First and foremost, blogging is not all about making money. If that is your initial intention, you are in the wrong place. However, if you are looking to take that next step into the blogosphere, Google Adsense is a common first step.
What is Google Adsense?
Google Adsense is an affiliate program that provides ads to insert into your blog relative to the items you post about frequently. Why is this beneficial? When a reader clicks on one of these inserted ads, you get a cut of the profit.
Besides making a little bit of extra cash, Google Adsense lets you call the shots. You are able to control how many ads are inserted and where on your page they pop up. If you are against bombarding your viewers with too much ad content, you don’t have to. Not only is the freedom great but they ensure that each ad is high-quality so you aren’t just promoting junk.
When you first enter their website they promote signing up in just three steps. This is not a lie.
- Provide your Payment Address – Entering your address is crucial to getting paid. Once you reach the payment threshold (we will get to this) they need your address to pay you.
- Verify your Phone Number – Who doesn’t ask for your phone number nowadays?
- Connect your Site to Adsense – Once completing the steps above a code will be provided to enter into the HTML of your website.
Enter the Code
If you are not familiar with coding this step may be confusing. After some trial and error, I finally figured out where to put the code they provide once you sign up.
DISCLAIMER: I blog through WordPress so this may only apply to others who use WordPress.
Go to your blogging dashboard and find the “Appearance” menu, then select “Editor”. Once this is selected, go to the right-hand side of your screen and select “Theme Header”.
You will see a bunch of coding, proceed to find the <head> code and enter your Adsense code there. Proceed to the bottom of your screen and select “update file”. After this step is completed you now are forced to wait.
Two weeks was the amount of time it took for Google Adsense to respond with a confirmation that my website is all set to start adding ads. So don’t worry if you do not hear immediately!
In order to start gaining clicks, you must physically enter the ads you would like your viewers to see.
- Get an Ad Plugin – I personally use “Ad Inserter” which has been incredibly comprehensive. This can be done by selecting the Plugin Option on the left side of your dashboard, “add new”, search for “Ad Inserter” and activate.
- Select your Ads – Once you have a place to put your ads, you now need to select the ads you would like.
Adsense provides three comprehensive options with an explanation of how exactly they will look once inserted into your blog. This all comes down to personal preference, so choose which ever you think will flow nicely into your theme.
- Insert your Ads – Once your specific ads are chosen you can not place them on your site. Copy the code provided and head over to the “Ad Inserter” (or whichever plugin you prefer). In WordPress, this will be under your settings tab.
Copy and paste the code you selected into the black box. You can rename each tab to keep track of each ad you enter. The bottom left-hand side provied you with more options on where exactly you would like readers to see your ads. I currently have selected “homepage” and “category pages”. Once again, this all comes down to personal preference. Do not forget to save all changes to this page.
This part really comes down to chance. There is no technical way to get money through Adsense. You just need to continue gaining traffic to your blog in hopes that eventually people will find interest in the ads that pop up on your site. There are also Facebook groups out there specifically for Bloggers who host “Click for Click” threads. This is an optimal way to acquire clicks on your site, just be sure to be fair and click on others’ ads in return.
How to Get Paid
If you are to this step of the process, Congratulations! This means that you are gaining momentum and making some money. Google Adsense does not allow payouts until you reach $10.00. Once you have hit that mark you are ready to get paid! However, with payment comes another hoop to jump through.
Remember at the beginning one of the first steps was to put in a valid mailing address? This is why! Once you have hit the minimum payout amount, Adsense sends you a pin in the mail. After receiving this pin you will select the action in your Google Adsense dashboard and enter the six digit pin. In all honesty, I have not received my first pin yet, therefore, I can not tell you exactly what happens after this step.
Disect the Dashboard
This is what you dashboard may look like on the computer screen. Though for more convenient access there is a Google Adsense app you can download onto your phone. This shows you a general breakdown of your earnings.
Here is my overall preformance in the last seven days. The green numbers below the stats are the difference between your stats a week ago. The line charts below that give you a visual of how much you have decreased or increased in the past week.
As you can see I have acquired 31 clicks this week, which is the number of times a person has checked out one of my ads provided by Adsense. The number right next to that is the CPC or Cost Per Click. Where this is a weekly overviews it averages the amount of money I accumulated per click. If you were to break it down even more by day you would see that number vary more specifically over time.
Like I mentioned before, having people click on your ads results more from luck than anything else. Unless you are persistent with the “Click for Click” threads online. I have had 449 views in the past week but only 31 of those have been money making ad clicks. Patience is definitely a virtue in the Adsense game.
Would I recommend Google Adsense to fellow bloggers? Absolutely. It is a great beginner tool to make some extra cash on the side. It is definitely not a tool that will allow you to quit your day job.
Regardless of the money, it is a perfect tool to breakdown the traffic that is coming to your website.
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