Google Adwords and Adsense Explained
It can be confusing for beginners to grasp the difference between Google Adwords and Google Adsense. They are in fact two separate programs, although they work in tandem with each other to deliver results for all parties involved.
Google Adwords is the program that allows advertisers to advertise their website by the use of ads. Those advertisements most often show up on Google‟s search results page (usually on the right hand column). They can also be displayed on Google‟s partner sites (like other search engines) or on publisher/webmaster‟s websites. As an advertiser, you only pay Google for your ads that show up on their site and on their partner‟s sites. You do not pay for your ad to show up on other publishers‟ sites. In this instance, you would pay per click (PPC).
Google Adsense refers to the program wherein publishers sign up to run advertisers‟ ads on their website. The publishers are then paid by Google for each user they provide to those ads.
So, in summary, the advertiser PAYS Google to run their ad with Google Adwords. Google PAYS the publisher for results generated from Adsense ads.
The connection between the two programs is this: The ads that advertisers pay to run on Google Adwords are the SAME ads that publishers run on their websites. This is where the confusion comes in for most people. So, Google Adsense would not function without Google Adwords.
The publishers/webmasters are often referred to as Google‟s “content network”. When a publisher/webmaster signs up to run Google Adsense, they are matched up to your ad based on the content of their website.
Be aware that there are many places on the Web (like forums and blogs) that confuse readers by referring to Adwords and Adsense interchangeably. Remember that they are two separate programs, although they do work together to generate income for Google, the advertiser, and the publisher/webmaster.
If you are still finding it difficult to understand the difference, you can find more information on the two programs by going to Google‟s Adwords or Adsense website and reading their explanation. (However, many people find their explanation confusing, hence the making of this article.)
Enjoy making money with your Adwords and Adsense advertising programs!
What is Google Adwords?
Google Adwords is one of the most popular and arguably one of the most effective internet marketing methods today. You have probably seen Google Adwords in action and been unaware that you were looking at Adwords advertisements.
Google Adwords advertisements are text based ads that appear on the right side of Google‟s search results pages. When a user types in a search query into Google‟s search engine, that keyword or keyword phrase is instantly scanned for across the World Wide Web. Your search results, obviously, are matched up with your search.
What you may not also realize is that the advertisements on the right side of that results page are also tailored specifically for you. Based upon your search, Google sends its “spiders” out to find any advertisers who sell a product or service that matches well with your needs.
These advertisers have signed up for the Adwords service. They pay Google each time someone clicks on their ad from Google. The price that advertiser pays depends on the current value of that keyword. If you searched for a popular keyword that is high in demand, then that advertiser will pay top dollar when you click on their ad. The price is based on a bidding setting between advertisers. So, advertisers bid a price they are willing to pay to get you to visit their website.
Advertisers who use Adwords may also get their ads displayed on a few other search engines who are partners with Google.
Another common system to use is Google‟s content network, which is also known as Google Adsense. Adsense ads are the same Adwords ads, but they appear on many different websites. Website owners (a.k.a. publishers or webmasters) can sign up for free to have ads matched up with the content on their website (based on keyword matches). Each time someone clicks on an ad from a content site, the website owner is paid a portion of the bid price and Google pockets the rest.
More and more advertisers are choosing to advertise with Google Adwords. This method of advertising is most often referred to as PPC or Pay Per Click advertising. There are other related pay models that include CPM (cost per 1000 impressions), pay per sale, and pay per lead.
Getting Started with Google AdWords
More and more advertisers are turning to Google Adwords as a large player in their internet marketing strategies, and for good reason. It is fairly simple to use, Google provides clear tracking and tools to determine your success, and ads are targeted to specific users. Here is a starting guide to getting your feet wet with Google Adwords:
First you will need to set a daily and weekly budget for your Adwords campaign. This is very important so that you stay within your means. It is easy to go overboard and get excited about bidding on top keywords for your market.
You want to be on top of your competition, but you must also carefully consider what position will do for your bottom line. Calculate the difference between being in the number one, number two and number three positions will do for your business. For example, you might make the same amount of profit in the first and second position, but the being in the third position becomes detrimental to your sales.
After you‟ve decided on a budget, create several ad groups each with a keyword. Keep your Adwords campaigns separate and organized. This way, you will be able to determine what is working best and what is performing poorly so you can make the most of your budget. Be sure to stop and remove all creatives or keywords that are not performing after giving them a fair chance.
Be sure to set your ad serving to rotate so that you can test different creatives to determine which works best for you. Remember to always test your creatives for optimum performance. Using numbers in your ads has been known to attract attention. Also, using dynamic titles and geotargeting will help give the user the feeling of your ad being tailored just for them.
Send traffic directly to specific webpages instead of a generic page such as your homepage. Users want to find what they’re looking for right off the bat. If it‟s not on the first page they land on (so called the landing page), then they will leave your site.
Understand that your click through rate depends on many different factors. The best way to arrive at success is to try, track and test your Adwords creatives to see what works for you.
Understanding Different Types of Targeting for Adwords
Targeting is an extremely powerful matching system. It is what allows Google Adwords to make such an easy and turn key system for displaying your ads in front of targeted audiences. When you ad matches with a keyword search or relevant content on a website, you ad has the chance to be displayed. This gives you the greatest chance for influencing the user and getting them to click onto your website (qualified traffic).
