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To Filter or not to Filter

Google says I filter too much...

     
9:23 pm on Oct 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Google keeps telling me I filter too much... they tell me that I could make much more money if I allowed the scraper sites to run ads on my site. Google allows those sites to run ads on their sites... Google sees no harm in letting such sites make money for themselves and for Google. Why should I not do the same?

Google sees no harm to the Internet in general for such sites to be in the natural results of a Google search. Google sees no harm in the general quality of the Internet by the spread of such sites. Why should I see harm in it?

Google is always right, right?

Mike

ann

9:29 pm on Oct 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

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welllll, according to Google, maybe.

Just 86th about a dozen of the little fleas and my conscious feels really good about it :)

I watch when my numbers start tanking I break out the trusty mouse and start multi-tasking until I find the worst of them.

Happy Hunting,

Ann

10:13 pm on Oct 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Every month, they tell me the same thing. I simply ignore them. I have anywhere from 50-200 SPAM filled looking sites in my filter. A few times a month, I empty out the filter for a few days, just to experiment. You know what? I still get more or less the same results as far as CTR and eCPM. I know it is better for my visitors NOT to click on those SPAM filled ads, so I rather have those URLs filled up in my filter.
10:17 pm on Oct 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Has anybody developed a good system for making space in the filter? We filled ours up back a few months ago. The only way I've figured out to remove domains without getting them back is to take whole sections of our website that they were targetting out of the Adsense program. We're doing that to an extent anyway, but if somebody has a logical approach for making space in the filter that doesn't involve giving up, I'd like to give it a shot.
10:42 pm on Oct 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Google keeps telling me I filter too much...

Think of Google as a sultry strawberry-blonde named Ginger.

Ginger will tell you things to make you feel special. But Ginger tells all the guys the same thing. Even the gals too.

FarmBoy

10:58 pm on Oct 16, 2007 (gmt 0)

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I don't think Google is right on this one. I have experimented enough to feel pretty comfortable that blocking spammy sites and most site targeted ads will raise my earnings.
1:32 am on Oct 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Think of Google as a sultry strawberry-blonde named Ginger

On the issue of MFA's and the arguments for conservative filtering; I think of Google more as the political party or govt. adminstration of the day. They sell an idea or try to appeal to you with spin. They tell you that something is for your own good when you know otherwise. When questioned at depth and presented with contrary arguements they simply duck or ignore the question.

3:54 am on Oct 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Just today I had a site that was underperforming compared to other Tuesdays so I checked the Adsense ads. Sure enough, it had been site targeted with ads that not only didn't match the content, they were ads that this site's users would dislike. (It was along the lines of having SUV ads on a save the environment site.) As soon as I blocked the ads the earnings for the site started to rise. This has happened many times in the past, and my earning seem to almost always go up every time I block off topic ads, especially the site targeted ones.
5:07 am on Oct 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Has anybody developed a good system for making space in the filter?

Keep track of your filter list in an Excel sheet. Upon entering look up once other relevant information, e.g. registrant or target IP address. Then determine whether these guys are annoying, bad or really bad. ;-) When you run out of space, throw out the annoying ones first. If you still need more space, have a look at the bad ones' Alexa charts. Often, from the chart you can already see whether they are still actively advertising (in this case you see a spike in traffic). Then you may be able to release the sites in question as well.

Never release the really bad sites. They will keep on advertising. Maybe they are just pausing their campaigns and do the domain-switch thing (a common tip at the Adwords forum). I have one spammy company from the Caribbean that runs a variety of domains that are just "cycled through" for ads. ALL their sites end up in my filter, and keep on being there.

10:45 am on Oct 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Has anybody developed a good system for making space in the filter?

Every couple of months I physically visit the blocked sites that I do not know. Many times they have disappeared or are parked.

You can safely delete them and add others.

1:15 pm on Oct 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Every couple of months I physically visit the blocked sites that I do not know. Many times they have disappeared or are parked.

Well, there goes the afternoon:-)

1:50 pm on Oct 17, 2007 (gmt 0)

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G sends this message to everyone regardless of how many websites that you have in the filter.
12:49 am on Oct 18, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Every couple of months I physically visit the blocked sites that I do not know. Many times they have disappeared or are parked.

I find it's fairly rare to visit a blocked site and find that it no longer exists. I guess it depends the length of time one allows between visits.

In any case some of the fleas that become inactive end up being reactivated at some later stage anyway.

5:09 am on Oct 22, 2007 (gmt 0)

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May be G's right but my stats don't lie. After 1 year or so of my unsuccesful adsense experience when I came to know about ads filtering my earnings immediately started to grow (dramatically). Even if you trust G if it says don't filter, it's a common sense to filter those MFA sites, isn't it?
11:33 pm on Oct 24, 2007 (gmt 0)

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Zett's got the right idea. I just keep a running list of dates when I add advertisers and when I run out of space I get rid of the oldest (which are by then maybe 6 months old). If they come back, I re-add them, but most of the time (90%) they don't.

Most of them don't last very long to begin with, maybe a week, but they can do a lot of damage in that time, before their probation time runs out and G realizes they aren't making as much money as the non-spam. Most of them have obvious disposable URLs with long strings of variously plural or rearranged keywords and .org or .net extensions. Some of them lately are even using non-spam look-alike URLs now.

I've come to the opinion that if you are seeing an inordinately large number of these sites, popping up your site is in serious smart-pricing trouble already. Ultimately I think I've found that it is good to keep as few filtered as possible as they ultimately do contribute to the higher bidding for keywords once you surmount that bid ridge. During our all time highest PPC period we had only 2 true competitor sites filtered. I agree filtering them does positive wonders for the average PPC when your PPC/CPM is low, but when I can find no more showing up and I see PPC start to dip again, I'll remove ALL the filtered sites (except the true competitors, I keep a copy of them all handy in a text editor, to put back on a moments notice if necessary) and let things resettle for a couple days. This usually results in an instant PPC surge and very few spammers re-appear.

My own opinion is that the PPC surge puts your site out of the targeters' price range (at least temporarily) since they are generally bottom feeders, and this is long enough for Adsense to get the proper idea that the higher paying ads REALLY are more appropriate for your site afterall.

As far as rationalization when G sends those messages about only TRUE competitors belonging in the filter, I DO view Arbitrage sites as TRUE competitors of the purest form, since they are trying to STEAL MY end-user (e.g. a retailer who actually sells the product and thus makes the most profit and thus is willing to pay the most for the customer) clickthru profit and make it THEIR own profit! So in effect they are directly competing with ME for that same end-user clickthru payment. GAd should realize this point of view and take a good long look at the list of sites consistently appearing in everyones filters.