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What is Adsense?

April 14th, 2009

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After speaking with some of my readers I realised I had jumped the gun on what Adsense actually was.  I often found myself explaining it to family and friends as they simply don’t know.  So if you are a hardened internet guru then feel free to skip this post, but if you want to know more then read on!

How do I get Adsense onto my site?
Adsense, put simply, is a contextual advertising service from Google.  It is Google’s cash cow that generates most of it’s $21,800,000,000 a year [thats $691.27 a second]!  Here is how it works:

  1. You register with Google adsense
  2. You goto Adsense Setup, and create an advert block – this is where adverts will be placed
  3. You copy the Javascript code provided and place onto your site where you want the ads to appear
  4. Google will then attempt to show text or image ads based on the topic of the page
  5. You will earn money everytime someone clicks an advert, although you can earn small amounts if someone just loads your page

How do I make money using Adsense?
Once Adsense is on your site you now need visitors so that you can make some money.  Essentially what happens is a visitor goes to your site, and if they find the ad displayed interesting and click it you will make some money.  The money you make is dependent on a lot of things, but essentially it comes down to how much competition there is for advertisers.  The more competition an advert has the more it will cost the advertiser to be there, and the more money you will make.  Top paying niches tend to be medical / law related, but there are a lot of varying niches with good payouts.  The trick is finding ones that not many people know about :)

Checking your Adsense performance / reporting
When you log into your Adsense account you can view reports and see the performance of your ads.  You can see page impressions / views.  Click through rate (CTR) which is the percentage of clicks to view ratio. eCPM which is the estimated cost per thousand impressions, this is essentially what you earn, on average, per 1,000 impressions.  And of course you get the total figure you earnt.

The reports can be broken down into channels.  You can assign any number of adverts to be part of a channel, for example if you have a block of ads at the top of your site you could label these “site_top” and you could see a breakdown of how well these perform separately to the rest of your site.  This is very useful when trying to optimise your site.

How do I increase my earnings on my site?
I will go into adsense optimisation in greater detail at a later date as there is far too much to cover here, but essentially there are a few things you need to look at to improve your earnings on an established site.

  1. Improve click through rate (CTR) – the more clicks you get, the more you will get paid
  2. Improve eCPM – this will go up if your CTR increases
  3. Use adsense link units
  4. Test, test and test some more!

The list there is very breif and a lot of factors can affect this, for example having one ad block on your site may increase your revenue.  But this is a topic for another post.

I hope this helps some people, and if I have missed something out or if anyone has questions please feel free to leave a comment and I will try help out as best I can.

Related posts:

  1. Adsblacklist and adsense competitive ad filter, does it work?
  2. Increase your profits with Adsense link units
  3. Tutorial: Using AdsBlacklist to increase your Adsense eCPM
  4. Adsense blacklist does work!
  5. Adsense Challenge – Join me!

Chris Adsense

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