Adsense Publishing — Intro To Online Advertising

Welcome to the exciting world of AdSense publishing! If you’re here, you probably already know that putting adsense on your blog or website is a great way to make money. What you might not know is that it’s not quite that simple, and there’s a lot of nuance and gotchas involved.  So let’s start at the beginning with some theory.

I promise to keep it short, I know you want to get started with setting up your site and learning all the technical details. But if you don’t get the basics right, none of that stuff will matter.

Here’s an agenda of what we’ll cover over the next several articles. This is just the first part.

Adsense is a Google product that lets users puts ads on sites they own. When a visitor clicks on one of the ads, the site owner gets paid, and the user goes to the site mentioned in the ad.

Adsense is very easy to set up and get started. You just add a snippet of code to your website. But to really make Adsense work, and make more than a few pennies from it, you really need to work hard. Adsense Tutor will help you every step of the way.  You can always contact me at for any questions or suggestions you have, or leave a comment on any article on the site.

Let’s get started!What is a publisher?

In the Adsense and internet marketing world, a “publisher” is just someone who has a website and will put ads on it. I am, and you soon will be, an AdSense publisher.  When you publish for Google Adsense, your site will be included in the Google Display Network. This just means Google will pick the best ads to show on your site.What is an advertiser?

An advertiser is the company advertising on Adsense. They create the ads themselves using Google Adwords. Google then places those ads on the most relevant sites in the Google Display Network. Your site will be one of those sites in the Google Display Network.What is Adwords? Adwords is a sister to Adsense. Publishers like us use Adsense to display ads, but advertisers use Adwords to create their ads and bid on the keywords where they want the ads to appear. If an advertiser is advertising for “Dog Shampoo”, Google will try to find Adsense publishers that have the best sites related to dog shampoo. The advertiser will then pay a certain amount (“cost per click”) when users click on that ad.

We won’t be using Adwords ourselves, but its important to know how it works because those advertisers are effectively our customers!What is a niche?

A niche is just another name for the market your site is in. If your site is about “dogs”, that is a very broad and large market. But a site about “obedience training for greyhounds”, that is a narrow niche. When you’re just starting out, try to choose a narrow niche. We’ll talk more about this in the “choosing a niche” article later.

You may already have a site without Adsense, that you want to monetize. In that case you don’t need to choose a niche, but it might help to understand why it is important. The niche your site is in now may or may not be a very good one to earn money with Adsense.What is inventory?

Inventory is just the available ads that can be shown on your site. When inventory is low, that means there are fewer relevant ads to display on your site.  Less relevant ads means fewer clicks and lower earnings (and you care about earnings, right?)

Because other sites in your niche will be competing for the same advertisers and ads as you are, you want to make your site the best possible one to get the top-paying ads you want.What is CTR, CPC, etc?

CTR = Click Through Rate. This is the % of users who visit your site that click on an ad. Specifically, it’s ad clicks / ad impressions. Higher CTR is better for us.

CPC = Cost Per Click. This is what advertisers pay you for each click a user gives on their ad on your site. Remember, the whole point of Adsense is to help advertisers get new customers to their sites.  Depending on your niche, your ads might have high CPC or low CPC. Obviously we want high CPC, but ultimately it is CPC x CTR that determines your earnings.