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How to Use Google AdSense Custom Channels to Increase AdSense RPM

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How to Use Google AdSense Custom Channels to Increase AdSense RPM
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So what are Custom Channels?
In a nutshell, Google AdSense Custom Channels is a reporting tool on steroids and a great way to organize your ad inventory. But the best part is that Custom Channels turn your ad inventory into targetable for advertisers. Which can, in turn, increase your AdSense CPCs and revenues, creating higher competition for the premium ad real estate you offer.

Analytics and A/B Testing
By grouping ads into channels you can benchmark performance of ad sizes, placements on the page, colors, pages they appear on, user device used, surrounding content, and other factors.

For example, custom channels allow you to create reports for specific ad units and analyze them So take a text ad and analyze how it performs in comparison with image ads in that same placement.

This allows you to isolate other factors that affect performance and create a laser pinpointed A/B test.

How do you know which section of your blog is bringing in more ad earnings?
You can create Custom Channels for each of the sections and track the RPM for the pages in the section.

How to make your ad inventory targetable for advertisers using AdSense custom channels
In addition to giving you a powerful A/B testing and analytics tool for your AdSense inventory, Custom Channels make your online assets targetable to advertisers through Google Adwords.

And this is great for everyone.

Using custom channels to make specific ad units targetable for Adwords advertisers has the following benefits for you as a publisher:
By giving advertisers the choice of location, size and ad type, you’re actually increasing the competition for the better performing ads and ad locations.
You’re attracting savvy advertisers willing to pay more for the optimal location of their ads.
Targetable ad placements provide an opportunity to offer and describe your inventory to advertisers (almost) directly. So they can choose where and how they believe their ad would be most effective on your website.
According to Google: “Because CPM ads compete against CPC ads in the AdWords auction, we’ll always choose the highest-performing ad for your page. If an advertiser wants to target your site specifically, they will need to bid high enough to beat out the CPC ads that are already in the auction in order to show up on your page.”
Smart Pricing: If you’ve heard of smart pricing before then you know where we’re going with this (if you haven’t, read about it here). Better targeting will equal more conversions for advertisers and higher CPCs for you.

This is great for everyone involved: the users get relevant ads they want to click, the advertisers get the audience they want and you get more money. Awesome, right? So let’s get down to it.

Making it Happen – Setting Up Custom Channels
Once you decide how and what you want to measure and offer advertisers: it’s time to create some Custom Channels.

In the AdSense console go to Content => Custom Channel and click “New Custom Channel”.

Pick a descriptive name for your channel and add the ad units you want to group.

At this point you might be tempted to mark all your channels as targetable. Don’t. Before you offer your inventory to the advertisers who want to pay you, make sure you offer the best package for them and you. Test channels and ads before you make them targetable.

In your AdSense console go to Performance Reports” => Advanced Reports => Custom Channels.

Here you can see the performance of your various channels over time. You can play around with the report to see different metrics like performance of specific ads, pages and categories across platforms.

Love Your Advertisers – Optimizing Ad Placement Channels
Edit the best performing channels after your benchmarking period, and tick the box that says: “Show this custom channel to advertisers as a targetable ad placement”.

Don’t make all your Custom Channels into targetable ad placements right away. Choose the channels that perform best and offer those.

A/B Testing Your Advertisers with AdNgin
You can use AdNgin to create two separate but identical variations of your page layout. Then, hard code the custom channels to serve before serving the AdNgin tag in your page. This will, in effect, A/B test your advertisers to see which performs better in terms of revenue.

Channel Surfing – Keep Testing
Odds are you’ve heard me say this before: the secret to AdSense optimization is that it’s a process. Plastering AdSense code on your page is easy enough, but if you want to make substantial sums of money with Google AdSense, it requires some work.

Enjoy the full blog post

Optimization is a science. I’m sure we can agree on that. We can probably also agree on the benefits that we can see from optimizing and testing our websites and mobile apps to a point where they are humming in perfect tune. But getting there is a challenge that requires continuous effort. Luckily, we’re going to make it a lot easier. We’ve put together some really great posts with some seriously prolific tips and tools that will directly affect your bottom line, First, there a post on our favorite A/B testing tools. Second, a detailed guide on how to use Google AdSense custom audience. And third, hand picked articles from the webternet. So click away.

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