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How to Get Approved for Google Adsense and Other Tips


As a newbie digital content creator, getting approved in the Google Adsense program is one of the initial ways to monetize creative endeavors online -- particularly when it comes to Youtube and blogging.

A few people I personally know have been asking me how I started and what I did to get approved -- to be honest, I didn't even know what I was doing back then.

I did learn some tips along the way. 




So although at this point I'm tempted to reply with "Google is your friend", or to refer them directly to ShoutMeLoud blog where Mr. Agrawal shared a comprehensive guide about blogging already including Google Adsense, I understand that they want to learn first hand from someone they know.

I highly recommend going through Mr. Agrawal's blogging guide though before reading my own thoughts and sharing the steps I've taken on how I got approved, and other things I've learned along the way.


TABLE OF CONTENTS

I. To Use Google Adsense or Not?
II. How to Get Approved in Google Adsense
      A. Getting Approved for Google Adsense on Youtube
             I. How to Grow Faster on Youtube
             II. How to Apply for Google Adsense on Youtube
      B. Getting Approved for Google Adsense on Blogs
             I. How to Apply for Google Adsense on a Blog or Website
             II. How to Increase Chances of Getting Approved for Google Adsense on Your Blog or Website
III. Unpopular Ways to Earn from Google Adsense



I. To Use Google Adsense or Not?


I think the consensus of the majority is to not put ads yet when you're just starting out -- which makes sense if you don't have enough traffic yet to make a decent living out of ads.
seemingly being greedy. When it comes to Youtube, there's even a higher threshold now that content creators must meet before even getting approved for ads.

But the thing is:


1. You're NOT trying to make a career out of blogging or Youtube from Google Adsense.

It's best to treat it as a side hustle that can eventually turn into an actual business that generates passive income.

Hence I personally don't like calling Youtube income as "Youtube sweldo" (Youtube salary). 

Related Post >>> How to Claim Google Adsense Payments in the Philippines (Other Than Western Union)

Even if you "make it", get viral, or popular, and get lucky to earn a decent money from it, considering how any algorithm changes within Youtube and Google search engine can instantly kill your Youtube channel or blog overnight, doing Youtube and blogging aren't viable career paths for the majority and shouldn't be treated as such.

Pewdiepie's Digital Art
Pewdiepie or Felix Kjellberg planning to be world renowned graphic artist and never knew he's gonna become a successful Youtuber -- this is one of his creations in DeviantArt which he sold so he was able to buy a new PC

Even Pewdiepie, one of the most subscribed Youtubers out there, honestly said that he didn't quit college to be a Youtuber -- and doing that is crazy! He actually wanted to shift career paths: from a boring economics course to arts (but didn't get the scholarship he was aiming for as blessing in disguise because he was meant to be for something greater).

Instead, have the same mindset of small business owners or start ups who give it their best shot, but accept failure as part of the process and learn from that (and there's a lot to learn both in blogging and making Youtube videos -- they're highly useful skillset to have nowadays), instead of having a dangerous "all or nothing" mindset to it like most of us subconsciously do when climbing a traditional career path like accountancy or medicine.


2. There's no difference if you put ads now or do it later -- eventually.  

As long as you're not being annoying and putting ads every 1 minute in your Youtube video (like some of those videos highly targeted for kids that I've seen back then), or putting ads in your site that is against site & advertising policies, then there's nothing wrong monetizing through Adsense as soon as you get approved.

So set yourself up to receive income from Adsense as soon as you become eligible for it especially your viewers or audience don't really mind. It's not like those annoying ad.fly powered links where viewers are forced to go through a certain ordeal before accessing your blog or videos. They are free to install ad blockers and keep them on if ads annoy them so much.

And I agree with Mr. Agrawal's post about this. It's not being greedy, but simply knowing your worth and being confident that you're providing valuable content (or entertainment), and allowing abundance to come to you naturally by welcoming opportunities like so to build multiple income streams.

Wallet - lifeaftergrind.com

When it comes to websites, you can put ads as soon as you get approved because, unlike back then when you need tons of backlinks and other shady blackhat seo tactics to rank, right now Google improved its algorithm and the more people find your content genuinely valuable, the stronger your site's authority gets, and the more likely it will rank on top of search engines faster than before. 

