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Google Launch Ad Manager (an Ad Server)

Posted By Darren Rowse 27th of August 2008 Blogging Tools and Services 0 Comments

google-ad-manager.gifGoogle AdSense announced the beta launch of their Ad Manager Ad Server product back in March. At that time I heard from a number of publishers in the beta program that they were finding it to be an effective way of managing their ads.

Today on the AdSense blog they have announced that Ad Manager is now available to everyone. It’s still in beta but is obviously stable enough to be opened up to everyone.

If you’re an AdSense publisher already all you need to do is sign in here (no need to apply to join). If you’re not an AdSense publisher – you will need to sign up first.

What is Ad Manager?

I’m yet to test it (and have little need to as b5media have their own ad management tools to manage the ads on my blogs) but from reports of others and digging around Ad Manager today it’s a quite powerful tool that will help publishers to manage a number of aspects of the selling and displaying of ads on your blog.

Most larger websites will do this by having their own ad server – but what Google have done with Ad Manager is provide a product that they host and that is much more manageable for smaller to medium publishers.

You can see a full list of Ad Manager features here and can access their Help Center here.


What Does Ad Manager Cost?

This is the beauty of Ad Manager – it’s free.

Some publishers will no doubt worry about privacy as this is all hosted on Google’s servers but outside of that (and it doesn’t concern me) I’m not seeing too many negatives. Google don’t make any money from this unless you use AdSense to fill unsold inventory (something that it will easily do and that they are no doubt betting many publishers will do – note: it’s not compulsory to do this). You can also use other ad networks with it.

Ad Manager is going to be most useful to bloggers who have a decent amount of traffic and who are wanting to start selling ad placements directly to advertisers. If you’re still at the stage of just running AdSense on your blog then this will probably something you’ll want to grow into. It is reasonably easy to use and set up however unless you’re wanting to sell your own ads there isn’t much point.


If you’d like to check out the competition to AdSense Ad Manager you’ll probably want to check out OpenX which is a similar system.

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. I was excited about Google Admanager (compared to OpenX) as it’s hosted and will hopefully be less of a hassle to run (since we’re not dealing with the actual software, just using the interface and code.) I think…

  2. I’m registered with AdManager since March 2008. Although I haven’t implemented it extensively, it seems that their key features like simple ad tag generation and management and yield optimization are impressive.

  3. Wow this is awesome. I love the little graphic explaining how it works. So basically, if you’re a one man show, Google manages everything for you so you don’t have to do so much split testing anymore to see which network pays out the highest. Spiffy!

  4. Time to test all types of scenarios! :) I wonder if they have a way to see all earning streams on the same screen. I would be so happy the day I can just log into one place and see how much I’m making from all my blogs through the many different ways of monetization!

  5. I’ve been using it for a few months now and one of the best things about it is you can use it to set a minimum floor for Adsense — ie., if you don’t want adsense that pays less than a $4 CPM you can set it up that way and you’re set. Of course that may mean you’ll get no adsense at all, but for serial moaners about low paying clicks, this is the solution.

  6. The question is, how does it actually stack up against OpenX? Is it a better system, or more simplistic?

  7. I originally applied for the beta test, Google got back to me at the time and I had just missed the cutoff.

    Going to have to give this a look in as I need to setup advertising across 5 different websites and it likely fits the bill.

  8. James says: 08/27/2008 at 3:43 pm

    It’s sad how less you care about privacy. Maybe if I’ve received those amounts of money like you from the big G, I would think like you.
    But know I can not understand how you as a rich man trade privacy against a simple tool you already own in a more privacy saving program.

    You all will be sorry one day, when G. grows to a big menace.

    Always remember: Bad codes grow tall…

  9. I removed Adsense.

    Google’s robots decided to call me a “splog”.
    I post often , that is what traders do (stock market).
    I have over 2500 posts, and pretty decent traffic.
    I use to blog on Geocities, then moved to Blogger in 2006.
    Been posting since 1998 !
    Calling me a “splog” after 16 awards, appeared on TV (for my comments) ……they call me a “splog” ???

    Financial coaching makes me enough money ….. no need to help a company that calls me a “splog”

  10. Definitely sounds interesting. I’ve just startet using AdSense and so far I like it.
    The Ad Manager might be exactly what I am looking for, but I will probably wait to the final release and until I’ve read some more reviews of people who have tried it.

