another means I’ll probably lose a lot of the platform-building momentum I’ve built up over the past couple of years. And WordPress is one of the best ones out there for my needs. Sucks because it looks very unprofessional.

    If I do switch, I’m getting my own site again. The cost isn’t that much more and I get access to the CSS as well as the database. (There’s a number of drawbacks to a self-hosting site if you don’t like dealing with technology, but I personally enjoyed it.)

    • Pete Denton says:

      Thanks, Amy.

      They do look unprofessional. There are some drawbacks to WordPress, but the free angle and the ease of doing everything is a big plus. Like you say, building up a presence to then move seems like a waste.

  18. jmmcdowell says:

    I do pay for this upgrade because 1) I don’t want readers bothered by random ads, and 2) I might not approve of some of the products or services being advertised.

    I have noticed, however, that I will see ads on other WordPress bloggers’ sites, even when I’m logged in with my WordPress account. So either those bloggers have chosen to allow something that overrides the “no see ads” option, or the process isn’t working the way it’s supposed to do. Gee, that couldn’t happen, could it? πŸ˜‰

  19. I don’t have anything new to add here, your commenters have hit it on the head. The big drivers are (1) What your target audience is for your site; and (2) Whether those naggy little ads at the bottom of your posts bother you.

    My personal opinion is that if yours is a “hobby” site, enjoy the free service, but if it’s more than that spend the thirty bones to look a little more professional.

  20. I never noticed ads until I was logged out and googled something and went to my blog. $30 doesn’t seem like that much when you divide it over 12 months. It’s less than $3 a month. And I hate ads so I paid it. Plus this is my author blog so I want it to be professional looking and ads are distracting.

    • Pete Denton says:

      Thanks, Kourtney. you’re right it isn’t much and I guess they are giving you the option to make your blog more professional. If I ever finish a book to publish it I might do the same. πŸ™‚

      • I understand they need to make money. Better that they put up ads than charge for blog space. I just wish they’d have done the little ad notification earlier. An ad at the end of a post does seep into the reader’s perception of the post. πŸ™‚

        When you publish a book you mean. πŸ™‚ And then I think the cost makes more sense. πŸ™‚

        • Pete Denton says:

          True. They could have done things earlier and it is better than charging for blogging. We have a choice afterall.

          Thank you for the confidence When and not if. πŸ™‚

  21. 4amWriter says:

    I do pay for my blogs already, and I noticed on my 4am site there is no advertisement but on my Musefly site there is! I will have to give WP a little tap on the shoulder to let them know they’re advertising on a paid site. Thanks for the info!

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