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12:38 pm on Jul 21, 2005 (gmt 0)

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One of the main objectives of this AdSense forum is to help each other improve earnings based on a quality website that plays by the rules. Many new members come here looking for just such advice and older members can validate or dismiss practices based on the information they accumulate here over time .

With this in mind, I thought it would be nice to have one thread that puts all the best tips and advice together from old and new members - for the benefit of old and new members.

It's also my hope that we can put together a high impact thread worthy of being bookmarked and referred to, as well as to take the wind out of the sales (pun intended) of those who sell $75 overpriced Adsense eBooks that never deliver on what they promise. [And at the same time, hope those same opportunists don't violate the copyright on this thread and produce another eBook based on this information]. :-)

To start, here's 3 of my best AdSense tips.

1. Google's Heat Map really does work and deserves the full attention of those who've ignored it. It's really helped me improve my CTR. [google.com...]

2. When it comes to content, take the time write the best article you can. Don't write a bunch of rehashed garbage that's already been copied 100x before by lazier webmasters then you. Write something fresh and recent with new sources. Also, don't make the article short just because you don't like to write. Write until you've exhausted the subject. This will help you avoid duplicate content penalities, increase the stickyness to your site, and put out more 3,4,5, etc. keyword combinations that you can pick up traffic on.

3. Clear off the clutter, eye candy, bells and whistles and unnecessary links from each page. You want visitor's eyeballs to focus on 2 things: Your Content and Your Ads. Trimming the fat also reduces the low value places for visitors to go. You want them to either continue surfing your site or to exit through an ad. I've reduced the clutter and low value links off many of my pages which really helped my CTR and proved to be worth the time it took.

One Final Note: I think it's okay for members to repeat tips as it validates the importance of such tips and shows some priority as to what publishers can focus on.

Thanks,

Freedom

5:17 pm on July 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

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1. Watch your server logs - I have noticed that sometimes I will just mention something in an article for one sentence that brings in a lot of visitors so I go and write an entire article on that subject. The results have been stellar. You've been given a big hint that people are interested in this and if you ignore it you are missing a big opportunity. I have more than a few articles that have been linked to all over the web because they are almost the only decent material on this subject.

2. Don't fret too much when your income and/or traffic are low for a few days. These peaks and valleys are normal but you should still investigate the matter to see what factors could be causing this like an algorythm update.

3. Use proper grammar and spelling so that your articles are professional. Use bullet points and bold headings for sections.

Bonus!

4. Write content that is as specific as possible. Don't write an article that is super long unless it is necessary. If you can break it up if it seems logical to do so.

5:30 pm on July 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Don't be afraid to ugly up your site a little bit to make your Adsense ads really stick out to get a better CTR. You'll get a few complaints, but the increased CTR will help you sleep better at night.

This is one point I can not agree with. Remember "think long term". You want other webmasters to link to you; to increase traffic and popularity. If your site looks like "Made for Adsense" youíre not going to get many natural links.

5:36 pm on July 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I like the tips, but itís nice to listen to people who can back up what they say. If you donít mind, would you be so kind as to post your CTR% with your tips.

1.) Create sequentially related content spanning multiple related pages and encourage visitor flow.

2.) Match the look of ads to the look of contnet.

3.) BLEND ads directly into content - do not place ads on the sides, top, or bottom of content.

My CTR% is 19.6%

5:46 pm on July 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

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My CTR has been between 8% and 12%

But it's not always about ad placement and design. It really helps if your article is targeted and the ads shown are what your visitors are looking for. If they aren't I don't know how much you can do with design and trickery.

And did anyone notice: Payment in Progress!

5:49 pm on July 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Atomic;
Watch your server logs - .... sometimes I will just mention something in an article for one sentence that brings in a lot of visitors so I go and write an entire article on that subject. The results have been stellar.

That's a huge tip, and I'm surprized it isn't mentioned more often.

