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Google AdSense Forum

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Related Searches on AdSense Ads
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Visit Thailand

 2:24 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

Has anyone noticed the Related searches on the AdSense Ads? Just below the ads are two links to a Google Related Search.

I for one do not like that as people may click on that rather than the ad.


In fact I have now just seen one add that had no ads but just a whole bunch of links for related searches.



 3:08 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

>>it looks like they've found a good way to kill the spammers who were looking for the highest paying words so they could throw up crappy sites and watch the money roll in! <<

absolutely, it may change the profile dramatically of adsense sites. For a start, if i had a commerce site selling things or was in any way "shy" of my competitors, there is absolutely no way i would have adsense on my site.

In some ways, this is a brilliant move by Google.

Having said that, we expect our earnings to reduce dramtically.


 3:08 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

Dear Google,

I don't mind related searches appearing in AdSense Ads at all. Just pay me.


 3:10 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

On some of my pages I'm seeing four related searches

Buckworks - are you showing four searches on targeted ads, or just on the charity ones?


 3:11 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

how can google say they will not earn any revenue from clicks on related searches?

more searches and exposure for google = more money for google.


 3:14 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

Exactly -- there is more than one search engine out there. Anyone using ask.com, inktomi, fast, etc will be hit with thousands of sites that act as free ads for google.

The purpose of this is VERY beneficial to google, but they want to pretend it doesn't help them anymore than it helps you as a publisher. I call BS on that one.

Can anyone tell I'm mad about the bait and switch?


 3:15 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

Yes, but not an empty box of a different color from the background! If it were transparent then fine. But a big colored box? Gimme a break.

But you can now change the background (and border and text and links)


 3:17 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

seaboy, making the ad space to match your site will only help make it look like the related content is from YOU as the publisher.

I have a content rich site. As users read down my pages, they look over to the skyscraper ad, which of course has colors that complement my site, and see topics that I carry ON MY SITE. Believing they will be linked to another internal content page, they click on the link and are brought OUT of my site, to a Google search which lists my competitors. The skyscraper ads on several pages had 2 legitimate ads and up to EIGHT "related search" links out of my site. These are not small fonts embedded in the border, but rather large bulleted items that take up the space of two or more sky scrapper ads in a prominent position on all my webpages.

Since the average user on my site visits nine pages, and up to 75% connect directly to me rather than come in through another site or search, I am confident they do NOT want to be (mis)led off my site.

NO amount of compensation is worth destroying my userbase.

[edited by: JasonHamilton at 3:24 am (utc) on Aug. 7, 2003]


 3:21 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

We talked about the potential lowering of EPC and the payout rate before. It looked Google just took a more radical "move" to "respond" this issue!


 3:22 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)


I know their terms allow them considerable latitude while our choices are limited to "take it or leave it" (yes, I read the ToS before signing on) but even so I'd have expected them to have more honor about what they do and how they do it.

Tweaking the CPC share is one thing, making such a substantive change -- without notification -- to what they're delivering on our web pages is hardly something that builds trust.

@ Jenstar, I've never seen an ad on any of my pages that I recognized as being a charity ad. I've only ever seen well-targeted commercial ads.

[edited by: buckworks at 3:23 am (utc) on Aug. 7, 2003]


 3:23 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

JasonHamilton - firstly, he said if it was transparent that would be ok - change the background for 'this blank space' would make it transparent.
But ok, if it were my ideal world I would have tons of free traffic from Google, I would then show their ads and they would send me a huge check every month for doing nothing much.
But this isn't an ideal world - The Google giveth and the Google taketh away.
The more I think about it, the more I think this is the best anti-spam weapon they could use. If you had a good site before AdSense, and you think this will hurt you then don't use AdSense. If you think you'll still make slightly more money, great, but at least we shouldn't have 500,000 'content sites' about casinos and viagra.

[edited by: seaboy at 3:28 am (utc) on Aug. 7, 2003]


 3:27 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

seaboy, trust me, all my sites contains content that no other site comes close to matching. And no.. there is nothing about viagra on them either :P

Majority of my traffic does not come from search engines. So I owe nothing to google in this aspect.