Imagine all those potential revenue loss when you didn't notice right away that one of your blog posts is getting more traction than usual (I had that experience, but that's ok 😅)

When it comes to Youtube videos though, Google became stringent and raised the minimum requirements starting back in 2017. The reason why they did so was not to "punish small creators" (why would they even do that, it doesn't make any business sense at all for them too), but actually to protect the whole Youtube community by limiting the number of scummy re-uploaders trying to apply for Adsense.

Not only will this help the people manually approving new creators be able to manage their workload better, but they'll quickly see and approve those legit creators who worked really hard in creating valuable content for others, instead of simply doing copyright infringement.


3. When it comes to impressing your target audience as a newbie creator-- ads aren't the enemy, e-begging is.

There are folks out there who don't like ads, and that's fine. Again, they can simply install ad-blocker. 

Problem solved.

The good thing about ads is your audience won't feel obliged to spend money on you while they're still gauging if you're worthy of their trust. You start earning passively in the background from companies who spend thousands to millions on ads, while your audience -- most of which may just be students that don't have extra cash-- can consume and enjoy your content for free!

Before trying to sell an online course, consultancy service, or worse, e-begging through Twitch or Patreon, your audience must get to know and be able to trust you first

InvadierVie e-begging
InvaderVie, a popular Twitch streamer who could have started her own OnlyFans account if she wants her videos behind a paywall instead of lashing at some of her Twitch viewers

Same logic with those who are successful in running an OnlyFans account.


4. It's ok not to put AdSense when you're selling your own products or services in your website that might distract your audience 

Unlike #3 above where you need to market your trustworthiness to your audience first, when it comes to selling your own products or services, you need to market THAT instead. 

Etsy marketplace

Hence, Etsy, Shopify and Amazon FBA sellers don't necessarily even need to grow a blog first in order to sell -- although a niche blog is great for our products' discoverability. I don't know how effective they are now since Google changed its algorithm again to minimize the spammy niche sites created just for copywriting and marketing. 

But this is a valid instance where applying for Adsense doesn't make sense -- unless selling merch is just a side thing and not the main business similar to what Youtubers do.


5. When it comes to Youtube though, AdSense is ok

Even if most successful Youtubers start selling their own merchandise eventually, it's still ok and acceptable for them to turn on ads in their videos too -- especially their merch usually caters to their fans only, and might not have a wider appeal than the typical products sold in Etsy and Amazon for instance.

Since most of the ads on Youtube "disappear" after playing in certain parts of the videos, unlike in websites or blogs where ads remain where they are placed, the ads won't distract the viewers from buying the merch of their favorite Youtuber.


II. How to Get Approved for Google Adsense


To be honest, I never expected to meet the minimum requirements right away to get approved in the first place, especially when it comes to blogging, the people I personally know who have started blogging and applying for Adsense earlier than me didn't get approved. When it comes to Youtube, I just got literally lucky that my videos resonated to an audience I guess.

All I had that time when I applied was...

Hope Star Wars meme

And a lot of passion to create short videos in between written posts, because I really want to have my own collection of all the things I've learned through my own experiences-- which I can look back to if ever I get amnesia *knocks on wood*.

I also enjoy being able to share those things to others too. 😀


A. Getting Approved for Google Adsense on Youtube


Back then, the only requirement to get Adsense monetization on Youtube was to have 10,000 views.

Then 2017 came when the "Adpocalypse" happened and Youtube raised the minimum requirement to have 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 hours of watch time within a year before getting approved for Adsense.


I. How to Grow Faster on Youtube


Here are the tips I've observed that work to grow faster on Youtube, and be able to meet the minimum required hours of watch time and also naturally grow your subscribers :

1. Target an audience instead of a niche.

They always say stick to a niche. But it's hard to be boxed in just one particular niche, and harder to consistently upload content for it when you're just forced to stick to it instead of naturally enjoying the whole video creation process.

So the best is to choose a certain audience and find the cluster of niches that audience enjoys. 