Search targeting refers to advertisements which have been optimized for certain keywords and are shown on Google‟s search results page. These ads are highly relevant to the user‟s search query and are therefore matched and appear on the right side of the search results page. If your ad‟s keywords match those of the search query then your ad could appear. This results in a highly tailored product to person match that helps users find quality services while advertisers find a niche market online.
You can modify how your ad is matched by using features like broad matching (matching with different combinations of your keywords), geotargeting (regional specific) and negative keywords (those you do not wish to be matched with).
When ads are paired up with keywords on websites within the content network, contextual targeting is used. Google has an advanced system that looks at the content and overall theme of each website. Things like text, language, link structure, and page structure all factor in when creating a relevant match between an ad and keywords on a website.
You have the ability to make changes to your ad for contextual targeting purposes. Just use the site exclusion function to list competitors or low conversion rate sites or any other sites you do not wish your ad to display on. Also try combining keyword targeting and placement targeting in the same ad group to define specific websites on which you want to display your ads.
4 Things You Should Know Before Using Google Adwords
You will learn many things as you begin using Google Adwords to grow your business. However, knowing these things before you begin can help save you time and money. Here are a few important things you should know before you begin:
- Beef up your Landing Page
Your landing page is the first thing a visitor sees when they arrive at your site. It won‟t necessarily be your home page, in fact it‟s better that you don‟t. You want to send your visitors to a page that is uniquely targeted to their needs. This can be a different page depending on what link or ad they clicked on to get there. According to the source from which they came, you can determine a few things about that person and what they are interested in. Therefore you should take them to the page with the most information tailored to their needs.
- Use Global negatives
There is a feature on Google Adwords that allows you to filter out certain words that people type into their search. For instance, if someone searches for the word “free” you probably don‟t want to pay for them to visit your website. This person most likely is not interested in buying something, so you will pay for a bad lead. This feature can help increase the quality of your leads and is especially useful if you are using broad matching.
- Use Keyword Specific URLs
The design and techniques you use for your creatives is an extensive topic in itself and you will need to test what works for your business. However, one good point to keep in mind before you begin your Adwords campaign is to optimize your creatives. One example of this is to use keyword specific URLs. In other words, when your visitors click on one of your ads, label the
URL name according to that specific keyword. For example, if the person searches for “peep toe pumps”, then name your URL www.example.com/pumps/peep_toe_pumps. Your visitor is more likely to follow a link that includes their keywords, as opposed to one with a bunch of numbers and symbols.
4. Track your Progress conversion and ROI (Return On Investment)
Tracking is perhaps the most important aspect of any marketing you do and Google Adwords is no different. In fact, Google helps you by tracking a lot of the numbers for you. Be sure to read their help section so you understand what all the numbers mean. You can be completely clueless about Adwords and you will eventually become successful as long as you are tracking what works and you adjust your campaigns through trial and error. (Of course, it is better to do a little research first so that you can learn from others‟ mistakes and have to do less of your own trial and error.)
Google will track the number of impressions, number of clicks, and your click-through rate. However, just because people are clicking on your ad doesn‟t mean you are making a profit. Keep track of conversion numbers at each step of your sales funnel. Cut the keywords that are not performing and keep the ones that are. Keep in mind your final ROI and you will be successful with Adwords.
Top Mistakes Made Using Adwords
These mistakes are commonly made by first time Adwords users. Be aware of the following mistakes so you don‟t make them yourself:
Ads Lack USP Power
Your Adwords ads should reflect your business. You must communicate your USP (Unique Selling Proposition) to your audience clearly, just as you would with any other advertisement. Unfortunately, many advertisers fail to do this and so see poor results in their Adwords campaign. Study your competitors to see what they are doing and how your product or service differs from theirs. What keyword phrases are they using and how can you make your ads stand apart? Once you conduct some research you should be able to strategize what will work best for
you. Remember to track your results. If one thing doesn‟t work, then try another until you find something that performs great.
Poor Use of Keywords
Keywords are the foundation for the Adwords system and why it works. Failure to use them in your ads is a critical mistake that could cost you a lot of money. When you use keywords in your text ads, including in their titles, you present an ad to the user which is tailored specifically to their search. This will increase the likelihood that they will click on your ad.
Overlooking the Importance of Optimized Landing Pages
The landing page is the first page the user sees when they click on your ad. This is where they land on your website. If they do not see what they‟re looking for on this page, they will flee. It is imperative that you optimize your landing pages for the keywords you use in your adwords campaigns. When a user searches for a specific topic or product, do NOT send them to your homepage. They will be faced with the challenge of digging through your site to find what they‟re looking for. When you send them to a specific product page or a specific article tailored to their needs, they get immediate gratification. They get a warm and fuzzy feeling about your website, making them want to click to see more.
Many first timers in Adwords make this mistake. When you use broad match, you open yourself up for all sorts of keyword combinations that may not match up to your business or product. This is a waste of your money.
Not Rotating Ads
In Adwords, this is called serving up your ads. You want to serve up your ads so that they rotate according to which ones you are trying to test. Adwords will automatically display the best performing ads first, but if you are running a test then you can tell it to serve up each equally.
