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Google AdSense Forum

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Google AdSense launched today
New content targed ad program for content providers

 8:39 am on Jun 18, 2003 (gmt 0)

It's way cool :)


Not sure if this should be in Google News or adwords. I guess this forum should really be the one for AdSense questions as it's about advertising.

Also, it seems that the site hangs in IE. Mozilla ( as usual ) works perfectly so use that.

Unlike the exising content targed ads you do not need 20 million visitors to put these ads on your site.



 1:50 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Are the ads being delivered to dynamic pages? If yes, that explains a lot about the infmaous Dominic update. At least to my simple mind. You know what they say about blondes.


 1:56 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

I just checked one of the sites on the adsense case-study page and it seems they are serving adsense in their search results pages.

A direct violation of the TOS?
"AdWords ads may not be placed on search results pages"


Kinda funny that they would use a case study that violates their own TOS.

[edited by: linkshark at 2:04 pm (utc) on June 19, 2003]


 2:01 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Nope. It's against Google AsSense T&C to disclose clickthrough rates.

That may be the case, but we'll soon get an inkling of whether it's actually worthwhile or not nonetheless.

Especially from the people who used it for a bit and then stopped.



 2:20 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

jchampliaud wrote:

The affiliate programs that I affiliate with all have minimum payouts in the $10 to $25 range with commissions I see as fair. So I donít see why Google can't do the same.

The affiliate programs that I belong to typically have minimum payouts in the $50-100 range.

IMHO, $100 is a very reasonable minimum. Google isn't going to be making a lot of money from Web sites that earn less than $100 a month--especially in cases where the Webmasters require technical support or ask a lot of questions about the program and their commissions. The traditional "80/20 rule" works both ways: Eighty percent of the revenues will be generated by 20 percent of the Webmasters, and 20 percent of the Webmasters will generate 80 percent of the inquiries and complaints!

A beancounter might suggest that Google raise the minimum payment to $250, or that Google set a minimum traffic level of, say, 500,000 impressions a month. Still, it probably makes sense for Google to accept a lot of smaller sites in the interests of ubiquity. The "our name everywhere" approach certainly has worked well for Amazon.com.


 2:34 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

europeforvisitors wrote:

$100 is a very reasonable minimum.

Not from where I sit as a Webmaster of a small site. Your site is much bigger and you might be able to get a check a month, so for you it would have possibly worked.


 4:10 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

One thing I hadn't really thought about in comparison to the ad networks is that this is entirely CPC. CPMs in my experience are far better at revenue generation, so much so that I'd pretty much banned any further CPCs from my site. I will be giving google a go, but actually doubt it will increase my revenue at all.


 4:28 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

I am not sure I fully understand the TOS. Can ads be run on pages that have been optimized for affiliate sites? If so, that is great, more potential for earning money seeing that with the traditional affiliate page if there is no purchase there is no money made. With the AdSense program all you need is the click.

As far as not knowing what the payout is, just try it for a couple of days and see what happens. If you don't like the results, remove code and end the program. Simple as that.


 4:49 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

One thing I hadn't really thought about in comparison to the ad networks is that this is entirely CPC. CPMs in my experience are far better at revenue generation, so much so that I'd pretty much banned any further CPCs from my site. I will be giving google a go, but actually doubt it will increase my revenue at all.

That's a valid concern, but it's worth remembering that these are extremely targeted CPC text ads, which should achieve a higher clickthrough rate than, say, a CPC banner campaign on FastClick.

And unlike CPM ads, there's apparently no limit on the number of AdSense ads that can be served each day. (The problem with CPM ads, of course, is that there are seldom enough impressions to fill your inventory. For example, Tribal Fusion caps my Google AdWords banners at slightly over 10,000 daily, or less than a third of my total impressions on an average day.)

I think AdSense is worth trying if you can find a place for the AdSense banners or skyscrapers on your site without giving up valuable sources of revenue. It's easy enough to cancel if you don't like the program: Just say "Sorry, guys" and delete the AdSense code.


 5:03 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Hmm. I was just reading a really interesting article, and looked over at the ads on the side; it was text ads for mortgage rates. The ads had nothing to do with the article at all; kinda a bummer.

I don't know what the revenue share is, so I can't help with that. I do remember reading that the goal is to make AdSense at least as good a source of profits as other types of services/ads, so I do think that site owners who fit the bill may want to give it a try.


 5:15 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Indeed. I will reiterate, this is the best content targeting system I've ever seen. I'm stunned - honestly.

I think they call this a category killer.


 5:21 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

What's that stock symbol again? GOOG? GOGL?



 5:39 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Ah, the official revshare/potential revenue answers are evidently in the FAQ. Andrew Goodman has a post about it:


 5:44 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

From what I can tell by looking at my Tribal Fusion reports, it would appear that Google is currently paying an average CPM of about $1.70 for semi-targeted AdWords banners.

