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Less responsive support until the 5th of October

A quick reminder that I’ll be travelling to and through the Philippines between September 28th and October 5th. During this time I may not respond to email, forum posts, chat or tweets. I’ll try to catch up with stuff in between. Depending on Wifi coverage I’ll be able to answer emails and forum posts.

I’m moving to this place 🙂 Doesn’t it look stunning?
Puerto Galera from the air

Follow my exploits on www.floatingcoconut.net.

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AdRotate Switch 1.3 – Available now

icon-256x256Today I’ve added 2 new plugins to the compatible list; ‘WP Pro Ad System’ and ‘Ad Injection’. Additionally, a few of the already available migration modules got updated. I realised it’s a bit silly to import adverts but then not create a schedule for them. Just because the plugin you import from doesn’t support it doesn’t mean that AdRotate (Pro) should make a mess of things. So for those plugins that do not support a end date for their adverts you can now also opt to make a schedule to make the migration even easier.

Changes

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  • Support for ‘WP Pro Ad System’
  • Support for ‘Ad Injection’
  • Requires AdRotate Pro 3.17 or newer
  • Requires AdRotate Free 3.13.1 or newer
  • Fixed group linking not working for some importing scripts
  • Added option to create schedules for every plugin

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AdRotate Free 3.13.1 – Compatibility update

logo-512x512A smallish update, mainly to update the database to be on par with AdRotate Pro users. A few small tweaks to various dashboards and updated translation files.

Changes

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  • [change] Compatibility update for AdRotate Pro 3.17
  • [change] Compatibility update for AdRotate Switch 1.3
  • [change] Small tweaks to the dashboard
  • [i18n] New and changed translation strings

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AdRotate Pro 3.17 – Available now!

logo-512x512Another exciting update for AdRotate Pro. Just in time before I travel to the Philippines. Version 3.17 adds a bunch of all new options for schedules. Updated dashboards and some bugfixes.

Advanced schedules

This took some doing and a bunch of changes to the database. But in the end it turned out to be easier than anticipated. With these new options you can now finally finetune your advert campaigns. And it works super easy.

Editing a schedule now gives you a “advanced” section. And all non-essential options have been moved into this bit.
advanced-schedule

As you can see you can now select which days the schedule is active and between which hours on those days the advert should show up.

Use cases

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  • Long running adverts for weekends
  • Adverts showing off adult products
  • Greater variety for adverts in a group (alternate days)

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And many more…

It’s easy to manage/oversee too:
schedule-dashboard

The daily hours is a bit of a experiment. Let’s see how that pans out. The function works fine as far as I can tell. But it’s not very flexible for hours that carry over into the next day. I’ll try to update the filter if the option gets popular 🙂

Dashboards

Dashboards got a bit of an update aimed at mobile adverts. With small icons the various statuses are now indicated. So you do not have to ‘waste’ precious title space to differentiate between mobile, tablet or desktop adverts. These icons are visible in all advert listings where it’s relevant to know what kind of advert it is.

device-indicator

Keeping your titles clean is important for management, but also for Google Analytics and Piwik stats so the events created are more easy to interpret.

Changes

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  • [new] Advanced schedule controls
  • [fix] Mobile Detect conflict if it’s loaded elsewhere
  • [fix] Geo cookie lifespan not saving correctly
  • [change] Compatibility update for AdRotate Switch 1.3
  • [i18n] New and changed translation strings

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How to use Adblock Disguise in AdRotate Pro

logo-512x512AdRotate Pro 3.16 introduced a new feature called Adblock Disguise. This feature aims to solve the ‘problem’ created by adblockers.
Adblockers try very hard to stop you from showing adverts. AdRotate Pro tries very hard to prevent that.

Using Adblock Disguise you can try to avoid adblockers from being effective. This article explains how to best use this feature and how you can make smarter adverts so they’re less likely to be blocked.

How Adblockers work

Adblockers work very simple. They look for patterns and keywords. If they spot something that someone has listed as an advert it will hide that element from the viewer.

Stating the obvious

If should be obvious that your advert should not look like an advert. If you use a image in your advert called cocacola-320×200.jpg, that’s just asking for it to be blocked. Removing the -320×200 bit will increase the chances of your advert being shown.

A common issue is that even if you’re smart about making your adverts, themes offering advertising spots often label these zones as advertising areas. Dumb names like Header advert are all too common.

Because of the uniform way AdRotate works, the same is true for AdRotate to some extent. AdRotate (Pro) tries to use ‘generic’ code wherever possible to avoid adblockers doing their thing. But that’s no longer enough. Hence Adblock Disguise.

Enabling Adblock Disguise

Enabling the Adblock Disguise feature is super easy. You head over to AdRotate Pro settings and in the General tab you’ll see the Adblock Disguise option (Green arrow), a new text box where you enter your hash.

adblock-disguise

The Text Widgets option (Blue arrow) may be required for themes that do not allow shortcodes in the WordPress Text Widget.

Widgets

With widgets there is always the word adrotate attached to your advert. This increases the chance of your advert being blocked greatly.

If at all possible you should use the WordPress text widget and in that use an AdRotate shortcode. This increases your adverts chances of being shown.

disguise-widget

For more information on how to use shortcodes, check out the shortcode manual.

Don’t be a dick

The sole reason adblockers exist is because some people believe that they should have more adverts than content. Others think that blinking, expanding adverts are the way forward. And yet even more annoyingly – Some deem adverts with audio acceptable.

