Stef was impressed by what she
"They've definitely created a cool system," I agreed. "What's really interesting about AdSense, though, is how quickly it's evolved. The AdSense program was actually
Different Ad Types
AdSense offers two types of ads: conventional text and image ads, which jump directly to an advertiser when clicked, and
Multiple Ad Formats and Sizes
AdSense supports three regular ad formats, with several ad sizes in each format. A particular combination of an ad format and an ad
The first format is the banner format, the classic rectangular advertisement format where the width is substantially larger than the height. Each text ad in a banner is the same height as the banner itself ( Figure 2.4 ). A wide banner is sometimes called a leaderboard .
Figure 2.4. sample AdSense banner ad.
The second format is a
). A tower is basically the
Figure 2.5. A sample tower ad.
The final format is the
, a rectangle whose dimensions are
Figure 2.6. sample inline rectangle ad.
A good selection of sizes is available within each format. The smallest sizes display one or two text ads, while the largest display four or five. Note that image ads are supported by only a few of the sizes, so your choices are more limited if you want to display image ads within an ad unit.
Flexible Ad Unit Placement
You can place AdSense ads
Up to three ad units can be placed on a single page. Many sites display just one ad unit per pageyou don't want to overwhelm visitors with advertisements. Each ad unit can be a different size and format, though, so it's not uncommon to see pages with a tower on the side and an inline rectangle right in the middle of the page text.
Add Ad Units
Start with just one ad unit and see if that fills up. If it does, then add more units.
A downside to using multiple ad units on a page is that there may not be enough ads available to fill them all and you may end up with
Customizable Color Palettes
The default AdSense color scheme is the same scheme used for sponsored links on Google's own search pages: blue title, black text, green URL, white background. Not every site looks like Google's site, though, so AdSense lets you change the colors to suit your own site's color scheme. Even different ad units on the same page can have different color schemes.
An individual color scheme is referred to as a
. AdSense includes a number of predefined palettes that can be used by many sites. These palettes have
For variety, each ad unit can rotate through as many as four different color palettes, though a single palette per unit is the norm.
Despite its best efforts, AdSense can't always fill an ad unit with relevant advertisements. This can occur for a variety of reasons:
As long as one or more ads are available, AdSense displays them and fills the rest of the ad unit with the background color. The problem occurs when there are
ads to display. Rather than show an empty box, AdSense displays one or more public-service advertisements
for shortin the ad unit. PSAs are free advertising that Google offers to charitable and other
Black Hole Ads
If you're truly adventurous, you can even make empty ad units collapse to nothingsee www.memwg.com/collapsing-ads for the details.
Instead of displaying PSAs, you can ask Google to display alternative content in the ad space by providing Google with the URL of some other Web content. The URL might point to an image you've placed elsewhere on your site, to a page fragment you've created, or even to a different advertising service. It doesn't matter what it is, as long as it fills the space allocated for the ad unit. (The space will not be boxed or labeled by Google, of course.)
If you don't have any alternative content to display, you can simply display a colored box that matches the color of the
When AdSense was first introduced, there was no way to track which pages on a Web site were generating the most revenue. After receiving many complaints about this, Google allowed publishers to
URL-Based Ad Filtering
Sometimes you don't want to see certain ads appearing on your site, especially if those ads are promoting products or services that directly
URL filtering blocks ads based on the Web addresses they link to. You provide AdSense with a list of Web addressesup to 200 of themand AdSense ensures that no ads that link to those addresses appear on your pages. It's not a perfect solution by any means, but it works well enough for most sites.
From the publisher's standpoint, one of the great features of AdSense is the detailed reporting available through the AdSense management console. You can track revenue by date and channel and even know when Google has mailed you a payment check. And the great thing is that the really important information how much money have I made today? is updated continually throughout the day as visitors click the ads on your site.
Another great thing about AdSense is that Google pays publishers on a monthly basis. About 20 to 30 days after the end of a month, Google
AdSense for Content
The introductory AdSense for Content page is at www.google.com/adsense/afc-online-overview.