Friday, July 25, 2008

Those Deceiving Little Link Units from Adsense

Adsense offers up one product that really seems to have very few applications on a website other than possibly deceiving a web site viewer when Link Units are put in place.

Link units are a type of ad units that use contextual targeting to display a list of topics that are relevant to your page. Each topic, when clicked, brings the user to a page of related advertisements. You'll earn revenue for each valid user click on the ads on this resulting page. Link units come in a variety of unusual ad formats
Google Adsense

I have attempted to utilize these links from time to time acting in good faith that Google would not offer up a deceptive advertising product, but I have seen no situations where these particular products offer up a useful function.

The product at best lists several words in quasi menu form contextually related to the page they appear on.

As they are advertisements and not menus, this seems to be the first deception and results in their general lack of utility.

So if you have a site selling Nautica watches and you offer up one of these link units, someone clicking on the link might presumably find useful information but to throw up contextual words really rarely serves a purpose. 

This is likely why Adsense pushes their text and image ad units (the box looking ads) which have the option of including short phrases to explain why the contextual word should be clicked upon by a visitor.

So whenever you are considering putting link units in place, you are probably better off skipping this practice and either going instead with either other adsense ad units, nothing at all, or possibly some other advertising device.

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