Google Adsense is one of the most popular way to monetize your website. However, Profit-wise, there are just too many variables that play like relevance, traffic, CTR, and more.
And as if that weren’t enough, you also need to make sure you’re following everything by the rule book. A single mistake, and you risk getting banned.
Are You Making These Bannable Offenses?
Adsense publishers are used to being lectured on the importance of following Google’s policies. Yet so many of them, whether intentionally or not, commit offenses that jeopardize their accounts.
Any of these, when pushed to the limits can seriously damage your ability to monetize from Adsense. So let’s call out these Ads Violations one by one. Because when you know them, keeping yourself in good standing with Google will be so much easier.
Clicking Your Own Ads
This goes without saying. But it seems like for every 10 publishers who adhere to this rule, 20 more are applying sneaky tactics to get those coveted clicks. It is one of the most common Ads Violations. How many times have you clicked your own ads telling yourself you’re interested in them? Or perhaps you get sneaky by logging in from another IP address pretending to be someone else and clicking on your own ads.
“Wait a minute.”, I can hear you thinking “I was really interested in the ad”. Unfortunately, Google is less forgiving than that. Think of it this way: If you were the advertiser, would it be okay for you to learn that a part of the $1 you paid for a click goes to the person who actually clicked it? Of course not. So it makes sense that Google doesn’t allow every publisher to click their own ads under any circumstance. And this includes asking your best friend to do the clicking for you.
If you really want to visit the destination page of an ad, you can do so through the Adsense Publisher Toolbar. It’s a simple tool that allows you to ‘test click’ your ads without violating the rules and costing the advertisers money.
Using Adsense on Prohibited Content
Let’s face it. Adult-related, conspiracy-themed, covert methods to do something and any other content with a strong, controversial nature are a hit among people. The amount of eyeballs they naturally garner seems unfair when placed alongside topics like bed mattresses and kitchen counter tops. Needless to say, any Adsense publisher who’s serious about making money would not work on topics like these. But alas, that’s a BIG No for Google.
So how do you know if Adsense allows your content or not? Well here’s the list of things to avoid:
- Adult content
- Content that advocates against an individual, group, or organization
- Excessive profanity
- Copyrighted material (more on this later)
- Gambling or casino-related content
- Drug, alcohol, and tobacco-related content
- Sales of promotion of prescription drugs
- Hacking and cracking content
- Sites that offer compensation programs (“pay-to” sites)
- Sites that use Google Brand features
- Violent content
- Weapon-related content
- Counterfeit goods
- Underage, non-consensual, or illegal acts
Keep in mind that this rule applies to your entire site, not just to individual pages. That means if you’re running a website on online gaming and some of your web pages talk about gambling on online casinos, that means you’re not allowed to post Adsense anywhere in your site.
Additionally, just as posting Adsense on content classified as Prohibited is not allowed, so is linking to other sites with this type of content.
Using Ads on Content that Encourage Youtube Video Downloading
Youtube is a Google product so it makes sense that the world’s popular video site has an austerity that’s akin to the search engine. Youtube’s TOS prohibits downloading videos on the site. Whether Internet users today are following that or not is beyond the point. But if you want to steer clear from the Adsense program’s reprimand, don’t publish Adsense on content that teach and encourage people how to download Youtube videos.
Placing Ads with Content in an Unsupported Language
If you run an English website, feel free to skip. Otherwise, you may need to take a closer look on what Google allows on this matter. The Adsense program supports a few more languages other than English, which you can find here. If your language is not in the list, then Google won’t have any contextual ads to display in your site.
Placing Ads on Copyright-infringed Content
We’ve already mentioned what Google considers Prohibited Content and one of them is copyrighted material. We thought this one is tricky enough to deserve a point of its own. Depending on the function of your website, you may be posting both copyrighted content and Adsense ads. This according to the Adsense program is also a no-no
For example, if you have a website about music and it contains copyrighted videos, you should avoid posting Adsense on your site. This applies to all copyrighted content whether they are videos, images, music and others.
Placing Ads on 404 Error Pages
Many publishers overlook the ads displaying on their web pages that serve no major purpose. Examples include 404 error pages, Unsubscribe page, and Thank you page. After all, any opportunity to have the ads displayed are great, right? Wrong! You could be reprimanded by Google for this.
Google explains that since these pages typically have little content, displaying ads here spell deception. Your visitors may think the ads are your website’s content and click on them. Remember, using tactics that encourage unintentional clicks are not allowed so the aforementioned case is an apt example.
Sharing Your Earnings
Perhaps you’re someone experimenting on Google Adsense as a money-making tool. Or maybe you’re competing to be the highest earner among your peers. Whatever the case is, never discuss your earnings in full detail. Google allows you to share your gross earnings online and that’s it. Don’t go babbling about significant stats such as your CTR, eCPM, and other related data.
The Surest Way to Avoid These Adsense Violations
These are the top mistakes Adsense publishers make. As you can see, some of them are crystal-clear (not clicking your own ads) while others can be trickier (posting ads along with certain types of content). As a Publisher, it’s your duty to practice caution in using ads as well as keeping yourself updated on the policy changes.
If you’re not sure if what you’re doing is permitted or not, you should contact Google or ask an expert to clarify your doubts. It may take some time and effort, but doing so will keep you away from the receiving end of a Dear Adsense Publisher note.
Have anything else to add in this list? Share it in the comments below!