15 Google Adsense Mistakes

Google AdSense publishers make common AdSense mistakes that can lead to their Adsense account being banned. Google Adsense, a popular program for web advertising, is a great income source for many websites. Participation in the program requires you to adhere to certain terms and conditions.

Every day, I see many instances of Adsense ads being misused as I browse forums and sites. Here are some helpful Google Adsense tips. Most of these you probably already know. But you may be able to learn a few more.

You can check these official Adsense FAQs  – Program Policies, Terms and Conditions and FAQ.

1. Never click on your Adsense ads.

This is a sure-fire way to close your Adsense accounts. Do not tell colleagues or friends to click on your Adsense ads. You should keep an eye on your children and family members who are clicking your ads. Do not offer click incentives, use automated clicking tools or any other deceptive clicking software. Adsense can detect fraudulent clicks very intelligently. If necessary, you can check the ads that appear on your pages using the Google Preview tool.

2. Never Alter Adsense code.

There are enough means of AdSense optimization & customizations available to change the color, background or border to suit your needs. Do whatever you want to do outside the code, never fiddle within the ad or the search code unless it is allowed for example in cases of switching to responsive code or load Adsense script once when using multiple units. They know it when you do. The search code has more limitations to color and placement, but you should adhere to the rules. The code may stop working and violates the TOS.

3. Limit ad units.

Do not place more than 3 ad units and 3 ad links or 2 AdSense search boxes on any web page. Anyway, ads will not appear in those units even if you place more ad units. But this is the limit they set, so it is better to stick to it. If you use the larger ad units like 300×600 ad units, you can use them only once – you cannot add 3 such units of this size – so take care to see rules with larger ad units.

4. Beware of competitive contextual text ad/search services.

Many alternate ad services offer Google Adsense competition in their field. Never try to create link units and placements resembling the Adsense ads, to confuse users. Never use other competitive search tools on the same pages which have Adsense powered Google search. While they do allow affiliate or limited-text links and other contextual advertising like Yahoo ads, Chitika, etc, ensure that they do not resemble Adsense ads.

5. Do not disclose confidential information

Do not reveal publicly information about your account like the CTR, CPM, and income derived via individual ad units or any other confidential information they may reveal to you. However, you may reveal the total money you make as per recent updates to the TOS.

6. Label ads Correctly

Label ads as “sponsored links” or “advertisements” only. Other labels are not allowed. I have seen many sites label ads with other titles. Dont make your site a target in a few seconds gaze.

7. Never launch a New Page on Click.

Adsense ads should open on the same page. You may be using a base target tag to open all links in a new window or frame by default. Correct it now as they do not want new pages opening from clicked ads.

In some regions of the world and in some Adsense premium accounts, they will enable ad clicks to open in new windows/ tabs by default.

8. Use One Account.

You do not need to create 5 accounts for 5 different websites. One account will do. If you live in the fear that if one account is closed down for violation of TOS, believe me they will close all accounts when they find out. You can keep track of clicks by using channels with real time statistics. They will automatically detect the new site and display relevant ads.

9. Place ads only on Content Pages.

Advertisers pay only for content based ads. Content drives relevant ads. Although you might manage some clicks from 404 error pages, login screens, registration, “thank you” or welcome pages, parking pages or pop ups, it will get you out of the program.

10. Do not mask ad elements.

Alteration of colours and border is a facility to blend or contrast ads as per your site requirements. I have seen many sites where the url part is of the same colour as the background. While blending the ad with your site is a good idea, hiding relevant components of the ads is not allowed. Also do not block the visibility of ads by overlapping images, pop ups, tables etc.  – a very common mistake with all new design elements.

11. Do not send your ads by email

Html formatted emails look good and allow placement of these javascript ads. But it is not allowed as per TOS. You do not want impressions registering on their logs from any email even once. They are watching!

12. Keep track of your content.

So Adsense is not allowed on several non content pages. But it is also not allowed on several content pages too. Do not add it on web pages with MP3, Video, News Groups, and Image Results. Also exclude any pornographic, hate-related, violent, or illegal content.

13. Do not alter the results after ad clicks or searches

Ensure you are not in any way altering the site which the user reaches to after clicking the ads. Do not frame, minimize, remove, redirect or otherwise inhibit the full and complete display of any Advertiser Page or Search Results Page after the user clicks on any Ad or Search results.

14. Avoid excessive advertising and keyword stuffing

Although the definition of ‘excessive’ is a gray area and is subject to discretion, yet Google adsense with correct placement, focused content and high traffic will get you much more income than other programs, so excessive advertising is not required. Keyword stuffing does target better focused ads, but overdoing it is not required. Excessive ads can also get you stick with a Google penalty.

15. Do not specify Google ads as your alternate ads.

Several services like Chitika eminimalls allow you to place alternate urls, when a targeted paying ad cannot be displayed. This involved creating a simple html page and putting the ad to be displayed instead. Even Adsense allows an alternate url feature instead of displaying public service ads. But never use Adsense ads as alternate urls as you do not know on which poor content pages they might start to show.

16. Do not confuse with adjacent images

It was a common policy to increase CTR by placing same number of images as the number of text ads, which falsely gave the impression that the text ads represented an explanation to these images. Inserting a small space or a line between the images and ads is not allowed. Make sure that the ads and images are not arranged in a way that could easily mislead or confuse your visitors.

Whenever in doubt, it is better to ask for adsense help from the learned staff of Google Adsense. They are very helpful!

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About the Author: P Chandra is editor of QOT, one of India's earliest tech bloggers since 2004. A tech enthusiast with expertise in coding, WordPress, web tools, SEO and DIY hacks. He is designing websites for over 20 years.