Let's take Kelly Stamps for example. Her audience is young adults who are into funny meme-ish type of content and trying to figure out things in life. 

Kelly Stamps - successful Youtube channel
Kelly Stamps, making her stamp on the internet with her deadpan style of comedy especially during this period when Black Lives Matter is coming to more people's consciousness

She started off by niching down on videos about New York. But after moving to L.A., her Youtube channel plateaued. 

But that didn't discourage her, and she continued uploading-- and now she actually even grew larger than ever! 

She consistently created videos talking about topics (other than New York) and found a new audience that resonated well with her new videos and overall theme and personality of her channel.

Since according to the Youtube white paper, the algorithm initially targets your same demographics first, think of an interesting cluster of topic that is popular to the same demographic that you belong to.

This is another reason why Kelly Stamps was able to bounce back and grow from that initial slump because the topics she discussed in her videos are the ones that the people from the same age range and location are highly interested into.





A lot of women my age are definitely into more serious content, especially related to home decor and adulting in general. Though my gaming channel was initially growing traction fast before because I upload gaming videos that appeal to a similar demographic as I am (i.e. girly dating simulator type of games, art related games), I lost traction not only from lack of consistency in upload but also because of switching to games that I personally like more but appeal less to my initial "very girly" audience, like battle royale games and anime related stuff. 

Not to mention livestreaming replaced Let's Play type of content too nowadays, so that's another major factor why it's harder to grow a gaming channel compared to other types of channel in the first place.

Location is also a huge factor too! 

Since I play mostly games that don't appeal much locally, while feng shui on the other hand has wider appeal here in my country, I probably just need to suck up and generate content about topics that have wider appeal here locally; or consider eventually moving to the country of my target audience, just like what Pewds did as well as cDawg and AnimeMan.

Although in my Feng Shui channel my audience is mostly from the US, just based on my personal observation, Youtube seems to work like Tiktok where it samples your video mainly locally first, and if it gained enough traction, that's the only time it recommends to viewers outside the country where you upload that video (btw, VPN doesn't work because they can still trace the country origin of the ISP).


2. Ride the trend

Just like in trading, the trend is your friend. If something is blowing up, and has high relevancy, ride it. This is actually one of the reasons why Joanna Cedia grew literally overnight.

Joana Ceddia's viral video on Youtube
Joana Cedia's video titled "I DIY'd Emma Chamberlain's Clothing Line" was the spark that propelled her channel to success

She rode the hate train of Emma Chamberlain's pixelated (and overpriced) merch, by sewing her own version at a fraction of a cost. Not only that resonated with a lot of her ideal audience, but she also edit her videos well in a meme-ish way that is humorous and highly relatable.


3. Create quality and relevant content instead of aiming for viral videos.

Of course, both Kelly Stamps and Joanna Cedia didn't just grow by "exploiting" how the algorithm boosts videos. People actually stayed and regularly consumed their content --- they're both funny, have great personality and highly talented too in different ways (Kelly in dancing, while Joanna with arts and crafts). Their videos have something in them that viewers also get value from, either information or sheer entertainment.

This is why downright click-bait and sub-to-sub don't work and actually will harm your channel from the get go through low watch time, and inactive subs. The less watch time a video gets, and if the initial subscribers being "tested" to by the algorithm ignore your videos, the less they get recommended to others.
 

4. Upload on a schedule.

This is also related to number 3. Choose a time where your target audience is most likely active on Youtube so more chances of your videos getting discovered right after uploading your video.

Youtube viewers schedule

Not only will this help your videos reach your audience faster, but it will also help you establish consistency in video uploads.


5. Create videos that people actually search for.

Youtube is actually a search engine in itself -- but for videos. So Get-Ready-With-Me, vlogs, Let's Plays and similar types of videos take slower to gain traction-- unless you're already a celebrity or influencer and have a certain following interested in your videos. 

Channels with How-To's type of content, or those that people search for grow faster. It actually makes sense because people want to get certain information they're looking for first, before engaging with your other type of videos especially if you're just new and they don't know you yet. 

