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Google AdSense Forum

Google, I don't want interest based ads!
Google ignores their own preferences!

 8:38 pm on Jun 23, 2011 (gmt 0)

I have a medical forum, so people who are there, should see medical ads! I have opted out in the preferences from interest based ads.


"Do not show ads based on user interest or demographic categories. Visitation information from my sites will not be used to help create interest or demographic categories."

But still I see ads that are totally unrelated to medical issus but related to my interest (like SEO etc.) When I go on my wife's laptop I see ads about clothes and lifestyle (on a medical forum!).

The CTR is already on all time low because of that interest based ads. How can I remove this junk?

90% of people are coming via search engines to my forums, they should see ads that are specifically targeted to my topic and not about "everything which might be interesting to them".

AdSense was much better last year, every month and year they are adding some stupid feature NO ONE REALLY NEEDS!



 8:58 pm on Jun 23, 2011 (gmt 0)

Read my post in this thread [webmasterworld.com...] (I've been posting about this for years now )

since this one [webmasterworld.com...]
where the ASA at the time finally had to admit that "opt out of IBAs" doesn't mean what they want you to think it means,
and again [webmasterworld.com...]
and more...and no doubt will again..


 9:30 pm on Jun 23, 2011 (gmt 0)

Besides that IBA can't be deactivated you should check your stats.
I run a medical forum myself and IBA is double the eCPM of my contextual ads.


 11:01 pm on Jun 23, 2011 (gmt 0)

I don't understand the logic behind IBAs. If I am on a shoe site one day, does that mean that I am still interested in shoes the next day? Maybe but also maybe not, especially if I bought the shoes I wanted yesterday. If I am now on a travel site, why would I want to see shoe ads? Makes no sense to me.


 11:04 pm on Jun 23, 2011 (gmt 0)

That is re-targeting. If you were interested once, chances are you will be again. And stats prove that over and over. Otherwise advertising networks and for sure AdSense would not do it. They have hundreds of millions of clicks to prove that it works. By the way, IBA Ads still take part in the auction so they pay you more if they are shown.


 11:14 pm on Jun 23, 2011 (gmt 0)

Not if they are running purely for branding as CPMs ..Groupon ads come to mind..as does the "competition" ad I mentioned in a thread I referenced above..


 6:39 am on Jun 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

About two or three months ago I visited a site which was promoted in the Google search results (premium Ad), a printing company. For WEEKS this ad is now following me, on youtube sites, within youtube videes, on gmail, on my medical forum site (!), on x other sites! I am definetly not interested in that ad or company any more, I just visited it for once..... this is really ridiculous!

I will never click on it because that ad is based on a interest which is two or three months old!

If all my site-visitors are treated this way it is really understandable that click rates are falling and falling!


 8:17 am on Jun 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

They've come around to the old school "tv ad" way of thinking.

Forget "contextual ads". Show irritating ads, over and over, the majority won't bite, but enough of the minority will. To make the numbers work..

I remember the old "mikey" Life Cereal ad. It seemed to run for 20 years...


 9:53 am on Jun 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

About two or three months ago

Like several members around here I use Opera with cookies disabled, for those sites where I have to have cookies enabled when I shut down that browser, usually Firefox, it automatically clears both cache and cookies.

Try it, it makes for a much smoother experience and NO IBAs!


 10:08 am on Jun 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

Thank you HuskyPop... I really don't care about the ads that I see! I'm talking about ads that my site visitors see - I'm sure 99% of normal people do not disable cookies, why should they. So they will see ads not related to my forum's topics!


 1:00 pm on Jun 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

And did you follow my advice and checked your AdSense stats for IBA performance?
You can find it in your performance report under "Targeting types".


 2:17 pm on Jun 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

IBA's show pretty good performance in my account for the past few months. Nobody finds them more annoying than I do, but they do pay, and they must be working across the board because Google is all about the math, and if the numbers weren't there they'd drop 'em like a hot potato. Unfortunately there's probably some collateral damage, which would be insignificant to G as we are just one giant hive mind to them, not individual sites or publishers.


 2:52 pm on Jun 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

Hello DaStarBuG, thank you for your advice!
Now I checked.... it's reeeeeeally weird.

Last six months:

a) eCPM
Contextual 4 /1000 impressions
IBA's 235 /1000 impressions
Placement 541 /1000 impressions

b) CTR
Contextual 1,25%
IBA's 79%
Placement 121%

How on earth is this possible?


 3:27 pm on Jun 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

You might want to make a little less detail public there..G TOS and all


 3:40 pm on Jun 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

Click on the "columns" drop down and switch from page views to ad requests and you get accurate date.
However leosghost is right, you are not allowed to share eCPM or CTR.


