How to Do Adsense without becoming a Spammer

There is a shared revenue program between website owners and google called adsense. If you have ever been to a website and saw a bunch of links in the middle of articles or on the page that said something like “ads by google” or something similar then you have seen it.

This is a great program for website owners who have sites that aren’t really selling anything but still would like to make some money off of their sites. For instance if you have a blog about your passion – say its golf – and you are not a golf store or anything then adsense might be a way for you to make a few bucks off your blog.

The problem with adsense… actually let me rephrase that… the problem with people is that invariably we want a shortcut. We want to get something for nothing. So we see a program like adsense and instead of using it as an add-on to a project we are already passionate about – we make it into the goal itself.

Adsense as a Business Model

There are TONS of sites on the web right now that are just made for adsense (MFA). These are the little 1 to 5 page websites that are made about some obscure topic like corningware pots. I will summarize the method here:

Step 1: Find a keyword that has 1000 searches per month (exact match)

This means that the keyword has people typing it in at least 1000 times per month in the exact way that it is written – for our made up example – “corningware pots” would be the keyword. (Now before you go checking – I just made this up… I dont even know if such a thing exists or care about the kw searches for this example)

Step 2: See if the “exact match domain” is available for that keyword.

This is a little ranking loophole that google had for the last several years. They gave a little ranking boost for your site having the exact same wording as the keyword someone is typing in. This boost only really worked for the exact match domain in the .com, .net or .org iterations. So, you have probably seen something like this all over the web when searching. For our example, lets suppose that the .org is available.

Step 3: Buy the domain and install a wordpress blog on it.

This is just putting up the site. The reason that wordpress is used is many fold. The main reason is its ease of use. You can get the site set up quickly and people can upload articles easily.

Step 4: Have 1 to 5 articles written about your topic/keyword that are 500 words long and have a kw density of at least 3%.

This is where it gets really ugly for the end user. The domain is registered. The site is up. Now its time to make the BEST darn corningware pots site on the internet right? Wrong. Now its time to get several articles written as cheaply as possible and then post them to the site. These articles have to use the exact keyword at a clip of 3% usually which means you have to use the words “corningware pots” 15 times or more in the 500 word article. This doesn’t make the site very read-able. As a matter of fact, most times the site ends up pretty near useless.

Step 5: Create some backlinks to your site so that it rises up the ranks to the first page of google.

Now, build a bunch of links to your site. There is a whole cottage industry for this. There are many softwares made just for creating spammy links to MFA sites like these. But if you build some links, then you will rise up in the ranks.

Step 6: Install your adsense code and cash in.

Now that you have your crappy site up on page 1, you can install your adsense code and make your $1 per day on the site. That is the goal of most of these sites. To spend $100 or so creating them and then realize $1 per day in earnings and thus break even in the 4th month.

Step 7: Scale it up and build 20 to 100 of these per month.

Now, you can scale it up and spend anywhere from $2,000 to $10,000 per month and crank out the sites. Then you end up with anywhere from 80 to 400 sites in 4 months that are all making you passive income. Ahh… the dream! This is what has been and is being pitched all over the internet right now. If you are thinking about it, then don’t buy that course because I just broke it all down for you for FREE. So, when should I get started making all that cash?

Houston We Have A Problem…

There are lots of problems with the model that everyone is pitching out there right now. Problems that never seem to get mentioned on the sales pages of the next great adsense course or the next software tool. Here are a few of those problems and what they mean:

Problem 1: Building crappy sites like this will lead to your adsense account being shut down.

This is the biggest problem from a business standpoint. There are many people who worked their butts off and built up an empire of these sites only to have their adsense account shut down. The adsense account is what is called a single point of failure for the business. And when it fails, the business is done. You can try other forms of monetization – but currently they aren’t worth much. The people who are building these sites are in a constant cat and mouse game with google and it is a losing proposition for the mouse. Some people get lucky. Most wont because they are all following the same playbook.

Problem 2: The system for this to work is all predicated on ranking algorithms that change regularly.

The other cat and mouse game that these marketers play with the search engines is the ranking game. They build tons of links to rank. Then those links are devalued and the lose their rankings. Their business is done overnight. This is a problem for several reasons. Because of the small amount of profit made on one site, it is not viable to pay for traffic. So all the paid traffic sources are out – because they are too expensive for the site that is making $1 a day. That means you are left with free methods like SEO. But again, you will be swimming upstream because the search engines have smart people hired just to stop you from gaming their system. THEY WANT THE BEST SITE RANKED #1. Not a crappy MFA site.

Problem 3: It becomes a nightmare to manage 400 websites.

This is pretty easy to figure out. But if something changes and you have to work on 400 sites quickly to get your rankings back or whatever… then you are in for a long haul.

Making so many sites that are just above sucking has been the norm for a long time. And honestly, I tried it too. I built a bunch of sites and got them ranked and made some money off of adsense. I did it for about 3 months a couple years ago… and I hated it. This leads to problem #4.

Problem 4: You are a spammer.

This was what I hated. I felt like I was adding no value to the web or the world with that business. So I shut it down. I could have sold the sites. I could have left them. But I just shut them down and moved on. There is an intrinsic negative to doing something spammy with your business. Some guys can do it and sleep at night. Most people can’t. I have found that it is much better to build something that you are proud of – that also accomplishes your financial goals.

The Way Forward

So, how then should I proceed? Is adsense a worthwhile business model? The answer is yes and no. Adsense is worthwhile. However it is better used as a monetization method for your awesome site rather than a business model in and of itself. The best thing you can do is decide to make something that is awesome. If you want to make a blog, don’t make it about corningware pots! Make it about your passion. Are you into wrestling? Make a wrestling blog. You will stick with it and it will make you more than 50 MFA sites do.

This is a challenging deal for most people. It is hard to turn down the easy money that you see with the quick buck of methods like the MFA sites.

What you have to realize is that while you can make small amounts that way relatively fast, in the long run you are fighting an ever-steeper uphill battle against all the powers that be in the web. It is much better to make something that is the BEST you can make and then monetize off of that. There are tons of ways to make a great living online. You don’t have to go the low road.

Do something that you are proud of… it will be harder at first but the payoff is better in the end.


Kevin December 6, 2012 at 7:02 pm

Thanks Simon… Adsense is now becoming less of a business model and what it was always meant to be – a monetization strategy. Good luck with your site.


Simon November 24, 2012 at 5:40 pm

I found your site through the and now I started to read some articles. I like your blog theme and the way you write. Good Job!

I personally just implement the Google-Search into my wordpress blogs and add some AdSense boxes, because putting to much AdSense on a site increases the probability of sending away good traffic. It depends on the site, but with spammy sites it is getting more difficult due to Googles updates.



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