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AdSense is one of the widely-used monetization tools amongst digital publishers, especially those of the smaller variety. Yet publishers have no idea what portion of the advertising revenue their sites generate is being shared with them by Google. Until now.

Yesterday, in a move that has been discussed and anticipated for some time, Google has finally shared the AdSense revenue share with publishers.

In a post on Google's Inside AdSense blog, VP of Product Management Neal Mohan detailed:

AdSense for content publishers, who make up the vast majority of our AdSense publishers, earn a 68% revenue share worldwide. This means we pay 68% of the revenue that we collect from advertisers for AdSense for content ads that appear on your sites.

We pay our AdSense for search partners a 51% revenue share, worldwide, for the search ads that appear through their implementations.

Calling these figures "very competitive", Mohan stated "We hope this additional transparency helps you gain more insight into your business partnership with Google."

Google's move is certainly one that will be welcomed by publishers. According to Mohan, Google doesn't have plans to change its revenue share structure anytime soon, although it of course reserves the right to if it feels business conditions warrant such action. Even so, yesterday's announcement should put to rest some of the speculation that frequently pops up about the revenue share figures.

The big question now is how AdSense competitors will respond to Google's newfound transparency. As Search Engine Land's Danny Sullivan notes:

The split will also likely put Google under pressure to share more. Keeping half of all search ad revenue is a huge chunk. Even keeping over 30% seems a huge slice. Expect competitors to perhaps stand out by offering to share more with advertisers.

Google is no doubt aware that disclosing the AdSense revenue share will give competitors a new means to try to poach publishers, which is probably why Mohan encouraged AdSense publishers to look at the big picture: alternatives to AdSense may offer a higher revenue share but deliver a lower yield. Publishers should "focus on the total revenue generated from your site, rather than just revenue share, which can be misleading," he wrote.

Whatever happens, Google's transparency is long overdue and the trust this move may help to build is probably worth far more to Google than publishers who aren't happy with 68% and who try their luck elsewhere.

Patricio Robles

Published 25 May, 2010 by Patricio Robles

Patricio Robles is a tech reporter at Econsultancy. Follow him on Twitter.

2393 more posts from this author

Comments (5)

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Jamie AJM Digital

Hi Patricio, 

Im glad I found this - interesting to see just how much they were taking as a share. Very pleased to see some Adsense honesty, but looking forward to seeing some changes! 

Thanks for the post

Jamie

over 6 years ago

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Jackie Lee Choon Yau

Hi there. I wonder if those on the Premium Adsense Publisher plan get more or less than 68% or the same. The way they treat and manage Premium Adsense Publisher continues to be a "black box" But, I do agree that this is a big step towards honesty and openness. Cheers.

over 6 years ago

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Ambere Khan - Star Content Writers

I think now that Google has disclosed this information, competitors will definitely take advantage by advertising that they take less than Google.  It is insane that Google takes over half of ad revenue (or even more).

over 6 years ago

Alec Kinnear

Alec Kinnear, Creative Director at Foliovision

These figures are much better than speculated. I'm not sure I believe that Google is being 100% honest in the way the 68% is generated (are they deducting some costs or overhead?).

over 6 years ago

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Sydney Web Design

I am having a really difficult time being accepted into Google Adsense I have no idea why they are declining my application, I guess my website is not quite to their standard yet. I heard their revenue share has dropped a lot since the global financial crises though, I have seen people moving from adsense to CPA companies which really suprised me.

about 6 years ago

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