You Can Use AdWords To Drive Traffic To Your AdSense Site

I often see advice in forums telling people not to use AdWords to drive traffic to a site that uses AdSense. For example, today, this threadd at DigitalPoint forums, which asks “Will I get banned if use adwords on my site with adsense?”. One person advises:

using adwords to get traffic to an adsense optimized site IS called Arbitrage which google doesn’t like. i would not suggest it

I also found this advice in another thread at DigitalPoint:

Hey, thats againt TOS. You cannot send Adwords traffic to Adsense Sites.

Obviously there is a strong belief out there that Google frowns upon using AdWords to drive traffic to an AdSense site. The fact is that Google does not mind you using AdWords to send traffic to your AdSense site. Look at this post at Google’s official AdSense blog. In it they say

We’d like to share some of Peter’s insights with you about monetising his sites with AdSense and his experience using AdWords to attract visitors.

Clearly if Google is sharing stories about an AdSense publisher using AdWords, they do not frown upon this practice.

There is one thing that Google will ban your AdSense account for, however. They do not like it when you use AdWords to send traffic to a low quality site that displays AdSense. These types of sites are frequently referred to as MFAs (Made For AdSense). This is what Google had to say about this:

This new policy requirement doesn’t mean that you can’t use online advertising; it simply means that if you do, you need to be sure that the way you advertise meets with the guidelines, whether it’s through AdWords or through any other advertising program.

So how do you know what Google considers a “quality” site. You can read all about it at Google’s Landing Page and Site Quality Guidelines. The quality guidelines boil down to three things:

  1. Original Content – Make sure the content is original and is relevant to any advertising you do.
  2. Transparency – Make sure: your visitors know who there dealing with; don’t mess with their browsers or automatically download software; and have a clear privacy statement.
  3. Navigation – Make sure you site is easy to navigate and doesn’t force them to click on ads to get away from you site.

Basically if you have a real website that you built for users, you will have no problems advertising with AdWords and keeping you AdSense account safe.


  1. Lee Said,

    May 7, 2008 @ 5:12 pm

    I’m the one who started the thread in question on DigitalPoint! Thanks for shedding some light to my question; after reading this, it’s quite obvious that it does not violate TOS providing you meet the guidelines.

  2. Toivo Lainevool Said,

    May 7, 2008 @ 5:15 pm

    I’m glad the post was helpful. This really does seem like it causes a lot of confusion.

  3. klaas Said,

    May 21, 2008 @ 8:39 am

    ofcours google like this if you have a website for users .There are so many big websites that have ads and drive traffic by advertise on the web.
    And google like AdWords very much the make big money with it

  4. Faisal Said,

    March 14, 2010 @ 1:22 am

    Thank you very much for clearing this misconception of using Adwords with Adsense. You are very right it is not against the terms and conditions as long as you are playing by the rules.

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