Tracking is one of the most important parts of marketing. If you don‟t know where you stand, you have no way of knowing how to move forward. There are so many wasted advertising dollars being spent on ads that are either not tracked or are poorly tracked. Poor tracking is perhaps worse than not tracking at all because it gives you inaccurate results and therefore false information on what is working.
Ways to Increase Conversion Rates on Adwords
Conversion rates are an important part of managing your Adwords campaigns. If traffic is not converting, something is wrong. Tweaking a few small details can make a big difference. Here are a few suggestions for tweaking to increase conversion:
Use Brands as Keywords
This is usually true: the more targeted your keywords, the cheaper the bid price and the higher your conversion rates. It does not get much more targeted than the specific brand name of the product your user is searching for. For example, if you sell shoes, then use “Nike LeBron James” as a keyword instead of just “Nike basketball shoes” or what have you. Be as specific as possible.
Presell with a Squeeze Page
Instead of sending your users directly to the landing page for their search, try preselling them by sending them to a squeeze page first. A squeeze page gets your user to trust you, warms them up to the sale, overcomes objections, and primes them for your landing page.
Use Solid SEO Practices on your Landing Pages
Optimizing your landing pages can be the difference between a high bounce rate and a conversion rate. Having relevant content on your destination pages can increase your Quality Score as well. Google gives you a Website Optimizer tool that allows you run different tests on your landing pages. Use this tool to automatically carry out A/B split testing or multivariate testing with ease.
Run Placement Performance Report
For content network advertising, make a point to run a report with this tool. It will tell you where your ads are appearing and will give you click through rates for each. Use this information to decide where to spend or cut your budget.
How to Keep Google Adwords Simple
To ensure long term success with Google Adwords, the process should be simple for you and for your visitors. Here are some tips for keeping things uncomplicated:
Stay Organized by Creating Adgroups
Staying organized will help you understand what is going on in your Google Adwords campaign. By creating adgroups and keeping things separate, your results will be easier to comprehend. Your reaction time will be shorter, therefore saving you wasted dollars. (The sooner you recognize an unsuccessful campaign, the faster you can change what‟s not working.)
Make things as specific as possible. For example, if you sell cell phone batteries, have an adgroup not just for Palm batteries, but for Palm Centro batteries. Create another adgroup for Palm Pixi, etc. Being more specific will allow you to know exactly what is and what is not working. It will also keep things simple and targeted for your visitors.
Don’t use Content Targeting or Search Network
These are features that you don‟t need to worry about when you are first beginning with Google Adwords. They can be useful, but if you don‟t know exactly what they are when you are first starting out, you are better off just sticking to the basics. Try them after you feel more comfortable with the whole process.
Do Not Broad Match
Broad matching expands your keywords to include any combination of those words and sometimes extra words in addition to the ones you specify. It makes things more complicated for you and more difficult to know when your keywords will show. This feature can be a timesaver, but you should wait until you are more experienced to use it. You are better off targeting your campaigns when you begin.
Dynamic Titles make Your Life Easier
With dynamic titles, your ad titles are automatically changed to be the keyword your user is searching for. This makes it more appealing for your users and therefore usually has a positive effect on conversion rates. Do be sure to use a backup title, though, in case the dynamic title is too long or doesn‟t work for some other reason.
Using the Search Based Keyword Tool for Google Adwords
Google Adwords is great about giving us useful information so that we can utilize their Adwords service in the most effective way possible for our businesses. The Search Based Keyword Tool is very useful for beginning Adwords advertisers. It helps give them an idea of which keywords exist in their industry, which ones match well with their website or webpages, and which are the most competitive. Here is a brief overview of this tool for beginners:
The Search Based Keyword Tool allows you to find the most relevant keywords and landing page ideas for your website. Type in your website and it will generate a list of keywords that match your website along with additional information on each keyword or keyword phrase. (The list reflects averages for user queries over the past year.)
Filter your keyword list by word or phrase by entering it into the “word or phrase” box. Click the “+ More Filters” button to see a menu of other filter options. You may want to filter your list by
level of competition (high, medium, or low), suggested bid, or ad/search share. By typing in a specific page on your website, you can find keywords that match just that particular page.
Ad share refers to the number of times an ad for your website showed for that keyword search. Search share, on the other hand, refers to how many times your website was listed on the first page of the results for that query. (This information will only show up after you have started using Adwords. If you are just experimenting and have yet to create an account, you will see nothing in these fields.)
The Monthly Searches column tells you the average amount of traffic that keyword sees for each month. This is great information to see when certain products might sell the best throughout the year. In turn, this is vital information for you to use when considering which months to run ads on certain keywords. Note: This information will be based on search results within your country/territory.
If you have already begun with Google Adwords, the Search Based Keyword Tool will give you keyword ideas that are different than what you are currently using.
It is a good idea to export the keywords list. This way you can make any changes before importing it back into Adwords for incorporation into your Adwords campaign.
How to make Google Adwords Cost Effective for your Business
Keep on Budget
This seems like a no brainer, but it happens all too often. Going over budget can make you think your Adwords campaign is not working when really it is. It is a good idea to set a weekly budget and stick to that. Keep on top of knowing which keywords are performing and why they are working for your business. Then make an informed, smart decision on how to invest more money.
