How to Detect AdBlock Users in WordPress


Are you looking for ways to detect AdBlock users in WordPress? Many bloggers rely on ad revenues to support their website. Browser extensions like AdBlock plus can hurt your revenue potential. In this article, we will show you how to detect AdBlock users in WordPress and share ways to bybass the AdBlock software.

Detect and bypass AdBlock users in WordPress

What is AdBlock, and How it Hurts You?

AdBlock and other ad blocking software allow users to automatically detect and block advertisement on websites.

While Adblock brings a cherished ad-free experience to users, it can hurt bloggers who rely solely on ad revenues.

Research published by PageFair shows that the total number of devices using AdBlock software grew from 142 million YoY to 615 million devices in 2016.

AdBlock usage research

Mobile devices with AdBlock software increased from 145 million to 380 million.

Another research conducted by Ovum estimates that publishers will lose $32 Billion to Adblock software by the year 2020.

This is a serious problem affecting many websites particularly blogs that rely on advertisements as their primary source of revenue.

What should you do about Adblock as a publisher?

There are several measures that website owners have taken in this regard.

1. The Do-Nothing Approach

As the title says, you do nothing about the users with AdBlock. You simply learn to live with the loss of revenue for the sake of happy users.

2. Passive Approach

You can nicely ask your users to whitelist your website with a promise of quality content and non-obtrusive ads. There is no way to know how effective such an appeal would be.

Another alternative is to create a membership website with paid subscription plans. You can promote paid plans as an ad-free experience with additional content and features.

Reddit is a great example of this approach with their Gold membership plan.

Reddit gold

3. Aggressive Approach

In this approach, you simply block the site for all users with AdBlock enabled. If they want to view your content, then they must disable AdBlock.

AdBlock wall on Forbes

This kind of approach is rather aggressive, and it will turn away users from your site. PageFair’s survey shows that 77% of adblock users leave websites with adblock walls.

It’s best to use the passive approach that we mentioned above.

How to Detect AdBlock Users in WordPress

Before you can request users to whitelist and support your website, you need to be able to detect the AdBlock users. Fortunately, there are plenty of ways to do that in WordPress.

We will show you few different methods, and you can choose the one that best suits you.

1. Detect and Target AdBlock Users with OptinMonster

OptinMonster is the best lead generation software in the market. It allows you to convert website visitors into subscribers and customers.

OptinMonster comes with a built-in feature that allows you to show optin campaigns to users with ad blocking software installed on their devices. This includes popular software like AdBlock, AdBlock Plus, and uBlock Origin.

First you will need to sign up for an OptinMonster account. You’ll need at least their Pro plan to access the AdBlock targeting.

Once you have signed up, you can head over to your WordPress site to install and activate the OptinMonster plugin. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

This plugin acts as a connector between your website and OptinMonster.

Upon activation, you need to click on the OptinMonster icon in your WordPress admin bar. You’ll be asked to enter your API key. You can find this information from your account on the OptinMonster website.

OptinMonster API key

After entering your license key, click on the ‘Create new campaign’ button at the top.

Create new campaign

This will take you to OptinMonster website.

First, you will need to choose a campaign type. If you want to take the passive approach, then you can use the lightbox popup campaign type. On the other hand, if you want to aggressively lock out AdBlock users, then you can use the Fullscreen campaign type.

Choose campaign type

Next, you need to choose a template for your campaign. For this tutorial, we are using the ‘Target’ theme, but you can choose a different template if you want.

Choose template for your campaign

Now you will be asked to choose a title for your campaign. After that, you will be redirected to the OptinMonster’s campaign designer.

Simply click on the text in the optin to edit it.

Edit optin

Next, you need to click on the Yes/No icon to convert this optin from email subscription to a Yes/No campaign.

Switch to Yes/No campaign

Now you can click on the yes and no buttons to edit their text. We have changed the yes button to ‘I have disabled AdBlock’ and the no button to ‘I will think about it’.

After that, you need to click on the ‘Display Rules’ tab and scroll down to ‘Visitors who are using AdBlock’ rule. You need to activate the rule and then select enabled next to ‘Show only when the visitor has adblock’ option.

