While browsing the internet on your smartphone, laptop, tablet, or desktop PC, you must have encountered advertisements (also refered to as Ads). You will notice some of them have a little text at the top right corner indicated “Ads by Google.”
Well, that is Google AdSense.
We will take a quick look at how Google AdSense works and how website owners can use it to monetize their blogs or websites.
Here is the thing…
After creating a beautiful blog or website and you already have a following, the next thing you need to do is monetize it. There are many ways to monetize a blog, and using Google AdSense is one of the easiest methods.
In this quick guide, we will look at how AdSense works and how to make money online from the program.
How Does Google AdSense Work?
There are so many businesses advertising with Google. These businesses pay Google to place Ads either on the search results (these are called Google Ads) or on individual websites (AdSense). The Google Ad publishing app that puts ads on personal websites and YouTube channels is called AdSense.
When Google places an ad on your website or channel, you will earn a commission from what Google makes from the advert.
Is Google AdSense Same as Google Ads?
Google Ads refers to the advertising platform by Google. Here, Google places ads as part of search engine results or on individual websites, blogs, and YouTube Channels. You can see the ads on search engine results when you search for something, and Google recommends a website or business. Google always indicates the ads.
These Google Ads help businesses advertise their products or services, and the businesses pay Google based on clicks or impressions. AdSense, on the other hand, is a platform where Google places Ads on an individual websites or YouTube channels. When Google receives payment from the display of the ads, they give the website owner a commission.
The system, therefore, has three players;
- Website, Blog, and YouTube Channel owners
Google is the intermediary between the advertisers and the website owners. Advertisers will pay Google to place ads on partner websites. Google then pays website and YouTube channel owners for all the ads displayed, and the ads clicked.
Google spreads the ads based on the criteria set by the advertisers and the site owners, but Google also has its standards. Advertisers have the power to select where they need their ads to appear, including the content the websites offer and the interests of the visitors to those websites. They can also choose specific sites through Google Ads.
Similarly, you can choose the ads that appear on your website. For instance, instead of showing diet supplements ads in an SEO-related blog, you can show web hosts and plugins and related ads. As a website owner, you can block Ad categories you need to exclude from the ads, and this works great to match the ads to the content you offer. Some ads are targeted to specific people – these are segmented ads.
Google considers the needs of the advertisers and the website owners and then decides which ads to place on which websites.
Google AdSense Earnings
Google AdSense earnings are dependent on the number of clicks on the ads or the impressions (number of times the ad is displayed to website visitors). A click pays as much as 1000 impressions, so it is up to the website owner to decide how easy it is for their visitors to click.
According to Google, you will earn 68 percent of what Google gets from the ad, and Google retains only 32 percent. If you have a YouTube Channel, you will make 55 percent, and Google keeps 45 percent of the earnings.
If, for instance, a brand pays Google $0.50 for every click the link gets, you will get $0.34, which is 68 percent of what Google receives. However, not all ads pay $0.50 as other pay significantly less, and your earnings will, therefore, vary. The payments will depend on the advertiser’s budget, the ad type, and the number of visitors that click on the ad or view the ad.
Your earnings are more dependent on the number of people who visit your website. If you have thousands of visitors to your website every day, it is more likely that someone will click on the Ad, which is how you earn. There are different id types that work with Google AdSense. These include:
- CPC (Cost Per Click): Here, Google only pays you when someone clicks on an ad from your website. Some advertisers will pay more for clicks than others depending on the industry and the type of advertisement.
- CPM (Cost Per Mille): Mille is the Latin word for a thousand. CPM, therefore, means the cost per a thousand impressions. Here, Google pays you if the ad is displayed to website visitors a thousand times. A user doesn’t have to click on an Ad for the website or YouTube Channel owner to earn. Earnings from CPM are lower; you will earn whether a user takes action or not. Google will choose the ads that are likely to earn you more money as the website owner as they also stand to earn 32 percent of what the advertiser pays.
- Active View CPM: Here, Google shows the ad (or about 50 percent of it) on the visitor’s screen for at least a second. This increases the chances of the visitor seeing the ad. The bids for this will be higher than CPM ads as the visitor will see the ad.
- CPE (Cost Per Engagement): The payment is based on how much a user engages with an ad. In this type of Ads, the advertiser might decide to run a lightbox ad. If the website visitor hovers on the ad for longer than two seconds, the lightbox will expand. The fact that the lightbox expands is engagement enough for the website owner to earn.
Why You Might Consider Google AdSense for Your Website Monetization
- AdSense is Free – There is no registration cost for joining AdSense. If you already have a website with a lot of traffic, all you have to do is register, and ready to start earning.
- Easy to Use – Google created a simple AdSense interface to make it easy for you to add ads and start earning. The platform allows you to post ads on different websites from the same AdSense account.
- Google Does all the Legwork – Once you register for an AdSense account and get approved, all you have to do is sit, and Google brings the advertisers and the ads. Again, Google uses its auction system to show ads that will pay the best. This way, you earn more, and Google earns more too.
- You Can Blocks Ads that are a Nuisance – Google can post any ad they deem appropriate for your website. However, you can block ads that you feel are not relevant or those that are a nuisance to your website visitors. All you need to do is block the URL of the advertisers, and you are good to go. You also have the chance to review individual ads and choose those that should appear on your site and those that shouldn’t.
- Customize the Ads: You can choose the type of ad content that appears on your website. Google allows you to choose the size and format of the ad that appears on your website. You also have the chance to customize the visual appearance of the ads to match the color schemes of your website.
- Get Paid Every Month: Google directly deposits money in your account as long as you can earn at least $100 every month.