Vanessa Lau - Instagram Algorithm guru
Vanessa Lau capitalized on that demand of a lot of people to know how to beat the new Instagram algorithm


This is why videos in Vanessa Lau's channel gained momentum fast. This is also one of the type of videos Kelly Stamps creates sometimes. 

This is also why I'm considering changing my first gaming channel into something else because my How to Pronounce Youtube video is the most viewed now (it's not much actually compared to the very first video that went semi-viral in my gaming channel before which reached 150k views before I got copyright striked...oof!)

Bigeyedkitteh - How to Pronounce Youtube
Thanks Google for featuring my video in the snippet even if I can't outrank PronunciationBook because of lack of channel authority - very nice! lol


It's ok even if your video don't rank on Google or Youtube though, as long as it's a searchable type of content because you still have chance of gaining momentum by being recommended to viewers watching the video that ranks, or being featured in a snippet in Google search engine itself.

Cool?

Cool.



II. How to Apply for Google Adsense on Youtube


Once your Youtube channel meets the minimum 1,000 subscribers and 4,000 hours watch time, as well as don't have any copyright and community strikes, you'll begin to see that you're eligible for monetization.

Youtube - Eligible for Monetization


After clicking Enabled under Monetization, you'll start seeing this:

Youtube Apply for Monetization - Step 1



Step #1: Agree to the terms of Youtube Partner Program.
Youtube Apply for Monetization - Step 1

Step #2: If you don't have a Google Adsense account yet, this is the part where you'll sign up for one. Only Google Adsense account is allowed per person. Since I already have one back when my gaming channel was monetized, I simply linked that account here.

Youtube Apply for Monetization - Step 2


Step#3: After setting up your Google Adsense account, you'll then be prompted next to indicate which type of ad-roll you want.


Youtube Apply for Monetization - Step 3Youtube Ad Roll


Step#4: This is where the wait begins. Good luck!

Youtube Apply for Monetization - Step 4

I think the waiting time for approval depends on Youtube's workload for a certain period. During this time, I guess I was lucky to get approved within a week and same thing goes for creators who also got approved around this time. This was in contrast to the creators who applied around middle of 2019, especially during summer time, which took months before finally getting their channels approved.

A lot of Youtubers spend their earnings on higher end gears -- I'm close to being one of them too lol.

But as most veteran Youtubers out there keep saying to newbies like us: it's not about the quality of gears, but the quality of content.

They also have an interesting advice to invest earnings back by hiring people like video editors and virtual assistants eventually, instead of splurging on gears. This will not only tremendously help us in achieving consistency in upload schedule, but also in preventing burn out and keeping both our physical and mental health in good shape.

Back


B. Getting Approved for Google Adsense on Blogs


Back then there are 2 types of Google Adsense accounts: hosted and non-hosted.
 
Hosted is for those who are monetized on Youtube and Blogger. If you're using Blogger, as long as you have a couple of original content, as well as the other needed requirements enumerated below, you'll easily see this option to monetize your blog:

Applying for Google Adsense in Blogger


But if you want to use a custom domain and also using a separate web host for your website or blog, you need to upgrade your hosted Adsense account into non-hosted.

Having a non-hosted aka fully approved Google Adsense accounts years ago means being able to use just one single code to all your websites.


Since this has been abused by content scrapers and dishonest bloggers doing blackhat SEO, Google eventually required everyone to apply all over again every single time you're using a new domain.


I. How to Apply for Google Adsense on a Blog or Website


Unlike Youtube, you can apply right away for your blog or website without having to meet certain number of visitors.

Step #1: To do so, just log in your Google Adsense account, and click 'Sites' to add your new blog or website. 

Applying for Google Adsense on Sites - Step 1


Step #2: You'll see a code which you need to paste somewhere between the "<head>"and "</head>" part of your new blog or website.

Applying for Google Adsense on Sites - Step 2

Step #3: After doing so, go back to Adsense and click Submit.

Wait for a few days to a couple of weeks for Google to reply whether your blog or website is approved. Mine took an average of 1-2 days only before getting approved. 

Applying for Google Adsense on Sites - Step 3

Also as mentioned earlier, I didn't apply right away with just 3 posts off the bat. I made sure that I followed all the tips below first, and have enough content for a few months as well as getting my own domains first before applying.