Don’t be a dick and be reasonable with your advertisements. Place them in smart places where they are not obnoxious. Don’t place too many adverts on your site, either.

Use advertisements in a sensible way!

Disclaimer

While AdRotate Pro keeps on trying to avoid adblockers it’s very much a cat and mouse game. These features, methods and such are not guaranteed to work. Your own code and settings, adverts and even the rest of your website will influence the effectiveness of these features.

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AdRotate Free 3.13 – Available now!

logo-512x512Updates, updates! Several bugfixes, some improvements and and tweaks. Dashboards are now more uniform and consistent. Code validation for javascript/html5/flash adverts has been improved and a bunch of under-the-hood improvements have been made.

Changes

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  • [change] Use ABSPATH for files instead of own function
  • [change] Dashboard optimizations and improvements
  • [fix] Table layout for adverts, groups and schedules
  • [fix] Select box layout for Post Injection
  • [fix] Tracking error when using HTML5/JS/Flash ads
  • [fix] Rare error when using bulk actions
  • [i18n] New and changed translation strings

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AdRotate Pro 3.16.1 – Media uploading fixed!

logo-512x512A quick small update to fix a intermediate bug introduced in 3.16. Aparently get_home_path() doesn’t work for everyone. Luckily ABSPATH does 🙂
I’ve also finally found a quick way to duplicate adverts, huzzah! Turns out it wasn’t all that hard if you add the feature in the right spot.

The way it works is that you create your advert(s). Then select which ones you want to duplicate. This can be one or many and use bulk actions to do so.

advert-duplication

Changes

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  • [new] Duplicate adverts with bulk actions
  • [change] Use ABSPATH for files instead of own function

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AdRotate Pro 3.16 available now!

logo-512x512It’s been a busy few weeks and a number of improvements have been made. A bunch of bugs have been fixed and a few new features. Statistics (Using the internal tracker) has a few new tricks up it’s sleeve and can now also show this and last months totals for adverts.

Adblockers

A new and exciting feature called ‘Adblock Disguise’ has been added to AdRotate Pro. Using Adblock Disguise you can mask the CSS and Javascript Output from AdRotate so that adblockers can not easily cut out your adverts.

Adblockers work by looking for common phrases, a few of which include the CSS and Javascript from AdRotate. You can now dynamically change these from AdRotate Settings to trick the adblockers. Obviously if your advert uses other code or terms that are easily spotted this feature will have little effect. So be mindful of what you do.

Mobile support

The Mobile feature has had a bit of an overhaul and now uses the PHP Library ‘Mobile Detect’ to determine what’s what. This allows for a bit more control.
You’ll see that adverts that are set to be mobile only now can differentiate between Phones and Tablets. Check your advert settings to see how this works.

The Responsive feature is proving exceedingly difficult to set up and maintain. This feature will no longer see much updates and may eventually be removed from AdRotate (Pro) again. For the time being, the Mobile Feature is the way forward.

Changelog

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  • [new] Select if Mobile adverts show on phones and/or tablets
  • [new] Adblock disguise
  • [new] Switch to enable shortcodes in text widgets
  • [new] Current and last months clicks for adverts and groups
  • [new] Current and last months impressions for adverts and groups
  • [change] Use get_home_path() for files instead of own function
  • [change] Better rendering of live preview
  • [change] CSV exports of adverts no longer supported
  • [change] Dashboard optimizations and improvements
  • [fix] Rendering for live preview for advertisers
  • [fix] Don’t allow special characters in the banner folder name
  • [fix] Belgium not listed for Geo Targeting
  • [fix] Table layout for adverts, groups and schedules
  • [fix] Select box layout for Post Injection and Geo Targeting
  • [fix] Tracking error when using HTML5/JS/Flash ads
  • [fix] Geo Cookie life not saving properly
  • [i18n] New and changed translation strings

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Reminder: Less support

At the end of the month I’ll be travelling to the Philippines. Probably with dodgy internet until I arrive at my destination on Mindoro in early October.

Puerto Galera from the air

This means that between September 28th and October 5th I may not respond to email, forum posts, chat or tweets. If at all possible I will try to answer emails and possibly forum posts every few days. But I’m not sure if I’ll be able to.

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The feeling of dread when creditcards are used

You know something is very wrong with the world when you’re not at all pleased to see someone use a creditcard on your site to buy something. Sure you appreciate the sale, but you just know there is a huge chance it’s going to end up in a dispute or chargeback because the card was stolen.

This has been the case for me pretty much every time someone bought one of the more expensive licenses with a creditcard. The reversal rate on these sales is nearly 100%. Not because people keep changing their mind or are being dumb with their monthly statements. Nope, it’s because almost every purchase was done with a stolen credit card. It’s ridiculous. Lately I just roll my eyes, thinking “here we go again” whenever someone uses a credit card for the more expensive purchases.

Read more »

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Announcement: I’m moving to the Philippines!

At the end of the month I’m moving to the Philippines. A few of you probably figured this already. I’ve launched a new site a few months ago which was part of the advert examples for a while. On there I’ll be blogging my experiences and stuff relevant to this new phase in my life.

End of the month

At the end of the month I’ll be travelling and trying to avoid Jetlag. I’ll be wandering through Manila to find my way in a strange new place. Probably with dodgy internet until I arrive at my destination on Mindoro in early October.

This means that between September 28th and October 5th I may not respond to email, forum posts, chat or tweets. If at all possible I will try to answer emails and possibly forum posts every few days. But I’m not sure if I’ll be able to.

Read more »