Why You Might Keep Off Google AdSense
- Ads can be annoying – If the ads keep popping up, they can be intrusive and annoy the visitors. As a website owner, you can regulate the number of ad spaces on your website to ensure you do not affect your traffic and, consequently, your revenue.
- Google has rules – Google has a set of rules that businesses have to adhere to. For instance, you should not offer adult content, click your own ads, or use any other dubious means to earn more. If you break any of these rules, Google closes your AdSense account.
- Your Earnings are Pegged on Site Traffic – You will only earn as much as your traffic allows. This is, therefore, not a get-rich-quick scheme as you have to work to get the visitors to your website. Again, when users click on an ad on your website, they move on to the advertiser’s website, and that is how you lose a user.
- The Ads Might Not Match Your Business Niche – Although you can block some of the ads, the Google machine sometimes allows some ads through.
If you manage your Google AdSense well, however, you can make a fair amount of passive income from your website without the few issues above.
Getting Started: How Does Google AdSense Work:
Do you need to know how to use Google AdSense? The process is simple, and all you need is a website with content and traffic or a YouTube channel.
If you have a YouTube channel, you need at least 1000 subscribers and about 4000 public watch hours. This shows Google that you already have content. Later in this Google AdSense tutorial, we will answer the question, how does AdSense work on YouTube? If you have a website or Blog, Google requires that you have quality content with enough traffic to the content to get approval.
Create an Account
Google AdSense sign up is the first step in monetizing your website with AdSense. You can create your account on the AdSense page. All you have to do is fill out the details as prompted.
After Google AdSense sign-up, Google prompts you to accept the policies and activate AdSense. Google considers that you have original content that complies with their set policies. For starters, your pages should not:
- Have illegal content
- Abuse intellectual property
- Promote the sale of endangered species
- Have derogatory content
- Encourage dishonest behavior
- Mispresent facts or offer false and dishonest claims
- Offer malicious software
- Offer sexually explicit content
- Offer mail order bribe service
- Promote child abuse and exploitation
If your website meets all the above, you are good to go. After activation, head to Google AdSense login and add your information, including your name, phone number, postal address, and payment details. From there, Google will prompt you to link your YouTube channel or website to get started.
Link Website to AdSense Account
You need to link your website with your website to start receiving ads. To do that, head to Google AdSense login, sign in and click the “Sites” section in the AdSense account. From the page, you open, click “Add Site.”
Enter your website URL, and the page will generate an HTML code. Paste this code in between the <head></head> HTML tags and your website and AdSense account will be linked.
After adding the code, finish the AdSense account’s linking process by checking the box and clicking “Done.”
Choose the Ads to Display
After creating the connection, you need to choose the types of Ads you need to appear on your website. You can do this by clicking Ads on the menu on the left then AD Units. From there, you will see three options to choose from:
- Text and display – These are banners that appear at the bottom or sides of your pages
- In-Feed Ads – These are previews of recommended articles
- In-Article Ads – These are ads integrated in between your content
Once you choose the type of ad you need on your website, you will then move to the ad configuration screen.
You can then choose the size of the space you need the ad and name the ad unit. You can also match the colour of the Ad to the color and theme of your site. Once you have configured that, save and get a code. Add this code to your website exactly where you need the code to appear. Those on WordPress can use a plugin such as Ad Inserter to set the ad without editing code.
If there are Ads you’d rather not see on your site, open the section “Blocking Controls” and then “All Sites” and select the types of ads you’d like to block.
How Does AdSense Work on YouTube?
It is easier to set up AdSense on YouTube than on a website. However, you need to have at least 100 subscribers with at least 4000 watch hours to start earning. You can create an AdSense account and link it, but you will only start earning when you meet the requirements.
Google pays you for your videos only if you have the rights to the content you post. Your videos and graphics need to be original. If you use royalty-free music, you need to offer a link to the music in the video description. You also need to show the licenses that apply.
Once you have your account ready, you can activate monetization by clicking “Creator Studio” and then “Channel.” You can then activate video monetization from there. From there, click Activate and follow prompts to link your YouTube channel to your AdSense account. Here, you do not have to deal with code as the linking is automatic. From there, you can choose the types of ads you need to appear on your channel. The options include:
- Display ads – banners on the right side of your video
- Overlay ads – banners that float at the bottom of your video
- Sponsored cards – banners on your video showing related products
- Skippable video ads – they appear before your video plays, in between the video, or after the video, and they take the whole video screen. Viewers can skip the ads after five seconds.
You can block specific ad categories of certain advertisers from the AdSense account. Open Blocking Controls and proceed as explained earlier – but this time in the YouTube section.
What’s Next after Linking the Accounts?
Once you learn how to use Google AdSense, and have already linked your sites, you now need to grow your traffic. Your business needs to bring in enough traffic to earn you a decent amount of money. Most of the visitors to your website will not click on the ad links.
Although Google doesn’t show statistics on the percentage of visitors who click links, webmasters claim that if between 1 and 2 percent of visitors click on ads, that will bring good returns.
Most of the clicks will give you $0.50 or even less per click. From there, you can calculate the traffic you need to earn the amount you need. For instance, if your business gets 100,000 visitors a month and 1 percent of these clicks on your ads, you will earn $500 that month (assuming the ads pay $0.50 per click).
You need to start a website or YouTube channel on a topic you are well-versed so you can generate a lot of traffic and earn as much as you want. Again, you will find it hard to get enough traffic if your website only has five pages.
Before applying for the AdSense account, grow your business to at least 50 pages to generate enough traffic to start earning immediately. You have to optimize your website for search engines and find ways to promote your content to get more traffic.