The topic of ad revenue on our website came up among people on my team. I, for one, think it wouldn’t be worth it, considering we don’t get too much traffic and I don’t want to sell out. However, I figured I should see what other people think.
We already have a store linked on the site.
Our website is here: http://www.angelbotics.com/index.html (not entirely done). The site was 100% built by student members of our team.
Truthfully, I really don’t think it’s worth it. For the cost of a few bucks a month, it makes more sense to offer t-shirts for sale or to have a recurring donation button. I also remain confident a little fundraising would easily offset the costs of a team website.
So, there’s a few ways to approach this, on the one hand, if you’re managing the “ads” yourself, you could use it as a fundraising tool with sponsors (sort of like a “hey, give us $xxx more, and you’ll get an ad-space on our homepage for x number of months” sort of thing). I’d imagine this might look something like the “ads” that CD has on the top of the portal page.
If you go through a 3rd-party service like google ad-sense though, it’s probably not worth it. Most people that visit your site probably aren’t going to click an ad anyways (and most ad revenue is generated through “pay per click” rather than “pay per view”). On top of that, unmanaged adsense ads generally tend to make a website just look tacky, which might actually drive interested people and sponsors away, so there’s that to consider too.
If they aren’t too intrusive, I’d say you could try it out and see what happens. Just make sure to be careful about what kinds of ads the ad network serves, since I doubt sponsors would like seeing ads about hot moms in their area on a website with their logo on it.
With regards to “selling out”… FRC is very much about money. Why would you find it unethical to generate money from some of your hard work?
Even besides ethics, I think it would actually hurt a team’s finance as it would turn away sponsors, like others have said before. I know that when we introduce ourselves to a potential sponsor, we always provide them with our website. This is their first intro to the team, and we wouldn’t want them to think that we do anything besides robots / STEM outreach activities.
I don’t think you should put ads on it but you could display your sponsors if you used something like google ads you wouldn’t make much money and it would make your website look worse(your website works great).