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Interest Based Advertising - New AdSense Performance Report

 6:20 pm on Jan 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

Many of you have been discussing the effectiveness of IBA and whether to opt in or opt out.

We have just launched a new feature in the AdSense interface that now shows interest-based targeting type earnings broken out. Previously these were included in contextual earnings. Now if you want to see how much you're earning from IBA, here's how:

1. Under Performance tab, click on the 'Accounts by entire day' drop down
2. Click 'Targeting types' under this drop down

You should see data broken out by contextual, IBA, and placement.

For those of you who aren't opted in, I'd highly recommend reconsidering opting-in and tracking the results.



 6:45 pm on Jan 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

3. (As I mentioned in two other topics) Be sure to set Column headings to Ad Requests so as to compare on the basis of Ad impressions - not Page impressions.

I believe Page impressions is now the default in the reports.


 6:52 pm on Jan 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

ASA, how come that I had turned off IBA-s ("Do not show ads based on user interest categories.") a long ago, yet there are 1000+ of them are reported in my window for this week?


 7:15 pm on Jan 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

Well as my IBA stats register zero income IBA is a complete waste of time on my site, so it isn't doing me much good!

I have to admit that I run PC support sites and my users are 'very' careful on what they will click on and what they will not. To be honest Google is no longer the largest source of revenue for my sites and as income from Google keeps dropping it makes one wonder whether it is worth continuing on the Google train.


 7:46 pm on Jan 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

Thanks ASA,

Results for last thirty days:

IBA CTR one half of contextual

IBA CPC triple contextual

IBA RPM one and one half times contextual

I am sold. Send more IBAs


 7:58 pm on Jan 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

the stats look good on mine as well, with an RPM higher than the contextual ads. but i've had IBA switched off for months and months.

does that mean i should switch them on?
maybe... maybe not.

even when you switch them off, you still get IBA ads if the user has previously interacted with an ad. (that's how i think it works... not too sure.)
so the IBA's i'm getting at the moment are more likely to interest the user than the ones i'll get if i switch them on -- because the user won't have interacted with those at all.


 8:17 pm on Jan 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

The only bad thing about IBA is when you search for a product, the searched company (same Ads) appear on all 3 ad units on the page most of the time.
This reduces CTR and clicks, because there are not showing 3 different ads on the page.


 10:30 pm on Jan 21, 2011 (gmt 0)

Many of you have been discussing the effectiveness of IBA and whether to opt in or opt out.

ASA, I was under the impression that we couldn't fully opt out of IBA. I thought our options were regarding the collection and display of certain data.


 12:18 am on Jan 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

Great improvement, thank you!

My stats:
CPC prices for IBA are 164% higher then for contextual ads
RPM are 338% higher for IBA then for contextual ads


 12:45 am on Jan 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

What and where is this "Performance tab"?


 1:26 am on Jan 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

What and where is this "Performance tab"?

In new adsense report interface, there is a tab called "Performance reports", click on it and then on -> "Entire account by day" -> "Targeting types".
There you can see 3 reports: Contextual, Interest-based and Placement Ads.


 5:48 pm on Jan 22, 2011 (gmt 0)

Just for giggles I turned on IBA now that there's reporting specifically for IBA ads.

Not getting many IBA clicks but the ones I'm getting are paying off really well.

Been a while since I've noticed anything paying several dollars per click, but the IBA did!

Will have to monitor how this impacts the bottom line, but the payout rate is encouraging.


 9:04 pm on Jan 23, 2011 (gmt 0)

I'm wishy-washing about opting in even to try it out...doing fine now, afraid to rock the boat. I'm pretty superstitious about testing this kind of thing - not only is it hard to control for variables, but also because I think about the human beings behind the campaigns and figure it could do long-lasting damage.

Here is my thinking:

My ads are pretty much always relevant to the context. My earnings are pretty steady, overall. This suggests to me that I have some consistent advertisers.

So if my advertisers have to compete with higher-budget external-to-niche advertisers to display their ads, that would initially cause a surge in CPC. But then the small-but-relevant advertisers will wake up to their quickly depleted budgets and re-evaluate whether it's worth it and, realizing a pet grooming tool simply can't compete financially with debt consolidation loans, or whatever, simply drop out of the pool for my pages, sending the CPC on a downward slope.

Of course even if that doesn't happen, then my CTR, nothing special but basically healthy right now, might decline. Which might be a big deal, or it might not, depending on how the bidding algorithm adjusts.

I wish Google would share data about what kinds of sites would do better to enable interest based ads. They're focused on averages, but we're not. My instincts say there's a big difference between how, say, fiction content would perform with IBAs and latest-cool-gadget content. Does the data support this?


 1:52 am on Jan 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

I have four sites.. However only one site truely benefits from opt-in IBMs... wish I could have the option to select which sites to show IBAs... but alas it is account wide...