 6:45 pm on Jun 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

I don't understand the logic behind IBAs. If I am on a shoe site one day, does that mean that I am still interested in shoes the next day? Maybe but also maybe not, especially if I bought the shoes I wanted yesterday. If I am now on a travel site, why would I want to see shoe ads? Makes no sense to me.

I read once that a person interested in a product "buys" after seeing the same ad an average of 3 times. This is why, but unfortunately in the case of IBAs, the ads continue to follow people around the web, whether they "purchased" or not. This becomes a form of harassment, and leads to more ad blindness and higher bounce rates.


 7:02 pm on Jun 24, 2011 (gmt 0)

You are forgetting that Publishers and Webmaster tend to look different on Advertisements as "normal" people.

Advertisings works with repetition. The more an advertising message is seen by a visitor the more it carves itself into the unconscious. That is why Advertisers spend millions on TV commercials. They want you to unconscious remember the transported message when buying a new product.

If you visited a store once and decided not to buy (or maybe you bought something) chances are greater that you buy from this store (again) if you see the Ad in the exact moment where you make your buying decision. And that is why re-targeting (which is different from IBA by the way but most of you are referring to) works so well.

If you feel that Ads are following you then you see re-targeted ads.
The metrics however are combined with IBA so you can't differentiate between re-targeted ads and IBA in AdSense.


 3:59 pm on Jun 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

Non-contextual ads in a contextual advertising system, without choice, is pure silliness. Thankfully there are other options besides adsense if your site is affected particularly harshly.

Yes, I might like SEO, but if I go to a lingerie site to buy something nice for my wife I don't want to see SEO, ya know ?


 4:20 pm on Jun 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

But maybe you look for lingerie and suddenly you see a SEO ad with a solution for a problem you spend your whole day in trying to solve and BOOM the SEO Ad on the lingerie site worked ;)


 4:25 pm on Jun 27, 2011 (gmt 0)


I think the opposite would be worse, you go to a lingerie site, and then lingerie ads follow you around. NSFW.


 4:29 pm on Jun 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

PROPERLY managed IBA can work very well for advertisers, just need to keep the frequency caps appropriate and if the product is a one-time purchase you need to setup a "negative" audience as to not re-market to those the already purchased.


 4:38 pm on Jun 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

This becomes a form of harassment, and leads to more ad blindness and higher bounce rates.

interest based ads obviously work. the stats say so, otherwise google wouldn't implement them.

however, more "efficient" ads can lead to more ad fatigue. it's the same principle as with popup/popdown/layer ads. 99% percent of visitors may find them really annoying, but the 1% who react on them make the operation worthwhile.

yes, it works - just like spam works. but the question is, what are the long term effects? if the majority of people will strongly oppose a certain advertising type, ad blindness and ad hatred will escalate further. that means more ad blockers or overall more frustrating user experience over time. an effect that isn't priced into google's oh so awesome algorithms - which are only about maximizing the short term cash flow.. it would indeed make sense to reflect these issues - because annoying advertising is not sustainable.

p.s. the flaw in the current system is this: google really can't correctly guess, what i am interested in right now. unless i tell them directly what i want. which i do when i enter my query into the input field on their search engine. that's what the adwords on their serps are serving. whereas ads on the content network are always inferior anyway (less targeted, more annoying) if you look at it this way..


 10:12 pm on Jun 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

Works for whom? Obviously IBA is a brilliant idea for generic websites/forums etc.. Contextual ads wouldn't work well on NYT politics article pages.. Google is using our focused sites/pages to create visitor profiles, and shows relevant ads on premium/high traffic/generic websites..


 10:34 pm on Jun 27, 2011 (gmt 0)

Works great on my medical site


 5:05 am on Jun 28, 2011 (gmt 0)

I just never click on an ad or use Google for search. Along with ad blindness the problem is solved.


 2:47 pm on Jun 28, 2011 (gmt 0)

As a webmaster I never click on an ad, I know they are ads and can spot them a mile away. It's possible the ads might serve my purpose or give me the info I'm looking for but since I expect a sales pitch I avoid them.

Anyway - non-contextual ads negate the need for unique content. The ads are divorced from it and there's not a darned thing you can do about it. That's my real complaint.

Imagine if serps went non-contextual too. Doesn't matter what you search for you see what Google thinks you are interested in. Looking for lingerie? Too bad, we think you love SEO more so here's some SEO sites. Not good!


 7:53 pm on Sep 15, 2011 (gmt 0)

i think the way that google looks at interest-based ads is this...

they have a load of advertisers that spend a lot of money to get their ads on our sites. and they have even more advertisers who spend very little, so they cant compete.

so what google needs to do is increase the number of sites on which their ads can appear. because then they can burn through the small advertisers budget quicker.

before interest-based ads began, their ads might have been competing to appear on a thousand sites, but now they can compete to appear on hundreds of thousands.

so it doesn't matter if individual publishers are seeing their CTR drop, because overall google is bound to see their own go up

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