Target AdBlock users

Next, you need to click on the save button to store your optin and then click on the publish button to make your campaign available.

You will be asked to choose the website where you want to display the campaign.

Save and publish your campaign

After this, you can head over to the OptinMonster settings page on your WordPress website and click on the ‘Refresh Options’ button. OptinMonster will now fetch the new optin campaign you just created.

Enable campaign to go live on your website

You will need to click on the ‘Go Live’ button to enable your AdBlock detection campaign go live on your website.

You can test out your campaign by installing the AdBlock extension in your browser and visiting your website. You will see a popup asking users to support your website by disabling AdBlock.

AdBlock detector popup

For an aggressive approach, you may want to see this guide on how to lock out AdBlock users with OptinMonster’s AdBlock targeting feature. This will allow you to hide content from users with AdBlock software installed in their browser.

AdBlock lockout

2. Target AdBlock Users with AdSanity Plugin

AdSanity is one of the best ad management plugins for WordPress. It has a paid ‘Ad Block Detection’ add-on that allows you to detect users with ad blocking software and restricts their access to your website until they disable ad blocking.

First, you need to install and activate the AdSanity plugin. After that you need to install and activate their Ad Block Detection add-on. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Upon activation of both plugins, you need to visit AdSanity » Settings page and click on the Add-Ons tab.

AdSanity Ad Block detection settings

AdSanity allows you to detect AdBlock on posts and pages. You can show a warning popup to AdBlock users with your custom message, or you can redirect them to a custom page.

Both methods are aggressive and would require users to disable AdBlock to continue browsing your site.

3. Detect AdBlock Users with deAdblocker

If you are looking for a free option that allows you to detect AdBlock users, then you can try this method.

First, you will need to install and activate the deAdblocker plugin. For more details, see our step by step guide on how to install a WordPress plugin.

Upon activation, head over to Settings » deAdblocker page to configure plugin settings.

deAdblocker settings

The plugin allows two methods to show a custom message to AdBlock users. You can either display a notification bar on the top of your website or show a lightbox popup.

Both options are dismissible, and users will be able to ignore the message to continue browsing your website.

Don’t forget to save your settings. You can now visit your website with AdBlock extension installed in your browser to test the plugin.

AdBlock popup

Diversify Your Revenue Streams

Publishers are finding new ways to combat ad blocking and protect their earnings. At the same time, ad blocking software are getting smarter everyday.

Research shows that privacy, security, and bad user experience are the most common complaints among AdBlock users. Publishers can address these complaints by adapting different monetization methods that address those issues.

1. Affiliate marketing

Affiliate marketing is one of the most common ways to earn money from your content. You can recommend products and services to your users and earn commission when users make a purchase using your affiliate link.

There are plenty of plugins and tools for affiliate marketers that will help you get started.

2. Selling direct ads

Advertise with us page on list25

If you are serving ads through a third-party advertising network like Google AdSense, then you have limited control on ads, privacy, and the CPC.

Selling ads directly to advertisers allows you to ensure privacy, limit tracking, and control what you get paid.

WordPress ad management plugins like AdSanity allow you to serve your own ads as well. You can use hosted images on your own websites for ads and easily bypass most adblocking software.

Tip: Don’t wrap your ads around HTML elements with CSS classes like ads, advertisement, promo, etc. This is how AdBlocking software detect and block ads.

3. Sponsored Content

Allow advertisers to sponsor content on your website. You can write content about their product or service, and you can even include an affiliate link to get referral commission. You can also require users to pay to submit a post to your website.

4. Premium Content

Another helpful strategy used by many online publications is premium content. You can adapt a pay per view model, membership plans, or simply restrict pages to paid users.

Paywall on The Washington Post

For more ways to diversify your website’s revenue, take a look at our guide on different ways to make money online from your website.

We hope this article helped you learn how to detect and bypass AdBlock in WordPress. You may also want to see our ultimate step by step WordPress SEO guide for beginners.

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