generating roughly $20k per month in Ad RevenuesteemCreated with Sketch.

in steem •  8 months ago  (edited) just gave a brief glimpse into their financials

In an interview with the CEO of, @elipowell gave a brief glimpse into the financials of steemit,inc and

In case you missed it, the interview can be seen here:

This was a rare glimpse into the financials as the last update we had seen came over 6 months ago in the form of a blog post.

Which can be seen here: is one of the few crypto projects (apps) that is generating revenue (outside of fees to transfer), though they are still a long ways from being cash flow positive as we found out...

To the numbers...

According to @elipowell, is generating roughly $20k per month in ad revenue.

Though, she mentioned that number is somewhat sensitive to user metrics as an increase in traffic could easily double that number.

She went on to say that the numbers have been rather consistent over the past 4 months overall though as they finally found an ad company they are happy with.

Unfortunately for many of us, that $20k number felt a bit light as the financial update put out 7 months ago made it look like the ad revenue would be climbing up over $100k, possibly on a consistent basis...


Though from this more recent update, it sounds very much like that may have just been a one time thing and this $20k number is much more of the 'norm'.

Eli also gave a brief glimpse into their expenses...

And again, this was a little on the disappointing side compared with revenue of $20k, as it was mentioned that they would need to generate something close to $200k per month before they would be cash flow positive without having to continue to sell steem.


On the whole, not exactly what I had hoped for, but I do like the transparency

I would have liked the revenue numbers to be a little higher and I had hoped they were able to cut total expenses a little more with the hardware upgrades, layoffs, cost cutting etc.

Overall though, the good news is that if we can get an influx of new users, that revenue number should climb pretty quickly and pretty easily.

And according to the video, they have a plan to do just that.

Stay informed my friends.

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That's really problematic when you consider that content producers should be rewarded for ads too... Hopefully, it picks up, but I am disappointed with that number.

Additionally, I'd really like to see a decentralized promotion system with STEEM burned like Steempeak has.

Yep, I was as well. I knew the traffic numbers had been declining, but I had hoped with increased optimization perhaps those higher revenue numbers could be achievable. Some will say that steemit,inc selling their steem is a good thing, but in my opinion, them selling their steem in order to fund something that directly adds value to the network would be more beneficial than just selling to make payroll each month. And yes, I also like your burn steem to promote idea, I believe @theycallmedan has mentioned things like that for steemit as well.

that would be awesome ! duplicate the feature of blogging platform like wordpress blogger.
-content creator can add their own ads
-dashboard analytics on their post (especially post views)
-customize layout

I think this challenges the claim that Steem is decentralised - on Wordpress, they store my data on centralised servers but I get ad revenue based on the traffic I generate.

On Steem the data is stored on decentralised servers (unless it's video) and Steem keeps all the add revenue from the traffic we generate.

I know that's just fiat, and the crypto's (Steem distribution) is different, but that aspect at least is about as centralised as it gets... all the fiat from the ad revenue all of us generate flowing to one company.

Maybe it doesn't matter because that's what's required to stablise the platform...?

I dunno, it's just an interesting/ challenging thing to think about.

I don't think it would pass the 'pub layman test' - If it came up in conversation down the pub people would laugh at me if I claimed Steem was decentralised on the basis of what's happening with the ads.

On a separate note I've earned a decent WP ad revenue since 2015, which has declined rapidly in the last couple of years. When Ellie was making her predictions about proposed future revenue in a Discord show last year i did comment that that was guff, I was right. She was way over-optimistic.

That 20K figure isn't going to increase. The only way is down. There's too much competition out there. If they maintain that figure, that would be a real achievement.

Yea I think eventually users need to be getting part of the advertising revenue. Steemit,Inc is in a tough spot, they have to pay the developers otherwise they will quit, but they don't have anything to pay them with unless they sell steem, which further drives down prices and makes them have to sell even more steem down the road. It's not sustainable. Generating revenue via advertising is the lesser of two evils, though perhaps once (if) this place gets bigger, perhaps they can use excess revenue to buy up steem and burn it, or come up with some other way of giving that ad revenue back to the people that are actually responsible for generating it.

Yes fair point - ad revenue is better than selling Steem!

I'm not convinced it's sound to rely on ad revenue going forwards....a nice stop-gap for 2020 and that's about it.

