Creating an Alternate Ad for Google AdSense

Google [tag]AdSense[/tag] ads are a great source of income for many web site publishers. Google delivers the ads live relevant to the content of the web page. The ads are delivered from the inventory of ads they have available. What happens when no ads are available at the time? AdSense delivers non-profit (non-paying) ads. Or, lets you choose a filler color for no ad. Most publishers choose the later option. The end result is lost income and ugly white space on the web page.

Google, however, allows you to specify content to display whenever they don’t have sufficient relevant ads in their inventory. Instead of their ads, they display your alternate ad(s).

Use a HTML WYSIWYG editor such as Microft FrontPage to set-up and test your alternate ad. Here’s the basic code:

<title>Put Ad Title Here</title>
<div style="margin:0; padding:0;">
<!--replace this line with your ad code-->

The ad on the web page can contain any content a normal web page can contain (text, image, Javascript, forms, and so forth) so long as it fits within the allotted ad space. I highly recommend using an alternate ad of the same dimensions as the AdSense ad. Save the ad as an html file. Then, upload it to your server. Check that all is well by pointing your browser to the ad. For example:

The alternate ad web page URL can be specified when you generate the ad code from your AdSense admin panel. The URL will then appear in the code generated between the quote characters of this line: google_alternate_ad_url = “”;

Remember to make an alternate ad web page for each ad format on your web site. Especially for image only ads that have limited inventory.

This technique can also be applied to other PPC ad providers such as Clicksor.

Tip: Never use AdSense as an alternate ad.