Why Using Google AdSense To Monetize Your Website Is A Bad Idea!

Last Updated on September 22, 2020 by Fabrizio Van Marciano

Google AdSense is one of the oldest contextual and rich media advertising programs on the web. It is also regarded as one of the best ways to earn revenue from your blog or website. However, if you run a personal brand or small business website, is it such a good idea to be using AdSense for monetization?

The short answer is no, it's not a great idea, and I'll share my reasons 'why' shortly.

You're probably unaware of this right now. Still, if you're using Google AdSense to monetize your personal brand site, to whatever extent, then you're probably doing your business more harm than good.

I've done the Google AdSense thing for several years. In fact, I opened my Google AdSense account back in 2006, but I didn't actually start using it until 2010.

Back in the day, almost every blogger that I came across was using AdSense to monetize content.

Even to this day, AdSense is still the simplest and the laziest way to earn a few bucks from your blog or website.

Yes, that's right... I'll repeat it, a 'few' bucks because in almost all cases, that's all most people earn from AdSense.

Let's face it unless you've worked super-hard to have built a popular blog in a lucrative niche with a ton of traffic each month, you're really only going to earn cents from AdSense. Pardon the pun!

Why I loved using AdSense, back in the day

As I said, when I got started, I was using AdSense almost everywhere on my blog, and I loved it.

Each week I would log into my AdSense account to see the earnings increase ever so slightly.

I wasn't earning a great deal, mind you, around $70 to $100 per month. However, It was free and easy money, right? All I had to do was create more content for my blog and whack on some AdSense ads!

But here's the thing:

I was sightless and didn't really know any better. I should have paid more attention to creating other reliable and profitable income streams from my blog, rather than invest all my time in AdSense. Or use any type of ad network similar to AdSense.

Many bloggers either use AdSense or do affiliate marketing to monetize their blogs. Some do both. I would argue wholeheartedly that affiliate marketing is a way better monetization strategy.

Why adding AdSense to your business website is a mistake!

So, if I loved using Google AdSense so much, why do I now think it's terrible business?

Asides from the fact that it's not very profitable? Let me explain something else.

If you're trying to build a brand, a business with your blog/website, then using AdSense isn't such a great idea.

I stopped using AdSense when I realized that I wanted to build a REAL business from blogging.

If your website exists to help you promote and grow your brand, your products, or services, using AdSense to monetize will more likely help to kill your conversion opportunities like nothing else.

Here are some things you might want to think about very carefully before using AdSense for your small business or personal brand website.

  1. AdSense ads can make your website look "cheap, and this can dilute your brand value. This is not good!
  2. AdSense adds no additional value to your website or blog what so ever!
  3. AdSense ads can seriously damage your conversion rates. Sending visitors away from your site that could potentially become new leads or even sales for your business.
  4. AdSense can contribute to a high bounce rate on your site. People who click on an AdSense advert are literally taken away from your site forever. This is not a great conversion strategy.
  5. Adding AdSense ads everywhere on your site makes for poor user experience, especially those intrusive ones that interrupt readers halfway down a blog post or page, pop-up ads, and so on.
  6. AdSense scripts can sometimes increase your page load times. Again, not great for your users that have to wait for your ads to load so they can read your post.
  7. AdSense is the least profitable way to monetize your blog unless you have a ton of traffic.

OK, so no AdSense, but what about displaying affiliate banner ads instead?

Banner ads are more or less the same thing, in my opinion. They, too, take visitors away from your site. However, I would much prefer to use affiliate ads instead of AdSense.

Why?

Because the profit of a potential affiliate sale is far greater than a single click on an AdSense ad!

I would very much prefer to earn $50+ from someone making a purchase via one of my affiliate banner ads, than I would have some stranger click on an AdSense ad and earn 20 measly cents.

Remember, these days, website visitors are much savvier than they ever used to be. And, most of them are blind to blatant advertisements, regardless whether it's an affiliate ad or Google AdSense block of ads.

What sites are great for using AdSense on then?