Using dynamic titles can make your life easier and can mean better return and better conversion. When you use dynamic titles, the keyword that the user searches for will automatically appear in the title of your ad. This can be a great time saver and can help get you the most for your money.
Track your Results
As with any marketing, you need to track your results to know what is working and what is not. If you do not track, you are just throwing spaghetti at the wall to see what sticks. Make sure you track your ROI (return on investment) and not just the number of clicks per ad. Obviously, you want to make sure your conversion rates are high enough that you are making a profit in the end.
Know your Cost per Acquisition (CPA)
In order to calculate your ROI, you need to know your CPA. This will tell you how much it costs you to acquire each customer. From there, you can determine which method of advertising is working best for you. If it is costing you more to acquire a lead from Adwords than it is to acquire a lead from your Yellow Pages ad, and they are averaging the same amount per sale, then perhaps you should tweak your Adwords campaign or even drop it altogether.
Avoid Bidding Wars
It can be really tempting to do this when you want to be in the number one spot. Your competitor wants to do the same, so you both start hiking up the bid price. It might be worth it to pay a little more to be in the number one spot, but do your math and make sure it is in fact worth it before you proceed. Be sure you are not paying more for nothing.
How to Stay Competitive with Google Adwords
In general, the more targeted you can make your campaign, the better. Geotargeting allows you to zoom into a specific region (countries or even cities) and target only those customers. This makes your ad appear more tailored to what they are looking for. In turn, they are more likely to click on your ad because they think it is made just for them. In addition to your ads being more tailored, Geotargeting allows you to eliminate those markets that don‟t make sense for your business. (Go to your campaign settings to use this feature.)
Study your Competition
Knowing your competition is key to staying competitive. If you don‟t know what offense they‟re playing, then you have no way of knowing what defense you need to use. Playing your own game will always be what makes you successful, but you also must take into consideration what they are doing. If you can determine this, then you can level the playing field by doing it too, or you can even do it better. Take a look at what keywords they‟re using, how their landing pages are optimized, etc. Anything you can emulate that is already working will save you time and money doing your own testing and it will also level the playing field. That being said, you still must always do your own testing…
Use Trial and Error with Creatives
Test, test, test is the name of the game. With your creatives, you need to test the wording, the content, the titles, the positioning, everything. Google allows you to create several different creatives and test them. Google will automatically run the one that performs best, but to test you can tell Google to run them evenly. If you find that one gives you a better return on investment than another, then go with that one even if its click through rate is lower. Tweak this by going into your campaign settings.
Always have Optimized Landing Pages
A great way to give business to your competition is by sending your traffic to a generic page. Users will see that you don‟t have what they‟re looking for, (they won‟t bother to click further), and they will go right back to search results and click over to your competitor‟s page.
The beauty of the Internet is its search feature; it allows online users to find specific topics and products that fit their needs. So, give them what they want by designing landing pages that are optimized to match their keyword search. When possible, send them to a product page or a certain article that makes sense. Get as specific as possible, then enhance those pages to get the user to click further into your website (i.e. add the product to their shopping cart, or click over to the sign up page for your newsletter).
How to Choose Appropriate Keywords for Google Adwords
If you are just starting out with Google Adwords, it can be overwhelming to think of which keywords will work for your website. There are some good tools and tips you can use to make sure you are choosing keywords wisely before you begin. Consider these points to help your Google Adwords journey go a little bit smoother:
First of all, start with what you know. You know your business better than anybody, so begin by creating a short list of the keywords that best describe your business and your products/services. Think: if you were a customer doing an online search for your products, what would you type into the search field? This is a good starting point.
Consider doing some primary research. Poll a few of your existing customers or organize a focus group to determine which keywords people are using in your industry. Do they match your products? You may be surprised at which keywords other people think about that you do not.
Especially when you are first starting out with Google Adwords, it is a good idea to focus on a few keywords at a time. Don‟t overwhelm yourself and blow your budget by trying to corner the market on all of your keyword matches. Pick two or three that make sense for your niche and go with that. Then build from there.
Once you have a few keyword ideas, go onto Google Adwords and use the free search based keyword tool. It will give you additional keyword suggestions along with useful information like how competitive the market is on each specific keyword or keyword phrase. This is important to consider because, especially if you are a new business or small business, you probably will see little immediate success in a highly competitive market. It takes time, effort, and a significant (expensive) campaign to break into these large markets.
Instead, try focusing on less competitive, small niche markets. Choose keywords related to those niches to get people looking at your site. After you are familiar with Adwords, try branching out to more competitive, challenging markets.
Common Google Adsense Questions
Interested in trying out Google Adsense as an additional way to make income with your website? There are many webmasters and publishers out there who have been very successful with Google‟s Adsense program. It is easy to set up and you make a fair commission for each time one of your visitors clicks on an Adsense ad. Here are answers to some common questions from publishers/webmasters like you regarding the Adsense program:
How much time do I have to commit?
There is little to no time required to run your Adsense program. Google takes most of the work out of it for you. The time you would traditionally have to put into soliciting advertisers and selling ad space, they do for you. When you first sign up, you must do some initial work to get the code setup on your website to run the program. After that, you just keep your website maintained with good content and good traffic, which is time you would have spent anyway.
