Google AdWords has upped the limit for their site exclusion tool (also previously known as the “Campaign Negative Sites” tool). Previously, advertisers could block 25 URLs per campaign, but now advertisers can block up to 500.
Recently, we increased the number of sites that you can exclude using this tool to 500. This gives you the ability to further tailor your AdWords account to the needs of your business. Remember, excluding a site in the content network will prevent you from showing on all of the pages that fall under that site’s domain. We suggest that you review these sites carefully before you decide to exclude them. After all, the content network allows you to reach a targeted audience across a broad range of sites, and we wouldn’t want you to miss any customers!
500 sites is a huge jump from the previous 25, and from an advertiser’s perspective, this is a great change for the site exclusion tool. However, it still works on a per campaign basis, so advertisers would need to add a site URL to all campaigns individually, even if they want to block that particular URL from showing on any campaigns.
It will be interesting to watch and see if publishers notice a significant difference or impact in earnings or ad inventory with this new limit. It will likely be the scraper type of sites that find themselves targeted first, by advertisers judging simply on looks and not necessarily ROI.
This could also potentially free up advertising revenue for quality sites that aren’t likely to get filtered out if many advertisers chose to block scrapers or other obviously “made for AdSense” variety of sites. If advertisers aren’t spending them on poor quality sites, more advertising money is available to the publishers whose sites are not getting filtered out.
Quality sites could also see a revenue jump from advertisers making the decision to opt into the content network, because now they will have considerable more control over where their ads are appearing. Advertisers who are right on top of this could block a considerable number of sites they don’t feel are good enough to show their ads, or sites that just aren’t performing well enough in terms of ROI. So there could be another potential jump in available ad revenue… and again it will primarily be quality sites that will benefit from this.
That said, how many advertisers really will go to all the effort of filtering publisher sites? And it would be interesting to see exactly how many advertisers have taken advantage of the site exclusion tool and had 25 URLs added on every campaign.
More on the official Inside AdWords blog.
Added: Forum discussion at WebmasterWorld here.