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Background Designs for my Google Adsense Ads

17 February 2006

Ok, I wasn’t exactly going to mention them, but my ad background designs on my Google Ads have seemed to have caused a flurry of excitement, discussion and positive feedback over at Problogger.

Background designs for Adsense

Basically, as the popularity of my site rose over the past 7 years, I have been looking for ways to help pay for the bandwidth.

I was unhappy with the LOOK of ads on my blog. Being a graphic designer ā€“ and very particular about style, branding, tone and association ā€“ I baulked at the thought of those blocky, chunky squares on my site.

So I had an idea : To create some cool backgrounds for the ads, which were in keeping with Google Adsense policies and the look of my blog. I did a bit of research and discovered to my surprise that no one had done it before ā€“ or rather, not to the aesthetic level and integration I was aiming for.

I designed a few backgrounds. I put them up on my site. Then I emailed Google for permission and confirmation that I was indeed NOT breaking any of their policies.

They wrote back and said,

The graphic that you added behind the ad block is permissible, I would however remind you as per our Terms and Conditions, that the ad code itself provided to you by Google AdSense may not be altered in any way. Publishers may not:

- Change the way in which the ads themselves appear
- Change where ads link to
- Load ads within a new browser window
- Deliver users indirectly to the URL associated with an ad. For example, the page may not load within a frame for your website
- Alter the ‘Ads by Google’ label
- Associate other ads with the Google ads or the ‘Ads by Google’ label

Thank you for your cooperation. To uphold the quality and reputation of Google AdSense, all publishers who apply are reviewed according to these programme policies.

Since then, Iā€™m aware that lots of people have alerted Google of my ads, and lots of questions about the code, to analyse and share my results, if I could experiment with and without the background etc.

Anyway, I must admit, I am quite proud of them, and hope others are inspired to design their own!