Difference between Google ads and Google Adsense

If you have set out in the world of marketing, you have probably come across the advertising opportunities by Google. As one of the big digital advertising platforms, Google accounts for 37.2% of total ad spending alone in the US. 

Google mainly features two platforms, Google Ads and Google Adsense, for generating traffic and boosting brand awareness. Many people get confused between the two platforms. So how can you take advantage of these? By knowing how each works and the differences between them. So, let us get started! 

What are Google Ads?

google ads

Formerly called Google AdWords, Google Ads allows advertisers to make bids for ad placements. These placements can be iGoogle’s Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) or the Google Display Network (the network of sites, apps, and more that show Google display ads). We also have a guide on how you can rank with it.

Google Search Engine Results Pages (SERPs) 

google search engin


Search ads that appear in SERPs let you know if there is a demand for your product. It shows you whether your audience uses search engines for it. 

Google Display Network

vpn ad

This space is more like a display banner, where your advertisements are more visual. They grab attention as you rent your place, where your audience visits online. 

What is Google AdSense?

google home page

Three years after the inception of Google AdWords, Google released another platform, AdSense. 

It allows publishers to place their ads on their websites and other real estate for commissions. They make up a portion of the Google Display network, which one can leverage through AdWords. 

For instance, if you look at any advertisement on our site, it is because of Google Adsense. We get paid by Google for the success of these advertisements.

Hence, Google AdSense is perfect for anyone with good website traffic looking for its monetization.

Key Differences Between Them

In many ways, Google Ads and AdSense are not the same. The only thing they have in common is that they are both Google advertising goods. Aside from that, they are both different and have differences in more than how they work.

If you wish to use any platform, you need to be aware of the fundamental distinctions. 

1. Their User Base Differs

The main difference is that Google Ads attracts advertisers, while Google AdSense attracts publishers. Advertisers use Google Ads to drive organic traffic to their website, whereas publishers use Google AdSense for monetizing their online sites. 

Hence, if you are a corporation, we recommend using Google Ads. But AdSense if you are a publisher or a website owner. That is the most fundamental distinction between these two advertising platforms: each has been tailored for a specific user and use case.

Google Ads promotes brand awareness and products, displaying adverts on Google and its affiliated sites. It generates leads as businesses pay for them to drive traffic to their website and convert visitors.

Advertisers can place advertising on publishers’ or website owners’ websites using AdSense.

2. Payment Plans & Working Differs

Businesses and marketers must pay money to have their adverts displayed on Google Ads. Publishers get compensated for allowing marketers to post advertising on their websites in the case of AdSense.

As a result, you earn money through AdSense and spend money on Google Ads.

Marketers can set a budget for their Google Advertisements campaigns and pay a certain amount; publishers get compensated for each click on advertisers’ ads on their website via Adsense.

With Google Ads, you have complete control over the amount of money you spend. Publishers, on the other hand, get compensated for each click. Their earnings increase with traffic.

On Google Ads, advertisers can now choose between a cost per click or impression payment structure. Publishers have no say in which payment method is used, and they get compensated according to the model that advertisers prefer.

3. There are Different Levels of Ad Design Flexibility

Google Ads users can alter text within their ads, whereas AdSense publishers have no flexibility in this regard. However, AdSense users can control the formats, sizes, and colors that appear on their pages. 

4. Ad Limit Per Page 

AdSense users can place three link ads, three content ads, and two search boxes on a page. However, Google Ads users can only have it delivered on SERPS, The Display Network, and Google! 

5. Ease of Setting Up an Account

Google Ads account is easier to open. You need to sign in with your Google account, setting time zones and currency preferences. However, with AdSense, you have to apply.

You have to register:

  • Website URL
  • Website language
  • Account type (individual or business)
  • Name
  • Address
  • Phone number

There are also some policies you have to agree to before signing up.

They include: 

  • Not placing ads on sites with incentives on clicks or pornographic content. 
  • Not generating clicks on the advertisements you run through AdSense.
  • Reading and agreeing to the AdSense Program Policies.
  • Certifying that it is the only account. 
  • Verifying that you are at least 18.
  • Ensuring your name matches the bank account and AdSense account. 

You receive your application’s outcome in a day or two. 

The Bottomline

With these differences, you can now choose what advertising platform suits you the best. Figure out your marketing plans, budget, and fine details with our guide on the differences between Google Ads and Google AdSense. Do not forget that Google Ads and Google AdWords are the same marketing platforms, with the latter being an old name.

As a general rule of thumb, Google Adsense is for publishers while Google Ads for advertisers. You might want to check our guide on practical tips for creating google approved content!