8 Key Takeaways from Official Adsense Optimization Expert

This article shares some key advice I got from an official Adsense optimization specialist. I just got off a phone call with a member of the Adsense optimization team, who called to help optimize Adsense on our site to get higher earnings.

The call lasted about 20 minutes and the Adsense specialist reviewed our site in real time and made the following suggestions … some for optimizing earnings and some problems to be aware of and it was truly great advice to make most out of Adsense.

1. Monetize Homepage

You might know we usually do not place any ads on the homepage. Since the homepage is the most commonly visited page, he advised we should add a 300×250 rectangle ad in the sidebar on the homepage and see how it works. 

2. Review Ad Placements

He advised the current ad placements above and below the content were good. He advised we could add upto 3 ad units and could add a sidebar 300×600 large skyscrapper also. But since the site would look cluttered with ads, we both agreed it could be avoided.

3. Above-the-fold Ads Penalty

I informed about the Above the fold ad penalties which were striking bloggers and asked if we might be affected. He advised that the algorithm affected sites which stuffed many and all ads above the fold and our placements should not cause a Google penalty. We should try to fix Google Panda/Penguin issues.

4. Ad Link Units

We often use ad link units, and asked about usage of same. He advised that text/image ad units had a better user experience than link ad units, yet we could consider adding a link ad unit below content to see how it works.

5. Beware of Dropdown Menus

We have a main navigation bar on the top of the site. He advised us to be careful that the drop down menus should not obscure the Adsense ads as that would violate the Adsense guidelines.

adsense dropdown obscure

It is a common mistake and can easily be overlooked. So the dropdown menus arrangement and dropdown height should be studied. The current 2014 theme is a responsive theme and the navbar collapses into a menu button on mobile screens, that is less of a concern there.

6. Use In-content Ads Safely

He advised we should keep at least a 5px distance from the content so that the ads are not confused with the content. Blending ads should not be such that it incites clicks in the garb of content.

7. Advertisement Labels

If the ads are so closely placed that they can be confused with content, he advised we can add the text ‘Advertisements” over the ads so that there is clear understanding that these are ads to avoid accidental clicks.

8. No Sticky Ads

Sticky content is getting popular wherein you can fix any html site component such that it stays in the same position in the browser window,  despite scrolling (easily done with Bootstrap). I asked if sticking ads is allowed – and he said it violated terms of service and should NOT be done.

Follow up …

The conversation was followed by  an email with the suggested advise and a request to perform the changes and see if earnings improved.  Adsense team performed a similar optimization review last year also and they truly give great advice.

Google Adsense is the main income source of this site (and we also blog lots of Adsense tips) and I am thankful they take all this care such that publishers can make more money online.


  1. Varun says:

    Are you a Premium AdSense Publisher like Amit Agarwal from Labnol ?
    and does big publishers have individual AdSense managers ?

    • P. Chandra says:

      We are not a premium publisher, but I understand big publishers do have dedicated account managers. Adsense team offers optimization help sometimes to many publishers.

  2. Ryan Biddulph says:

    P I like the advice. Keep a healthy number of ads below the fold. Avoid penalties…..and looking like a desperate blogger. Short, simple and sweet tips here.

    I post 2 prominent ads. 1 up top and 1 on my sidebar. So far, so good.


  3. Tarun Singh says:

    Nice sharing :) I have placed one horizontal ad above the fold,one 320×250 on side bar and one 336×280 below the comments.

    • P. Chandra says:

      Always remember that the first ad unit pays the most, so ensure it is place where there is highest CTR.

  4. Oregon Foto says:

    I agree that the cluttering of ads can overpower a site. Thanks for the good tips!

  5. Sushil Rajput says:

    Well this is really helpful information to fellow bloggers.but i want to ask how often they held these type of face-to-face-meetings?and another thing is do webmasters have to pay income tax on their adsense earnings?

    • P. Chandra says:

      I am aware that there are ‘Adsense in your city’ events when they invite local Adsense publishers for one-to-one meetings with Adsense teams. And yes, you need to pay income tax on your earnings as it is clubbed with your other income as well and the money is deposited in your bank account.

  6. Mike Howg says:

    Very informative article. Google AdSense is also the main source of income on my blog so I’m always looking for ways to improve my ad revenue. Having proper placement that fits in well with the theme of your blog is key.

  7. Madhav Tripathi says:

    Adsense is still my source of earnings but I am willing to play on affiliates, directs ads and sponsored reviews.

  8. Arun says:

    Good info, I guess Home page ads won’t contribute to much to adsense earning, moreover placing more ad unit will decrease RPM value. So using all the ad units on a page is always not recommended.

    I also got phone call from adsense once, that was regarding Policy violation (not really). They said, move ad units away from download links. The ad which is showing below download links is “download banner ad” so must users clicked ad instead of clicking real download link.

  9. Hemant says:

    Hi Chandra,

    Your article is really helpful, thanks for writing. I am looking forward to read more articles in future. Keep writing!!! cheers.

  10. uttkarsh sing says:

    I like your important point shared. Very need to know basic thing before adverse. Best thing is that it must be people read regularly ads.

  11. Hardy says:

    Thanks for the advice! It is very useful to me..

  12. Shaleen says:

    thanx for tis helpful information. adsense is the biggest way to earn income and then other advertiser companies. it is very helpful to me.

  13. Nikhil says:

    I am using 3 ad units and 3 text advertising units of Google adsense. And also I am using again one ad unit of Yahoo-Bing ad unit. Is it harmful to use that much ad units.?

    • P. Chandra says:

      That is too many ads.The first ad unit pays highest. Too many ad units will ad to clutter and have low CTR and payment.

  14. Helal Uddin says:

    It’s very helpful topic. Google Adsense is a dream to thousands of people. Everyone should follow your guideline.

  15. Den says:

    Hi, I have a problem to view ads on my page that have many hidden block like in google images. I would like to put ads into open area. Can you help?


  16. Next Buy says:

    Nice sharing 👍 I have placed one horizontal ad above the fold, one 320×250 on sidebar and one 336×280 below the comments.

  17. Dev Prasad says:

    I didn’t know about the fold ads penalty before. Thanks for your valuable article. It helps to learn these things for a new digital marketer like me. Please post more like this.

  18. Varun Rana says:

    thanx for tis helpful information. adsense is the biggest way to earn income and then other advertiser companies. it is very helpful to me.

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