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General Category Blocking: Invitation to Test It
Anyone else get an invitation?

 2:45 pm on Nov 17, 2010 (gmt 0)

Did anyone else get an invitation to try the new "General Category Blocking"?

Have you tried it?




 3:09 pm on Nov 17, 2010 (gmt 0)

i got the invite... for us, the data is more interesting to see which categories are performing better than others.

google provides data on percent impressions vs percent of revenue. this makes it easy to see which categories are outperforming and which are underperforming from a revenue standpoint.

we have category performance information already (with custom channels), but google categorization is more granular.


 3:38 pm on Nov 17, 2010 (gmt 0)

I'll look at it again when there's more data, but my first impression is that unless we can specify categories for particular URLs, or even websites, I can't block any, because the categories are pretty sweeping and I write in too many niches.

I do block lots of specific categories, because I write a good portion of my content on third-party sites where certain incompatible niches dominate. That seems to help a lot. But the general categories are too broad.


 3:40 pm on Nov 17, 2010 (gmt 0)

Even though I've been around since the beginning, I've obviously missed something. I thought AdSense was about contextually based ads and so I don't understand why anyone should need to worry about ads in categories not related to the content of the site/page.

Further, in reading the email, it seemed as if this new "General Category Blocking" is account-wide. So if I block a "Travel" category to try and keep travel ads off my site about widgets, that means I won't be able to have travel ads on my site about travel.

I'm not sure if I'll participate in the test, I'm not a person who trusts Google very much

this makes it easy to see which categories are outperforming and which are underperforming from a revenue standpoint.

I don't mean to sound sarcastic, but if you don't like what you see, what can you do about it?



 3:47 pm on Nov 17, 2010 (gmt 0)

I thought AdSense was about contextually based ads and so I don't understand why anyone should need to worry about ads in categories not related to the content of the site/page.

Interest based advertising perhaps?

So even if your page is about travel but a user previously visited a get rich quick site, then the ads shown in your site for that visitor may be about getting rich quick.

The breakdown of the categories and how much they account in terms of your revenues is very interesting. One of the categories account for about 25% of our Adsense revenues, so I will be crazy if I block that.

I'm not very particular with blocking ads, even if that category accounts for only 0.2% of our revenue. I'm still thinking about this


 4:25 pm on Nov 17, 2010 (gmt 0)

I only run one site and, after taking a peek, General Category Blocking seems like a very good idea for a site like mine.

The categories that are doing well are not a surprise. The ones that are not doing well are the surprise.

For example the category Travel is doing pitifully.

I don't even expect Travel ads to appear on my site, which deals primarily electronic widgets.

However, I may write an article about how to prepare your widget for travel so I can understand why an ad on Travel may appear. So, I blocked Travel; more chance for an ad relating to widget X to appear on the page.

Unless I'm missing something, General Category Blocking is a plus for me.


 5:04 pm on Nov 17, 2010 (gmt 0)

I got the invite and looked at the categories and % of revenue from each. Apparently ads from a category that I have never seen on my site and that are completely irrelevant to my site generate 54% of my revenue.

I think there are some bugs to work out with the reporting.


 5:51 pm on Nov 17, 2010 (gmt 0)

Most of this filtering is useless to me until they come to the realization that some of us have more than one site. Of more than one type.


 8:16 pm on Nov 17, 2010 (gmt 0)

Netmeg, we've been saying that since they first created the Ad review center and it's been a few years now. It's pretty much useless unless you can use it on a per site basis. I guess statistically, the majority of Adsense publishers really just have one site and it's not worth their time/money to cater to multi-sites publishers, for now. I understand priority.


 8:27 pm on Nov 17, 2010 (gmt 0)

Interesting data indeed. Though at this point I don't have much of a need for blocking by the general categories. The Sensitive categories might be useful if we see some problem ads start popping up, or get some complaints from users.


 9:08 am on Nov 18, 2010 (gmt 0)

I mainly run AdSense on one site that spans several loosely related topics, so ad targeting has generally been excellent. However, the new category blocking revealed several completely unrelated categories (e.g. health, gambling, etc.) that combined for several percent of impressions and revenue. I blocked those three weeks ago (in beta) and have seen no impact on revenue. I never actually saw ads appearing on my site that would fit the blocked categories, so I can't speak for what ads might have replaced them.

Overall, I'm happy to provide a better user experience by blocking controversial/unrelated categories (beyond that of initial ten "sensitive" categories). I figure the ads that will replace the blocked categories will likely be more relevant; even if they pay less per-click, they likely provide better conversions for advertisers which is a win-win for the long-term (i.e. smart pricing). I agree with others, though, that the blocking options (general, sensitive, URL, etc.) should really be a per-URL basis for those publishers with multiple, unrelated sites.


 9:10 pm on Nov 18, 2010 (gmt 0)

What I don't understand is why the CTR in the newAdSense interface (beta) is only a fraction of what is indicated in the current interface.

Anyone know why there is a huge discrepancy between the two?


 9:55 pm on Nov 18, 2010 (gmt 0)


Yeah, it's confusing. The units are different - you have to go to Columns on the right and change it from Ad Units to Page Views. Then you'll see the usual CTR and RPM (eCPM).


 9:57 pm on Nov 18, 2010 (gmt 0)

duplicate post


 5:36 am on Nov 19, 2010 (gmt 0)

Thanks for the info Lapizul!

After my site was put into WordPress over a year ago, income and CTR dropped dramatically! Ouch! So I've spent considerable time and money since then trying to get back things to at least the level the were prior to the changes and redesign.

Finally, things started improving the last six months. Then suddenly seeing the CTR figure drop to an all time low the other day, shook me.

Glad to learn there is another way to look at the figures.


 8:04 am on Nov 21, 2010 (gmt 0)

Is there also a category

fraudulent tests where the user is required to send his cell phone number and has subscribed an abo with this?

I have 50 advertisiers looked, always again and again the same fraudulent ads targeting different domains and published by different advertisier accounts.


 1:38 am on Nov 22, 2010 (gmt 0)

This new feature just proved beyond a shadow of a doubt what I already knew which was my income came from one specific category and nothing else.

I was once told I'd earn more by not blocking certain unrelated ads, when their own reports now confirm I was right and the massive impressions they gave those certain ads results in lower income.

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