I'm done ranting, AdSense in it's current form isn't for me.


 3:29 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

Perhaps the launch of the ad color options was a deliberate attempt to soften the imminent blow of the related searches.

I've got to admit; I want to play with some color schemes before I rid Adsense from my website.


 3:33 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

I wouldn't say I'm "super" happy about this new development - I'm not really sure how I feel yet.... though one half-positive thing (well at least for me, dunno about everyone's adsense ads) is that the related searches are opening in a new window automatically. So visitors to the nonpaying ads are not completely lost to my site.

One thing I also noticed today is that my CTR is way higher than ever before, though revenue is only the slightest bit higher than normal (and I'm talking nearly double CTR). Is Google mixing the click tracking of free and paid ads into the same "Clicks" value? Maybe just a fluke though - I'll see if this keeps up for several days.


 3:33 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

Well heres another that will be removing adsense from a large content site.

I am not content to provide new exit points to my traffic unless they are paid for.

It was a nice trial run.


 3:35 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

The more I think about it, the more I think this is the best anti-spam weapon they could use. If you had a good site before AdSense, and you think this will hurt you then don't use AdSense. If you think you'll still make slightly more money, great, but at least we shouldn't have 500,000 'content sites' about casinos and viagra.

You could have a point. For now, I'm crossing my fingers and keeping an eye on my revenue reports to see what happens.


 3:37 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

Keyz316 - I hadn't noticed that the related searches opened in a new window (I'm so paranoid about accidently clicking on the ads!) - that softens the blow a little.
My CTR has shot up today too - so much so that I was actually getting worried about being flagged for fraud - but it seems to have dropped off to about normal now.

Visit Thailand

 3:38 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

Perhaps the launch of the ad color options was a deliberate attempt to soften the imminent blow of the related searches.

Agree scummbar the CTR should improve because ads will be more prominent so it may be difficult to see the impact of what related searches and colours have separately.

While I think it is a good technique from Google to stop people building new pages to get high SERPS in the hope that a user will click an ad. I am not sure I like it as legitimate users can now leave my site without me earning anything, which is not what I signed up for.

When you have legitimate users that have not come from a SE then why should I have related searches on my site, ads OK but am not comfortable with this move.

We have a loyal following of people that come to our site daily, the ads were great but related searches is a waste of space not a useful addition.


 3:41 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

for us we will be looking seriously at what pages the adsense codes "work for" and which don't..

playing around today im finding.. (all skyscraper) all pages here are all original news items of 500 to 2,000 words, analysis pages, and original reviews of hotels, books etc.

1. A page which had charity ads because it had negative words re the marriot jakata bombing yesterday, now had just one long white box saying this space brought to you by google, and NO related searches, which i find highly surprising as the topic of the page would be related to many sites.

2. One page with 1 paid ad, and (wait for it) ten (10) related searches!

3. a few pages which USED to have targeted ads, which now have NO ads, but 6 to 8 related searches instead.

I dont know which of these are planned, permanant/temporary or teething problems, but obvously there is a lot of work ahead for Adsense publishers in evaluating and reviewing the porgam and deciding how best to use it now (or not at all!)

[edited by: chiyo at 3:45 am (utc) on Aug. 7, 2003]


 3:43 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

Now who was it that first said..

"...If something looks too good to be true, it probably isn't..."


 3:44 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

We have a loyal following of people that come to our site daily, the ads were great but related searches is a waste of space not a useful addition.

I think that's kind of the point though. If you're better of with them, use them, if not, don't.
We've all been in this position before - should I put a punch the monkey banner on my site and make the trade: crappy look but more income? I presume most here decided (like I did) no, that wasn't worth it.
Here we just need to think back to a couple of months ago - Were we doing ok then? Will we be worse of next month if we use AdSense?


 3:46 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

I just changed the code back to the original one from color one. The "Ads by Google" title is gone now!

Is it temporary bug or what?

I didn't like "related keywords".

I just lost "Ads by Google", too.

Is it good or not?


