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December 2017 AdSense Earnings & Observations

     
6:23 am on Dec 1, 2017 (gmt 0)

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System: The following 6 messages were cut out of thread at: https://www.webmasterworld.com/google_adsense/4874961.htm [webmasterworld.com] by martinibuster - 11:50 am on Dec 1, 2017 (utc -5)


November - page views were down by about 5%; earnings were up by over 10%; page RPM up by 15%
4:54 am on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Something's wrong here. AdSense pageviews 20% higher than Analytics and CTR is extremely low, a drop of 60%. While earning is down by 30%

What's wrong? :(
6:12 am on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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That's an interesting observation... for my main site, Analytics shows 7.11% more pageviews than Adsense shows (total difference, about 28,000 pageviews) for the last 7 days.

Which may not seem huge until you consider that (assuming the same Page RPM) is a discrepancy of about $80.

It wasn't that bad of a day so I can't complain, but now you have me wondering about the difference in pageviews.
7:56 am on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Maybe their ad slider is in for another maintenance ;) j/k
9:38 am on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Confirming that I too DO have blank spaces instead of ads on my websites. Earnings are extremely low too (RPM is just horrible!). It looks like Adsense doesn't have inventory to fill all the ads and because of that we we are facing low CPC (no competition) and a lot of irrelevant ads (low CTR).
10:53 am on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Same here, Cyril.
1:28 pm on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Classic signs of inadequate inventory:
1. Coverage is below 90% and dropping.
2. CPC is low and CTR is appalling.
3. Ad Review contains a ton of Google product ads.
4. Google is spamming Adwords by sending one-for-one vouchers.
2:08 pm on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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@trebuchet this isn't "inadequate inventory", there is a bug in the system. I am running with an aggressive ad-balancer setting of 50%, and my ads are being filled at 38%. Ad-balancer works by taking, in my case, the top 50% of the highest paying ads and showing them, that is a relative measure. Before the inventory falls, prices fall so one should see an increase in low quality ads appearing, and that hasn't been the case. Furthermore, with a setting of 50% there is still a lot of inventory available that is being blocked, so if inventory falls, that inventory should be displayed and blank space are then part of the "blocked" portion of the inventory. So I at 50% should be the last person to notice the issue, and you with no ad-balancer you should be the first to notice the issue. My coverage is at 38%, if this were caused by low inventory your coverage should also be 38%. This is a bug!

My ad-review is also showing many blank ads from big reputable brands. So I am not sure how this is squaring with the coverage figures. Are the blanks ads counted in the impressions or not and or counted as not covered. Is this part of the coverage issue or another problem in addition to the coverage issue? It certainly doesn't help CTR if there is no ad to display.
2:17 pm on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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On other hand, this Adsense drop could be due to algorithm updates that are happening right now (according to moz - 14 and 18 December). On my websites revenue always suddenly and drastically dropping during updates, this is happening on a regular basis (update -> drop). It looks like they have some kind of a button to stop earnings/disable relevant ads showing when they are making changes! :)
4:10 pm on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Yep! Sad days indeed, any ideas when this will come to an end?
4:11 pm on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I would like to add the following, first it seems that the coverage issue is resolving itself this morning. When I first checked my stats this morning I was at 38% coverage now less than 2 hours later I am above 40%. 2% may not seem big, but it is based on a change of the daily average and not a real time value.

Back to Trebuchet's point
The other sign that this is not an inventory issue alone is that the ad-balancer would be showing estimated earnings of 100% if there were a glut in inventory. But I am set to 50% with 97% and still seeing blank ads. That said, I am down from 96% earlier this month and 95% at the peak of last month. So, there is evidence of some weakness in demand but it is not enough to explain the blank ads / low coverage. And it seems from the reaction of people in this thread that this coverage issue is not affecting everyone.
7:17 pm on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Nothing has changed on my end today. Crappy coverage and RPM :(
9:28 pm on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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RPMs are still pretty good, but traditionally it's all downhill from around the 20th of December, except for maybe a few days before and after New Year's eve. Still, at ~66% of the December month the earnings are at 82% of what they were for the full month last year, so I'm happy.