How much will I be paid?
The amount you get paid will depend on the keyword and the number of visitors that actually click on the adverts displayed on your page. The amount of pay per click may not seem like much, but if you have hundreds of visitors to your site each week, you can make a fair amount of extra money. If you have a higher rate of traffic, you can stand to make a lot of money using Google Adsense to match your customers with products in which they show an interest.
How does Google make money?
Google still gets paid because they pocket a good portion of the fee they are charging their advertisers per click. The rest is paid to you, the publisher/webmaster. For example, let‟s say your website has content having to do with the keyword “dry skin” and an advertiser wants to display their ad on your website. Google will charge the advertiser, say, a dollar and eighty cents per person who clicks on the ad and goes to their webpage. Of that price, Google might pay you something like thirty cents and they pocket the rest.
Will I lose visitors by advertising?
Your visitors likely will not be bothered by an ad or two on your page (most users understand the capitalistic nature of websites these days). However, make sure you are not inundating your website with ads. If you do, you probably will not be approved to run Adsense adverts on your site anyway. Google wants to make sure that your website has enough content to fit well with keywords associated with the ads. This will keep your visitors happy and Google‟s advertisers will be happy as well. As long as there is a good match between your visitors, your content, and the products being advertised, then you should have good success with your Adsense program.
The Ugly Truth about Google Adsense… Not so Ugly
There are downsides to any income generating machine and Google Adsense is no different. What makes Adsense different is the tolerability of its cons. When it comes down to it, Adsense makes a lot of sense for a lot of people. Here are just a few instances that may falter your success:
Gotta Have Traffic
If you are a webmaster with a website that does not have very high traffic, you probably will not be very successful. The Adsense program requires your website to have a significant amount of traffic in order for the numbers to work for you. Even if you have a phenomenal click through rate (CTR), if the traffic isn‟t there then your Adsense revenue won‟t be worth your time.
Must Have a Focus
Another drawback to Adsense is that if your website does not have a focus, then you probably will not see very much success. By the same token, if your website does not have a focus then you probably aren’t seeing much traffic to begin with. It is not difficult to create a website with a theme that appeals to a niche market. It just takes some research and some time to build up your content. Even highly successful websites that appeal to a general market may have some success with Adsense. However, for the most part small niche markets tend to do better.
You Have to Learn the Basics
If you are someone who hates working online or who does not have the capacity to learn the basics of online marketing, then Adsense may not be for you. Even so, you could hire someone to do just about every part of the puzzle for you. All you would have to do is oversee the making of your Adsense website empire. If you choose to do the latter, you need to hire a web designer, a web hosting service, a content writer, and a marketing manager (to research markets and manage your Adsense campaign).
One other drawback is the odd match. Occasionally your Adsense ads may match up with your content, but in an odd way that doesn‟t quite work. Since matches are all automated by computerized software, you will get the rare oddity and there‟s just no way around it. However, this doesn‟t happen very often and is not going to be detrimental to your business.
Disadvantages to Google Adsense
Google Adsense is a great program for many website publishers, however it does have its drawbacks:
- One disadvantage you may face with your Adsense ads is that they may sometimes be inappropriate. Google takes great measures to ensure that their ads match well with your content, but this is all done by computer and so you don‟t actually get to sit there and filter through each ad before it appears on your site.
- Google does a good job of giving straight forward statistics, but they still are lacking in some areas. They fail to communicate precisely which ads users are clicking on and which keywords are associated with them.
- There is no way to find and block ads with low payout rates unless you jump through hoops. This is a disadvantage, but at least there is a way to get it done ultimately. It would just be nice to have it a little more accessible.
- The “Ads by Google – Advertise with Google” link appears on your website, but you never earn commissions off of clicks to that link, which doesn‟t seem fair. This is a referral all the same and should be treated as such by the company.
- You have to wait until you earn a minimum of one hundred dollars until Google will make a payout to you. Smaller websites with lower traffic will be frustrated by this.
- There is a confidentiality portion in the user agreement which states that you are not supposed to share your results with other webmasters. This is an odd request, considering we all need to hear testimonials most of the time before we are willing to pay for a service, especially a marketing service.
- Even shadier is the fact that Google never tells you how much of the revenue share you will receive. It is unknown until you actually get paid.
Aside from these disadvantages, Google Adsense is a reputable system that works successfully for many webmasters.
Google Adsense has many advantages and can be a great addition to your website:
- The program is fairly simple to join with just enough requirements to be valid and not so many that too many webmasters are turned away.
- Adsense makes it quite easy to implement ads onto your webpage. Simply copy and paste a short piece of code into your webpage HTML code.
- The program is free for publishers/webmasters to join. There is no need to sell ad space, which is a great incentive to start the program.
- Since you do not have to sell your ad space, you save time and energy you would otherwise have to expend soliciting advertisers for your site. The website then becomes a sponsored site, which also funds greater content for users.
- Perhaps the most well-executed part of Google‟s Adsense system is its ability to match up ads and content in a way that is relevant to the user and profitable for all other parties involved.
