Google has introduced a new version of AdSense aimed at making ads more relevant on search-oriented sites like a travel search engine, a job search site, or a product search site. AdSense Custom Search Ads are targeted based upon the keyword terms searched upon by the site’s users — the same keywords that the site itself uses to return results from its database of content.
Because the results are coming up in response to specific user queries, it’s possible that they’ll drive greater responses than conventional AdSense ads, which are contextually targeted based on site content. Google is also allowing extensions — Ad SiteLinks and Seller Ratings — typically seen on search implementations, rather than in the content network. The company says it will be able to bring newly-developed extensions to Custom Search Ads automatically, without publishers needing to change their code.
The new format, which offers custom layouts and font sizes, is being tested with a few sites to start — LemonFree.com and eCrater.com are both using it — but Google expects to expand the program to more sites in the near future.