 3:15 am on Jan 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

but alas it is account wide

I think Google has to stop thinking in terms of accounts with these things, everything should be presented or configurable on a site basis. Same with targeted / placement ads.. when you don't know which site is targeted, the usefulness of the ad reviews section is greatly diminished.


 3:51 am on Jan 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

Koan and ElvisFan, I agree. There seems to be an assumption that independent publishers are like business entities - good at only one thing. But one independent publisher can be engaged in very different fields.

So if your field is fiction, which is nearly impossible to monetize online as of yet - at least until micropayments are more usable and used - interest-based ads could be a dream come true for not just new, but established authors who already have a following but want to break away from the publishing houses into self-publishing. Context-based ads won't do anything much, but IBAs could be very effective.

But again, someone who writes science fiction AND is a chess whiz AND crafts artsy yellow widgets in his basement AND knows the perfect acne home remedy is up a creek if he has to choose one or the other type of advertising.


 2:32 pm on Jan 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

Great new report, ASA! Thanks

For the last 30 days, placement ads are the ones that got the highest RPM -- and what a huge, huge difference over contextual ads:

6.95% higher than IBA
780% higher than contextual

IBA's RPM is 723% higher than contextual. Really surprising numbers!

But what was the most surprising regarding IBA ads is the click through rates.

CTR of IBA ads is 5x MORE than contextual ads. My CTR stats is something like

contextual = X
placement = 3X
interest based = 5X

Give me more placement ads! And IBA ads are not too shabby either


 5:23 pm on Jan 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

ok, so for my site when I go into Ad Review Center, it tells me there are ZERO Placement Targeted ads blocked or allowed. There are zero allowed and zero blocked and zero waiting to be reviewed. (I have it set to run immediately)

Yet, when I check the new report, a good 1/8 of my Page Views are being reported as Placement.

Any ideas of what is going on? Am I missing something here?


 5:43 pm on Jan 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

For those of you who aren't opted in, I'd highly recommend reconsidering opting-in and tracking the results.

I'd better go to opt-out of everything then since my IBA CTR is 42.95% of my contextual and my placement may as well not be there at 22.60% of contextual!

That's for the period Jan 1st 2010 until January 25th 2011.


 5:59 pm on Jan 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

First of all, Interest-Based seems to be a low ctr, however they do pay well. This is probably because Google wants the higher paying ads following people around, not the 5 cent clicks.

Placements pay very well for us with a decent ctr, just slightly lower ctr than the contextual ctr.

How can we see who are the "Placement" advertisers? I promise not to approach them directly!


 6:01 pm on Jan 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

IBA is showing great numbers for me, but not enough impressions, send more!


 6:26 pm on Jan 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

First of all, Interest-Based seems to be a low ctr

Like everything with Adsense, it will be interesting to know where IBAs get very good CTRs (like in my websites where IBA's CTR is 5 times that of contextual ads), and what topics/type of websites they have low CTRs.


 6:44 pm on Jan 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

Can someone tell me exactly where this is being utilized - is this on affiliate type sites?


 6:49 pm on Jan 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

Since this month has almost died for me I'm going to try an experiment and for the rest of the month open everything to Google and just see how it performs.

The only thing I am blocking is a load of MFA advertisers therefore 5 full days with no restrictions whatsoever from me...I hope you prove me wrong G!


 10:00 pm on Jan 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

IBA is showing great numbers for me, but not enough impressions, send more!

I don't get enough IBAs to care either way. What types of sites would tend to get a high percent of IBAs?


 10:56 pm on Jan 26, 2011 (gmt 0)

IBAs aren't doing much but since we've specified placement ads and written descriptions for advertisers in the last 5 days, earnings have risen 15%. Placement ad CTRs are about the same as contextual but the epc is much higher.


 11:44 am on Jan 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

On my site interest based ads appear to pay twice as much as contextual, but the CTR is about a quarter. I opted out of IBA a couple of days ago, but I'm unclear as to whether or not that stops the pesky interest based ads following you around.

I know personally I find it irritating and I can't help but wonder if visitors are seeing the same and therefore not seeing ads related to the page content they are looking at. I'll leave it turned off for a period of time and see how things pan out.

Very useful to see this new metric on our reports though so thanks for that.


 6:22 pm on Jan 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

Wow. My IBA's are paying 45x what contextual is paying. I'm with bbd2000, send more IBA's, please!


 6:39 pm on Jan 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

I opted out of IBAs as much as possible as soon as I had the option. But with this new reporting feature I opted in to see what the numbers really looked like.

What surprised me most of all was how few IBAs apparently get shown on my site. The number runs around 1% of ad requests.

They do seem to pay somewhat better, but there are so few it doesn't make a big difference.

It's also interesting to see how large the variance is in what the pay per click. Some under a dime, others for several dollars.

Do IBAs pay on a PPC basis, or PM, or both, or could it be either/or?


 7:15 pm on Jan 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

Mine are a fifth of what contextual are paying, i'm out.

This 31 message thread spans 2 pages: 31 ( [1] 2 > >
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