Before you start giving me that shit-eating grin, let me just make one thing clear.
I still think AdSense is not everything and there are other ways to better monetize your website.
That being said, I’m not going to try to pretend like Adsense is a load of horse crap.
Because, one, no blogger with half a brain would believe me. And two, Adsense is not a load of horse crap.
Adsense works… yes, really.
Although sometimes the return on investment might not … well, match your expectations, let’s not quibble about semantics.
Adsense is definitely one of the best (and one of my least favourite) ways to monetize your blog.
We’ll dive into the ‘Do’s and ‘Don’t’s, the “How-to”s and the rest of the nuts and bolts about monetizing your blog with Adsense but first, let me tell you why I’m not exactly a big fan of Adsense.
The Adsense Guide You Probably Should
n’t Read Pt. 1
If you travel all over the web (and by travel all over the web, I mean google it), you’ll find a shit ton of pages on Adsense.
Yes, Adsense has a big fan club.
But not this blogger.
This blogger has never really liked Adsense, but for the sake of writing this blog post, he will do his research and even…ahem..*clears throat*… experiment with Adsense.
No, I’m not joining the fan club.
I’m more like James Bond going into the gathering of his enemies and ordering a vodka martini, shaken not stirred, while I look around.
This first part is about telling you what you need to have before trying to sign up for Adsense and showing you how to set up your Adsense account.
Watch this space in the next couple of days to see the rest (if my site gets approved… shhh, more on that later)
In case you were wondering: “Tomi, why you no like Adsense?”
Once upon a time, there were many boys and girls.
They formed a social circle/ hierarchy and were the cool kids.
But not Tomi. He didn’t fit in. He wasn’t cool.
So he developed a contrarian approach tomost things, and when everybody is going one way, he goes the opposite way.
Ditto when he’s told to do something a particular way.
End of story.
Now, when I got into online business, there was just so much senrenre around Adsense that I naturally stayed the hell away from it… until now.
I’d been doing a couple site reviews, and mostly pissed off by sites saturated with Ads by Google. They make it hard to just go through a site and find what you came there for.
I was misled to think that’s how Adsense worked and I huffed and puffed about it… A LOT.
Now, I understand that it was just poor Ad placement and their use that actually pissed me off. Adsense wasn’t really to blame for that.
Or maybe it was… until now.
What The Hell Is Adsense Anyway?
Wikipedia defines Adsense as “a program run by Google that allows publishers in the Google Network of content sites to serve automatic text, image, video, or interactive media advertisements, that are targeted to site content and audience.”
To me, Adsense is just Affiliate Marketing’s cousin from America.
Here’s what I mean.
Affiliate marketing allows you to promote products or businesses on your site for a commission.
You choose what products you want to be an affiliate for, join their affiliate program, get your link and place them on your site where you think they’ll get you the most clicks for your efforts.
Adsense does the same thing… with just a few differences.
For one, you don’t get to choose the products you promote on your site.
Sure, Adsense displays contextual ads (i.e. ads related to your content) and ads based on search history of the user. But the fact of the matter is, you don’t have any real control over what ads show up on your site.
That explains why you may see ads about shoes or watches on sites that have nothing to do with shoes or watches.
Secondly, your site has to go through a Mini Audition by Google before you can use Adsense.
Your site needs to sing and dance to Google’s tune (which is not necessarily all that bad) or you won’t get accepted. And while your site is using Adsense, you need to watch yourself and not make any careless errors or you could get banned… for life!
And Google reserves the right to terminate the agreement (or even reject you outright) at any point in time.
Don’t get me wrong.
I’m not even trying to join in on the “Affiliate Marketing vs. Adsense” Debate that has been going on for quite some time.
I’m just letting you in on the facts. I will say this though.
As a Sharp Guy, any “whish” way na way.
If Adsense works for you, use it. If Affiliate marketing does, use it.
If you can get both Adsense and Affiliate marketing to work for you (like I plan to do), my guy you dey ball!
Go forth and prosper.
But first, you’re going to need to sign up. You need to get your site affairs in order before that though.
Before You Sign Up For Adsense
Just like before you make a phone call you need to have credit, before you sign up for Adsense, you need to have your site set up right.
Or you can skip this, and try your luck setting up your Adsense account.
Your site might get rejected and then you’ll have to spend a lot of time trying to figure out why, and then try again.
It might just be a better option to get it right the first time.
