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November 20, 2006

New YPN Compliance Manager alerts publishers to TOS account violations

Many publishers fear the chance that they might get an email from their contextual advertising program - one of those important account-threatening ones - and it ends up not arriving because it has been spam filtered or there has been some other techy glitch. Now, Yahoo Publisher Network has released a new Compliance Manager to not only alert publishers to specific problems with any of their pages or websites, but also to detail not only what the specific problem is, but also at what exact URL the problem is located at.

Pages will be flagged in the account as one of the following:

Also included is the specific TOS violation each URL contains.

Here is more detail on what you can see in your account, and how you resolve each of the issues.

Flagged: An issue that violates our terms of service has been identified on your web page. It is recommended that you address the issue to avoid future issues.

Warned: An issue has been identified with your web page. Action Required: You have three business days to fix or address the issue before your web page is upgraded to suspended status

Suspended: The Yahoo! Publisher Network has stopped serving Content Match ads to your web page based on continued violations of our terms of service. Action Required: Fix or address the problem, then submit a request for reinstatement

Submitted: You have submitted a request for reinstatement and are awaiting a response. The Yahoo! Publisher Network will respond with a decision within seven business days

Accepted: The Yahoo! Publisher Network has reviewed your resubmitted web page and determined that it is now in compliance with our terms of service. Content Match ads will appear on your web page immediately upon reacceptance

Action Required: Your web page has been "Warned" or "Suspended." You must fix or address the issue to be in compliance with our terms of service

Blocked: Based on continued violations to our terms of service, the Yahoo! Publisher Network has opted to permanently block your web page from the Content Match program

Also, with YPN, publishers will still be able to login to their account if they do get suspended, so they can still access historical information such as stats or payment details. With AdSense, if you are suspended, your login stops working with a "no account found with this username and password" error.

Now, since most publishers won't have a problem, here is what the alert would look like as a homepage alert in your account (click image for full size)

compliancemanager-alert.gif

And here is an example of the problem detail it will show in the Compliance Manager to detail the problem and how to resolve it. (Click for larger)

compliancemanager.gif

I have to admit, this is a really great feature for YPN to give publishers. I have long asked (and blogged in multiple entries) about wishing that AdSense would do exactly this, so it is really nice to see YPN step up and give something extremely useful to publishers that AdSense does not offer.

And also kudos to YPN for giving much more transparency on what specifically the problem is and on what page the problem exists. Since AdSense is quite vague on many compliancy issues, this is quite refreshing to see this from Yahoo.

That said, yes, YPN publishers can (and I am sure will!) continue to be suspended for TOS violations in their account. But this will definitely give YPN publishers the chance to resolve other issues before they become a suspendable offense.

Posted by Jenstar at 07:24 AM | Comments (6)

November 13, 2006

Off to Las Vegas for WebmasterWorld PubCon

I am off to Las Vegas today to hit the WebmasterWorld PubCon this week. I will be on a couple of panels and moderating another one.

First off, I am moderating Tuesdays Yahoo's Panama Lunch Panel, so you can learn all the latest about Yahoo Search Marketing's Panama release. The panel includes John Slade, Senior Director, Global Product Management; John Kim, Senior Director, Advertiser Product Marketing; Dan Boberg, Senior Director, Sales Technology and Programs. Yahoo has posted more details on their new YSM blog here.

Right after that I on Feeding the Engines - Writing Copy.

Then Wednesday I am the sole publisher on the Contextual Advertising Optimization session.

And in case you haven't seen it, SEO Thursday has created the PubCon Drinking Game to encourage new attendees to network.

See you there!

Posted by Jenstar at 02:17 PM | Comments (2)

November 09, 2006

AdSense launches new channel targeting feature for advertisers

If you log into your AdSense account today and go through the process of adding a new custom channel, you will now see a checkbox underneath the field you enter your channel name into, stating "Targeting: Show this channel to advertisers as an ad placement". If you check the box, advertisers will be able to select target that channel on your site, rather than having to spend time to pick and choose what pages or directories they want to advertise on.

Of course, this could also have the opposite effect of advertisers deciding to only site target a single channel when they might have site targeted the entire site otherwise.

It is important to note that advertisers will see the name you have provided for the channel. So for this reason, a better descriptive channel would work better (ie. headerleaderboard) than something you have done in your own personal internet lingo (ie. hlb) that might not mean anything to a potential advertiser looking to site target.

Note that this only works for custom channels not URL channels.

To set up new channels for targeting, simply check the targeting box on the setup screen. To make a current custom channel available for advertisers to target, visit the channels listing page, then click the button next to the channel you want to make targetable, then click edit settings. Then check the checkbox for targeting and save the channel info.

As a publisher, you could set up custom channels so advertisers could target the ad unit running above the fold, front and center on your site. Or you could set up custom channels based on the topic of the content for each section of your site. There are a lot of ways publishers could decide to segment their channels to make it attractive to advertisers. When you do it, try thinking like an advertiser and how advertisers might want to run ads on your site through Google.

AdSense hasn't updated the support files yet with much information on the feature other than this page. There is also a mention of it on the AdSense overview page as one of the tips, but it leads to this page which is the AdSense custom 404 page.

I am not sure how many publishers will be utilizing this feature, or how many advertisers will use it for targeting, although it has been tested before it was launched to all AdSense accounts, which generally means that it was well received by those who beta tested it. It would make sense for publishers to use this who have very large or multi-themed sites where it would only make sense for advertisers to site target specific parts of the site rather than the site as a whole. But it is something new for pubishers to play with :)

You heard it hear first ;)

Posted by Jenstar at 06:42 AM | Comments (5)

November 01, 2006

Video from the AdSense booth at SES San Jose

While at this year's Search Engine Strategies San Jose, the AdSense team brought out a video camera and interviewed several publishers about their thoughts on AdSense. I was one of the publishers interviewed, and here is the final video.

You can see many of the AdSense team members in the background of the video as they work the Google booth. And you can also catch the interview I did with the AdSense optimization team while we were all at SES San Jose here.

Posted by Jenstar at 10:27 AM | Comments (2)