5 years of AdSense Money – AdSense then and now

5 years of AdSense Money – AdSense then and now

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Today, I have been trying, very unsuccessfully, to find revenue, if any, from the ads on my YouTube videos – and I learned 2 things.

1) The new updated design of AdSense SUCKs! But it’s designed that way – Google makes everything as difficult as possible.

2) 2008 was a Very Good year for me with AdSense, so good in fact, I need to call my step mom to make sure I paid enough in taxes! (I just called, I did!)

2007 was the year I decided to become a programmer. It made sense, I already knew html, you could sell websites eBay (I was all about eBay) and other than updating my computer it wasn’t going to cost much. I took adult-ed classes – those hardly cost anything and I used software I already had.

I got the cheapest hosting I could find (GoDaddy) and I start building site after site. At that time, GoDaddy customer service reps must have been bored stupid at night, they taught me stuff that I could have never learned in basic programming classes.
*Step-by-step instructions for finding and using free FTP
*Best free anti-virus
*Creating and editing a database – not just how to do it in GoDaddy, but by hand!

I’d call up around midnight, just to ask them none related questions.
Press 3 for Technical Support
“Hi, What would be the first steps in building a ZenCart theme?”
“What is the best site creation software?”
“Think I should have that looked at by a doctor?”
Honestly, there was no limit to the knowledge at 2am.

Then came AdSense!
All I wanted to do was make money. I didn’t care how as long as it wasn’t illegal and one night a nice Tech Support Dude said “You realize you have $50 of AdWords, you haven‘t used?”
“AdWords? What is this AdWords?”

Well HELL forget AdWords, once he started explaining I knew I wanted to know more about AdSense! Put a bit of code on your site and get people click it and Google Paid You Real Money.

Yup! That was the gig for me. But how to get people to my site?

This is where thinking outside the box and knowing how to fake it came in handy.

First I setup a simple WordPress blog complete with shopping cart plug in.
Then I cleaned out the basement – tons of treasures!
I listed the items as “Free” just pay shipping and they’re yours.

I took the AdSense ad link and carefully placed it into a html table so it looked like this:

Shop: Clothing Toys Books Crafts Services
AdSense: Ad Ad Ad Ad Ad
Categories: Adult Clothing Children’s Clothing Pet Supplies

And I put that table in at the top and bottom of every item I listed as free.

It was very easy for people to either click the ad by mistake or just to mistake the ad as a category – and at the time Google Allowed it (they don’t now, don‘t try it)

Then I went to Craigs list. I post ads for free items, I never posted anything about shipping – obviously – in the ad I wrote “for an entire list of items I’m giving away see my blog: link“.

And about a week or 2 later Google Updated and I had a PR of 3!

The thing is, most people just came to look, it was like a yard sale, people mulling over stuff, some people paid the shipping to get the stuff – Getting rid of the stuff wasn’t the goal (though it was nice) getting people to click the link and earn a profit was the goal and it worked.

That worked nicely until that med student was hiring hookers through Craig’s list, then he killed one! Around that time the Craig’s list people started taking a good long look at what was going on and people like me ……. Ummm got blocked.

But that wasn’t the only way I got people to my site. I also joined every “Mommy” group on Café Mom and every mommy forum I could find and posted the same information as on Craig’s List, people came, saw, some people ordered my free stuff, but most people just clicked the links and I cashed in.

Another thing not allowed by AdSense any longer, was a great little trick where you would put up 4 little pictures in a row and under those pictures put an ad link with 4 ads.

People would click the pictures thinking the pictures were a links to categories, when clicking the image didn’t work, they’d think “Oh, I need to click the link under the image” the link under the image was an AdSense link and cha ching!

I also themed many HTML/CSS templates where the Ad Links looked like part of the Categories on the sidebar, this is still allowed by AdSense (and back then was actually SUGGESTED by Google), but harder to do now since Google started putting their little logo either above or below the ads.

In the beginning the only hard fast AdSense rule was “Do Not tell people to click your AdSense links” But it did allow you to say “If you enjoyed the content, please visit my sponsors” and put the word SPONSOR over the Google Ads.

It was all fun and games and then my oldest started preschool, I was babysitting for a friend several days a week and my youngest started getting in to everything and I had to put AdSense aside for awhile. I have no idea what the rules are now, I probably can’t even say the word AdSense in a post any longer.

Maybe I’ll look up those rules tomorrow – wonder what I can come up with, because that AdSense money is sweet!

Elements used to create Featured image Artwork provided by Created by Jill.