(I say "semi-targeted" because the banners' AdWords are picked according to a site's keywords, not according to what's on any specific page.)

It would be interesting to see how the revenue per thousand impressions (RPM) for AdSense might compare to that $1.70 CPM. Obviously, this is going to vary quite a bit by topic and site.


 5:55 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Quick update on the css: it was tricky because very few browsers triggered the problem, and once it loaded once it worked from then on. I think they can reliably reproduce the css issue now, which means that an update will be pushed pretty soon. If you still see any problems tomorrow, let me know. :)

It's neat that my banner blindness is morphing into frustration that the ads I see aren't more targeted. :)


 5:57 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Well, in a VERY short term test, adsense is exceeding 1.70 cpm for me, but your mileage will vary. I imagine if I had it on a "recipes" site, the effective cpm would be under 50 cents.

Of course, revenue is likely to go down over time based on Econ 101 "supply and demand", as well as potential reduced adwords bids as advertisers learn the price-point of leads generated from adsense.

In the end, you have to choose your weapon based on your site content, demographics, and user behaviour.


 6:23 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Well, in a VERY short term test, adsense is exceeding 1.70 cpm for me, but your mileage will vary. I imagine if I had it on a "recipes" site, the effective cpm would be under 50 cents.

And if you had it on a content site for luxury travelers, the effective CPM might be far, far higher--but you probably could make even more from affiliate links.

My take:

1) AdSense is a question mark for sites about topics that don't attract online sales. If you're running a site about American history or zoo animals, you might do better with affiliate merchants like Amazon.com or AllPosters.com. (And you'll be lucky to do more than cover your costs in any event.)

2) AdSense is only minimally attractive to content sites in "easy to monetize" categories that lend themselves to relatively big-ticket affiliate sales. If your RPM (a.k.a. effective CPM) is in, say, the $5-10 range, you're probably better off using affiliate text links than running AdSense ads.

3) AdSense should be very attractive to content sites in big-money categories that, for one reason or another, don't have many good affiliate programs. Cruising is a topic that comes to mind. If I had a site about cruising, AdSense might be my salvation, because most cruises are bought through travel agents (who are more likely to buy AdWords than to have decent affiliate programs).


 6:24 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Heh, this stuff is fun. One example (hope it's okay) where I was just surfing around:
It's a story about Orrin Hatch suggesting to destroy the machines of file traders. Sometimes you'll see AdSense ads for things like DMCA reference, digital rights management software, registering your copyright, etc. When I hit reload once or twice, I saw the banner ad that would normally run: outsource your IT to Russian programmers. Which ads would you rather see? Something tells me I won't have to argue too hard for AdSense--it can make its own arguments. :) It's weird to surf around the web and realize how badly targeted most ads are.


 6:59 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)


Yes, that's an impressive example.

If I could run AdSense on my site, it would help to monetize "loss leader" editorial pages that--like most editorial pages--generate very little revenue directly.

For example, I have somewhere between 100 and 200 pages on European cruising. I get a little money from the ad banners that run on those pages, but--for the most part--the affiliate links don't bring in any money because people who are planning cruises aren't in the market for hotels, car rentals, or rail passes. AdSense ads would be a perfect way to monetize those pages.

IMHO, this shows one of the weaknesses of the "one size fits all" prohibition against other text ads (which apparently include affiliate links) in the AdSense TOS/policies. On a page about European cruising, my affiliate links for hotels, rental cars, or rail passes wouldn't compete with the AdSense ads. And on a page about Bergen, Norway or Ghent, Belgium (where I don't have any affiliate partners), an AdWord ad for Bergen hotels or Ghent B&Bs wouldn't be competing with links to my affiliate partners.

I'm guessing that AdSense will have to loosen up its rules a bit as time goes by; otherwise, the program will have limited penetration in some of the most easily monetized subject categories.


 7:15 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

How long is teh application expected to take? I haven't heard a reply yet. And can I point them to the future layout where the ad will appear, rather then the current site?



 7:15 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Good points, europeforvisitors. I'll mention this the next time I see someone from AdSense.


 7:44 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Which ads would you rather see?


In this case, ADsense looks like a 468 X 60 with two text link options. In others it looks like a skyscaper.

Believe it or not, if I had to choose one, I would go with the Russian IT outsource. Why? I know more about the predisposition of the user, due to the over-all content theme on Register from an IT dispositional standpoint, then I do about a user who reads an article wherein I am trying to extrapolate correlation of behavior with topical article considerations and matching that to behavioral presdispositions of the user.

US Senator would destroy MP3 traders' PCs ----um, DMCA and Copywright - now that is in context right? Its a stretch, when considering the dispositions of the user. I would be much more confident serving up an ad based on the user survey data of Register for the site as a whole or within site sections then I would be to serve up an ad based upon what I can infer from one article. This infact,is somewhat shortsighted, and as an aggregate, I would bet the inferred as much less likely to convert then an ad based upon site or catagory user survey and technical data.