First things first, you need to make sure:
There’s nothing more annoying to your visitors than a home page that confuses them more than it helps them.
Your home page should make it clear to them what your site is about and what the benefit to them is.
(ii) Your site is easy to navigate
This begins from that primary navigation menu.
You need to have all the important elements that make it easy for your visitors to find their way around your site without having to do a search for everything!
(iii) Your site speed
It’s usually recommended that your site load speed should be less than 3 seconds.
If you can get your site load speed down to less than 3 seconds, by all means, do it. If you can’t, get it down to as low as you can.
Your site should not take up to 30 seconds to load. By then, most of your visitors would have clicked the “Back” button.
Hello, High Bounce Rate.
First off, Google has a thing with content.
And you can’t blame them, they run a search engine and are always trying to curate the best content. So they don’t take too kindly to sites with shitty content.
When it comes to content, you have to ensure your content is unique and relevant. Your content also needs to be original.
As a matter of fact, if you have copyrighted content on your blog, don’t waste your time trying to sign up for Adsense till you have that sorted out.
You also need to make sure your content is not in violation of Google’s content policies.
Google is smart.
I’ll confess. I’m not exactly super-knowledgeable about this legal stuff, and you don’t need to be either.
Without traffic, you’ll have no visitors. Without visitors, you’ll have nobody to see or click on your Ads.
And that’s bad for Adsense business.
Promote your content effectively so you’ll start getting a sizeable amount of traffic. This will increase your chances of actually earning through Adsense.
These should get your site Adsense ready.
Now, it’s time to sign up.
Signing up For Adsense
I’m going to be signing up for Adsense as I write this and I’ll show you every single step of the process so it’s easier to follow.
Follow these steps:
Step #1: Go to www.google.com/adsense/start or just google Adsense and click the second link:
You should see this next page:
Click that “Sign Up Now” button.
And you’ll be redirected to a page where you need to sign in to your Google account to continue.
If you already have an email with Google, you already have a Google account. Just enter in your email and password and sign in.
Otherwise, you’ll need to create a Google account. Do that.
After signing in, you’d see a page that looks like this:
Type in your website URL. For me, this is “www.500nairawriter.com” so I’ll put that in here.
And in that box with “Get more out of Adsense”, I suggest you pick the first option “Yes, send me customized help and performance suggestions.”
Because well, you’re going to need help and performance suggestions so you don’t just have Adsense but no idea of how to use it or make money from it.
Next you need to pick your country of residence. That’s pretty simple.
When you do that, the Terms and Conditions will show up. Read through carefully, or if you’re like most people, just scroll through and then check the box with “Yes, I have read and accept the agreement.”
You should see this next page:
What you want to do is click “Get started” because that’s obviously what you want to do. The pop up will disappear and you’ll see this page next:
Now, there’s a list of tasks to do to activate your account.
First, you’ll need to copy a code into your header section of your site.
If you built your site from scratch i.e. you coded the HTML, CSS, etc, you should know how to do this already.
If you’re using WordPress, you need to get the “Insert Header and Footers” plugin. Find Plugins at the lower part of the left side menu. Click on it and then click the option that says “Add new”.
Type in “insert headers” in that search field.
Find the “Insert Headers and Footers” plugin by WP Beginner. Install and Activate it.
Next, go to Settings in your left side menu, and click Insert Headers and Footers. You should see this next.
Go back to the Google Adsense page and copy the code into that first box and click on “Save”. After that, go check the box on the Adsense page that says “I’ve pasted the code into my header” and click on Done.
Next, you need to handle the next option- Your Payment Address
Basically, Google needs your address so they know where to send your checks (I think).
Click on “Provide Address” and fill out the fields provided with your details. Then click on “Submit”. You should see this page next.
At this point, all your work setting up your Adsense account is done. Google will take a day to reply me on whether I get in or not. We’ll pick this up after I get a reply.
For now, just keep your eyes peeled and watch this space. More on Adsense coming soon.
Keeping it 500,
Author: Tomi Joshua
Tomi is a case.
A bit brash, at first blush. But ultimately, he means well. There are very few things he won’t say or do in the presence of tolerant company (especially when it could make for a good story later).
Tomi is a Doctor, writer, certified inbound marketer (Shout Out to HubSpot), Digital Hustler, and online business addict.
He is most likely to be found dancing to the beat of his own drum, even in accapella.