Introducing Pressed Ads, the premiere WordPress ad network


Today I’m excited to introduce Pressed Ads, our new invite-only WordPress ad network. Pressed Ads is taking inspiration from industry leaders like the Deck Network, Carbon Ads, and others and combining it with the unique qualities of the WordPress community.

Pressed Ads will see its introduction on WPCandy to begin with, but will expand in the future to other influential WordPress blogs. It’s my personal hope that Pressed Ads will provide a clean, elegant ad solution for readers as well as for WordPress businesses.

So in short, Pressed Ads have beed added to WPCandy’s sidebar, and you can find out a bit more at If you’d like to learn more about Pressed Ads, read on.

From “powered” to pressed

WPCandy has had a fairly unique way of making money. In January we launched the Powered By system, and since then that his been the only way for the WordPress community to support the site. Individuals could power a post, businesses could power a week or a month, and everyone would receive credit for doing so.

The system has worked out extremely well. I’ve been working full time on WPCandy since the beginning of 2011, which is just awesome. Expanding the site into a larger team is certainly a possibility in the future as well.

In the interest of growth, and in evolving our current system, going forward the Powered By system is going in two different directions. The first is for readers, for individuals who want to support WPCandy. The second is for WordPress businesses who want to support the site, which is what we’re talking about today in Pressed Ads.

The update on the reader’s end will come soon. It’s on the way, and I’ll have more on that in the coming weeks.

For WordPress businesses, I think we have something pretty cool. The top support level, our “Truck of mints” that would grant a business a month of recognition in our sidebar, is becoming Pressed Ads. Pressed Ads is an invite-only ad network for WordPress businesses, to be displayed on the best, most influential WordPress publications. In this way we’re able to allow more businesses to support WPCandy and, in time, expand that support to other WordPress bloggers.

How Pressed Ads works

Many of you know this: I hate advertising more than most do. Because of that I’ve worked hard on Pressed Ads to keep it as respectable and friendly as possible.

Only those invited will have the chance to advertise on the network. Network members must have used, and would recommend, a business in order for them to be invited.

Our ads will be the only ones to display on a page, keeping things clean and reader-friendly. Oh, and none of that animation stuff. One relevant, attractive ad for each page load.

If you’d like to request an invitation as an advertiser, or as a publication that would like to display Pressed Ads, you can find information on

More to come

As I said, this is just one half of an announcement. There is more to announce regarding the future of the Powered By system, but I can promise you it will be pretty cool. One big announcement is enough for a single day, right?

I would also like to welcome the first four advertisers to Pressed Ads: GetShopped, rocketgenius, Site5 and Startbox. I’ve had the pleasure of personally meeting many of the people behind these businesses, and am proud to have them supporting the site this way.

If you have any questions about this launch, or really anything else, feel free to drop them in the comments. And as usual: thanks for supporting our little WordPress blog!

37 thoughts on “Introducing Pressed Ads, the premiere WordPress ad network

  1. I’m sure Pressed Ads will be a hit, I’m surprised it hasn’t been done already!

    While I really appreciated WPCandy’s ad-free stance and user funding, I’m glad to see you’re working to keep WPCandy sustainable. And if you have to have ads, one good and relevant ad is way, way better than the typical alternative.

    • Thanks Josh, I appreciate it. In the end going this route, and offering an ad option, is what I believe is needed to help WPCandy grow to the next level. And hey, in the end it should be able to help other WordPress bloggers as well, which is pretty cool.

  2. Nice idea. I’m guessing you’ll only accept those WordPress related services that comply with Matts views on licensing etc? Since thats the ideological basis of your newssite I’m guessing your ad network will function on the same principle. If not I would be interested in using it.

  3. Nice work Ryan and very impressed by your outside the box thinking and execution of one of the best WP blogs. Ad network for WP blogs is killer idea you are one smart dude. Love the footer “a WP Candy Joint”.

  4. So basically you claim you don’t like ads but you are going to put advertising……hypocritical much?
    How is this any different from Linkshare, Commission Junction and other networks?

    • Woah woah woah, hold on a second there.

      First the accusation: you probably like STUFF IN GENERAL don’t you? And I also bet that you don’t like paying for it. Or maybe you don’t like driving to the store or waiting for it to be shipped.

      Oh yeah, I guess sometimes we have to deal with things that we DON’T like in order to continue getting/using the things that we DO like.

      If you don’t like WPCandy serving up ads, go somewhere else, nobody is forcing you to come here. The site has to support itself somehow, and if not just for real costs like servers, than for costs like the time spent getting articles together.

      Second, the sites you listed are affiliate sites, whereas this seems to be an ad network which will rotate (I’m guessing here) WordPress related banners, which is usually much better done (look at Carbon ads) then people plastering the banners given to them and affiliate linking at every turn.