- Google does the leg work for you so you do not have to spend time changing ads across pages and figuring out which one fits best with which of your webpages.
- Unlike having several affiliate programs, you only have to insert HTML code once and you‟re done. And, it‟s one big program so you don‟t have to worry about different affiliate agreements on different terms.
- Because Google does the leg work for matching ads with relevant content, your time is freed up to focus on creating good content for your users.
- It is easy to start if you are a newbie or an experienced online marketer.
- Statistics are given in a straight forward and simple manner. If beginners are confused at all, there are great tutorials, FAQs and support to help them understand all aspects of the system.
- You can still have affiliate links on your site and Adsense ads simultaneously, as long as they do not copy the appearance of Adsense ads.
- You have the ability to block competitors‟ ads from appearing on your site. You can also block ads that do not fit well with your content but that might be matched because of oddities (like keywords with double meanings).
- Adsense has competitive rates and so attracts many advertisers.
- Adsense give you channel options to track several websites with different campaigns, which makes it superior to joining several affiliate programs.
Although Google Adsense can certainly improve in a few small areas, overall the program presents a great opportunity for webmasters and advertisers alike to grow their businesses.
Getting an Adsense Ad onto Your Website
You have quite a few choices when displaying an Adsense ad on your website. Here are a few suggestions to help you understand what you have control over and which options might be best for you:
When you sign into your Adsense account after your application has been approved, go to the „Adsense Setup‟ tab to setup your ads. Continue to „Get Ads‟ then „Adsense for Content‟. You have a choice between accepting text, image, and/or video ads for your website. For beginners, you might want to keep it on the default (text and image).
You will be asked which format you‟d like your ads to be. According to Google Adsense, the formats that perform best are larger and wider, however you should always test what works for your website. Additionally, you should always keep in mind your users‟ perspective when implementing advertisements on your website. (This goes for any ads, not just Adsense ads.) Consider if the ad will be annoying or frustrating for your users. If it is too distracting and takes away from your content, then don‟t place it on your site.
You also have choices of color for your Adsense ads. The buzz in the Adsense blog and forum community is that making your Adsense ad blend into your content returns the best results. This is thought to be due to banner blindness, a case where users become desensitized to ads on websites to such an extent that they don‟t even look at ads that look like ads.
So, according to this theory, if you design your ad to look like it is part of your website content and not an ad itself, it is more likely to be clicked on. Try making the background color of your ads the same as that on your website and make ad links the same color as links in your content. Remember, test to see what works for you.
You will be asked if you‟d like to make a channel for your ad unit. This might be a good idea if you are using several websites with Adsense. Give your ad unit a name and copy the HTML code into your webpage. You are done!
How to Make Money with Google Adsense
Google Adsense is a program that can make you a nice little (or big) paycheck every week for doing hardly any work at all, in addition to the work you put into your website just to maintain it in the first place. So, if you are maintaining a website with good content and consistent traffic, then it makes complete sense to use Adsense.
Start with a Content Rich Website
If you already have a website, make sure that it is rich with content and niche specific. The best way to make money with Adsense is to have a niche market that pertains to the keywords associated with advertisers‟ products. In other words, choose a niche market and get those ideal people to visit your website. Use good SEO (search engine optimization) practices and other online marketing techniques to drive traffic to your site.
Sign Up for Free
Next, sign up for Adsense by visiting Google‟s advertising page. The beauty of Adsense is its ability to attract publishers/webmasters and compensate them for a website with good content and solid traffic. Google attracts publishers like you by offering them this program for free – publishers are never charged a fee – and doing all the work for you. You never have to sell ad space on your website; Google matches you up with advertisers who are looking for your visitors. You are paid commission for every user that clicks on one of their ads.
Maintain Traffic Flow
Once you‟ve signed up for Adsense, simply get people to visit your website. Make sure you keep posting great content that is geared toward your niche market. If you get the right people to visit your site and offer them great content, you should have no problem with your click rate because those visitors will want what products are offered on your page.
The amount you get paid will depend on the keyword and the number of visitors that actually click on the adverts displayed on your page. The amount of pay per click may not seem like much, but if you have hundreds of visitors to your site each week, you can make a fair amount of extra money. If you have a higher rate of traffic, you can stand to make a lot of money using Google Adsense to match your customers with products in which they show an interest.
Finding Keywords for your Niche Market
Once you have found a niche market, you need to find keywords that are relevant to that audience. It is crucial to find popular keywords so that you can structure your Adwords campaigns around what users in that niche are really looking for. You also need to know how to optimize your website so that members of this niche are excited about and impressed with what you have to offer.
How you go about finding keywords is up to you. There are three main options: (1) use your own brain, (2) use a free keyword search tool, or (3) use a paid keyword search tool.
Doing a brain dump is a good starting point. However, there is a lot missing with a brain dump. For one, you are only one brain. There is no guarantee that the users in your niche market think the same way you do. Therefore, there are most likely a lot of keywords that you‟re missing. Even if you were to poll all of your family and friends and ask them to come up with keywords in that niche market, there still would probably be some missing.