 3:46 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

2. One page with 1 paid ad, and (wait for it) ten (10) related searches!

chiyo, that is interesting. Right from the new section on related searches from their AdSense FAQ

As part of the AdSense program, Google may suggest up to two relevant search queries below the AdWords ads on your website


Visit Thailand

 3:52 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

One of our pages which was previously a PSA is now also showing around 10 Related Search ads all in one banner centrally located where the ad should be.

It makes the whole page look horrible - will definitely be removing it from that page.


 3:55 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

I will spend the next few weeks moving all the sites I manage off of AdSense advertising.

Google has, for the first time, infuriated me by putting more free ads for them on my site than ads that I can earn from.

Well targeted affiliate ads make almost as much money for the big time webmaster who has the skill to implement it.

What made me use AdSense was the ease of use. The "Ads by Google" already bothered me.

The new overbearing idiocy by Google has so infuriated my clients that we will now not use AdSense or AdWords.


 3:56 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

Jenstar, up to two related searches, but that does not include when they claim to have no ads available for the page, and replace the ad space with additional related links. I've had pages with over 10 related links out to google, not counting the preexisting links to google.

Also from the google FAQ: "If we do not yet have relevant ad inventory or have not yet crawled your web pages for content, related searches may appear in place of ads."

itisgene, you're mistaken on that one. Ads by google has always been there, and the old code isn't going to remove it. Might be a fluke, but using the old code, or the new definable color code, both have related searches output on them.


 4:05 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

So Joe Surfer does a keyword search on MSN clicks on the link to mysite. Upon arriving to my site they see a well targeted related search link and click on it, only to be sent to Google. Not cool by me and I am sure MSN wont be to happy. Worst yet imagine somebody clicking on a paid Adword only to click on the related search link on Adsense and be sent back to Google.


 4:11 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)


this is weird.

The one that I put the colored code has no "ads by google" or related keywords.

However, my other sites with adsense (I didn't put any modified codes into them) are showing the "ads by google" AND "related keywords".

It might be a fluke but I like it better.

The codes on my sites look exactly same but are showing different ads.


Visit Thailand

 4:13 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

Well it seems that they are not only doing above but now I have some pages that show a blank ad with no related searches and just a message where Ads by Google used to be saying 'This blank space is brought to you by Google'.

For a serious site with serious content I personally am very offended by that it is like they are taking the **** and looks as if I have allowed Google to specifically show blank spaces on my site.

Would a user understand why it says 'This blank space is brought to you by Google' I am sure that is going to confuse users why is Google giving me a blank space. Should we thank them for providing such interesting information.

I also think that message reflects badly on Google.

I hope some of these tweaks are temporary as I am getting very uncomfotable.


 4:14 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

interesting point novice.

Ive always had a nagging feeling that certain other search engines may "quietly" downgrade rankings of pages that had adsense code in them because of the adwords link. Now it may not be good for their credibility if it was "known", but sneaky tricks are not impossible. Now the up to 10 links straight to google searches on each adsense page, would make me wonder (if i was running a competitive search engine) why my SERPs should feature these pages to a great extent.

Its a consipracy theory, bu what the heck, im a business person too, and people have done far worse to me in the past. :)

The whole search engine, PPC and content-based-ad-delivery" market is getting more valuable, more defined (with just a few competitors now - having gone through their M&A stage) and possibly REALLY dirty (than ever before) in coming months.


 4:15 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

btw, I disagree with the posts earlier that said this move might get rid of spammers. I have serious doubts the spammers will care much about the change.

Remember, the spammers don't have real sites, it's just crap thrown together to get clicks. If their clicks are lowered? So what, it's still free cash. something for nothing is better than nothing.

Legit websites are the ones who'll be hurt, and leave.


 4:33 am on Aug 7, 2003 (gmt 0)

This is a sleezy move by Google. Just goes to show anything you can get away with goes in Cyberspace.

Heh, I guess it gives spammers a taste of their own medicine ... the spammee becomes the spammer!

This 240 message thread spans 8 pages: < < 240 ( 1 [2] 3 4 5 6 7 8 > >
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