      • 1) I was stating my opinion, calm down sparky
        2) advertising is advertising, affiliates or networks same thing.
        3) I just said that it is sort of hypocritical to have the whole POWER THE SITE thing they have her at WPCAndy and not liking ads (the whole speech) and now serving ads.
        4) I don’t care if WPCandy puts ads or not, it is up to them.
        5) “we dont like ads so we have power site thing” “now we are going to add advertisement”. I find that hypocrticial. That is all, calm down sparky. Even if he puts 1 ad, an ad is and ad is an ad, it still goes against the whole “we don’t like ads so we have power site thing”.

        • I’d say it were hypocritical had Ryan not explained why he was now opting to sell ads. Or if he continued to be dismissive about advertising as he was before. It’s still a fairly reserved stance (one ad in one location on the page).

        • Let me start by saying that nobody likes ads. Having that said, I for all people know that it is almost a necessity for webmasters to run them in order to sustain their business.

          Does this make Ryan a hypocrite for putting an ad on the site now while taking the powered by route in the beginning? Yes and No. If you read into his original post literally (word from word), then Yes he is a hypocrite because it did state that WPCandy will be powered by the community and stay ad-free…

          Now if you read his words figuratively and try to analyze it a bit more carefully, then NO he is not a hypocrite. The site is still powered by the community…. (which does include awesome businesses based on WordPress such as Gravityforms and others). Heck this started quite a while ago when a specific brand would power the entire month of posts and obtain the mention / logo on the sidebar. But I guess you didn’t notice it because it said powered by… The concept is still the same. The only thing that has changed is instead of being powered by .. it is now pressed ads.

          Could / Should Ryan have taken this pressed ads approach from the beginning? Sure he could have. Would it have been a better approach?? Who knows… the point is that we all learn and improve as we progress. Right now he sees this as the best move for WPCandy as a business to sustain and grow. I am interested in seeing how pressed-ads develop.

    • As one of the first advertisers for Pressed Ads this isn’t about the advertisement or marketing for us. This is about supporting what Ryan is doing with WPCandy. The amount of time and effort he puts into this site is a full time job, and we want to see it continue well into the future. We love WPCandy and buying sponsorship is our way of supporting what he is doing.

      How is this different from the networks you mentioned? For one it’s not an affiliate arrangement. Ryan doesn’t get a cut of any sales generated by the ads. It’s purely a flat fee for the sponsorship and that is it.

      He isn’t bombarding his readers with ads. They are unobtrusive with only a single small ad per page. I think it’s great and I’m glad we can do our part to help endure WPCandy continues to evolve and grow.

    • Hi Miroslav, thanks for commenting. It’s true that I don’t like ads very much, and my views on them haven’t changed very much. It’s actually my views on ads that have led me to structure Pressed Ads in a reader-friendly way. It’s minimal, it’s publisher controlled, and I think a professional way to implement advertising.

      I’m not very familiar with those other networks, so it’s hard to say how similar they are to Pressed Ads. In as much as they are invite only, minimal, etc, they could be similar. But after weighing the decision for some time, I do think Pressed Ads is the best direction to go to most benefit our community here.

  5. Hi Ryan,

    Just wanted to stop by and say kudos to you sir, looks like this will be a big hit within the WP community, and for once it’s nice to see someone working to a niche (I hate that word, however it does fit on this occasion).

    Specific ads for sites talking about wordpress etc is a fantastic idea and one that I have no doubt will be utilised by all those who blog about wordpress.

    I think it’s time to dust of and start working on some WordPress related goodliness!

    Great work Ryan



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  7. I think it’s a great, classy way of funding a full time job – or at least part funding it. I was just thinking of the Powered by the other day, but I’ll wait for the second half of the announcement now 🙂

  8. Very cool, Ryan! The community needs this exactly. You may have just beat us to the punch too, as we’ve also been working on something very similar at WPCoder HQ the past couple months.

  9. Looks great, sounds great and above all feels great that WP Candy is doing all it takes to fund itself. Its a brilliant concept for a brilliant site 🙂 Well done Ryan.

  10. Congratulations Ryan! I think this is a great idea, not just for WPCandy, but for the WordPress community at large. I love ad networks like The Deck, Fusion and Carbon because they give publishers a lot of control and their readers a lot of value.

    It’s great to see what you’ve been able to do with WPCandy since taking it over. Keep up the good work!

  11. A great idea and admirable initiative. I’ll say this though: Back when you were just manually adding the affiliate links, my adblocker (AdBlocker for Chrome) would ignore it. Now, your ads are blocked by default. However because this is advertising done right, I whitelisted

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  13. Will this be available for sites using WP that aren’t blogs?

    I can see this evolving a lot. We want to find an ad network to partner with for Junto when it launches…. the startups coming through are all being built with WP and many will be serving very techy audiences.

    So, just curious to see where this goes! Great idea, and keep up the good with with WPCandy in general. 🙂

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