You’ve probably heard a lot about Google AdSense (which is actually more accurately known as Google AdSense V1), but you may not know just what it is.  Well, for one thing, it’s a one of the hottest new ways to make money online without having to do a whole lot.  If you’ve read Robert Kiyosaki’s book, “Rich Dad, Poor Dad,” you know that passive income is the best kind of income to have.

Passive income is income that you get without having to work for it.  I know this may sound like some kind of “pie in the sky” get-rich-quick scheme, but passive income is for real.  In fact, every single billionaire on earth uses the power of passive income to keep money coming in while he or she jets off to parties and resorts and such.

The best example of passive income in the physical world is real estate.  When you own an apartment building and hire a property manager and a maintenance crew to take care of it for you and collect the rents, all you have to do is cash the checks that roll in.

Of course, passive income doesn’t just happen overnight, or everyone would be getting it.  In the case of the apartment building owner, it took money, time, and knowledge to set up an S corporation, find a building to buy, put up the cash to buy it with and get a loan for the rest, renovate it, then screen and hire the property manager and maintenance crew.  But once that was all done, checks began rolling in with little or no effort.

Well, Google Adsense is the online equivalent of that.  You’ll have to invest just a little bit of time in learning about it, but once you get it set up you can look forward to seeing those nice checks roll in.  Or, if you’re totally online, seeing money flow into your PayPal account.

1.1   So Just What is Google Adsense?

Google AdSense is a fast and absolutely ridiculously easy way for people with websites of all types and sizes to put up and display relevant Google ads on the content pages of their site and earn money.

Because the Google AdSense ads relate to what your visitors came to your site to read about, or because the ads match up to the interests and characteristics of the kind of people your content attracts, you now have a way to improve your content pages AND make some serious bucks off of them.

Google AdSense is also a way for site owners to provide Google search capability to visitors and to earn even more money by putting Google ads on the search results pages. Google AdSense gives you the ability to earn advertising revenue from every single page on your website—with a minimal investment of your time

So what kind of ads do you have to put up?  That’s the good part—you don’t have to decide.  Google does it for you.  AdSense always delivers relevant ads that are precisely targeted—on a page-by-page basis—to the content that people find on your site.  For example, if you have a page that tells the story of your pet fish, Google will send you ads for that site that are for pet stores, fish food, fish bowls, aquariums…you get the picture.

If you decide you want to add a Google search box to your site, then AdSense will deliver relevant ads targeted to the Google search results pages that your visitors’ search request generated.

If you’re into upgrades, Google is now offering “AdSense Premium”, which is CPC based and, for the time being, offers less flexibility in terms of ad sizes — only banners and skyscrapers are currently available. You can apply using existing AdWords accounts, or you can request a new account. Applicants are usually notified within a day as to whether they’ve been accepted for the program.

Here’s the thing you need to know:  Google has no strict criteria for acceptance into the AdSense program, and Ad Sense doesn’t hit you with a minimum traffic requirement. The only criteria they’re really sticky about is the standard “acceptable content” requirements, and that’s pretty standard almost anywhere.

Google AdSense says they’re serious about attracting quality content sites, and because of that they only allow AdSense members to serve one ad per page.  This means you can’t use AdSense for both banners and skyscrapers.(Note: banners are those horizontal ads that run up top and down bottom.  Skyscrapers are the tall ads that run vertically, on the left and right of your page text.)

Once you’ve been accepted into Google AdSense, you’ll be able to get the AdSense advertisements on any site you own using the same ad code, provided you obey the Google guidelines. (And that’s very, very important—more on that later.)

Your reporting doesn’t occur in real time, but is updated regularly throughout the day. Right now, you can’t view reports based on a domain or site basis if you run the AdSense on more than one site.

Before you sign up, you really ought to read the lengthy and detailed FAQ on the AdSense site.

1.2   What Can it do for Me?

In three words, earn you money.  More relevant ads on your pages translates into more clicks—and more money that you receive. Because when users click on an ad, Google will pay you. If you’ve set up your own sales team, you’ll get an additional benefit: AdSense complements their efforts.  It doesn’t compete with them.  With AdSense, you get a reporting page that gives you a breakdown on how your ads are doing and what they’re bringing in.

Google has a huge advertiser base, so they have ads for all kinds of businesses and for just about every type of content no matter how broad or specialized it is. And since Google provides the ads, you don’t have to spend time talking to your advertisers.

AdSense represents advertisers that span the spectrum.  These advertisers range from large global brands to small and local companies. And ads are targeted by geography so global businesses can display local advertising easily. One more thing: you can use AdSense in many languages.

So how does AdSense figure out how to do all this targeted advertising?  Well, AdSense has the ability to deliver relevant ads because the gurus at Google understand how web pages really work and they’re continually refining their technology to make it smarter all the time.

For example, some words can have several different meanings depending on context. You’ve seen th is happen with “two” and “too” and “to.”  Google technology is smart enough to understand these distinctions from the context that the word appears in, so you get more targeted ads.

When you put a Google search box on your site you start making money off of web searches that people do on your site. This ability to search off of your page keeps them on your site longer—since they can search from right there where they are—and it will only take you a few minutes to get AdSense up and running.   The best part, of course, is that AdSense is free for you to use.

Download a free copy of The Google AdSense Handbook

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