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Ads: You can show them to guests only!

Posting a follow up to Nicole Simon’s Ads: You can post them later! I thought I would mention a common practice used by membership sites or other types of sites that require registration, such as message boards. You can easily show ads just to those who are not logged in, leaving those who are regular members without any ads at all.

Many publishers running AdSense on phpBB message boards use this technique, since you can use variables or different templates to give one set of users (ie. Guests) AdSense or other affiliate ads. Then you can specify that registered or logged in users (or even a specific group of registered users) do not see any ads at all. Or while guests might see 3 ad units and an Ad Link unit, registered users only see a single ad unit or an Ad Link unit.

You can also set up custom channels and track what registered users and guests are bringing in to your AdSense account. You might find guests are responsible for 85-90% of your AdSense income from that site, so it would make a great “feel good” community gesture to remove AdSense from those who are registered. And you can use an ad free environment as an incentive to encourage users to register, if you are striving for increased numbers of registrations.

What in the World of AdSense

After a couple of non-eventful AdSense weeks earlier this month, the past week or so has seen plenty of new AdSense changes, many coinciding with the WebmasterWorld of Search Conference.

First, Google AdSense engineers were in abundance at the “Meet the Engineers” evening that Google hosted. Set up at several tables, publishers got the opportunity to chat with AdSense engineers and product managers, and ask pretty much anything they wanted. And from what I heard back from publishers, they were open and more than willing to discuss all things AdSense, and write down all the suggestions and feedback that publishers gave. There were very few “no comment” responses (mostly to “what is the revenue split”, I’m sure!) and most publishers felt it was a great experience and a perfect opportunity to voice any concerns or questions in a format other than the Google support form or email.

Gokul Rajaram, one of the AdSense Product Managers, also participated in one of the contextual publishing panels (yours truly was on the other one) and discussed the new features AdSense has rolled out recently, including the new Ad Links formats as well as the new AdSense for Feeds that bloggers (including ProBlogger & JenSense) are currently beta testing.

But the biggest surprise was the announcement Matt Cutts made in the Super Session about spam reporting AdSense sites. Now, if you see a site violating the AdSense terms and policies, click on the “Ads by Google” link, and be sure to include the keyword “spamreport” (one word) in the form, as well as what you believe the violation is. You can keep yourself anonymous, or you can include your email address.

AdSense continues to make great steps forward as we all await the inevitable launch of the Yahoo Publisher Network. It will be interesting to see what YPN does to attempt to dazzle publishers away from AdSense.