6:02 pm on July 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I'll add some:

1. Experiment with sites you don't have much other use for. Apply learnings to future sites.

2. Have patience. You may have good ideas that won't even start to pay for six months from now.

3. Use good title and description tags, plus Urls that look static even on a dynamic site. Helpful not just for Adsense, but to get search engine traffic as well.

7:08 pm on July 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I like the tips, but itís nice to listen to people who can back up what they say. If you donít mind, would you be so kind as to post your CTR% with your tips.

OK, here's another tip: Observe the AdSense rules, which don't allow sharing that kind of data. :-)

7:20 pm on July 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

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OK, here's another tip: Observe the AdSense rules, which don't allow sharing that kind of data.

That's redundant, I already posted READ ALL ADSENSE TERMS AND HELP PAGES, it's listed in their documentation ;)

TIP: read the TIPS!

7:47 pm on July 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Great thread.

I'll only give one tip, but it's the most critical in my view and one of the lessor known. It was touched upon in the 3rd post here:-

Only use 1 ad block per page to keep the highest paying clicks in view and avoid .03 clicks (not worth leaving your site for .03 in my opinion)

It goes a lot further than that. More blocks on the page actually works to your advantage. The key is in understanding the way that google serve ads:-

They serve the highest paying ads first.

Understanding that is critical to making good money on the AdSense program.

You want your highest CTR channel ads in your HTML code first.

Having three blocks on each page becomes extremely valuable when you've adapated your page layouts to cater for that.

Look at your page code and see which blocks are being requested first. Redesign your pages to ensure that the highest CTR positions are requesting ads from the server first in the page code. If you need to know how to do that, mosy on over to the CSS forum.....

There's no need to have one ad block only.

TJ

8:02 pm on July 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

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1. When first starting out (month 1&2), and the ads appear totally inapproriate, use the competitor filter profusely against totally out-of-whack ads, to force the Adsense Algo to "look" for something better to place there. If you start getting PSA's then trim it back, as that means there simply ARE nothing more appropriate. You should be able to remove them all by the end of the 3rd or 4th month.

2. When starting out it may be necessary to edit your text on high traffic pages to "nudge" the ad topics away from off-topic terms. For instance if your page happens to be all about North Pole real estate and you mention Santa lives down the street in one single spot, but every ad on the page suddenly focuses on Santa instead of the North pole (And those Santa ads aren't paying as much as the North Pole real estate ads should), you may want to temporarily remove or disguise the Santa reference until Adsense notices the REAL topic for a few days. Some folks claim putting the most appropriate text right before or after the adsense code helps, but I disagree, and suggest runnning the bad word together with another or putting a space in it instead.

3. REPORT ALL TOS Violators and Scrapers in your niche to Adsense support. The fewer unfair sites there are to display the ads in your niche and steal your clicks, the more demand and the more competition and higher PPC for YOU. Besides it makes the clickthrus better for the adwords folks and cleans the spammers out of the G database. The best way to find these spammers is to search for your own content (or that of a top 3 site in your niche) and see who has scraped it and why, and whether they are MADE-FOR-ADSENSE only pages (9 times out of 10 they are).

8:14 pm on July 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Blending ads - Do you make the link and title colours the same as the text? Or do you make them look like regular links?

I've tried both and haven't noticed much difference in ctr, wondering if anyone else has.

8:28 pm on July 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Whatch and learn. This very same website design can teach you some many leasons.

Think about your visitors, they are the most important thing to focus on. Who are they, were they come from, , what do they need, etc..

Quality content. Give a reason for people to come back to your site. Forget about scrapers, spam, etc.

8:28 pm on July 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

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"1. Serve the user. If your site has intrinsic value, users will come back, and you'll earn far more than you would from a single visit. (You'll also benefit from word of mouth and unsolicited links from other sites.)"

Absolutely. If the content is genuinely useful, it will be found by users. And if a site is packed with useful content, the probability of its failure over the long haul should be meager.

