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Google AdSense Forum

Side deals with Google advertisers?

 5:05 am on Feb 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

We've been running Adsense on our site for a number of years. Every so often we get emails from a company that advertises on Adsense on our site, asking if we want to form a direct relationship with them.

I am concerned because this would likely be seen as going around Google and undercutting their relationship with the advertiser. Granted, if we did this we would likely get a larger slice of the pie, and it might be less expensive for the advertiser. But I'm concerned that we might jeopardize our long relationship with Google. That's more important than the short-term gain we might get by striking up private deals.

I've looked at Adsense terms and conditions and to be honest, I can't find anything that prohibits us from doing this. Can anyone point to a Google policy - either in their terms or elsewhere that prohibits side deals with Google's customers?




 5:52 am on Feb 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

Communications Solely With Google. You agree to direct to Google, and not to any advertiser, any communication regarding any Ad(s) or Link(s) displayed in connection with Your Property(ies).


 6:55 am on Feb 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

Communications Solely With Google. You agree to direct to Google, and not to any advertiser, any communication regarding any Ad(s) or Link(s) displayed in connection with Your Property(ies).

In this context, I believe it is the advertiser who is in violation. lappert2001 was contacted by the advertiser, not the other way around.

IMHO, I would notify Google of the contact. It is not worth jeopardizing a long term relationship for a short term gain. Who is to say the advertiser would not bail on you as they are obviously willing to bail on Google. Then what do you do?



 10:14 am on Feb 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

It's both sides of the coin. At present, the people contacting lappert2001 are at fault. As long as lappert2001 does not contact them, the OP will not be in violation.


 11:50 am on Feb 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

That would mean that any advertising company utilizing Google AdWords would not be allowed to directly buy Advertising on any page that utilizes Google AdSense


 1:09 pm on Feb 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

DaStarBuG, that's exactly what it means. And there is some sense to that. Although legally, there has to be some limitation to that. It can't go on forever.

For example, if the company's ads don't appear on one's site for a certain stated period of time, then the prohibition can't be enforced (although Google might not agree and then it's a question for the courts).

In my youth I worked for a office temp company. They had a similar policy where any company who used your services through an office temp agency can't then hire you directly for a period of six months without a penalty being paid to the temp agency. I see it being the same thing with Adsense, although I was looking for a time limitation from Google.

If the company goes away for a year, then comes back to me with an offer, would I then be able to make a deal with them without incurring a violation from Google? I'm not about to violate the policy, but I'd like to see what the time limit is.


 2:49 pm on Feb 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

I don't think you guys understand what that sentence means.

It means that if anyone (like a visitor to your site or anyone) emails you about an AdSense ad on your site - that you are to direct them to Google.

If it meant what you guys think it means (paranoidically) they would simply say it explicitly.

Where in that sentence does it say an advertiser can't buy an ad on your site directly?


 2:49 pm on Feb 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

I think that paragraph in the Adsense TOS is referring to communication about ads displayed using Adsense. For example, if Adsense displays an ad that I feel is inappropriate, I would need to contact google about it and not go directly to the advertiser. It's not saying that you need to ask google permission before displaying other ads.

Also, the Adsesne help says this:
"You're welcome to display Google ads on the same site or page as other third party advertisements provided that the formatting or colors of the third party ads is different enough from that of the Google ads."



 3:14 pm on Feb 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

Glad to hear other opinions on this, but I was hoping for something more explicit from Google. Slashus, I don't think I'm being paranoid. We're not talking about a conspiracy. It's a business policy, and it's a business decision for me to protect my revenue. But I agree that the sentence in question might have differing interpretations like the one you suggest.

Yohaas, if there's an inappropriate Adsense ad, I can (and have) block it using the Adsense controls. No need to go to Google or to the advertiser.

The statement on third-party ads is a different situation. I have several sections for Google ads, and separate sections for non-Google ads. The question is if one of the Google advertisers wants to bypass Google and make a direct deal with the site operators, thereby cutting Google out of the revenue stream.

It's a perfectly legitimate policy, but I also agree it needs to be said better, and there needs to be a limit of time.


