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Scrolling AdSense Ads and Questions on CPC




Every AdSense publisher should have heard or read about those new AdSense scrolling ads by now. It was a nice improvement aimed at visitors interacting with ads. Question is, do readers really interact with ads?


The introduction of scrolling ads mean that a wider selection of advertisers will be available to the visitors by just clicking on the scroll arrows. With the limitations of the ad space, scrolling ads make sense just like those LED marquees you see everywhere.

Scrolling AdSense Ads

I think this development has got to do more about CPC rather than CTR. Those who are not yet familiar with how Cost-Per-Click (CPC) is determined by AdSense, here are some ideas you might want to know.

  • CPC is directly determined by the bid amounts made by AdWords advertisers. The more bidders, the higher the CPC as competition pushes the keyword prices up. One quick way to check whether a bid for a keyword is high is by searching for it on Google and looking at the number of ads displayed on the right side of the search results.
  • Just like AdSense for Search, the placement of ads in AdSense for Content is also arranged by highest bidder. That means that the first ads displayed on your page will most likely have the highest CPC. If you have 3 ad placements, a click on an ad at the 3rd box will more likely cost less than the one on the 2nd and the 1st. In essence, the more ad spots you have, the more likely you’d get a lower CPC on average.

In theory, having scrolling ads will most likely affect the CPC as the succeeding ads in the scroll will cost less to the advertisers (due to bid priority).

The contradicting statistical probability now is between the chances that “a visitor clicks on a default ad which costs more” or “a visitor more likely to click on a scrolled ad that costs less”. Would be interesting to see field tests on ad CTR due to scrolling ads and compare them with the eCPM.



Abe is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of YugaTech. You Can follow him on Twitter @abeolandres.

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10 Responses

  1. Gsas says:

    had the same analysis when I saw the scroll buttons on my adsense(lower CPC). it was also the first time i had the nerve to click on something interactive which is part of my google ads. hehe.

    yuga, you said that the more ads you have, the lower your CPC is, because you tend to display more ads with lesser amounts of bids. Does this hold true for all ads displayed in a page(say one on the sidebar, one on the header, and one on the comment section)? I mean if this is, then how do you know where in those three ads the highest bidder is (so you can concentrate on its placement and appearance)?

    i guess the bigger question is: how many keywords does Adsense consider when you have so many ads? i know Adsense detects several keywords at once per page because there are times that a “Philippine Remit 2 Home” would show up alongside “100,000 Guitar Chords” on my site—I’m just at a loss at how many.

    you see, the more keywords adsense considers, the higher your CPCs should be because your ads no longer compete with one another. am i right?

  2. Gsas says:

    had the same analysis when I saw the scroll buttons on my adsense(lower CPC). it was also the first time i had the nerve to click on something interactive which is part of my google ads. hehe.

    yuga, you said that the more ads you have, the lower your CPC is, because you tend to display more ads with lesser amounts of bids. Does this hold true for all ads displayed in a page(say one on the sidebar, one on the header, and one on the comment section)? I mean if this is, then how do you know where in those three ads the highest bidder is (so you can concentrate on its placement and appearance)?

    i guess the bigger question is: how many keywords does Adsense consider when you have so many ads? i know Adsense detects several keywords at once per page because there are times that a “Philippine Remit 2 Home” would show up alongside “100,000 Guitar Chords” on my site—I’m just at a loss at how many.

    you see, the more keywords adsense considers, the higher your CPCs should be because your ads no longer compete with one another. am i right ?

  3. boddah says:

    “Question is, do readers really interact with ads?” -if it’s just plain text ads probably no, especially if the the scroller/pointer (whatever you call that) is that small, users would hardly notice it. Unless maybe if the ads are presented in the same way as that of Widgetbucks, complete with item info, pictures etc. It can easily get the viewers attention and there’s a bigger chance that they will browse/scroll other products on that list.

    And yes, a Happy Christmas to all! :)

  4. yuga says:

    Rom, the rule of thumb is the “first displayed ads” have higher CPC. How to determine which is first? Depends on which ad code you placed high up in your HTML/CSS.

  5. Gsas says:

    So it’s quality clicks(fewer ad spots) versus quantity clicks(more ad spots). Hmm… Which one is better? I didn’t really take this seriously before so my instinct was to go for as many ad spots as my site can accomodate.

  6. yuga says:

    That’s basically the point. Which one’s better? Depends. You’ll have to do some trial and error stuff in the blog and see which setup is better.

  7. Macnerdzcare says:

    i think same pa rin yan eh.. marami lang ads pero ala namang mababago sa ecpm,etc..

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