Of course, there's always an opportunistic parasite peeking out from under a rock with the aim to make said useful content his own.

8:37 pm on July 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I think the most important thing is that DO NOT stop trying every idea you have with Adsense, even it looks like kind of cheating.
9:40 pm on July 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

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1. Don't turn your back on Adsense Search. The results it provides are pretty useful, so your visitors will be happy - and it can add meaningfully to your bottom line.

2. Use the channels to mine for your most valuable traffic, then go looking for affiliate programs on those topics. One particular page of my site only got a few thousand views a month and I paid it no heed at all - until I found what a click was worth! Now the affiliate ad I've set up on that page is delivering a sustained $200 CPM...

3. Once you've worked out the most effective Adsense/Affiliate mix for your niche, keep your eyes open for other sites in the same niche that clearly haven't gone through the same optimization process - then buy them, fix their ads based on your accumulated know-how and watch the $$$ roll in.

9:46 pm on July 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

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DO NOT stop trying every idea you have with Adsense, even it looks like kind of cheating

I don't think encouraging folks to do things that "looks like kind of cheating" is a good tip or recipe for success.

10:34 pm on July 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

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This thread really surpassed my expectations with original ideas and tips that never even crossed my mind.

However, I do have a sick feeling that some unscrupulous opportunists are going to rewrite and rehash this thread into a "Must Read, Can't Live Without" eBook retailing for the low, low, low price of $75.

Well, I hope they keep in mind what it says at the bottom of the every page:

Member comments are owned by the poster.
10:49 pm on July 22, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Sometimes small is good...

I switched several right-side ads above the fold that used to be 120x600 to the 120 x 240 ... have seen higher click rates and EPC thus far.

Seems to look less garish, and with only 2 ads shown ... more on topic/target with the page(s).

I know that's only one, but a lot has already been covered.

3:42 am on July 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

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what i have that works is an 468x60 banner at the bottom of all my artices, and it is blended in so you dont lose your users due to forcing ads on them but when the get done reading that tuorial on html forms there two test ads that probally deal with html or even learning html, my forum on the other according to the heat map isnt so great but im not in it for the money so im not gonna put em in between posts like some sites have
12:16 pm on July 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

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3 Adsense Tips:

1. Write original content.

2. Set up a Google Sitemap, even if it's only in .txt.

3. Pray.

1:05 pm on July 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

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fearlessrick, have you been able to see specific results as the result of submitting a sitemap? I've been doing it since the release, but besides a lot of visits by google to get them, I don't really see much change?
3:21 pm on July 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

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The 6 most valuable tips are:

1. Learn how to scream loudly, stamp one's feet and shake violently, all without throwing the cordless mouse. Wired mice are for wimps!

2. Post a message on this forum informing everyone you're about to fly the Enola Gay over the Googleplex.

3. Have a good buddy whose shoulder you can cry on.

4. Hit the ATM for a substantial wedge of cash.

5. Make sure the local pub is well stocked-up with your favourite beer and attempt to drink them dry.

6. When returning to the computer with a blinding hangover the following day and everything is back to "normal", wait for a couple of days before repeating points 1 to 5 again:-)

3:44 pm on July 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

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from trillianjedi's post...

There's no need to have one ad block only.

since the top paying ad appears on top, and the lowest one appears on bottom... suppose the payouts for the 8 ads are as follows: 42c 41c 19c 18c 11c 10c 4c 3c

if you have one block of 4 ads in a prominent location, then you isolate the higher-paying ads. if you include a second block, regardless of how you code it with CSS, then the CPC of that second block is significantly lower than the first.

as i understand it, a click on the top ad on the second block will be 11c, no matter what you do. for some publishers, it makes sense to limit the number of ads that appear on the page to increase earnings.

am i missing something?

