My plan is to integrate Google Adsense in key areas. I can later integrate other ads if I get approached by advertisers etc.
Sometimes I don't introduce ads until a website has been established though I was a little concerned that if I introduced ads once the site has a lot of members, there may be a few people upset. So I introduced ads for a while to see how members responded to it (no one complained).
I'm launching another xenforo forum this week and have been thinking about the situation again. I can see many sides to this. On the one hand, I know that advertising can reduce growth in a forum slightly as some people don't like ads. On the other hand, I do believe that members should respect the fact that forums are expensive to run and maintain.
What I plan to do is this. Integrate adsense ads throughout the site however only show the ads to users who haven't registered or signed in. Revenues will obviously be reduced though, particularly at the start of a forum, I think it will help the growth of the forum.
Perhaps what I can do is only show ads to guests until the forum reaches a few thousand members. Then I can show some ads to forum members and offer a premium membership option to those who contribute to the site.
How does everyone else deal with this - do you show ads to everyone or just guests?
Have you tracked the click through rates for adsense or other ads for signed in members against guests. It's well documented that click through rates from regular members etc is lower than those who are visiting the forum via search engines, though I'm not sure of the actual difference. For example, if CTR rates were 2% from search engine visitors and guests and 0.25% from members, I'd be happy to remove advertising altogether for members. Essentially, members would be creating the content that would be used to generate income from search engines.
Would love to hear from forum owners who have did some testing with all of this