Sabtu, 03 Januari 2009

New and improved referrals resources

If you've been looking for ways to improve your referral earnings, we're excited to introduce you to a few new resources. First is our updated referrals optimization tips page, where you can find our top suggestions for selecting referral products and how to best promote them on your site. We've added new, detailed tips as well as example implementations to help you get the most from your referrals.

Next is our very first referrals-themed case study. Learn how Randy Brown, site owner of, has used referrals to double his earnings while endorsing a product that he really supports.

Do you have a referrals success story that you'd like to share? Send us a note and maybe you'll be featured soon.

Introducing the Ad Review Center

In an effort to provide you with more transparency and control over the ads appearing on your pages, we've developed the Ad Review Center. This new feature, which we'll be rolling out to publishers over the next few months, will allow you to review ads placement-targeted to your site and ensure those ads are relevant to your site's users.

When you first opt into the Ad Review Center, you'll be able to see all placement-targeted ads currently targeted to your site, and a couple of days later you'll be able to review placement-targeted ads that have previously run on your site. If you think an ad is not relevant for your users, you can prevent it from appearing again by blocking it in the Ad Review Center. We recommend you carefully consider the revenue impact of blocking an ad, since blocked ads won't compete in the auction on your site, and advertisers whose ads you block may choose not to target your site again in the future.

In addition to letting publishers weigh in on the relevance of placement-targeted ads, the Ad Review Center will also help advertisers improve their placement-targeted ad campaigns. When you block an ad, you'll be prompted to select a reason. We'll share this constructive feedback with advertisers so they can use it to improve the quality and relevance of future ad campaigns.

As we've done with past features, we're gradually launching the Ad Review Center to all publishers over the next few months. When it has been enabled for your account, you'll see a green notification box at the top of your 'Competitive Ad Filter' page, located under the 'AdSense Setup' tab. By default, the Ad Review Center will let you review all placement-targeted ads after they have run on your site. However, if you have a strong need to manually review ads before they appear on your site, you may do so by clicking on the 'update settings' link in the Ad Review Center. You'll then have 24 hours to review ads before they are automatically allowed to run on your site. Please note that you can also return to the Ad Review Center and allow a previously blocked ad, or block a previously allowed ad.

We strongly recommend you keep your review preference set to 'auto-allow' and review ads after they have run. Ads don't participate in the auction while they are awaiting review, and ads that you have blocked cannot compete in the auction either. The actual revenue impact will vary in each publisher's situation, but when using the Ad Review Center, please consider the revenue effects of blocking ads or switching from the auto-allow setting.

To learn more about the Ad Review Center, please visit the Help Center. We hope you find this new feature useful and look forward to hearing your feedback.

UPDATED with screenshot

Jumat, 02 Januari 2009

Say hello to placement targeting

We wanted to let you know about two recent changes to our site targeting feature. As you may know, site targeting allows advertisers to select specific publisher sites on which to run their ads. Advertisers can target your site if they've determined a match between their offerings and the interests of visitors to your site.

The first change is that we’ve renamed 'site targeting' to 'placement targeting' to better reflect the variety of targeting options we offer. Advertisers can still target their ads to an entire site, but they can now also target your individual ad units or groups of pages based on how you’ve set up ad placements using custom channels. Over the next few weeks, we'll be updating references to 'site targeting' in your account and in our Help Center.

The second change is that advertisers can bid on placement-targeted ads (formerly known as site-targeted ads) on a cost-per-click (CPC) basis. Previously, advertisers could only bid on these targeted ads on a cost-per-impression (CPM) basis. Just as with contextually targeted CPC ads, you’ll generate earnings for valid clicks on placement-targeted CPC ads.

While you can also add the URLs of specific CPC placement-targeted ads to your filter list, please keep in mind that all placement-targeted ads will participate in the ad auction with contextually targeted ads. Allowing more ads into the auction will help increase competition and ultimately your revenue.

Finally, we'd like to leave you with a few reminders to help you maximize your revenue potential with placement targeting:
  • Turn your custom channels into ad placements. These ad placements will allow you to highlight specific sections of your site that may appeal to advertisers.
  • Enable text and image ads for your ad units. By opting in to different ad types on your site, you'll increase the competition in the ad auction, which can lead to additional revenue for your account over time.
  • Use the 300x250 Medium Rectangle. This ad format is one of our best-performing ad units, and many advertisers use it when creating rich media (image and video) campaigns. Again, you'll benefit from the increased competition for your ad space.

Answers to your video units questions

Since launching video units to U.S. publishers with English-language websites, we've received quite a few emails about this new product. Here are the top 4 questions we'd like to address:

1. I selected "Automated Content" but the videos aren't relevant to my site. What can I do?

Thanks to your feedback, we've implemented a feature to improve content relevance. Before, if you typed in [cars planes taxis], for example, only videos which matched all of these keywords would be returned. If there were no videos which matched all of these keywords, we delivered a default set of videos from the most popular YouTube partner content. We've modified this so that now [cars planes taxis] will deliver videos which have to do with cars or planes or taxis. This will greatly reduce the likelihood of default popular content being delivered to your units. In general, to refine video targeting with the "Automated Content" setting, you should try different keyword combinations to see what works best.

2. Can I select the individual videos that appear in my video unit?

It isn't currently possible to select individual videos for your video units. If you're choosing "Automated Content" for your video unit, you can further refine video targeting by testing different combinations of keywords.

