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Keywords in URLs and AdSense

Interesting post over at ipears (love the name) on The importance of a good ‘post slug’ where Jan reflects upon the impact that changing URLs of individual posts from number extensions to content related keyword extensions had on AdSense ads.

‘I left all titles as is, but started renaming all post-slugs from numbers to content related (yeah, now I know it is meant for that) slugs. While doing so and saving I saw the immediate reflection in the google ads. Quite amazing and quite stupid that never before I paid enough attention to it. ‘

This is a good observation – often we talk about the importance of keywords in URLs for SEO purposes and forget ads. I would add to this that I’ve found that meta tags can also have an impact upon your AdSense ads. While most people believe they don’t have much impact upon SEO in Google these days it’s one of the first things I look at when people tell me they are getting irrelevant ads on their blog.

Keep in mind that AdSense is reliant upon keywords in a very similar way to SEO draws on them – work on one and you might just work on the other without knowing it.

About Darren Rowse

Darren Rowse is the founder and editor of ProBlogger Blog Tips and Digital Photography School. Learn more about him here and connect with him on Twitter, Facebook, Google+ and LinkedIn.

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Comments

  1. Makes sense, how would *you* work out what a post is about?

  2. I recall reading somewhere that Google likes hyphenated words, too, instead of underscored (instead of spaces in filenames).

    When test-searching for one of my own blogs on Google, displays a cached version of initial page text (recent changes haven’t been crawled, I guess).

    I have experienced an increase in ad revenue, along with much higher CTRs (between 1% and 2%) and eCPM rates, but without a corresponding increase in ad impressions. I had thought that it was AdSense “doing its thing” over time, becoming more effective and accurate at targeting based on what gets a response. I had not considered that it might have been due to adding meta tags. Maybe it’s both.

    For those folks who use Blogger, we don’t have exact control over page slugs like with WordPress. But, if we remember to put the most important keywords in the first 3 or 4 words of a post title, we Blogger users should fare well.

  3. Well, makes sense I guess.

  4. HD Goddess says:

    That’s why it’s best not to use the word ‘blog’ in your domain name…unless your blog is about blogging, of course! I’ve seen many sites that end up with only ‘blog’ ads from adsense because they call themselves somethingblog.com.

  5. Adam Graham says:

    I’m going to start adding Meta Tags to my Blog posts going forward. We’ll see what it does to my Click Rate. Currently at 0.3% for this month.

  6. mark says:

    I always use meta tags, no matter what. I feel it still partially helps in search engines (well at least the meta ones). What’s funny is that I just noticed I dominate the first 5 listings in Google for a certain keyword that relates to my blog. First time thats happened. :D

    My Google ads seem quite relevant on 1 of my blogs, but on the others its irrelvant – even though the design is the same, but just a few details changed here and there. So, that’s kinda confused me.

  7. Supa says:

    HD Goddess, strange, never ever had that problem. But for all I know google doesn’t have many contextual ads to show to your country (if it’s not a major country).

  8. Jan says:

    Darren, thanks for the nod… =)

    It was really kind of coincidence finding this out, but I think updating/upgrading is always a nice time for trying out things. Of course with large quantities of posts, caution is necessary.

    It still is a bit of trial and error: The post I used as example at ipears.com, first ended in britney-spears-baby. For the wide-skyscraper ad I used to have on the side, this meant enough Britney Spears related ads.
    I changed theme layout and reduced the ad to a 468×60 sized one. Suddenly I only got problogging ads. Taking away the -baby part of the slug brought back Britney Spears ads… well, at least in my tiny part of the world… =)

    Oh before any judging… I am NOT a Britney fan! LOL

    Chrz y’all, Keep on tweaking and trying, blogging is a process of continuous improvement and innovation…

    Jan

  9. Ozh says:

    Actually, if the url has some importance, it’s not that important. I’ve ran a few tests some time ago, and I found that the URL is what defines the *first* loading of ads, i.e. :
    - create a page with a focused topic, say, “mortgage”
    - name it with another focused keyword, say ipod-mp3-players.html
    - load the page : chances are you’ll see ads about Ipod and MP3
    - reload the page : chances are, from now on, you’ll see ads about mortgage.

    I guess your mileage can vary, depending on several factors, but the tests I’ve ran made me conclude that, obviously, google bots are much smarter than reading a URL to determine a topic.

    (now, fingers crossed for my comment to go through anti spam checks with such keywords :)

  10. Drupal and WordPress publish verbose urls. Drupal can create separate words with dashes or underscores, so I prefer it.

  11. meta tags are important for Adsense for sure…. but i’m not so sure if they do much for seo – only the title and description tags seem to make an impact.

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