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What happend to my ads?

Ads not showing on index page

4:46 am on Jul 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

I am wondering why my ads would have stopped on my index page. It is now displaying the "public service" announcements.

I'm not sure what happend, as they worked fine yesterday, and are still displaying properly on every other page. Every time I checked today, I got the "freebie" ads.

Any ideas?

9:09 am on Jul 9, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Try emailing Google, their responses are, in my experience, quick

The answer to your question would appear to be in :-

"The AdSense ad code can be inserted in the body of the web page code
wherever you want AdWords ads to be displayed. However, if we are unable to crawl or understand the pages containing the ad code, we may not be able to serve relevant ads on those pages. In such cases, we would display public service ads, for which you will not receive any earnings. "

You need to work out why they cannot spider your page

2:18 pm on Jul 10, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Maybe they worked from Googlebot's last crawl but then the MediaPartners bot came along and was unable to spider the homepage but got access to all the other pages. This is the only thing I can think of. Check your logs :)
5:51 pm on Jul 13, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

This is now happening in some of my (perfectly crawlable) pages. A reload generally shows the correct ads, rather than american charities.
4:57 pm on Jul 14, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I've experienced the same thing. My site was showing content targeted ads for about 2 weeks on 80-90% of its pages, including the main page. No changes were made to the site, but several days ago the main page and most of the other pages have been showing the public service ads instead of the content targeted ads.

As a result the CTR is down by about 80% and AdSense revenue is down by about 95%. The Mediapartners bot continues to visit and Apache returns a 200 code for all visits. I contacted Google via their AdSense contact form Saturday, but haven't heard back.

7:40 pm on Jul 14, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Something is seriously messed up with certain sites. For instance, one of the largest blogs out there (search for Andrew Sullivan) has adsense displaying public-service ads. Before they were serving conservative ads properly.
10:16 pm on Jul 14, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Chalk me up as another site owner with this problem. My oldest page (one that was once listed in the GNN Select, for you old-school folks) reverted to PSAs over the weekend, and remains with them now. I've contacted Google via the AdSense Contact form and heard nothing back. All pages and subdirectories under this directory are also displaying PSAs.

I had an index page on another domain revert to PSAs for about 24 hours over the weekend, then get its targeted ads back yesterday.

Did the mediapartners crawl not populate the index correctly? Has Google implemented some new eligibility criterion that is excluding certain directories? All I can do is stab at random ideas. So many folks raved about Google's responsiveness when AdSense launched. It's apparent silence now both puzzles and concerns me.

10:24 pm on Jul 14, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I suspect that the public service ads go in when there are either no bidders (or the bidders have chosen not to have ads on your site) or Google visited the site when it was down.
3:05 am on Jul 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member


I finally heard back from Google about 48 hours after contacting them via their AdSense contact form. Unfortunately they didn't give a clear explanation and the explanation they did give is rather confusing.

"...the pages in question contains negative content."

I followed up to ask what they mean by negative content and for some details so I can take action if necessary. My site has thousands of pages, most of which previously had paid AdSense ads so I'm not sure which pages they're referring to.

The ads appearing on this page are non-profit ads because we do not have any paid-for ads to serve on this page.

Again, I don't know what page(s) they're referring to. I didn't mention specific pages in my initial communication with Google. My two top entry pages and hundreds of other pages were showing properly targeted paid ads for more than 2 weeks. Then a few days ago most (maybe 90%) of those pages began showing public service ads. Those that are still showing paid ads are still showing the ads from many of the same advertisers as before so their explanation doesn't seem valid.

Malibucreek, if you or any others experiencing the same problem are interested please contact me privately. I hope to hear back from Google about my second reply soon, but it couldn't hurt for me to mention details about others having similar problems. Let's coordinate our efforts and work with Google to figure out what the problem is and solve it.

4:18 am on Jul 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Lots of pages on my site periodically revert to either generic ads (targeted at the site rather the specific page) or public service ads.

I assume that's due to a shortage of ads for particular topics.

3:10 pm on Jul 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I had my top entry page ruined by this Nonprofit ads. I was updating that page yesterday morning and I think the Mediabot was hitting the page at the time.

My impressions are down by 50% now because of that. Other pages seemed OK.

I did a little trick that may revive the mediabot for this page.

I chaged the file name to upper case (i.e. from widgets.htm to WIDGETS.htm) and updated all the links with new(?) file name.

It is currently showing the correct one after I have done this. I will have to wait a while if this increase the impressions again.

BTW, the public ads are not counted as impressions.

3:45 pm on Jul 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

I assume that's due to a shortage of ads for particular topics.

That's an interesting theory. Being the advertisers have spending limits, it seems very viable.

