Facebook Pixel
Join our Facebook Community

AdSense launch Referrals 2.0

Posted By Darren Rowse 29th of June 2007 Adsense 0 Comments

AdSense have today announced that they are expanding the previously closed beta Referrals 2.0 program to be available to all AdSense publishers. This newly expanded Referrals is going to take a while for publishers to get their heads around but the basics of the expansion are that now instead of only being able to recommend and earn money from a handful of Google related products that you’ll now be able to refer your readers to thousands of products on a CPA basis (ie you get paid when your reader takes some action specified by the advertiser (like buy something).

The AdSense blog has more information on referrals 2.0:

Expanded product inventory: While many of you have had success referring one of our Google products, some of you weren’t able to find a product that fit the context of your site. Referrals 2.0 offers products from thousands of AdWords advertisers, so you can find the right ads for your sites.

Category and keyword targeting: With thousands of products available, it can be difficult to decide which ads will perform best on your site. That’s why we give you the option to refer products by category and keyword. You can narrow down the types of ads you want to display and let AdSense figure out which ones will perform best on your site. Whether you want ads for a specific category, advertiser, or product, referrals 2.0 will give you the control to decide.

Ad unit optimization: It can be tricky picking the best ads for your site, so we’ve included ad unit optimization for referrals. When you create a new referral ad unit, simply select the Pick best performing ads option. We’ll then compare your selected ads to other relevant ads, and serve the ads we expect to perform best on your site.

Better targeting for pages with multiple themes: With standard contextual targeting, ads may not match up directly with the text around them if there are a number of themes on the page. With referrals, you can select unique “keywords” for each ad unit to narrow the targeting directly to the theme you want. Better targeting means higher earnings for your site.

Greater compensation for high-quality traffic: Since referrals are paid on a cost-per-action (CPA) basis, your traffic matters. If the traffic you send to advertisers is more likely to turn into a completed sale or lead, you will earn more with referrals.

Add your seal of approval: Unlike AdSense for content ads, our program policies allow you to make specific references to referral ads on your site. If you endorse the product that you are referring, feel free to let your users know. By adding your personal review of the products you refer, you can help your users make more informed choices.

My referrals 2.0 is already activated and an initial look at it is a little overwhelming. Th eother first impression is that for some keywords that I’m interested in there are a severe lack of products listed – I’m sure this will change as more advertisers jump in. I’m going to have to sit down for a couple of hours over the weekend to learn how to use it before I can really make much more comment on it than that.

I am excited that they’ve expanded referrals in this way and suspect it will increase earnings quite significantly if publishers can find products that relate strongly to their topic (always a key).

For more information on referrals 2.0 check out the AdSense Blog and the newly updated Referrals Help area.

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 and LinkedIn.
  1. Sweeeeet! I think it’s about time they did that!

  2. wow..that’s really cool..thanks for the update
    google rocks! :D

  3. I have to admit, even after reading over this it is still a little confusing… I think Google will eventually need to illustrate this better… or I can re-read this post. :)

  4. Off-topic. This is the first “how-to-blog” I’ve ever read and it started me out. So it’s fitting to post on here.



    Brandon J
    Money for Military

  5. Looks like I’m going to spend sometime this weekend to see how this can best fit into my blog. Thanks for the updates, looking forward to see what you think after you have some time with it.


  6. Wow Brandon J – that’s great news! Congratulations!

  7. Inside AdSense has an update.

    UPDATE: Clarified that referrals 2.0 is currently only available in referrals-supported languages.

    Does anyone know what languages are supported??

  8. Cute… I can’t wait to implement this new features inside my site….

  9. Anyone knows how much money do we get for one conversion? Is it still $1? Are the products paid or free?

  10. Great ! google is definitely experimenting with new things for advertisers and publishers. Something might be a big hit or add on to the constantly changing and evolving web.

  11. Cool! I used to think that Google Referral Program is the lamest!!! Seems that Google is seeking for improvement constantly.

    Thanks for the info.

  12. Yeah, this is really great! Google is taking further steps to try and gain control of the on-line world. How cool is that, huh?

    Seriously now, I kind of like Google. But if it continues to develop at this rate…

  13. Will try it out too.

  14. It’s Great ! Definitely helpful for all publishers.

  15. @Simon (7):
    “Does anyone know what languages are supported??”

    German is supported.

  16. I think Google’s shift to CPA may seriously effect CPC based publishers in long run.

  17. @ Kashif: that depends, we are using auctionads and it is doing just fine, even at moments reaching the same earning as adsense, so when you do a good mix, it can work out just fine.

  18. Wow, this is a great news for publishers. Imagine what benefits publishers can get when they are able to refer products that their readers need and want.