Free Keyword Tools
There are a few good free keyword tools out there that you could use. Google Adwords has its own free Keyword Search tool and Wordtracker has a free tool as well. These are both great features to take advantage of. Even if you opt to pay for a keyword tool as well, you could use these tools to get a rough idea of what is out there. These tools will show you things like keyword bidding price, how many searches are performed each month for that keyword. Google‟s tool also allows you to scan your own existing website to see which keywords are matched well.
Paid Keyword Tools
Many paid keyword tools give you what the free tools do, along with added information. You are paying for extra information such as how many other web pages have been optimized for that keyword and how powerful those pages are.
No matter how you choose to find keywords, it is a vital part of your internet marketing strategy. People go to the internet to find something specific and when they find it, they are the most likely to buy something that meets their needs. Taking advantage of this occurrence is where internet marketing goes far beyond any other marketing method today.
How to Find a Niche Market for Keyword Marketing
Most experts agree that focusing on a niche market is usually the best way to succeed in Adwords marketing. Niche markets allow you to tailor your products to a specific audience who best fits your product. It allows you to choose niche specific keywords that are often much cheaper in bid price than larger, more general keywords. Niche markets generally are less competitive and therefore are easier to break into for newcomers. You may want to find a niche market for any of these reasons. Here is a good way to start looking for niche markets that might work for you:
First, begin by doing a brain dump on all the products related to a market you are interested in.
This may be a large market to start with, and that‟s okay. We‟re going to narrow it down later.
For example, let‟s do a brain dump on all products related to pain relief. Pain relief is a huge market, so let‟s narrow it down to back pain. Now let‟s do a brain dump on different sources of back pain. So, back pain caused by:
Okay. Now who would have back pain?
High school athletes
Blue collar workers – men
Blue collar workers – women
Middle aged men
Middle aged women
Executives – men/women
Teachers – men/women
Mechanics – men/women
We could go on forever… but you get the idea.
So, now if we match up anything from the first list with any one group of people in the second list, then we have a niche market. For example, overweight female executives with back pain. That could be a lucrative niche market.
The idea is to find a problem, find a specific group of people, and speak directly to that group of people with that exact problem. Working further within our example, you may sell a pain relief product that could help anyone with any kind of pain listed above. But, when you create a webpage optimized specifically to overweight female executives with back pain, you suddenly become the one pain reliever that has ever spoken directly to this group of people. That kind of targeting is incredibly powerful coming from an advertiser.
Now that you know how to find a niche market, all you have to do is some research to find what keywords will speak to these people about their problem. Create web pages and ads targeted specifically to that niche and you will be on the right path to success with Adwords.
Tricks of the Adsense Trade: Ad Placement & Design
The placement of your Adsense ads on your webpage (and on your overall website, for that matter) is a big area that you should be continually testing. Really, you can‟t assume anything is going to work with your online business until you test it yourself. That being said, there are a few tricks of the trade that have worked pretty much across the board that we will share with you here and we welcome you to test it for your own website:
Straight from the Horse’s Mouth
According to Google Adsense help, you will most likely see your ads perform the best when they are above the fold and near a navigational feature or rich content.
Another method that might work for you is to blend your ads into your content. In other words, don‟t make them look like ads. Remove the border or make it the same color as your background. Make the link text the same color as the links in the body of your articles. Do what you can to make the ad look like it is part of your content. This seems counterintuitive since we have been taught for decades that ads need to stand out to be seen. The reality is that users have become so accustomed to ads online that they develop „banner blindness‟ and will not click on anything that looks like an ad. So, take the other route and see what happens.
What we‟re calling image matching here refers to the practice of using images to draw attention to an Adsense ad on your webpage. To implement this strategy successfully, you should use images that best „finish the thought‟ for the ad. For example, if the ad is for car waxing kit, then choose images of clean cars (not dirty cars that NEED cleaning or waxing mitts, or any other part of the equation). This method has been known to work best when images are placed directly above or below the ad. (IMPORTANT NOTE: Only use generic, paid for photos to which you own the rights or that are licensed for your use. Stock photos work great for this. Also, never ever use an image of a branded product. Check Adsense Terms of Service for more information.)
In general, you should always look for places on your webpage where users will notice your ads, but will not be frustrated by them. The last thing you want to do is drive away traffic because of your ad placement. It is better to keep visitors happy and have a lower click through rate (CTR) than to lose visitors and increase your CTR.
The Best Formatting for your Adsense Ads
The most important thing to consider when integrating your Adsense ads into your website is that your users will react to them as you do. You should put the same amount of time and effort into formatting your Adsense ads as you put into designing the format of the rest of your webpage. You have a great amount of control over how your users interact with your webpage and you have that same control over your Adsense ads.
For example, you use a 728 x 90 leaderboard placed near the top of your webpage. This tells your reader that this is not part of your content, but you hope they will look at this advertisement before proceeding to read your content.
Use a 120 x 600 skyscraper in the left or right navigation to communicate to your users that these products are similar to my navigation; they are additional resources for you should you want to browse around a bit.
Place a square or rectangle Adsense ad within your content to portray a sense of importance about these ads. These ads are an important part of my content and I strongly suggest you consider them as relevant to your search topic as they are to this page.
It is not shocking then, that an ad placed within the content of a page outperforms the other formats on average.