3. I followed your instructions to link my AdSense and YouTube accounts, but my account still shows as "pending". I haven't gotten a confirmation email yet.

You might have to manually link your AdSense Account to your YouTube account. To do so please follow the steps below.
  1. Log in to your AdSense account.
  2. Click the "Account Access" link located under the "My Account" tab.
  3. Under "sites", find "" and click the "grant access" link.
Your AdSense account should now successfully be linked to your YouTube account.

4. Do you offer any other sizes for the video units?

Right now, we only offer the three sizes listed in your account when you generate the ad code -- note that the 'mini' size is larger than what appears on your code generation page. We'll be sure to announce any new sizes and styles as they become available.

Please keep in mind that video units are different from click-to-play video ads; while video units contain YouTube partner videos complemented by standard AdSense ads, click-to-play video ads are ads created by AdWords advertisers in video format. At this time, no in-stream video ads will show in your video units.

To make changes to your video units or try them out for the first time, visit your AdSense Setup page. Thanks again for your feedback, and stay tuned for more updates on video units.

New Manage Ads improvements, compliments of you

We've been listening to your comments on our new ad management feature, and so we're excited to tell you about a few updates that stem directly from your requests:
  • You can now view the ID number associated with a specific custom channel by visiting the 'Channels' link under the 'AdSense Setup' tab. Many of you told us that you needed these channel ID numbers for ad management programs you're using. We've added this information to your account since it no longer appears in your ad code.

  • Any ad units generated within the last 7 days that haven't yet received any impressions will now be listed as 'New', rather than 'Active', in your status column. This should help avoid confusion about your newest ad units and those already appearing on your pages.

  • You can now view the most recent date when each of your ad units was updated. Please note that these dates aren't retroactive, so any ad units you generated or edited before this display change will show a last-edited date of November 1st, 2007.

  • We're starting to slowly roll out the manage ads feature for your referral units. Just as with AdSense for content units, you'll soon be prompted to enter names for your newly generated referral units. If you'd like to make changes to your referral units at a later time, you can visit the 'Manage Ads' page. In the 'Content' column of this page, your referral units will display 'Referrals:' followed by the products or category of products being referred.

It doesn't end here, though -- we've got a few more enhancements planned for the Manage Ads feature in the next few weeks, so keep checking back for more updates. In the meantime, please continue sending your suggestions our way.

Accidental clicks fade into the background

Earlier this year we stepped back to examine the value users, advertisers, and publishers derive from clicks on content ads. As you integrate ads with your site's content and navigation, we want to ensure a positive user experience. We identified a few areas for improvement and began implementing changes, starting with our new ad formats in April.

Continuing these improvements, we've just changed our text ads slightly to help reduce accidental clicks. In the past, users could click on both the background and full text of an ad, but now they can click only on the title and URL of a text ad. By allowing users to click only on the ad title and URL, we aim to decrease accidental clicks, better aligning visitor behavior with their intent. Overall, the decrease in accidental clicks will keep users on your website, interacting with your content, until they intend to click on an ad.

In addition, this new clickable format better aligns with the text ad formats shown on We hope this format change contributes to a better, more consistent user experience.

Finally, this change won't just improve user experience on your site; it benefits advertisers as well. We currently monitor clicks on Google ads for accidental clicks, and the format change complements our monitoring system by further ensuring advertisers only pay for meaningful clicks. By reducing accidental clicks, we hope to increase advertiser campaign value and satisfaction, encouraging additional spend and facilitating higher monetization for all publishers.

UPDATED to fix typo

Kamis, 01 Januari 2009

Referrals reluctant to appear?

We've heard that many publishers are having trouble viewing referral 2.0 ads on their pages, and we'd like to explain some of the most common reasons why this might be.

First, keep in mind that not all referral ads are available in all sizes. For instance, most horizontal referral ad units smaller than 180x60, square referral ad units smaller than 125x125, and text links are only available at this time for Google products such as AdSense or AdWords. This means that if you generate code for referral ads in an unsupported size, you won't see any referrals shown on your webpages. To avoid this issue, we recommend first selecting categories or products for your referrals before selecting a size at this time.

Similarly, you may not see the referral ads you've selected on your pages if you've grouped a number of referral ads into your Ad Shopping Cart which are each available in different sizes. If this is the case, you may wish to try regenerating your referral code with a particular ad format in mind -- this way, you can be sure to select products available in that format.

Here are several other reasons your chosen referral ads may not show:
  1. The particular referral ad you've chosen is not available in your country. When generating your code, you can view the ads available for specific countries by clicking the 'change' link above the referrals wizard.

  2. You've unselected the 'Pick best performing ads' checkbox for a referral where the advertiser has run out of budget or ended the campaign. To take advantage of the available inventory of related products, we recommend leaving this box checked.

  3. You've added more than three referral units to your page. Our current policy allows a maximum of three referral ad units on any policy-compliant page.

  4. Our system has determined that your pages contain potentially mature or sensitive content. However, as your content changes, you may begin to see referral ads appearing.

  5. The referral ad code may have been modified. Be sure to copy the code exactly as it appears in your account and paste it directly onto your pages.
Please know that we're working as quickly as we can to fine-tune the process of generating referral code. Also, we appreciate all of your feedback on referrals 2.0 so far, and we encourage you to let us know how we can keep improving AdSense.