Friday, January 20, 2006 | 2:04:00 PM
As anyone who's ever had stage fright knows, there are times it would be great to be invisible. But while people sometimes feel bashful in the public eye, Google ads tend to perform best when they're easily seen. Increasing ad unit presence on your site and placing ads 'above the fold' (i.e., the area visible on a page without scrolling down) can enhance the likelihood that people will see and respond to your ads.
As a general rule of thumb, ideal ad placement lies in a region balancing the left to right (emphasis towards the left), and top to bottom (emphasis towards the top) portion of a page. Article based pages are an exception, as placing ads directly below an article can lead to a greater number of readers clicking through.
The number of ad units you choose to display can also affect ad performance. While some sites perform well using the maximum 3 ad units per page, it's important to maintain a balance between content and ad display -- the optimal number of ad units per page varies for different sites.
Lastly, remember that custom channels are helpful in the testing process to track ad unit performance. By using channels, you can collect 'before' and 'after' data to help you measure the effects of different ad placements.