Expecting payment to be sent tomorrow, just in time for Christmas :-)
10:02 pm on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Great RPM today, seemed to be a big delay in stats though.
10:11 pm on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Until today figures were comparable to last month, even a little better, but today is a crash on all numbers.
10:18 pm on Dec 20, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Coverage started dropping sharply for me on December 18th and is still going on. My coverage shows a drop from 97% to 80%. There is definitely something going on. I have many areas with blank ads that wont load.
1:51 am on Dec 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I just received an email from Doubleclick warning about "vendor files".
We have identified certain vendor files that may contain XSS vulnerabilities

Here is the link [support.google.com...] This doesn't apply to me as I am not using DFP but might be related to the coverage issues. According to the link they have disabled the accounts of some 20 or so vendors. I'm not sure if this disabled only for affected accounts or disabled the vendor from participating in all auctions.

We have disabled these vendors where possible for all DoubleClick for Publishers and DoubleClick Ad Exchange customers.
6:24 am on Dec 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I get a 404 when clicking on the link you provide.
6:50 am on Dec 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I got the email, too. Here's the entirety:

Dear Customer,

We’ve identified certain vendor files that may contain XSS vulnerabilities which could pose a security risk. Please check if you are hosting these files and remove them with the help of your webmaster. These are the currently identified third-party vendor files:

1. adform/IFrameManager.html

2. admotion/afa-iframe.htm

3. bonzai/bonzaiBuster.html

4. exponential/buster.html

5. eyeblaster/addineyeV2.html

6. eyewonder/interim.html

7. flashtalking/ftlocal.html

8. ipinyou/py_buster.html

9. jivox/jivoxibuster.html

10. mediaplex/mojofb_v9.html

11. mixpo/framebust.html

12. predicta/predicta_bf.html

13. rockabox/rockabox_buster.html

14. liquidus/iframeX.htm

15. controbox/iframebuster.html

16. spongecell/spongecell-spongecellbuster.html

17. unicast/unicastIFD.html

18. adrime/adrime_burst.2.0.0.htm

19. revjet/revjet_buster.html

20. kpsule/iframebuster.html

We have disabled these vendors where possible for all DoubleClick for Publishers and DoubleClick Ad Exchange customers. However, any of the mentioned files hosted on your site may still pose a risk and should be taken down. We will notify you as we learn more.

For more information please refer to this Help Center article.

Regards,

The DoubleClick for Publishers and DoubleClick Ad Exchange Teams


I have a lot of stub files on my end, so even though I'm not using DFP (yet) I had to delete a few to be safe.

On the note of Dec revenue, though, yesterday (12/20/17) was my best day of the year! Surprising because the month so far has been parallel to last year, and 12/20/16 was almost half of what I made today.
8:08 am on Dec 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I also received the same email of DoubleClick
4:02 pm on Dec 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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For the first time in over 10 years, we have removed adsense ads from our site. The low revenue just doesn't make it worth it. We will start up some tests next week, but the volatility just isn't worth it. Between Google changing SERP, and then Ads, then hackers, then https impacts, security impacts, and then putting ads in search and on and on and on. It's like they are ADHD. It's almost impossible to do business with them right now. Even major companies are complaining, but what company willy nilly changes so many factors in so little time. Testing will start after Christmas, getting 1000s of views on ads that are no longer producing revenue, when at one time they earned high income, is not worth it.
4:09 pm on Dec 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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CPC has crashed. Strange, you'd think advertisers would would be flooding the system. Maybe the xmas rush is over.
4:25 pm on Dec 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Never seen this drop in my 3 years with adsense, at least not for 4 days in a row... CPC, RPM, CTR all down. Page views are not correctly accounted for about 2 hours.
5:52 pm on Dec 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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I don't know what's happened today but we are only at 9 clicks with pathetic CPC and extremely low earnings. Let's hope this is just a slight glitch in the system
6:49 pm on Dec 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Payment still hasn’t initiated today, anyone else?
7:26 pm on Dec 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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It was late, but I received the e-mail about half an hour ago.

MIB probably tomorrow afternoon.
7:48 pm on Dec 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Everything seems to be stabilizing on both of my websites. Today is usual CPC and RPM, not bad overall.
8:00 pm on Dec 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Another day and more money flying away .... No changes here ... hundreds of sites in my account.... All of them are taking a huge hit on CPC and CTR
8:17 pm on Dec 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Forgot to mention, coverage is around 80%
8:33 pm on Dec 21, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Things are beginning to stabilize here as well. Earnings for today are looking better, and coverage is at the low end of the normal range. Today ad-balance is showing 98%/50%.
8:59 am on Dec 22, 2017 (gmt 0)

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Similar to others, coverage way down, sub 85% been at 95+% for years previously.

Has to be a bug. Or maybe it's a mishandling (at their end) of that ads.txt thing. Big pita either way.
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