Monetizing a website with cryptocurrencies

Monetization is a very vast subject on the web. Ads can be put inside games or under an article. They can be intrusive or not. They also can be blocked. So, what’s the point and what is the future of ads on the internet?

Well, even if annoying sometimes, ads are a good way to maintain a website alive at no costs. But today, is it still enough? I’m sure a lot of people reading this blog have Adblock or alternatives turned on by default. Maybe you don’t even know if I have ads or not! It is also possible that you like what I do or write. How could you support me by blocking my ads ?

What is a crypocurrency ?

Cryptocurrencies are virtual moneys, that have many advantages such as being decentralized, cheap, secured, fast, etc. It’s a good alternative to real money. To obtain valid coins, you have to mine them by telling your computer to resolve complex mathematical expressions. And you get rewarded for such task. Of course, you can also buy them, like any other currencies. Mining coins requires good GPU because it’s a very heavy computation task.

Mining Monero through the browser

Recently, ThePirateBay (TPB), a well-known piracy website, just experimented a new way of getting revenues : mining Monero through the browser. Monero is a cryptocurrency, like bitcoin, but this crypto is different since it can run inside a webpage. TPB then used CoinHive, a set of tools to mine Monero directly from the browser!

So, what to think about this technique? The following points will be subjective.

Pros and cons

  • Mining cryptocurrencies is less intrusive than ads : nothing visual appear on the website, all is done in the background and you will barely notice it. But keep in mind, we still don’t really know how much you can earn with this technique.
  • Inform your user about what is going on. If he discovers that you are mining without him knowing, it could be the last time he goes to your website.
  • Some could say that mining is an intensive work and that it could slow down the computer. In fact, you can manage the rate of mining. It even adapts to your current CPU usage. And ads are memory consuming too (sound, images, …)
  • Mining is interesting for game. Game are already CPU intensive tasks. Also, it's webpages where users spend a lot of time, so it's really worth it.

In conclusion, I’d say it’s a promising feature to monetize websites. However, you must no use it abusively as your users will never go back to your website. Don’t forget to let them know and allow the feature to be disabled.

And you, what do you think about that? How much do you win? Are your users satisfied? Let me know in the comments!