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So I'm not the only one who's noticed that AdSense is getting quirky with the ads displayed.
It felt to me that Google was experimenting with the topic detector algorithm in the past weeks or so on a few of my sites, with unfortunately really bad results, but it seems to be back to its old self now. It was a frustrating experience.
I tried temporarily putting a 468x60 there, and THOSE ads are perfectly targeted (but I don't like having more than one ad block, so I'm not going to keep it there) So then I put the ad links back, and it's still the search.
Used to work just fine, and I haven't made any changes to those pages at all.
So my conclusion is that it's possible there's something hinky going on with ad links.
The earnings are probably affected by holidays, I think there should be a bigger advertisers activity during holidays. It should result in a better payment per click because of more competition.
Edited: I meant "advertisers* activity" ^.
[edited by: adrianTNT at 5:40 pm (utc) on Oct. 10, 2008]
While checking Google ads today, I found 4th of July ads in the Christmas section!
I think the way they've been dialing earnings back has been ham-handed and looks too much like what it really is, giving publishers reason to suspect and complain.
The funny thing is, I see them on my PC but, NOT on my laptop!?! What on Earth?
Sometimes, I actually see my normal targeted ad and then right before my eyes, it changes to some wacky ad with no "Ads by Google".
Is this adsense working with some other ad company? Could it be some kind or virus on my PC? This is nuts.
I've had three series of e-mails between me and AS support over this. The first cleared up the problem after two days, and worked for about a month. The second took a week, then worked for about two/three weeks. The third series resulted in AS support asking me to implement AS weighting/ignore tags around key sections of my content. Tried that, but the problem continues, and is spreading to other pages. I'll e-mail support with a slew of affected URLs tomorrow morning.
FWIW, at first, I kinda saw how the AS got the first aid stuff, as there were some threads on my discussion board and pages on my site about staying safe on one's trip. But I eliminated AS ads on those pages, so the spider shouldn't be seeing those.
Also, in the latest series of e-mails, AS support confirmed that the spider does categorize my site for its particular type of niche travel. (Yes, AS does categorize websites by topic, I learned.) So where's it is still getting First Aid ads on some of these pages, which don't reference anything closely related to that topic, I do not know.
[edited by: Malibucreek at 12:32 am (utc) on Oct. 14, 2008]
CTR is still going down for me, something is happening.
Maybe Google decided to show more "Placement" targeted ads than "Contextual" ads, and users seing same ad about same old "Product Z" they will start to ignore it, resulting in lower click thrugh rate.
[edited by: adrianTNT at 1:05 am (utc) on Oct. 14, 2008]
The home page is displaying ads about ecommerce sites, but every other page displays the exact ads it should. I have basically the same title, description, keywords, etc. on all pages of the site.
Why do you all think that just the home page is affected with the completely wrong ad content, while all other pages are dead on?
Now I wish I had diversified a lot sooner and not depended so heavily on Google.
We did a big push for diversifying our income streams a few years back. It helps stabilize our bottom line when things start to go haywire elsewhere.
Here is the revenue breakdown we use:
CPM Banners: 15%
Text-link (CPM): 20%
Affiliate Programs: 15%
The CPM programs really help when the economy of clickers starts to slow down, or the relevance of our ads changes all of a sudden. Those programs still earn consistent with traffic... like clockwork.
Affiliate programs are hit or miss depending on the product/niche and what is going on in the market, but they can help balance out your income as well.
Hope this helps.