 3:49 pm on Feb 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

lappert2001, while you can block it yourself, this policy is telling you not contact the advertiser directly.

If an advertiser contacts you and asks to advertise on your site, are you saying that this policy would prohibit you from selling ad space to them based on the fact that they are also an adsense advertiser? I don't think that the paragraph quoted says that.
If anything it may prohibit you from soliciting direct ads from an existing adsense advertisers, not taking an ad from an advertiser that contacts you. The words "You agree to direct to Google..." would be relevant for communication initiated by you, not an advertiser.


 4:07 pm on Feb 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

One thing about Google is they always pay - the check never bounces - and always on time. You ca't say that about direct advertisers.


 4:07 pm on Feb 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

You won't get anything explicit from Google, and you definitely won't get it here, we don't have Google participation anymore. You could ask in the Google Help forum - they might clarify it, but I suspect that they are deliberately muddy on this one.

Personally, if someone contacts me direct, I sell them advertising; I can't keep track of who all is advertising via AdSense.


 4:54 pm on Feb 14, 2012 (gmt 0)


The Google Help Forum, in my opinion, is of little help. They also have a bunch of fascists (for lack of a better word) that would twist an honest inquiry like this around and blame the person asking the question.

Yes, Google is muddy on this, as they are on most things. It's called fear and intimidation.


 6:01 pm on Feb 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

If an advertiser contacts me and wishes to place an ad on one of my sites, I give them a quote. Adsense never even comes up in the conversation.

I do NOT check to see who is advertising on my sites via Adsense and then contact them at all, ever. In fact, I've never gone out looking for advertisers. They always find me. How they do it is their business.

I believe Google does not want their partner publishers bugging their AdWords users about ad problems, etc. I also believe Google does not want publishers contacting advertisers whose AdWords ads are showing on said site, to try and set something up "on the side".


 7:47 pm on Feb 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

We run adsense on one of our busier sites... We also sell ads direct. It's not at all uncommon to visit a page of our site and see the SAME advertiser who is buying the ad space directly from us, also showing in the single adsense block at the very bottom of the content.

Who is to say which came first? What if you decide to sell ad space to someone this week, and in 3 weeks, they also run an adwords campaign? Then what?

I think you are worrying about a non-issue here. All said however, I agree completely with what everyone else says about burning the bridge. If Adsense is your primary source of income on the site, it may not be worth your short term gain to mix up the kool-aid. Adsense probably has a pretty good idea of the quality of your site visitors as they relate to advertisers, and the last thing you want to do is sell a direct ads, and have the perceived quality reduced.


 8:07 pm on Feb 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

I do NOT check to see who is advertising on my sites via Adsense and then contact them at all, ever. In fact, I've never gone out looking for advertisers. They always find me. How they do it is their business.

I don't think anyone has a complete list of advertisers on their sites. This shouldn't be an issue at all.


 9:59 pm on Feb 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

I agree with @Habtom. If Google were to require this, they would have to give us a list of all the advertisers that have appeared on our sites. Otherwise it would be impossible for us to know if that company had ever advertised on our site.


 10:26 pm on Feb 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

Granted, there's no way to know every single ad that has popped up in Google Adsense, but they would know about those Adwords customers that have directed their ads to your web site. The advertiser that contacted me directs their ads to my site, and I see them almost every time I load particular pages. Moreover, they take up entire ad insertions, that might otherwise be populated with 3-4 smaller Adsense ads.

Indeed I do have some smaller advertisers that bought space with up first, and then appeared later in Adsense, but here we're talking about a more significant player.


 5:34 am on Feb 18, 2012 (gmt 0)

As matter of policy it's not a bad idea to ignore any unsolicited offers. If you want to sell ads approach potential buyers yourself, word will get around quickly.


 3:16 pm on Feb 19, 2012 (gmt 0)

I agree with few members here who said that it is not necessory and not possible to check whether the said advertiser is also advertising on adwords.
We have a "Do it Yourself" advertising module on our site where we accept All the advertisement from all companies / individuals who completes the form and make payment online and abide with our guidelines.
I have seen many sites who run their own ad network along with google adnsese.
Ofcourse if you ask google they may not agree.


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