  11. I don’t think I’m ready to tackle ad manager quite yet but when the time comes I’ll be glad to know about it. Thanks for the tip.

  12. It is a good news that ad manager service is free and I think am very primitive to think about ad manager as I dont have decent traffic to my blogs. Thanks

  13. I hope it will give us more opportunity to generate income..
    My adsense is far from minimum payment..

  14. From what I’m reading this sounds interesting. I tried digging around last night actually. I couldn’t get my head around it. I dunno. I need to see a better tutorial than the one Google provides. I got lost when they talked about uploading a CSV file.

    I’d love to earnestly try it out but right now it’s beyond me.

  15. Anyone know how this compares to a service like ScribeFire?

  16. wow, love it…

    all tools i have made by google now :D

  17. Hi Everyone,

    I am completely confused with this product. The explanation in this post isn’t quite clear.

    Please let me know how this works, as I checked the help pages, but still don’t understand.


    Richard Rinyai

  18. Darren,
    Wish I could jump on this – a few years ago, I got that dreaded email from Google that my account was terminated due to “invalid click activity”. I had no clue what was going on, begged and pleaded for some evidence, which of my sites, etc.

    My appeal was futile, and although over the last 2-3 years I’ve occassionally emailed them a polite letter, showing how I’m still operating legitimate websites, haven’t tried “cheating the systems” by signing up a new account, etc., I’ve rec’d no response.

    What can a guy do in this situation? I suspect the invalid click activity came from a domain I sold to a guy (who turned out to be a fraud), yet that domain was still “associated” w/ my Adsense account.

    It’s disheartening, to say the least. Any advice?
    For the Kingdom,
    Fred McKinnon

  19. Thiers says: 08/28/2008 at 2:50 pm

    Do you guyz know how are the advertisers billed with this system? I just can’t get it, i spent to whole day going up and down, reading the complet FAQ and so on, but i can’t get the answer to this.

    Thanks for replying.

  20. I know about google ad manager before but didn’t use it as it was in beta stage. Now that they have announced. I think i should give a try and see how it works out.

    3 months back i used openx. but that made my site slower due to heavy traffic and also my site is hosted on shared hosting.

    Here the ad management will sit on google servers(one of the best in the world). I think it won’t make the site slow.

    BTW which ad management tool do you use?

  21. oh ! i didn’t even know about it . I’ll give it a go . Thank you .

  22. I was able to create Inventory and Orders with Line times and Creatives, but after generating the code, I couldn’t get it to work in WordPress. I did insert the code from head into header file and places the script where ad has to appear, but still no luck.

    If anyone has step by step instructions to make ad manger work in WordPress, I would appreciate that.

  23. Is there anyone with google ad manager earns better than adsense? I’m still confused to be honest… will google ad manager automatically replace the ad-slot of adsense in our website, or it will take another space in our website to show the ad manager? please explain…

  24. I’ve been using openx for over a year and it’s a better product feature & UI wise. Having said that, I’m in the process of migrating over to Google’s Ad Manager b/c I was paying over $100/month in hosting/bandwidth fees and the constant upgrades were a pain. All the logs take up a huge amount of space too.

    What I love about Google Ad Manager:
    -it’s free (will save me $1,200/year)
    -their delivery network is the same as adsense (which means it’s reliable)
    -the snippet code is minimal. openx is much larger

    What I don’t like about Google Ad Manager:
    -features are not as complete as openx. (over time they will improve so I can wait)
    -Setup is a bit confusing the first time
    -No ability to serve text ads. Right now it’s only images or rich media.

    If you’ve got a small site don’t even bother with an ad server and just use adsense until you’ve got at least a few hundred unique visitors/day. By the time you’re ready to upgrade I’m sure Google Ad Manager will be much more mature.


  25. He friend:
    Someone has a real experience with admanager? I tested it but i thinks it is too slow to paused banner and delivery…

  26. I am perfectly willing to let others try this product and get the bugs worked out before I try using it. Besides as you said I am still in the adsense only stages of my blog. But I am getting better and learning more everyday with the help of forums like this

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