Returning the ad revenue to users, even if it's a tiny proportion, would be a great pro-steem, anti FB marketing tool come to think of it.

Yep, and if there was a way to do it based on views per post without it being game-able, it would help reward those that put out good (possibly popular) content that don't get many votes on here. The steem rewards would be a bonus.

Want an influx of new users??? Stop the malicious, programmed and ideological downvoting by people WHO NEVER POST or add an value to the platform.

THAT, and go BACK to the reward system setup that was in place prior to the last hardfork. The rich getting richer here is NOT going to drive site statistics higher.


True i never understand why people downvote for no reason in the first place. Its hard to go up.

Some people are just plain NASTY. No other real reason for it.

I agree completely.


That’s not a bad number considering the drop in traffic and the use of other front ends! I’m not sure if they also going with a self managed programmatic tool because that would also help improve CPMs and CPC’s

Yes that is true, there has been a pretty steady decline in user numbers for months and months now... partly due to the decline in steem prices and partly due to newer front ends popping up (and partly due to a few other things).

I primarily use steempeak, and i know of a lot of others who use other front ends as well. Not a bad number at all.

Yeah i use steempeak by far the most and on my mobile im using the esteem app so i hardly see any ads! I guess it does provee an incentive for them to keep gathering traffic and improvng their front ends too!

I would say bad advertisment partners if its only 20k.

Last year has been quite a fight between ad blockers and ad publishers... Even though there is still a lot of people that don't use ad blockers, the number of people who use host black lists and ad blockers is constantly increasing. Even some browser development teams have joined the fight against ad publishers and added features in browsers to block known hosts serving ads.

Once everyone starts doing that I wonder how websites/advertisers will get around it? They gotta make money somehow...

Some sites already require registration so they can track payments... Unregistered users or registered users who have not paid, don't get full access.

Other sites abuse vulnerabilities and loopholes in implementation of scripting languages in browsers to circumvent ad blocking, for example constructing the code to show advertisements character by character, so regular expression pattern matching becomes too complex to implement.

As long as browsers don't restrict overriding and aliasing of internal functions of the drawing and/or debugging engine, there is always way to circumvent any restriction. Good example is how Facebook has constantly circumvented blocking advertisements.

Maybe they should start promoting themselves after next hard fork
I'm starting to think they have yet to understand the importance of marketing. Its kinda sad, though.

It sounds like their plan is to do a bit more promoting after a bit more development is done, though word of mouth was mentioned a lot so it doesn't sound like we will see a large advertising campaign.

They are doing it wrong they can't relay on word of mouth since unique value prop is almost completely oriented towards incentivization. Bear doesn't help either.
Im actually surprised noone proposed marketin efforts

I would vote for an SPS proposal that funded a marketing campaign as long as it was lead by a marketing professional. Though I would actually prefer if we wait to market until communities and smts are launched as well. The retention rate on here is like 10%, pretty tough to spend on marketing when you know you are going to lose 90% of what you bring in...

I would vote for an SPS proposal that funded a marketing campaign as long as it was lead by a marketing professional

Agreed completely, i would't support any of that amateur stuff...

Long run over short term i guess. Step by step and 10% might end being bigger than expected

wonder if they are able to tell which accounts generate the most traffic? if they have such detailed info on stats, would be nice to know more about views?

They used to have a view counter on every post, though not sure why they got rid of it. I remember some were saying it was being gamed?

didn't know a view counter was such a difficult feature to implement 😂 figured it was basic seeing as most websites can sort it out, even if it was gamed and numbers were what? better than nothing! was there ever a vote to take it away? was it just one persons decision? how do we get it back lol

Good questions. I'd love to have it back as well.

It is better 20k than nothing!


  ·  8 months ago (edited)

More layoffs incoming.

Yes the ad rev and monthly expenditure figures were very interesting.

I was surprised when Eli had mentioned $50K /mth in the past. $20K is more realistic (and more in line with Hypestat projections - currently $32K/mth).

It is going to be a majorly hard slog to 10x that ad rev to break even - but somehow they need to find a way...

Othewise presumably the monthly deficit of $200K - $20K = $180K can only be met by selling STEEM.

If my calculations are correct that would be over 1 million STEEM per month (higher than the previous programmatic sales of 800K per month).

Yep, I noticed that as well, and if prices drift lower, it means more steem would need to be sold.