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Adsense targeting has become poor


Automotive site

4:10 pm on Dec 13, 2012 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Since the start of November the ads on my biggest site has been rather poor in terms of targeting. I am ads seeing that are not always highly targeted, sometimes even getting celebrity ads on what is a health site. I am also seeing lots of Adword ads, although that could have been because I had been on Adwords a few time sin the last month so they are probably aimed at me personally. But even the 'well targeted' ones are not always on the money with around 70%-80% relevance. October was awesome where the ads were perfect match and I could even see that in the CTR which was almost double the regular.

Automotive site

4:14 pm on Dec 13, 2012 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

I am tempted to replace adsense on this site with an affiliate program. However, because its a multi category site (general health), it would be very time consuming unless there was an affiliate program which showed targeted ads based on content of a page.


4:20 pm on Dec 13, 2012 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member

i've often wondered this... even if google put a load of highly-targeted ads on our sites, we would never actually click them (because its against the rules), so google would probably end up switching them out and show us something else. that is what we end up seeing.
your users are in a different boat though, because they might click them, so they might be seeing better ads.

that is the optimist in me talking. the realist says that they are probably seeing rubbish ads too.


4:43 pm on Dec 13, 2012 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member

Try viewing your site pages through a proxy to escape personalization.


9:28 am on Dec 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I am experiencing the same problem also since the beginning of November. The Christmas e-commerce ads just don't work on my sites and ctr has collapsed.

I have tried blocking categories of Ads, but this doesn't seem to work. Also, categories cannot be blocked if they are more then two levels deep (looks like a bug in Adsense).

I was surprised to see interest-based ads being displayed to me on a brand new computer - based entirely on being connected to a public wifi hotspot that I had connected to using another pc.


1:34 pm on Dec 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member netmeg is a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 10+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

Contextual advertising is moving more and more towards being contextual to the user, and not to the site. It's not just Google either - go read Advertising Age or other publications specific to the ad industry, or take a look at other big display ad networks. If (when?) Facebook issues their ad network, it will be even worse. On average, it works better for advertisers.

I think this may be one of the reasons why my CTR has fallen so much, but my EPCs have more than tripled. When it works, it works *really well* - it just doesn't work as often.


6:47 pm on Dec 14, 2012 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

My CTR has been extremely low for the past week. It has never been this low before.


4:17 am on Dec 15, 2012 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member

It must be dependent on the niche because I'm seeing lots of well targeted ads in my niche, no problems.


12:41 pm on Dec 15, 2012 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month

@netmeg I second that. However, both my ctr and EPCs are up.

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