If you’ve already signed up for Google Adsense, congrats. You’re smart and you’re probably finding out that pages and sites that have just been sitting around doing nothing are now generating a revenue stream for you. It’s possible that it’s enough for a latte every few days, but it might be more. Quite a bit more. I have colleagues who see “four figure days” with Adsense.
if you haven’t yet plugged in, then you’ll want to immediately read the article Partner with Google and Make Money!. Back? Good. Let’s talk about a whole new facet of Adsense that you can utilize to generate additional revenue from your site: search.
If you read the Google Adsense terms of service, you’ll find that you aren’t allowed to have adverts on search result pages because their engine can’t figure out how to accurately target the search results page. A definite drag since many sites have a search engine to help visitors navigate through material.
But Google does have a solution. After all, they’re a search engine company, right? Their solution is called WebSearch and it’s not only easy to add to your site, but the search result pages have adverts added by Google that have your adsense account data buried within. Very nice!
You can start learning more about this exciting program on their Google WebSearch Overview page, but here are the key highlights:
- Lets you customize your search result pages
- Lets your visitors decide whether they should search the Web or just your site
- Offload the task of building a search index database: Google will do it for you (how much disk space do these guys have??)
- Track results online
- Filter out unwanted ads
There are other aspects to the program, but if you already have an adsense account, there’s no reason not to apply for WebSearch access and add it to your site.
To get going, just log in to your Adsense account, then click on the “Account Information” tab, then “Products” and Edit Information to subscribe to WebSearch. That’s all there is to it. A few configuration fiddles and it’ll spit out the code needed for a site search that you can just paste into one or more of your own pages. Here’s what I got for this site after about 60 seconds – enter something and try it to see how easy it is to work with!
If you want to have the search include your site, then it’s just one change on the Adsense site and a bunch of new code is spit out:
And since it’s all HTML, you could even tweak it to match the layout and design of your own site, which is always nice.
In summary, adding Google’s WebSearch is well worth doing, and even if you have no other Google Adsense advertising on your site, it’s nice to know that you can not only add a simple site search utility to your site, but you can make a few bucks off it too.
And if you haven’t yet signed up for the Google AdSense program, here’s a shortcut: