Into 2008; Adsense affiliate program removed

There’s been a bit of a hiatus on posting at the moment due to a new addition to the family of a bouncing little baby girl so affiliate market updates will be a little light for the next few weeks but hold in there as some new developments are in the wind for 🙂

Fresh into 2008 and Google have announced that they have quashed their affiliate program for referrals to Adsense. Here’s the full text of the email;


We are writing to share some important information with you about
referrals to the AdSense product. As part of ongoing efforts to
optimize revenue opportunities for our publishers, we’re
constantly experimenting with new revenue-enhancing features as
well as tweaking those products already available to our
publishers. This is the case for referral units directing visitors
to sign up for AdSense. After experimenting with this program
over the past year, we’ve concluded that there are other products
that are of higher value than this program to publishers in your
region. As a result, referral units for the AdSense program will
be retired in the coming weeks. Referrals to other products and
services remain unaffected.

If you’re currently displaying referral units on your site
directing users to sign up for AdSense, read on below for details
about what to expect in the coming weeks.

In early January, the option to add referral units directing users
to the AdSense product will no longer appear in your account. You
will continue to accrue earnings for all existing referrals yet to
generate $100 until late January, at which point the program will
be fully retired. Existing referral units will continue to appear
on your pages.

By the end of January, you should remove all referral units
directing users to AdSense from your pages. Referral units
that you do not remove will continue to be displayed on your pages
as normal, but conversions will no longer be recorded. We
suggest you replace the AdSense referrals with referrals to
another product or service or an additional ad unit.

Thank you for referring users to AdSense in the past. We
apologize for any inconvenience this news may cause.


The Google AdSense Team

Darn. There are bound to be a lot of people who have many links through-out their sites promoting Google Adsense. It’s a frustrating experience whenever an affiliate program (no matter who it is) completely removes their program.

There have always been questions about this happening and the amount of traffic that the program continues to receive from old links that webmasters have either not found to change or are just never bothered to be updated.

Interestingly, Google appear to have replaced this affiliate program referral to Adsense with advertising Adsense itself through their own Adwords system. I consider it more than a bit questionable to have a company competing with their own clients (particularly in any form of bid system) to promote their own internal products. Very questionable, as the cost is nil to them but may drive up the price for other advertisers who are bidding to show their ads on affiliate related keywords. Perhaps Google should front-up and let the community know if their own Ads on Adsense affect the bids of others?

If anyone has heard of Google talking about this in the past let me know and I’ll update this post.

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