3:57 pm on Jul 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

BTW, the public ads are not counted as impressions.

itisgene, that may be true, but what are you basing that on? Based on comparisons of AdSense impressions to Apache log page views I thought that was the case until recently and now I'm not so sure.

4:02 pm on Jul 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

To simulate ad rotation I alternatively added some of hte top ads to my block lsit to refresh the CTR rates.

I found for many pages in my nich there less then a dozend advertisers... if jsut a few of them switch off content ads it could happen quickly that there are no viable advertisers for that page.

If this happens more often they have to give us some chance to add our own default ads, or at least shrink the space used and let us display our own ads.


4:52 pm on Jul 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member


I am comparing the impressions from my stats with the Adsense impressions. Today it dropped dramatically even if the site stats shows normal page views. The entry page I mentioned gets more than 50% of my traffic.

So, i can tell the difference.

And also if you don't get paid for it, you don't have to know the stats. Right?
Same for Google, I think.

5:05 pm on Jul 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

I have ~130 new pages of content generated a day, it seems most pages are now getting ads right away but there are a lot of pages that keep the public service announcements even after several days, i don't know why they aren't updated.
6:39 pm on Jul 15, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

>> i don't know why they aren't updated.


>>I have ~130 new pages of content generated a day

Probably gives you your own answer. Generating pages without real content will not be the answer from anyone's point of view :(

4:31 am on Jul 16, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I heard back from Google, as well, about 48 hours after contacting them. The rep e-mailed me:

"We have found that while our content targeting algorithms generally work very well, there are a small number of pages where poorly targeted or non-paying ads will show up."

They asked for more details on what kind of targeted ads I had seen, when they ran and when they stopped. Haven't heard back yet -- I'll let y'all know if I hear something tomorrow.

But, from following the board, I gonna read between the lines that late last week, Google did something to the algorithm in attempt to cut down on inappropriate or poorly targeted ads. And that resulted in pages that Google perceives to be about multiple topics, or more generic content, now getting the PSAs rather than scattershot ads.

That said, the ads I got on my page in question were quite well targeted. But they may have been so targeted that no one clicked on them, which I assume also will throw a page into the PSA dungeon.

8:14 am on Jul 16, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I found tacking on "?rand=[random 4 digit number]" to my page URLs will get the bot to behave and show real ads. It's been a pain as I had to rewrite several sites to work. However, it was worth it, i'm in some in some niche keywords, and although I only get about 40 clicks a day, I'm earning 4-5 dollars per click, and that's revenue I can't afford to lose.
11:34 am on Jul 16, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

After a week of well focused, almost perfectly tuned ads on my site, I'm getting the public service ads now too.

I also noticed that Google's first Case Study site is showing them on home page.

It's a disturbing trend, as I have no idea if or when the normal ads will return. I've removed competing ads, as per Google's TOS, and have given AdSense prime real estate on the strength of last week's strong beginning. With the public service ads running, I'm losing revenue as we speak.

11:40 am on Jul 16, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I work with several groups that do it besides myself. One of my entire domains went public service (and it's an information site, we are not out of keywords). Several other sites have, but some of my domains are only half affected.

The only way I have found to get those to go away are messing with the url.

http //www.mysite.tld/page.php <- will not work

The following all work:
http //www.mysite.tld/page.php?rand=2242
http //www.mysite.tld/page.php?blah
http //www.mysite.tld/page.php?something=somethingelse

Why? I have no idea, but it freaked the crap out of me at first, as I stood to lose my shirt. I strongly, strongly think it's a bug.

11:41 am on Jul 16, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

I'm guessing this (a higher frequency of public service ads) is the result of two things. Firstly, the increasing popularity of AdSense resulting in more competition between publishers for the pool of Ads. Secondly, AdWords advertisers may be discovering that the scheme isn't working so well for them and turning Content Ads off.

I wouldn't mind this, if only they had a broader range of public service ads - some Australian ones, in particular.

3:14 pm on Jul 16, 2003 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

cornwall users write the content for my site and submit it. I'm just saying that of the 130 new pages a day, maybe 5% have perm Public Service announcements, and i've even noticed in the serps if you construct your query right you can see hundreds of pages in your site that contain nothing but a URL. I think there is a bug in the bot.
9:47 pm on Jul 16, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I emailed Google today about this. Haven't heard back yet, but within half an hour of sending the email, normal ads were showing again.
6:27 pm on Jul 17, 2003 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

On a few of my pages I've had these public services now for a couple weeks.

I sent Google a question regarding these and they send me verbatim FAQ.. They clearly didn't read the part about the page being up now for a couple weeks.

It does seem that it's more common on pages that are heavier with outbound links.

PS: My per click earnings have gone down over 50% over last few weeks.



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