AdSense vs AdWords

AdSense vs AdWords – What is the difference?

Adsense vs Adwords

AdSense vs AdWords

AdSense and AdWords are two very popular business products offered by Google. Newbies often find it a bit confusing distinguishing one from the other.


What is AdWords?

AdWords is for Advertisers

AdWords program is for people who want to advertise their products, services, businesses, and/or sites.  Advertisers create ads that can be seen by users on the internet.  The AdWords program allows advertisers to create the ads they want.

Below is a sample of an AdWords ad (non-clickable). (It is only a sample!)

Sample of an AdWords ad

Sample of an AdWords ad

Google serves up these ads when and where appropriate. They can appear in search results pages.  More frequently, you will see them on websites.  Google serves up these ads contextually – i.e.  ads that are contextually relevant to the contents of the page it appears on.

For Google to be able to do this, Google requires publishers – i.e. people who own sites with published content.  These publishers use the AdSense program.


What is AdSense?

AdSense is for Web Publishers

The AdSense program is for owners and publishers of sites. These publishers decide that they are going to allocate space on their web pages for Google (AdWords) ads.  The publishers determine the ad locations and the ad-sizes that they will allow (subject to Google’s Ad Placement Policies) on their pages.

Each time a Google ad is clicked by a visitor, the advertiser pays a specific amount to Google.  And Google pays a percentage of that to the web publisher.  That is how web owners/publisher can monetize their sites by joining the AdSense program.

Important!  As a web publisher, you are not allowed to click Google ads on your own pages in an attempt to cheat the system and make money.  Nor are you allowed to encourage friends to do the same to help you make money.  Take it as a certainty that Google has ways and means of determining when this types of behaviours happen.  And if and when a web publisher gets caught, Google has been known to shut down their entire account.

Don’t cheat!!!

If you are a web content publisher and would like to earn some income stream via the AdSense program, then have a look at AdSense basics to help you get started.


I hope you found this simple explanation of AdSense vs AdWords article useful to you as you move towards either creating your own ads with AdWords and/or earning some income via the AdSense program.

Please feel free to share any tips and expertise you have on this topic.

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