Is it OK to Put Adsense Under Menus?

Dropdowns and AdsenseI was going back over some of my older sites earlier this week, most of which I hadn’t tweaked quite as often as I should.

I noticed that some of them had Adsense underneath dropdown menus. This placement used to be quite profitable but Google’s algorithms have become more effective at detecting such placements and they’ve since been classified as wrong because they have such a high chance of accidental clicks.

Voila! Simply by moving Adsense to the side of the site and away from the menu, over the last few days earnings on those old sites has jumped over 50%. Presumably Google’s algorithms had been devaluing all the clicks on Adsense under the menu and overall, I agree with their decision – a lot of people were probably clicking by mistake.

One thing struck me as odd, though….

Today the official Adsense blog touted a success story from India, talking about

“Having tried almost every AdSense format and feature as they were offered, he settled for a vertical wide skyscraper (160X600) on the left sidebar and a horizontal link unit (728X15) along the top of his pages.” (emphasis added by me)

The thing is, the Adsense placements that were praised by Google look so much like the actual menu links that people could easily be fooled into clicking on them:


What do you think?

  • Is Google missing a step by clamping down on ads under dropdown menus, but not ads that look like the menus?
  • Am I missing a big difference between these two setups?
  • Is the next step for publishers looking to get a brief boost in their Adsense earnings?


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