Google AdSense with Italics

Google [[GOOG]] is testing a number of enhancements to Adsense Text Ads. These include adding Google logos, favicons, and Google Checkout icons. Also, ads without “Ads by Google” have been reported. A recent addition to the list is the use of italized titles. Shown below is an example that appeared on another site recently. I have put the the italized ad together with the non-italized version for comparison purpose. The two ads actually appeared on separate pages loads.

Screen capture of Adsense ads

In order to blend ads into websites, publishers can choose ad type (text or image), size (format), background colors, or font colors. Google does not, however, give publishers control over the font-family, font-style, or font-weight used in [tag]AdSense[/tag] text ads.

Few websites use italized text in links or titles. Google must see this embellishment as a distinguishing feature that could attract attention and therefore, clicks. Every AdSense publisher knows that small changes in ads can make a huge difference in click-though-rates (CTR). Google is wise to test any changes extensively – no matter how subtle.

What do you think?