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Missing Adsense Ads

Software Bug or New Feature?

     
9:14 pm on Apr 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I'm seeing what I think may be an Adsense bug where in my blocks of four ads sometimes only one to three ads will show. These aren't the big, block ads. These are just the small single ads. So on some of my more profitable pages where 4 ads used to show above the fold, now sometimes there is only one to three ads showing instead of four. Often it is only one small ad.:( If I hit refresh then four ads show up again like it used to work.

Is anyone else seeing this? If so, is this a new feature I'm not aware of or a bug?

9:47 pm on Apr 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I see this all the time. It doesn't make sense at all because oftentimes the scroll arrows appear and the next pane displays 4 ads so AdSense does have the inventory to display but they're just not displaying it.
10:12 pm on Apr 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I see this frequently now, and it is the most obvious for competitive, high ad inventory topics. Why display only one small ad in a mostly empty 4-ad unit and then have scroll arrows to lots more ads?
10:34 pm on Apr 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I too have seen this. Quite befuddling, isn't it?

I have seen lower earnings go hand in hand with it.

This is one of those things that I wish they would let the publisher control. If the page is laid out for 4 ads, it looks pretty lame to lony have one ad with a bunch of whitespace and a couple of cryptic arrows...

10:52 pm on Apr 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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YPN does this much more than G and Y has been doing it for a long time. Sometimes a large unit with only 1 or 2 ads which look odd in appearance. Not positive but I believe it's due to insufficent ad inventory related to the page content.
11:26 pm on Apr 30, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Not positive but I believe it's due to insufficent ad inventory related to the page content.

I would be surprised in my case it is due to insufficient ad inventory for a few reasons: 1) if I hit reload, then all of the ads appear as normal; 2) it never happened in all of the years before they introduced ad scrolling; 3) I have a very large backlog of placement ads that rarely appear on the site, presumably because there are sufficient contextual ads to show in their place; and 4) it happens on pages with pretty good earnings per click, so I'd think there would at least be inexpensive MFA ads they could show (or the backlog of placement ads) in place of blank space.

3:49 am on May 1, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I wonder if it could be a cache issue.
4:09 am on May 1, 2008 (gmt 0)

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I wonder if it could be a cache issue.

I was wondering if it was caused by a counter not consistently being reset to zero in the new ad scrolling logic, because I've noticed that it seems to happen mainly when a page is initially loaded. If I hit reload multiple times, all of the ads show up again each time. So that made me wonder if it was a bug rather than a new feature.

5:49 pm on May 4, 2008 (gmt 0)

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Okay, today I saw one of those nonprofit ads in the first space on my site for a topic that always has tons of well paying ads and on a site that has hundreds of placement ads that could have been shown even if there were no contextual ads available (which is highly unlikely). As before, after hitting reload the nonprofit ad went away on all subsequent page loads.

So I'm pretty sure the problem on my site is a bug. I'm surprised more publishers haven't posted in this thread.