An awkward in-person conversation I recently had:
This person: Um, the ads on your blog are kinda adult themed right now. Adult, playthings. Are you aware?
Me: Um, you know how google generates those ads, right? Were you aware?
Clearly, this person was not aware how ads show up on their favorite (always wholesome) web pages.
You guys, YOU GUYS. You know how google generates sidebar ads, right?
Ok, fine. I’ll throw you a bone if you don’t. In fact, I didn’t know either until about 18 months ago. At the time, I was researching a potential trip to Disney, and pricing out various lodging options for the family. I found it very interesting that every time I got on the internet, even for something totally unrelated to researching the trip, I saw an ad for the exact resort I really wanted to stay at.
And then the exact purse I had been coveting from Zappos (which I continued to stalk on their site, just waiting for the price to drop) started randomly show up in all the ad sidebars. Taunting, come back and buy me, Emily….
Coincidence? Nope, not a chance in cyber hell.
Friends, google and his sneaky-sneakster friends are watching. Google ads generated in any given sidebar are typically ads BASED OFF YOUR SEARCH HISTORY.
And sure, site owners (such as myself ) can for the most part customize what types of ads show up, if they are truly worried about offending readers. But for real, I can barely find time to publish a post these days, let alone make sure weird pantyhose art doesn’t show up in the sidebar.
Let’s prove a point, shall we?
These are the ads that popped up for me this morning on the various sites I frequent. They make complete sense based off my resent search history.
Breaking it down:
I’m doing a series of spring cleaning posts over at CafeMom. They’re sponsored by, you guessed it, Bissell.
GAP had a big 40% off Memorial Day sale, hence the GAP ad. I didn’t buy anything, but I did do a bit of cyber browsing.
And lastly, The Simple Moms site has been down all weekend with some epic server issues related to the company in the solid state ad.
So when you see an undesirable ad in your sidebar, don’t look at me. And don’t email me being all judgy and stuff telling me how I’m trying to sell ya gross hippo lip decals or bowling balls that look like human heads.
Look um, at yourself. Or your husband. Maybe even your kid or your dog.
Yes, it’s totally the dog’s fault. He’s always up to no good, giving everyone the shifty eyes.
But definitely don’t blame me. Because things will get awkward fast.