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Google AdX vs. AdSense: History, Difference, Accessibility, Payment and More

Google Ad Exchange vs Google AdSense (AdX vs AdSense) is one of the most common questions asked by publishers—which one’s better and which to choose? Here we go with the difference. But first, some history.

The History of Google AdX and AdSense

DoubleClick was launched in 1996 as an independent brand offering ad serving services. Then in 2008, Google acquired DoubleClick for $3.1 billion.

The idea was to bring publishers, advertisers, and agencies together, so that everyone can make money out of the ad industry. DoubleClick further expanded and we got DoubleClick for Publisher (DFP) and DoubleClick Ad Exchange.

Since we are here to discuss the difference between DoubleClick AdX and AdSense, DFP will remain out of this.

Talking about AdSense, it was released on June 2003. Since then. it became popular amongst the publishers. It might be because AdSense is a free service available that publishers use to display ads on their websites. Also, AdSense is relatively easy to use for small and medium-sized publishers.

AdSense and Doubleclick Google Trend

Even though DoubleClick is older, AdSense is clearly more popular than the DoubleClick. However, it doesn’t mean AdSense is better or DoubleClick is not. AdSense and DoubleClick Ad Exchange carry out two different jobs entirely.

For a publisher, AdSense may sound like a medium to display ads on his/her website. But in reality, AdSense is an ad network whereas AdX is an ad exchange network which are two different things.

So, What are Adsense and Adx Exactly?

AdSense is a self-managed platform to run ads. Once AdSense approves you (publisher), get the ad tag, place it on your website, and start working. However, AdSense often seems to benefit advertisers more than the publishers.

That’s because AdSense ads are rendered from Google Ads (or Google Adwords). And Adwords is designed to offer low-cost impressions. Also, AdSense doesn’t provide publishers with the option to set floor price, which means they wouldn’t able to utilize the inventory.

Also read: Google AdSense: Guide to Improve your Existing Revenue

Google AdX (aka Google Ad Exchange, aka DoubleClick Ad Exchange) is an ad exchange network that brings publishers, advertisers, and agencies together. AdX primarily focuses on providing real-time biddings, private auctions, and preferred deals.

This increases the competition for the inventory and as a result publishers make good money.

Once you understand what AdSense and Adx are, dive into major points of difference between them. Mostly, the following points are asked:

How To Get Started With Them?

AdSense: To get started with AdSense, simply go to the AdSense webpage and click on the sign-in button (you would require a Google account for that). Next, submit your website details and wait for AdSense to approve your website. You should receive an email from AdSense in a few days.

Once done, copy the ad tags provided by AdSense and place it on your website’s code to display ads. The service is free and AdSense manages everything, from the placement of ads to payment.

AdX: It’s tricky to get started with Google AdX. For starters, it asks for minimum 5 million monthly pageviews along with other eligibility criteria. Then a publisher need to have a Google Ad Manager account and wait for approval.

However, publishers can also access AdX working with a Google Certified Publishing Partner (such as AdPushup). Along with the AdX marketplace, publishers can also take advantage of demand partners offered by their GCPP.

Here are detailed steps to follow to get access to Google Ad Exchange

Publishers can run AdSense and AdX together using Google Ad Manager. This improves the competition on the inventory.

Services Provided and Accessibilities

When using Google AdSense, Google manages the ads displayed on your website. You can change the size and type of ads, if you want. It allows publishers to also block URLs (which is not recommended).

Publisher’s accessibility is limited when using AdSense. However, on the positive side, AdSense manages ad placement, ad targeting (to show relevant ads), and payment for publishers.

DoubleClick Ad Exchange has its own network of publishers, advertisers, and third-party ad networks. Unlike AdSense, publishers need to manage their inventory (like giving the floor price for auctions and carry out preferred deals by choosing advertisers).

Also, AdX allows publishers to put up to five ad units on a web page. These ad units can be edited (ad size, ad type, format, restrict advertiser/URL, and more) as per the publishers’ requirements.

How Are Payments Made? Which One Offers More?

AdSense and AdX are very different when it comes to paying the publishers. With AdSense, if publishers have crossed the minimum payment threshold, the payment would be initiated. Usually, it starts with 21 days payment processing period.

Once that’s over, the publisher gets the payment within 5 to 7 days. Whereas with AdX, once the minimum threshold is met, payment is credited by the end of that month.

Revenue generation from ad inventory depends on too many factors that it’s hard to pick one and say “this method makes more money”.

However, the data collected by Adnimation by evaluating the performance of 400+ websites showed, AdX generated more revenue than the AdSense.

I Understand The Difference. But, What Should I Choose?

AdX is all about real-time deals, private auctions, and preferred deals. Here, multiple advertisers bid for the inventory in real-time. This increases competition and revenue generation.

Whereas, AdSense is the largest ad network of small and medium-sized publishers. It’s easy to get started and serve automatic text, image, video, or interactive media advertisements, that are targeted to the site content and audience.

Who should go for AdSense: Publishers with fewer page views, small to medium business size, not much time or bandwidth to manage ads, and lack of technical knowledge; should choose AdSense.

Who should go for AdX: Large publisher with high page views, who can manage ad placement and monetization; should choose AdX. Also, if you get approval to join DoubleClick.

Although, managing AdX can be too much for publishers. For that, a third-party company can be hired. Alternatively, publishers can just switch back to Google AdSense without any significant effect on their earning.

Also read: How to Use Google Ad Manager with AdSense and Ad Exchange

Adx vs AdSense: Summarizing The Differences

ParametersDoubleClick Ad ExchangeGoogle AdSense
What is itAd Exchange is a Google platform for publishers, advertisers, and agencies to exchange inventories via RTB and private auctions.Ad Network contacts publishers, gathers their inventory details, and passes them to advertisers/agencies to place their bids.
DealingDFP allows private auctions, preferred deals, and CPM, CPC, other such auction types.Google AdSense pays based on CPM and CPC models only.
Buyers (Advertisers and Agencies)Buyers from other exchanges, ad networks, SSPs, DSPs, and Google Display Network are allowed. Only Google Display Network advertisers bid for publishers’ inventories.
Payment Once threshold balance is reached, Google sends the money to publisher’s account by the end of the month.Once threshold balance is reached, a 21-day payment processing period begins, after which, the payment is issued.
Ideal userLarge publishers with more than 5,00,000 pageviews per month.Small and medium-sized publishers with lesser page views.

Frequently Asked Questions:

1. What is Google AdX?

Google AdX or DoubleClick Ad Exchange is an ad exchange network. In other words, it is a programmatic advertising platform that offers real-time bidding (RTB) on ad spaces to ad networks.

2.. What is Google AdSense?

Google Adsense is an advertising network. It provides a way for publishers to monetize their online content. AdSense works by matching images, video, or interactive ads on a publisher’s site by matching their content and audience type.

3. Why is AdSense popular among publishers?

AdSense is a free service available that publishers use to display ads on their websites. Also, AdSense is relatively easy to use for small and medium-sized publishers.

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