I'm experimenting with Google AdSense on my weblog. My plan is to be selective about where it's used, but first I need to figure out how smart their targeting really is. So don't be surprised if you see ads pop up now and then.

No, I don't need the money. Heck, I don't expect to make enough to matter, but I have some ideas that I can probably use to greatly reduce the annoyance factor for my regular visitors/readers. It'll take a bit of tinkering to test them out and gather some data, but I think it'll be quite interesting. I have no intention of simply spraying them all over my site, so let's hold off on calling me a "sell out" for a bit, okay?

This is largely inspired by tests on a few other sites (some blogs, some not). I will, of course, report my findings if anyone is interested. If this works, I think others may be interested too.

Posted by jzawodn at February 11, 2004 12:46 PM

Reader Comments
# Mark said:

Sell out!


on February 11, 2004 01:05 PM
# Dennis Pallett said:

Yup, very interested, especially if it'll make me a few bucks extra!

on February 11, 2004 01:10 PM
# Scott Johnson said:

From my experience, the targetting is mostly good. It's all based on keywords, however, and can be misguided at times. You should certainly make enough to more than cover your hosting costs with these ads. They pay very well.

on February 11, 2004 01:18 PM
# Jeremy Zawodny said:

Well, my effective hosting cost is already $0, so that's not an issue. This is more of an academic exercise right now: can I run ads that are significantly less likely to annoy the folks that come here most often?

on February 11, 2004 01:26 PM
# Alden Bates said:

I got ads for a blogging service and a New Zealand "Geek product" store, so I'd say that was pretty well targetted.

Actually, some of the stuff at the store looked quite nice... :)

on February 11, 2004 01:34 PM
# jim winstead said:

"pay very well" depends a lot on the context. the google ads on blo.gs make very little (less than the hosting costs, which is not much to begin with). you need to have targeted content to get much traction with google ads. (it does not surprise me at all that a site like mathowie's pvrblog does very well with google ads.)

on February 11, 2004 02:04 PM
# Craig said:

Turned off PithHelmet to take a look -- and Ew! Isn't there anything you can do about that color scheme? Time to turn PithHelmet back on.

on February 11, 2004 02:06 PM
# Chris said:

addign http://*.googlesyndication.com/* to the FireFox's adblock extension sorts these sell-out adverts out :)


on February 11, 2004 02:22 PM
# Joe Grossberg said:

Well, just make sure you don't actually talk about AdSense ... you might be in violation of their bizarre TOS.

on February 11, 2004 03:58 PM
# Aristotle Pagaltzis said:

I'll have to agree about the color scheme — any chance you can relieve your readers' eyes?

on February 11, 2004 04:07 PM
# Steven Citron-Pousty said:

Matt Raible has played around with this as well

on February 11, 2004 04:51 PM
# Mike Hillyer said:

Well I can say that the ads seem well targeted at my site (except when a forum post refers to records, then I get a bunch of ads for used LPs). The pay is good, and certainly covers hosting costs, and is currently contributing to a new server as well.

on February 11, 2004 05:45 PM
# Manish Jethani said:

Tell me if you get rich! ;-)

on February 11, 2004 11:34 PM
# rich said:

We've had these on our site for a month now and I've been thrilled with the results. The ads are usually extremely well-targeted, if you've laid out your pages correctly.


on February 12, 2004 07:18 AM
# Jeremy C. Wright said:

Why am I not seeing these ads?

on February 12, 2004 12:01 PM
# Donny said:

Now Jeremy you better watch out since some company that you work for owns Overture. :))

on February 12, 2004 12:20 PM
# Dominik said:

"Why am I not seeing these ads?"

I do not see them either?? Did you decide not to use AdSense any more?

on February 13, 2004 05:36 AM
# Marco said:

You can also block pagead2.googlesyndication.com in your hosts file.

on February 13, 2004 02:59 PM
# aaron wall said:

I don't think most bloggers really click ads. I honestly think most people that read blogs also write them and know enough about the web to know how ads work.

Also bloggers are more opinionated and less influenced by ads than most people are (in my estimation.)

on February 14, 2004 04:27 PM
# vibhash said:

Hie there well I am also using adsense in my blog and I am not getting perfect idea about it.
Some times I get very descent revenue and then just next day I get nearly same page views as well as clicks but revenue genrated is very less.
May be google removes high paying ads from my blogs..!!!

on June 6, 2005 11:30 AM
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