I'm not saying that AdSense is 100% bad. What I'm saying is that I don't think to display them on a personal brand business website, where you're trying to build a brand and promote your own products or services, is a smart strategy.

However, if you really want to use AdSense to generate revenue from your site, first make sure you have a decent amount of traffic. Micro-niche websites and blogs are great for AdSense. But definitely not eCommerce, personal brand blogs, or freelance websites.

Again, that's just my opinion.

What should you do instead of using AdSense ads on your business website?

When it comes to monetization, I prefer to create my own digital products to promote and sell. Such as my blog planner workbook.

I also provide services through my blog because, as I said, I'm focused on building a business.

Also, I recommend quite a few affiliate tools, apps, and services that I have used in my business.

In the future, I plan to create online courses and publish a book. So that's my monetization model.

For your personal brand website, you should be focused on growth. You should also be creating great content, building a community, creating your own digital products aligned with your business or goal, and providing relevant services, if you want to, of course.

Building your email list

The other thing you should be entirely focused on doing is building your email list.

Converting visitors into subscribers should be a top priority, in fact, because they're the ones who are going to be your customers later down the line, over and over again in many cases.

Those many visitors you lost, or could potentially lose, through a quick AdSense click? They're never going to come back.

If you're thinking of using AdSense on your personal brand blog or small business website, please, please, please think very carefully about it before you do.

Do you think AdSense is bad for a business website?

Do let me know your thoughts on this debate.

  • Do you think Google AdSense should be used on a personal brand or small business website?
  • Do you already use AdSense on your personal blog or website? And if so, do you not think you could be missing out on a whole lot of opportunities, conversion wise?

I know the comment section below is probably closed when updating this post, but you can always contact me on Facebook or send me an email here.

Best of luck!

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8 comments on “Why Using Google AdSense To Monetize Your Website Is A Bad Idea!”

  1. Hi Fab,

    Agreed. Adsense is bad branding unless your brand is so strong and HUGE - ie Huff Post - that it overpowers the Adsense. Super points dude. Stick with the eBooks and services and list building to make things happen from a well branded, clear and focused space.

    Ryan

    1. Hey Ryan you're right a large online media outlet like Huff Post or Mashable would do well with AdSense, makes you wonder just how well those brands do with AdSense. But small business sites and blogs are a definite no go in my experience.

  2. Completely agree with you! Before I knew any better I had Adsense on my site and I only earned coppers from it. Then i managed to break one of their T&Cs, so they closed me down and kept the balance of the money I'd earned anyway. I never figured out what I did wrong, but by then I'd started to realize that Adsense was taking my visitors away - and I was pleased to lose it. ALSO, sometimes, the sites displayed were direct competitors! I tried to block them, but it's hard to block every one.
    A lesson well worth emphasizing! Joy

    1. Hey Joy, thanks for dropping by, I was the same. I remember getting off the phone to the tax man way back in 2005 and he mentioned something about Google AdSense and I should look into it, first time I ever heard of it at the time. I opened my account in 2006 I think. I used it on several old blogs and did OKish, but soon learned it was the ultimate 'conversion killer'. I currently use AdSense on one parenting niche site of mine and that's about it as it earns pence each day. Have a great weekend Joy 🙂

  3. Yeah you're right Fabrizio!

    Adsense is a waste of space

    I used it several years ago - made a couple of hundred dollars from it - and then promptly removed it.

    Apart from the fact you make peanuts from using it, as you say it is ugly and devalues your site. It's also a conversion killer because people click off and don't get into our own content as much, which defeats the purpose of having a blog.

    Certainly it is a lazy way to make a few bucks, but so is affiliate marketing - and is much more profitable.

    Bloggers should focus on the basics - list building, promoting their own products/services, as well as affiliate offers.

    Thanks for your helpful post, Fabrizio

    Kim

    1. Hi Kim so glad you agree with me here. I prefer affiliate marketing as well, you work hard writing some great reviews, case studies etc, and promoting the heck out of it, and it pays off 50 times more than AdSense could ever give you back, that's awesome.

      List building and creating my own products, eBooks are also a big part of my strategy. Have a great weekend Kim.

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