I do not want to belittle what you are doing, GG. But, this topic is older than G is. This topic is fundemental to the ad serving industry. You are *not* doing anything new from an internet advertising stanpoint. You are doing something new from a G standpoint. And I have very mixed emotions about what this is going to do to you in the long term. I dont care about your IPO. I care about serps. Investors care about your IPO, they won't care about the serps above and beyond SERP Adwords. You will create an insatuable appetite for third party content to serve ads- to feed the revenue demands of the company. Whilst the public, that is just getting used to the altruistic nature of G will have the tables turned.

[edited by: Chicago at 9:18 pm (utc) on June 19, 2003]


 7:44 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Well here is a good news (I hope it is good), one site that I applied for adsense is approved, but the funny thing is I forgot the password I used for it.. (I guess, I forgot to save the password file).. darn it..I think I will have to wait another day before I can log in (waitint for reply from google)

Hope this one works out good, and I would rather have text ads compared to banners (am hoping to make a switch from banners to text ads for good), as the load time is very important for visitors to my site.



 7:46 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Just gives visibility.. not Clicks


 8:16 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

It took less than 24 hours to get a site approved for AdSense, I will know the results soon enough compared to my other CPC banner advertiser.


 9:11 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

I have to admit, there is a good chance that GoogleGuy fits the demographic target of the Russian IT banner.


 9:17 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

You are *not* doing anything new from an internet advertising stanpoint. You are doing something new from a G standpoint.

Content targeting surely isn't new, but who has implemented technology this good? Engage, DoubleClick, BURST!, FastClick, 24/7? No, no, no, no, and no.

I agree this is not a paradigm shift in ads, but it is certainly best of breed technology with the caveat that cpc will likely take a nosedive on these adsense listings soon. Nothing *new*, but certainly better than anything before it from an implementation standpoint.


 9:34 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

but it is certainly best of breed technology

yea, i know. wouldn't you rather have that intellectual capital, however, focused on search and keyword driven ad serving?

i would. yet, i don't stand to benefit monetary as a result of this new best of breed technology visa vie stock or options.

i see search about to become more competive than its been in years. whilst i see G infatuated with off-site ad serving-revenue generation. anyone else see the irony (albeit fragile) between the timing of DominicEsmeralda and ADsense? I think it portends the months and years to come.

not one company has figured out how to be the best at both search and ad serving. if i had to bet my life, i would say G will lead the ad serving arena of the future, while losing its command of search.

most reasoned on-lookers have no problem with this scenerio. i see it as a fact that will require me to spend my time and money with the companies focused on search because that is where the best prospect in the world is. not on some article about Orrin Hatch.


 10:39 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

Wouldn't you rather have that intellectual capital, however, focused on search and keyword driven ad serving? .... I think it portends the months and years to come.

Chicago, I stated in an earlier post that technology we've developed for AdSense also can have potential uses in search; that's how we came into this area. Feel free to tease about the Orrin Hatch article if you want, but if you actually go read the piece, the ads are spot-on. All I'm saying is that I've never seen that with ads with targeting that good before, and that off-target ads are starting to annoy me now. :) But it feels like your mind was made up a while ago.


 11:06 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

i have a site where users need to log in :-( ... is there any posibility to run those google ads?

maybe a rotation where ads that have a higher clickthrough appear first. is google working on something like that?


 11:09 pm on Jun 19, 2003 (gmt 0)

<it's a deal, with respect>

[edited by: Chicago at 12:25 am (utc) on June 20, 2003]


 12:15 am on Jun 20, 2003 (gmt 0)

ok, We are testing the Adsense on our production site. From what we can see, it is great. 5000 ads show in 3 hours. And from what we see it actually TRIES to figure out non pre-cached pages. But I would like to help Google out a little because I know the meaning of my own pages. The biggest problem we have is that most of our pages are not indexed by Google and we donít want them to be, since we have 30 million pages. So they would have no idea what to display except the default theme of the site.

The challenge we face is displaying the ads on a results page, not a Search Engine Results Page, but none the less a results page. Not sure how big a deal that is with the TOS, but I suspect Google would not mind since they approved our site and it is clear that is how we would use the ads. Now the big problem is that Google has no idea what to show for non-cached pages. We would like tell Google what the pages is about, AND we do know what it is about. So either allowing use to use a variable in JavaScript telling them what the page is about. Or allowing use to query Google in the background for the ads that we can show via SSI.

examples of not cached stuff:
1) /travel.ext (G knows it should show travel stuff just based on URL)
2) /travelroads.ext (G defaults to the site's main theme because it has no idea)

In the example 1 above, Google just used the URL. But in example 2 it has no clue, We do! Our automated system would have chosen ďTour OperatorĒ as the query term because we know that is the most relevant term for the page.

So do we need to talk with Google directly because I see Alexa already can target. But I donít think they are using this version of adsense. We just need the SSI ability or JavaScript variable feeder ability.

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