The overall idea is to treat your Adsense ads as part of your webpage content. They are just as relevant to your users as what you are saying on your website. So, the ads should appear on your webpage as something you feel your users need to see.
Why Adsense Ads Give More Value to Your Visitors
The best way to succeed with Adsense is to think of the targeted ads as recommendations for your visitors. You want to please your visitors and help them find products and services that will enhance their lives and solve their problems. When you do this, you do not view Adsense ads as marketing pieces and that is the trick to Adsense success.
People today are completely overstimulated by advertising. We have developed banner blindness and desensitization to many elements of ads. Many times we feel violated and offended by how companies advertise to us and attempt to solicit our business.
Adsense, however, should be viewed as an additional resource for your visitors. These advertisers do not call their homes or leave flyers on their windshields. Instead, they pay to make sure they have the best chance of offering something of value to your visitors and then they simply show a few sentences about their product to the user. This could be the least intrusive type of advertising out there today.
The reason Adsense is able to be viewed as a resource instead of an advertisement is because of its design:
Highly Targeted Content
Adsense‟s unique ability to match ads with website content makes it useful and relevant to the user. Your users are most likely to pay attention to an ad when it is tailored to their needs and speaks to them directly about their interests and problems.
Ads Mold to Your Website
By molding the Adsense ads to your website design, you are able to lessen the distraction a traditional advertisement would cause to your user. Choice of size, format, color and placement help you blend ads right into the content of your site where users are less likely to be turned off by them.
High Quality Ads
High quality businesses are attracted to Google‟s Adwords system for its widespread respected reputation and its ease of use. This system is what feeds the Adsense program. The ads are well written to include content targeted specifically to your users.
Adsense ads are constantly changing to offer your users a more varied array of useful product recommendations. The competitive nature of Adsense ads ensures that each ad will speak to the latest trends in your industry (advertisers who do not stay current with their industries will fall farther behind and will no longer be relevant to your users). Adsense works great for websites with repeat traffic since the ads are constantly changing. This increases click through rates as well because a user is more likely to click on a different ad for the same product twice in a week.
Make More Money with Higher Paying Keywords
You could be missing out on higher payouts with Google Adsense just by targeting the wrong keywords. Keywords have different payouts, even in different niche markets. You should be targeting the most profitable ones, don‟t you think?
Target your Webpages
Be sure that for each of your landing pages (and throughout your website) you are using relevant, high valued keywords. These need to show up in your title tag, meta tags, and header tags as well as in the body of your content. When your pages are optimized for the best keywords, Google will notice and your CPC will increase dramatically.
Optimize for Related High Value Keywords
Find other keywords that are related to the existing content of your site. Do not add content for the sole purpose of increasing your CPC. This will confuse readers because you are detouring from the original purpose of your website.
Instead, use a keyword tool and type in your number one keyword for your site. Sort the results by cost or bid and find the highest valued related keywords. Develop new content optimized for these specific keywords and you will get a higher payout than with your old website.
Regardless of the theme of your existing website, you should be able to integrate new content for related high value keywords and get a boost in cost per click revenue. This method will save you time and money creating new websites for new niche markets. Instead, put your efforts into optimizing and adding to what you already have worked for. High paying keywords can be your saving grace in Adwords.
Required Skills to Make Money with Google Adsense
Plenty of webmasters and publishers are making money with Google Adsense online. But can
YOU be successful in this business, if you have no technical or business skills? Well, no. But it‟s not hard to learn these types of skills and you don‟t have to be an expert in web design, internet
marketing or business in general. If you are coachable, you can make money with Google Adsense. Here are the basic skills you will need to learn in order to have some degree of success:
In order to make money with Google Adsense, you must be willing to do research. Look for keywords that apply to certain niche markets. You want a niche that is in demand, yet is not highly competitive. (If there are already major players in this niche, you may have a difficult time getting in at the bottom level.)
Gather Good Content
Notice we say „gather‟ instead of „write‟ or „create‟. You do not have to be the author of this work. You simply find it and publish it. Of course, if you enjoy writing and you have some background in a certain area, then by all means go ahead. Just keep in mind that usually it will be more cost effective for you to get content made for you, depending on how much your time is worth. There are websites and services that will do this for you for a nominal fee.
Build a Website
You can do this yourself from scratch using HTML or a program that generates the code for you. Or you can use a simple website builder. Usually you can get this free as part of your web hosting service. Then of course there is always the option of having a designer make a website for you. However, this last option can be expensive unless you happen to have a family member or friend who will give you a great deal. Or perhaps find a student designer who is looking to build their portfolio and will do it for you free or for a nominal fee. It really doesn‟t matter which way you choose to do it, just get it built.
Optimize Your Website for Your Niche
You need to read up a bit on SEO (Search Engine Optimization) in order to carry out this step. It‟s not hard, and as stated earlier, you don‟t have to be an expert. You do need to understand the basics and go from there. It is critical that your website be optimized in order to drive significant traffic to it and therefore getting exposure for your Adsense ads.
From here on out, once you get your Adsense ads up, you just need to maintain that traffic flow and update your content. Use linking strategies to build your search engine ranking and find good content to keep people coming back.
That’s basically all there is to it! Anybody who is willing to learn a few basic skills and who is willing to do the work can be successful with Adsense.