II. How to Increase Chances of Getting Approved for Google Adsense on Your Blog or Website


To ensure that you get approved as well, here are the guidelines I've followed:

1. Create enough original (and transformative) content. If it's just like many other blog posts out there (i.e. How to Start a Blog type of posts, personal finance, gadget and tech) with similar or duplicate posts, and nothing new added in it, not even your own twist or personality injected in it, then it's most likely to get rejected. Same thing goes for copywriting type of posts which only serve to market a product instead of having an actual honest review of the product. 

I don't know if they have a set number of blog posts required to be approved -- some say around 20-ish, but others claimed they got approved with 10. I don't remember how many blog posts I have before I applied but definitely somewhere between 10-20 (I didn't apply right away because I also heard certain locations like China and India require a site to be at least 6 months old first. So to be safe, I just waited for around that long and also just continued posting content whenever I could).

2. Make sure to properly setup up an About, Contact Us, Terms and Condition, and Privacy Policy pages. There are already tons of tutorial out there how to set them up step-by-step, and also Terms and Conditions and Privacy Policy generators that you can use for free. Here, Google is your friend because I don't wanna endorse one site over the other-- it's up to you. But make sure all these 4 elements are present on your page.

3.  If you're blogging about financial related topics like trading the stock market, or using affiliate links, make sure to include a Disclaimer on your site, as well as add a separate disclaimer line in your blog posts containing those topics and affiliate links.

4. Make sure you're following Google Publisher policies and not posting prohibited content.
Pretty self-explanatory.

5. Ensure that all the Categories of your blog have at least 1-2 well-written content in them. Don't leave any page and link blank.

6. Only use language supported and approved by Google Adsense. I guess that includes minimizing or avoiding curse words too because we want content that are safe and appeal to Google's advertisers, and not deemed risky for them.



III. Unpopular Ways to Earn from Google Adsense


Having a Youtube channel and running your own website are the popular means of earning through Google Adsense, but there are also other ways to do so. 

One of them is by publishing a game or app in the Google Playstore and linking your AdSense account to it so you can earn from in-app advertising. 

Another way is by associating your website's search engine with Google so when people use your search engine, they will see related ads there too.

Flappy Bird
The notorious Flappy Bird game on mobile

I haven't tried out these 2 yet though, so will keep you all updated IF ever I do -- or if I personally know someone who have tried monetizing through these and been earning regularly in doing so (if they're willing to share their experience with me lol). 

Running ads through a game in Google Playstore like what the Flappy Bird developer did even before his highly addictive game became popular prepared him to massive financial rewards as soon as it became a hit to millions of users -- enough for him to call it quits because he's also feeling guilty about the addictive side effects of his Flappy Bird, and created less addictive iterations instead afterwards.

----------------------------------------------------

If ever you don't get approved for Google Adsense right away, don't worry! Check the email you receive and see why, and make improvements while you keep on creating great content. 

As long as you haven't committed any grave offenses and spread prohibited content, you can always apply again in the future. 😉

If ever you find Google Adsense not appealing to you, there are other ad providers out there such as Media Net and also Facebook -- the latter I'm gonna talk about once my gaming page for livestreaming successfully manage to meet their requirements and be approved for it (maybe a year or 2 from now -- we'll see!). 

There are also other means to monetize your content such as selling your own products or services in your blog or website, affiliate links, and brand sponsorships.


How to Get Approved for Google Adsense and Other Tips | lifeaftergrind.com


4 comments:

  1. Thanks for sharing that bit about youtube growth! Ive noticed the changes in youtube as well over the years while striving to grow my vlog. The location factor might be why the video I uploaded when my fam visited the US didn't get enough views compared to the videos I normally upload here in NZ.

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    Replies
    1. No problem, and oh it's nice that I'm not the only one and you noticed how Youtube promotes locally too! It's sad that VPN doesn't seem to work though lol, but I've seen a video by MatPat talking about it and explaining that it's actually one of the main factors why Pewdiepie grew (he was traveling a lot in the early days and uploading content from different locations).

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