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There are a few different ways monetize your website traffic. Most of them involve advertising third-party products or services on your website. There are many different advertising programs that help you do just that, but Google AdSense is by far the most popular advertising program on the internet. Every year, Google pays over $10 billion to its publishers, and you could be one of them! Here’s the run down on how you can start earning money with Google AdSense.

What is AdSense?

AdSense is a program run by Google that displays advertisements next to your online content. Google will show relevant ads to your site’s visitors and you can even customize the look and feel of the ads to match your site. The best thing about AdSense is that it’s easy to use and completely free for you! 

What’s the difference between Google Ads and AdSense?

Google Ads lets you to create your own advertisements that will appear on relevant Google search results pages and Google’s network of partner sites. AdSense delivers those Google Ads advertisements to your individual website. Google then pays you for the ads displayed on your site based on user clicks or on ad impressions, depending on the type of ad.

Why use AdSense?

Google acts as an intermediary between you and the advertiser and keeps the whole process transparent and clear for both sides. All the necessary metrics can be tracked using your Google Analytics account, so there’s a high level of security, safety and transparency when using AdSense. AdSense also offers a wide variety of ad formats. Advertisers can run text, images, HTML ads, video ads and much more, and in many different sizes, and as the publisher, you can experiment with different ad types and figure out which ones drive the most revenue for your site.

How Does it Work?

AdSense works by matching ads to your site based on your content and visitors using Google Ads. The ads are created and paid for by advertisers who want to promote their products. Since these advertisers pay different prices for different ads, the amount you earn will vary. First, you choose where you want the ads to appear and paste ad code on your site to make ad spaces available. Then, advertisers bid to show in your ad spaces in a real-time auction. The highest paying ads will show on your site. Google then pays you for the ads displayed on your site based on user clicks on ads or on ad impressions, depending on the type of ad. Google will also bill the advertisers and networks for the ads and send the payment to you. You don’t get to choose the ads that will show on your site, but you can review individual ads and choose whether to let them show on your pages on the “Blocking Controls” page.

How are the ads targeted on my site?

Google targets the ads on your site in four different ways:

  • Contextual targeting: Using factors such as keyword analysis, word frequency, font size, and the overall link structure of the web, Google determines what a webpage is about and precisely match Google ads to each page. For example, if an advertiser wants to run ads on a new line of gardening tools, they could bid on certain keywords like “gardening, gardening tools, tillers, pulling weeds, etc.”  If Google sees that your site has content with some of the same keywords, then those ads will show up on your site. 
  • Placement targeting: Advertisers choose specific ad placements, or subsections of publisher websites, where they’d like to run their ads. Ads that are placement-targeted may not necessarily be related to the content of your page, but are hand-picked by advertisers who’ve determined a match between what your users are interested in and what they have to offer.
  • Personalized targeting: This enables advertisers to reach users based on their interests, demographics, cookies on their browser, and more. 
  • Run of Network targeting: Run of Network lets advertisers target all sites in the AdSense network, except ones that are explicitly excluded.

What is AdSense for Search?

With AdSense for search (vs. AdSense revenue share), you can monetize search results on site just like Google. You add a few lines of code, and Google matches targeted ads with your search results. You can still control the look and feel like the other ads, and when users click on the ads, you earn revenue. If you already have a search experience on your site, you can add Custom Search Ads to show search ads next to your own search results based on what your users are looking for. If you want to add an ad-supported Google search or site search experience to your site, you can add a Custom Search Engine so readers can search your site and see targeted ads next to the search results.

How Much Do I Get Paid?

Your AdSense earnings depend on a lot of factors like how much traffic you get, what type of content is on your site, where your users are located, how you set up your ads, etc. You will get 68% of the click amount, or 51% when it comes to AdSense for search. The commission you get depends heavily on the competition and CPC (cost per click) in the niche, and the commission per click can range from $0.20 to $15. To get an estimate of your potential earnings, you can try the Google AdSense revenue calculator. You can also estimate an average cost per click in your site’s niche with this CPC Map tool, or check the CPC of a particular keyword with this Keyword Magic tool

How Do I Withdraw Money?

Once you get to a minimum threshold of $100, Google will either send you a paper check in the mail or make a direct deposit into your bank account.

Now that you’re ready to get started with Google AdSense, you can sign up here!