If you’ve been blogging for some time now, the thought of earning money to support your blogging passion may have crossed your mind. You probably heard about others who successfully monetized their blogs, and you’ve finally decided to have a go at it, yourself.
Fortunately, there’s a program that allows bloggers and website owners to quickly generate income from their content. It’s called Google Adsense for content publishers.
Here’s something I’d like you to do before we dig in deeper into this topic. Take a second look at your favorite websites right now, this won’t take much of your time, I promise.
Notice those ads at the top of the page, at the upper right-hand corner, or sandwiched in between the body of the article? More often than not, those are Google Adsense ads.
You see, a lot of websites (2 million publishers, to be exact, according to Google) are using the Google Adsense monetization model to make money online.
What is Google Adsense?
Adsense is the display advertising program of Google connecting their advertisers (from a separate program called Google Adwords) to website owners and bloggers, also referred to in advertising parlance as publishers.
As a blogger or blog publisher, you can choose to register for an account with Adsense and start displaying advertising blocks on the different pages of your blog or website as soon as your application to join the program is approved.
Each time a visitor to your site clicks on an ad, your Adsense account earns money that Google pays out the following month if you reached a certain amount of earnings from the current month.
In this article, I’m going to show you how you monetize your blog through Google Adsense. We’ll discuss how to set it up and then focus on strategies to grow your income from this passive revenue stream.
How To Monetize Your Blog Through Adsense
Create A Blog or Website
Apparently, you can’t show ads if you don’t have a website or content platform to show it.
The first step in this monetization strategy is to establish your own website or blog, and if you’re not sure which blog platform to use, this guide might help.
If you have a Google account, you might want to start a blog at Blogger (Google’s blog platform), or if you’re good at creating videos, you can start a channel on YouTube.
Provided they meet the Adsense Eligibility Checklist, Blogger blog and YouTube channel account owners (called hosted accounts) can join the Adsense program.
Sign up for your Adsense Account
It’s quite easy to join Adsense, and any website owner or blogger can do so – simply go to the Adsense home page to get started.
You’ll need a Google account to join the program so you’ll have to start one if you don’t already have an existing account. Adsense also has a list of prohibited content that you might want to take a look at and see if your site’s topic or product is included before applying, to avoid wasting your time.
Finally, you’ll need to provide Google with a phone number and a mailing address. This is for them to be able to contact you if there are any questions about your Adsense account. Google also mails out the physical checks to qualified advertisers every month (if you select this payment option), hence, the need for a mailing address.
For hosted accounts on Blogger, simply log in to your account on that site and select the blog you want to run ads on. Click on Earnings and choose Google Adsense. Fill out the form and wait for approval which Google says can take as long as 48 hours.
Test Your Code
It may take a couple of days to a week, but once your application to join the Adsense program is approved, you’re all set.
Just select the type of ads you’d like to display on your blog or website from the selection of different ad sizes available. Make sure that your choices conform to your own site design to avoid any mismatch or incongruity that will annoy your readers.
Copy the code and paste it into the widget you want to display the ad on. If you’re working on your site’s dashboard, try visiting your site on a different tab to check the displayed live advertisement.
If the code is working correctly, your first Google Adsense ad should already appear right in the place where you wanted it to be seen by your readers.
Placing Your Adsense Ad Blocks
Where should you place those Google Adsense ads?
Ideally, your ad should appear at the top of your page next to your content but below the navigation bar. Blog readers are invariably drawn towards the top of the page, and you’ll want that ad to appear in that space to immediately catch their attention.
The top corner on the right sidebar is also a proper place for a 250 x 250 ads if you don’t want to place an ad banner directly above your content.
Google used to limit the number of ads that can appear on any given page, but they’ve shifted to a more open policy called “Valuable Inventory” in 2016. This guideline stipulates that ads arising on a page should not exceed the amount of original content on that page. Excessive ad placements may result in some of your ads being disabled by Google.
The fact is that people do get turned off when they see too many ads appearing on a page. A page cluttered with ads will detract from the perceived value of your content.
It makes the publisher look sleazy, amateurish, and unprofessional. In short, too many ads can ruin your prestige and authority as a blogger especially if those ad boxes don’t fit in seamlessly with your website’s overall design.
So, next time your puzzling over how many ads to place on your page, go to the bare minimum. Your readers will appreciate your restraint and implied respect for them.
Create Lots of Content
In this day and age, content is king on the internet. People are always in search of new content to answer their questions, clarify specific issues, or solve their problems.
It makes sense, therefore, for any publisher to create lots of content. Google indexes all web pages and will rank your pages according to the topic or keywords being discussed. The more pages that you have ranked, the more organic search traffic you’ll be able to attract to your website.
However, publishers need to be aware that publishing substandard, plagiarized, or duplicate content can hurt their efforts at content optimization more than it can help them generate Adsense revenue. Publishing inferior content could get you penalized by Google and have the traffic flow to your site completely cut off.
Try to avoid thin publishing content (below 250 words) because these will also raise red flags with Google. Most likely, you’ll not get very far with Google Adsense when you publish flimsy content because of their “Valuable Inventory” policy discussed above.
Build Up Your Traffic, It’s a Numbers Game!
Money from Adsense should be treated as just one stream of income as you build up your blog and your internet business. Revenue from Adsense is reliable but very small when compared to income you can generate from other monetization strategies.
For example, if the average payout per click is $0.50 and the average click-through rate (for most Adsense ads) on Google’s display network is 0.1%, you’ll need about 1,000 visitors each time to generate that one click that would make you $0.50.
Don’t be disheartened by these figures, however. Adsense is a pure numbers game type of revenue stream. The more traffic (visitors to your site) you’ll have, the quicker those clicks (money) get generated.
Build up your traffic over time. Have patience and focus on creating great content so that more readers will come to your website and those who really like your content will tell others about it.
Google is always on the lookout for Adsense fraud to protect their advertisers and the integrity of their business model. Adsense publishers who indulge in fraudulent activities to earn quick cash will soon find themselves entirely banned and blacklisted from the platform.
Activities that Google sees as fraudulent include fake clicks (don’t click on your own ads), repeated clicks from a single user, automated clicks, and those generated by publishers explicitly encouraging readers to click on their ads.
Google sees traffic generated through these shady activities as invalid and will likely withhold payment and investigate your account.
Collect Your Paycheck
Google would send payments to Adsense partner publishers once per month if the money they earned reached the minimum payout threshold. You can check your account after every cut-off date and see if payment is already available for pick-up. Payment options available are through check, Western Union, Electronic Fund Transfer (EFT), etc.
If you chose to receive an actual check from Google, make sure that you’ve registered your correct address as the test will be delivered right to your doorstep. As an added layer of protection, the check is crossed so you can only deposit it to your bank account.
There’s entirely no reason not to generate an income from your blogging activities. As we’ve seen from the discussion above, you can quickly monetize your blog through Google Adsense.
If you have suggestions or ideas you’d care to share on how to make money blogging, either through Adsense or some other alternative monetization strategy, please feel free to leave a comment below. Thanks!