3:56 pm on July 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

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elsewhen, the way I read it is that you use CSS to position block no. 1 and block no. 2 differently on the page than google expects it to appear. That way you can steer the best paying ad block to the location on your page that gets the best exposure for you, and still have a second block of ads that gets some response which the best paying ads couldn't create. Better to harvest some of the cheaper clicks than to drop them completely in the quest for the best paying ads.
4:32 pm on July 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

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I'm currently executing OptiRex's 6 commandments with brilliant results! Couple of my own:

1) Don't rely on Adsense for anything more than emptying the fridge at the local pub. When you can't drink anymore use the remainder to buy Alka-Seltzer.

2) Use the mouse. Bad positioning of ads, a good Jedi does not make you, Luke.

5:52 pm on July 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

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am i missing something?

Yes.

As DoingItWell explained - CSS allows you to position elements on a page in pretty much any location you like, irrespective of it's position in the page source.

The first call to google in your page source code will pull the highest paying ads, but that doesn't mean they have to appear at the top of the page...

On one page I have 3 Ad blocks - a banner (low CTR of about 1%) a center 250x250 block (pretty good at 4%) and a skyescraper (about 1.5%).

I pull the center block first in the page source (highest paying ads to the highest CTR block), skyescraper second, and banner (even though it appears on screen at the top of the page) last.

Hope that makes sense - a good understanding of this coupled to well organised channels can help you double or triple your earnings in my experience.

TJ

[edited by: trillianjedi at 5:56 pm (utc) on July 23, 2005]

5:54 pm on July 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

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Some greats tips here, thanks a lot everyone.

But one point, I've never really been able to get around the concept of analyzing my stats, both site stats and adsense ones.

There just seems to be too much information with both of them so I never know where to start and what really to look for. Suppose it's like a goldmine - I know there's some gold there but where the hell do I start to dig, and with what tools?

Does anyone know of an 'introduction guide to reading and interpreting stats' because I'm sure there must be others out there that are struggling with this concept.

PS. With my hosting I've got about 5 different stats programs included, so again which one(s) should I be looking at. At present I just look at Webalizer to see uniques, pages and top 20 words etc, basically very simple stuff.

6:04 pm on July 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

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The first call to google in your page source code will pull the highest paying ads, but that doesn't mean they have to appear at the top of the page...

i get that... so the technique effectively allows you to make the 2nd or 3rd appearing ad block on a page get the top paying ads.

your suggestion is a good one if there are lots of high paying ads for a particular page and especially if you have long pages that the user has to scroll to view.

There's no need to have one ad block only.

this is the part that caught my attention... imagine you a page where all the text content appears above the fold. additional ad blocks just compete with the first one... so giving a visitor ONLY the top 4 ads, for example, in many cases is the most profitable thing to do. having low-paying ads competing on the same screen with high-paying ads is not necessarily ideal.

i think your idea is a very good one, for certain instances, but i still think there are many cases where the best results would be to have one ad block (or an ad block and a link unit) on a page.

6:07 pm on July 23, 2005 (gmt 0)

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but i still think there are many cases where the best results would be to have one ad block (or an ad block and a link unit) on a page.

Yes, I agree with you 100%. As ever, experimentation is the name of the game - some things work on some pages, some things work on other pages.

The point I wanted to make was that it's not necessary to limit the number of ads in order to get the highest paying ads into the highest CTR locations.

especially if you have long pages that the user has to scroll to view.

Yup and you can drop three floating DIV's with AdSense at three positions as you head down the page. If your CTR is usually highest on the very last block, you can pull that block's AdSense code first.

It's such a powerful trick that it amazes me when I see sites not making use of it.

TJ

3:01 am on July 24, 2005 (gmt 0)

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1. I have had some success with wrapping the text around a rectangular ad block on the right side of the page, above the fold.

2. I change my link colors from time to time on my heavily hit pages for my repeat visitors sake.

3. Work a text link block in with your navigation at the top of your pages, blending them as best as possible.

That's my 2 cents worth :-)

Good Luck!

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