Seeking the magic answers (and finding the real ones)

The AdSense home page. Purportedly you can earn money while you sleep with this program, and indeed you can -- but there are plenty of barriers on this road to "easy money".

On quiet Sunday mornings, I quite often head over to the Google AdSense Help Forum. I’ve been a Product Expert (formerly Top Contributor) there for the past decade after two near-death experiences with the company’s third-party ad serving program, and continue to answer questions from a diversity of people experiencing problems with it.

Many iAdSense issues fall into two general buckets: The person has applied for the program and tried again and again, and still can’t get accepted. Or the individual has had his or her account disabled — a true disaster, because once that happens, the publisher is banished for life.

For both categories, AdSense has become a place of thwarted or dashed dreams.

In both situations, however, the problems find their roots in variations of greed and laziness, sometimes spurred on by scammers (and even AdSense’s own marketing material), which create the impression that the program allows you to make money around the clock with little ongoing effort, passively, even while you sleep.

And it does . . . but there are some rather big catches.

The rules require you to have a website (or high-volume/traffic YouTube videos) that comply with a diversity of policies, and if you do, you can post snippets of code on your sites. If all goes well, Google will serve relevant advertisements and then, once a month, pay you about 70 per cent of the funds received for clicks and viewership.

In theory, you can create a site, put the code on, and relax while the regular monthly income arrives.

Trouble is, 95 to 96 per cent of new AdSense applications are declined these days. And if you try too hard to help along the results — perhaps by spamming your site on social media, or (worse) clicking or having friends or others click on your ads for you), you’ll receive the dreaded “account disabled” email.

With a group of about a dozen voluntary Product Experts, we will try to answer the questions, generally with the bad news that there is no solution to the problems.

But is that answer true?

If you look at me for an example, you’d say “no” as I’m in a truly unique category — someone whose account had been disabled twice (once totally validly) and ended up as a Product Expert. In other words, I blew through all of the probability calculations and ended up successful.

Sort of.

Yes I have a valid AdSense account, and the PE status has some pretty nifty perks, including annual expense-paid visits to Google’s HQ in California. These experiences gave me enough confidence in Google’s parent company Alphabet’s business system and model that I allocated quite a bit of my retirement funds to GOOGL shares — which have increased significantly in value (even despite the recent market down-turn). And my AdSense revenue has been increasing nicely in the past couple of years.

But I don’t live off of AdSense, and the success I achieved cannot easily be replicated. (The details are long, but I can’t conceive of very many people around the world with circumstances where my story could be repeated.)

So my advice to the many people who try to succeed on the program is: Do your own thing, and achieve success outside of the AdSense program. When you succeed by acquiring genuine expertise on a specialized topic that is relevant to the program, you might succeed. (But it is folly to try to achieve success FOR the program.)

That answer reflects the challenge with any success-based advice.

We can tell you some generalities and platitudes, but these won’t help you very much in answering your specific request.

We can tell you the specific rules you need to follow, but unless you can put yourself in all the right places at the right time, you won’t succeed, either.

In some cases, we can help you with specific “turning point” options — and this is where industry experts (both from the AdSense and Construction Marketing Ideas) perspective can provide valuable counsel. These circumstances generally occur when you’ve got most of the details and requisite experience, but just need a bit of counselling on how to put the final pieces together.

As an example, you have gone through university, completed your architecture or engineering degree, worked in the field for several years, and have achieved true technical competence and are ready to branch out on your own. Here, business operations and marketing advice from consultants with relevant industry experience may help you get started and advance much more quickly.

In other words, it is easy to paint pictures of great, easy success if you take just a few simple steps — but usually, these steps will only work if you’ve already done plenty of work and are on your way to success, anyways. Otherwise, the “simple steps” generally require you to pay plenty of dues with hard work, education, effort, and some luck thrown in for good measure.

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