Google is retiring adsense referral program during the last week of August.Google is also offering the “Google Affilate Network” as an alternative.But Google Affilate Network will work only for U.S traffic to your site.
Google Affilate Network was formerly DoubleClick Performics Affiliate Network. But, for now, it is only for advertisers targeting users located in the United States.
Google has stated the following, in its mail to all Adsense referral unit publishers:
If you currently use referral ads, either to promote Google products or offerings from AdWords advertisers, AdSense Referrals code will no longer display ads beginning the last week of August. We encourage you to take the following steps before the product is retired:
- Remove the referral code from your site(s): Please take a moment to remove all referral code from your sites before the last week of August, so you can continue to effectively monetize your
- Run and save all referrals reports on your desktop: Create and save all reports related to the referrals program on your desktop, so you continue to have access to your valuable campaign
Google has obviously not found the referral program effective. Many publishers have already discontinued using adsense referral program, as it was was not yielding revenues for them.In adsense referral programs, payments were based on advertiser-defined actions instead of clicks or impressions.This obviously is difficult for google to track.Even if it were able to track, there are always going to be differences between Google’s and the referral program advertisers’ data.Hence Google’s operational expenses(OPEX) in managing adsense referral programs are always going to be high and the revenues might not have justified the OPEX. Neither google nor the adsense referral publishers were benefitted by the referral program. Though Google is now recommending Google Affilate Network, the earning potential of this program, for publishers, is yet to be tested.Moreover Google Affilate Network program is not very different from Adsense referral program.