  19. Sadly, Google still doesn’t have the guts to address issues that really affect referrals…like their crappy text link formats for referrals.

    At SOME point, they need to move away from Java links and offer us legitimate text links formats for their referrals.

    I know they are concerned about bazillions of spam emails touting Adsense….but good grief, Google…grow up and find other ways to deal with the pressure.

    Their lack of vision and flexibility in this matter is pretty sad.

  20. Any word on when this will be available to everyone else?

  21. I’ve been reading this blog forever now, but never thought of commenting. My two cents here on google referrals. Mine got activated today and had a thorough look through them.

    These need to look different than the regular ads for anyone to even think of implementing on one’s site. The same kind of ad units, sizes is kind of monotonous. I have been using Linkshare/CJ/NCSreporter for CPA ads and they are doing just fine.

    Having “Ads by Google”, and now more so “Referral Ads by Google” is somehow toxicating at times to the reader. Google adsense search, ad units and now referrals.

    Its high time they give us some freedom on how we present advertising to our readers.

    One thing which will keep me from implementing it for the time being is the caption “Referral Ads by Google”

    True we earn a major part of our advertising earnings from Google Adsense, but so much of their own “BRANDING” will at some point of time motivate us enough to move to other options, or to at least reduce “Ads by Google” on our pages.

    They could have picked up a thing or two from the smartzones being used by Commision Junction, where you have much more freedom on which links to use and managing them.

    More later…

  22. That’s hot (don’t I sound like Paris circa prison?). Adsense seems to always keep everyone on the edge of their seats, don’t they.

    Ask Trew Life

  23. Are we allowed to put the referral in a post on our blog and review it so people are interested in it?

  24. I checked out the referral program and they don’t seem to have products in my niche. I couldn’t find anything related to fitness or health, and those are the things I would want to advertise on my blog. Oh well, as you say, perhaps in a few weeks, once more advertisers sign up, there will be more selection.


  25. i just want to know when will referral 2.0 be open to all countries ..

    i check my adsense set up but then i still see the same referal look and Google products on it.

    what i saw on Google adsense blog was different with what i saw on mine..

    is it using an invitation only ? or is philippines publishers not part of it yet ?

  26. Sound so great, But it’s still not support my country language anyway.

  27. Well I think that this is not going to help the CPC publishers with the niche like proxies or even image hosting in that case as CPA will suffer a lot on these niches.

  28. great news.. but i never get any cheque from Google..uwaa

  29. Ah..seriously, I don’t see that feature in my Adsense Referrals setup. And also I’ve applied this feature since It has been launched. But I did not get any reply from Google Adsense even I’m adsense publisher. Google always do like this ?

  30. I’ve written a guide to Google referral 2.0 if anyone interested


  31. I have more than one site. My main site is about “hotel” and Google does have “hotels ads” at google referrals ( in portugues wich is my native language) .
    I put this google referrals at my sites. It was shown 3000 and zero clicks !
    So, I removed google referrals from my site.
    I do preffer the old AdSense, because with the “old” one I do receive some USD each month.

  32. Has anyone received any money from the new Google 2.0 referrals program?

  33. Hmm, I find it very weird that there is so little ads for electronics. There was no hits for “digital camera”.
    Oh well, hope it will expand later.

  34. Yeah Thomas – I was surprised by the lack of Electronics ads too. Hopefully that’ll change in time because at the moment it’s lean pickings!

  35. I’m amazed, The new Adsense Referrals “2” started rolling out 3 weeks ago

    This is the absolute biggest event to happen for Adsense marketers, since the arrival

    of 1 cent clicks 18 months ago.

    You can now turn these 1 cent clicks into huge profits.

    I cannot believe there is not a huge buzz about this all over the internet. There should be!

    This is what all those people how have found it hard to make money with Adsense have

    been waiting for.

    I’m starting the BUZZ now.

    See my Video Demonstration


    See why all the other CPA offer sites like Azoogle are going to feel the pain.

    Peter Drew

  36. Adsense referral is great. but think our blog need some quality Visitors , not just hits.


  37. I got my first referral… 7 bucks!

    Thanks Darren for the tip!

  38. Great information Darren,

    I stopped browsing other blogs for information as i get all the information from you which is very relevent for me.
    Thanks for the great work.

  39. I just put Adsense referrals on my web site and am interested to see how I’ll do. I chose to let Google choose which ads appear on my site, and several of them pay above $80 a referral (I’m a health blogger). One or two signups a month would be a big, big increase in income for me.

A Practical Podcast… to Help You Build a Better Blog

The ProBlogger Podcast

A Practical Podcast…