Sunday, September 6, 2009

What Is Adsense? And How do I Start?

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Welcome to the Basics - this is a very basic explanation of AdSense and how it works. More details and further explanations can be found at the AdSense website, and you should be sure to visit that to gain a better understanding of the program.

What is Adsense

Adsense is a marketing and advertising platform that serves up advertising paid for by the businesses, companies and individuals who advertise using the Google AdWords program.

If you qualify to use AdSense you are allowed to place these advertisements on your website and collect earnings for ads that display. The advertisers who use Google's AdWords program buy advertising through the program, and they pay Google to advertise for them. These ads are then served to prospective customers through the AdSense program, using third parties to display the ads (that's the AdSense Publishers - people like you and I).

Effectively, the advertisers pay Google, and Google takes their cut, and then pays us.

Does it Cost Anything to Get An AdSense Account?

No, AdSense is free to apply for, and free to use on your website. Google does not charge the publisher any fees at all.

Does Google or AdSense Provide Me With a Website?

No, AdSense is not in the business of providing pre-built websites or hosting websites. Google does provide free site space and a free blog platform that you can sign up for, but you must build the site yourself using your own content. google.sites is a website building platform that you can use for free, and is a blog platform that you can use for free.

How Much Money Does AdSense Pay Me

How much you can earn using this program depends on how much time and effort you put into maintaining and updating your website, and how much traffic you have, and how much the ads on your website pay. There are a number of factors that go into earnings.

Don't let all the hype you see on the internet take you for a ride. Average publishers do not make thousands of dollars a week, or even a month on this program. It's more like a couple of hundred dollars a month. There are quite a few publishers who can pay most of their monthly bills using this program, but to get there is hard work, and takes time to grow your site holdings. If you just want to plunk some ads on your site and forget about it, then the program isn't for you...not if you expect to earn a lot of money doing it.

See more information on the AdSense website about earnings.

How Do I Get Started with AdSense?

AdSense has requirements that each prospective publisher must follow in order to qualify for an AdSense Account.

You must first have a website. One that is already established, and has already started to draw traffic. You don't have to have traffic in the thousands to get started, but a site with zero traffic isn't ready for AdSense. Your website should also have a lot of good, originally produced content. AdSense isn't really looking for sites that are simply made in a hurry in order to make money. Some get accepted, but most are in error, and large numbers of these sites lose their accounts. Original content is "stuff" you produce yourself - whether it's stories, articles, tutorials, photos or other images, wallpapers, videos - original content has more value because it can't be found in other places.

If you have your website built, then you need to find out if your content would qualify.

Your website must also have content that follows the AdSense policies - no adult content, no content relating or linking to things like drugs (prescription or illegal), weapons, illegal software, music or video downloads, no content that is considered a copyright infringement, no sites that are nothing but big long lists of links, among many other things. All of the policy requirements can be found on the AdSense site, under the Help section in the AdSense Policies subsection. It's important that you make yourself aware of these, and it's also important that you read and understand the Terms of Service before you get involved in AdSense.

There are a lot of rules, and it's important that you do more than just read those rules, you also need to understand them. If you don't understand something, then don't be afraid to ask for help.

Once you have gone through the policies and you are sure your site is ready, then you fill out the AdSense application and provide them with the url of your website. Then you wait for them to review the site and application, and when they have, you'll receive an email from them. If you are accepted to the program, you are off and running - but attention should always be paid to the policies when adding things to your site.

What if I'm A Business Who Just Wants to Advertise?

If you want buy advertising, then you would sign up for the AdWords program, rather than the AdSense program.

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