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Getting Started With Google Adsense
By Douglas Titchmarsh
It's probably one of the hottest topics out there, and with good reason. Where else can you get paid over and over again for doing something once?
Of course I'm talking about Google's Adsense program, for website publishers who don't mind placing a small bit of code into their sites to show ads in return for a share of the profits.
It's relatively easy to get started with Google Adsense, as all you need to have is a website or blog on which to show the Adsense ads, and a Google Adsense Publishers Account. To get an Adsense account you need to go to www.Google.com/adsense and apply for an account, as long as your website complies with their terms, you will be accepted and be able to log in to create your Adsense ads. If you don't have a website, you can setup a blog for fr.ee at http://www.blogger.com put up some content, and submit this. Blogger is also owned by Google, and some people claim this gives you a better chance of acceptance, whether it does or not you decide for yourself.
For the next part, once you are logged in you need to choose what type of ads to display, link units are just one line links to sites related to your sites keywords, ad units are the blocks of code you see everywhere with a short description, a link and a url for each site advertised. Once you have chosen which ad type to display, you can then choose the size and format of the Adsense box. This is where you must make a decision to ensure it fits in with your site, where you are going to place it.
Be aware that irregular sized and shaped adsense boxes work better than the regular ad sizes, 468x60 is immediately picked up as an ad due to banners being this size for so long online and has a low clickrate, while the 336x280 and 300x250 adsense blocks work much better. There is also some arguments as to whether you should blend the ad into your site by using the color palette Adsense gives you to edit the ads colours to make the colours the same as your site, or to make them stand out by making them a different colour, this will depend on your site, and you can test to see what works best.
After you have setup the format, colour scheme and type of ad, you will get the code to add to your site. Before you go ahead and paste it in, it's a good idea to setup channel tracking. Setup different channels named so that you will know what it is about, and this will enable you to track which ads are working, on which sites by changing them around, and tagging them with different channel ID's. This is one of the most overlooked parts of Adsense, the ability to track your ads through channels affords you the ability to test and tune to get the ideal colours, and placement for your adsense blocks.
Adsense does a good job of finding ads related to your site, and you have no input into what will be shown. Sometimes it gets confused, so you may have to tweak your sites copy to make the keywords more prominent so Adsense can do a better job of targeting your visitors with the ads displayed. Obviously the better the ads target your visitors, the more relevant they will be and the better the clickthrough rate.
As we already said, Adsense is a great way to make some income, and some people are even making a good living from it, it's residual income, fairly easy to setup and low maintenance. If nothing else it will help pay the hosting fees for your website, so why not get started with Google Adsense today?