Google AdSense is a monetization program by Google that allows content creators make money online. We live in an age where physical ads such as billboards or posters don’t carry so much appeal any more. People spend more time surfing the internet and it just makes to take the adverts to where the people are.
Product advertisers create the ads in form of text, video ads, images and so on. The ads come in different sizes too e.g 460×60, 300×250, 728×90 etc. These companies then pay Google to distribute the ads to websites owned by content creators signed up on their AdSense program. In order to make the ads effective, Google chooses ads that match the context of the site’s content or previous search enquiries of the visitors. This way, the ads are displayed to those that are really interested in the advertised product and are most likely to follow through.
So in summary, advertisers pay Google to put up their ads on websites. Google pays the owner of the site when visitors click on the ads, and the advertisers make more sales.
How Google AdSense works
Google pays content creators based on Cost per click (CPC) policy. What this means is you get paid when visitors click on the ad and not just view them. This is because Google charges advertisers per ad click. Content creators get about 68% of the charge. The amount Google pays per click varies for different niches. This is because advertisers do not pay the same amount to Google for all kinds of products.
Ads with high CPCs are usually those advertising products with really high Return-On-Investment (ROI). Insurance, for instance, has the highest CPC in the US with $17.55. Online education comes next at $12.08 per click. Marketing and Advertising is the third-highest at $6.45 per click. Most niches, however, do not have such high CPCs and you’ll find most of them between the range of $0.15 to $3.00. If you want to create a blog or website solely for the purpose of monetizing it with Google AdSense, then it only makes sense to focus on the high paying niches such as insurance, advertising etc.
Your earnings do not depend entirely on the CPC of your chosen niche. Other factors that affect the amount you earn are the location of the ads on your website, how well it matches the interests of your audience, but most importantly, traffic. You can create content around the topics with the highest-paying CPCs, place your ads in the most strategic positions and design the most beautiful website. But if you’re not getting enough traffic, all your hard work won’t translate into revenue for you.
You should also know that only a very small percentage of your visitors will click the ad. In fact, the standard Click-through-rate (CTR) is 1%. What this implies is if your page has 1000 visitors, only 1% i.e 10 people will click on the ad. Since your pay depends on the number of people that click, if, for instance, the CPC of the topic you content centers around is $1, you make $10. Note that you can only withdraw your earnings after you’ve reached the threshold of $100.
Requirements for getting Google AdSense approval for your website
The first step in making money with AdSense is creating an account with them. Before Google let’s you put up the ads on your site, your AdSense application must first be approved. In order to get Google AdSense approval, you must meet the following requirements.
1. You must be at least 18 years old.
2. You should be owner of the domain of your website. This means your website should be in the format ‘abcdef.com’ and not ‘abcdef.blogspot.com’.
3. You should have a mobile friendly website. Getting your AdSense approval will be a little difficult if your site is not optimized for mobile phones.
4. Your website should contain original content, free from plagiarism and written in a language supported by Google AdSense.
5. Your content should be in line with Google content policies. It shouldn’t contain elements of racism, terrorism, drug abuse, adult content, pornography and so on.
Maximizing earnings on Google AdSense
Making money on Google AdSense is a slow process. If you want to make quick money, especially if the site you’re working with is a new one, then this is not for you. However, there are tips to help quicken the process a little bit and increase your earnings.
1. If you’re just starting a website, choose a niche with a high CPC. This will help you make a lot more money for the same amount of clicks than a niche with a low CPC.
2. Create engaging and useful content around your niche. If people don’t find your content useful or engaging, they won’t remain on your page long enough to even click your ad. The more people are invested in your website, the more likely they’ll be to return and that increases the chances of your ads being clicked.
3. Prioritize search engine optimization. Search engine optimized websites attract a lot of traffic as they are placed right in front of internet browsers. The more traffic you get, the higher the chances of people viewing and clicking your ad, thereby increasing your revenue.
4. Don’t be tempted to click on your own ads. Neither should you offer incentives to people to click on them either. It is against Google’s policies and could lead to your account being permanently banned.
5. Experiment with the different standard ad sizes (728×90, 300×250, and 160×600) so you know which one converts to more clicks than the other.
6. Also, test different positions for placing your ads and choose the one that leads to more clicks.
7. Use honest methods to direct organic traffic to your website. An example is posting links to your articles on social media. You can even be a guest blogger on another site so that traffic can be redirected to your site. Just don’t do anything that is against Google’s policies.