Google AdSense allows you to create different types of ad units to display on your website. Link ads display a set of text links relevant to the content in a single ad unit. Google offers both horizontal and vertical link units to optimize the space usage of a webpage, especially if you want to display more content in a single page along with ads. Image and text ads occupy considerable space whereas you can place the link ad unit in a very small space. A vertical link unit (120 x 90 or 200 x 90) consists of two or three links together and a horizontal unit (728 x 15) consists of 3 to 4 units together in a single ad unit.
How to Create Link Unit Ad in AdSense?
Google changing the AdSense interface frequently. With the latest updated interface, you can login to your account and navigate to “Ads > Ad units”. You will see all possible ad units like below and click on the “Link ad”.
On the next screen, you can do the following customizations for your link ad unit.
- Provide a unique name for your ad unit.
- Select Square or Horizontal style and check the preview.
- Choose the “Ad size” as responsive or fixed.
- Select text color and background styles.
After setting all required options, click on “Create” button to create a new link ad unit in your AdSense account.
How Does Link Unit Ad Work?
Link ad unit is different from other AdSense ads since link unit itself is not considered as an ad. And, clicking on it will take you to the real advertiser’s page showing the ads. The picture below explains how does a link ad work.
Due to the fact it’s not an ad by itself, Google permits AdSense publishers to click on their own link ad units. However, publishers are not permitted to click the ads in the resulting page.
Formats of Link Ad Units
You have two options in the “Ad size” dropdown – Responsive and Fixed.
Fixed Link Ads
Select the “Fixed” ad size to open additional options. Google offers the following fixed link ad formats:
- 728 x 15 – Displays four links in horizontal
- 468 x 15 – Displays four links in horizontal
- 200 x 90 – Displays four links in vertical
- 180 x 90 – Displays four links in vertical
- 160 x 90 – Displays four links in vertical
- 120 x 90 – Displays four links in vertical
Choose the size and create fixed horizontal or vertical link unit ad. Horizontal format link units will have few keywords in a line and contains three or more lines. And the vertical link unit ads are similar to horizontal format with the keywords are showing in vertical column format.
Responsive Link Unit Ads
Generally the problem in using horizontal link unit is that it will not fit on mobile devices. In order to overcome this issue, Google introduced responsive link units so that the ad display will be automatically adjusted according to the viewing device. When you create a link unit, select “Responsive” ad size and generate the ad code for creating responsive link unit ad.
Note that link ad unit is also part of matched content and display ads. You can see the link unit ad showing as keyword blocks in matched content and display ads.
Quick Facts about AdSense Link Unit Ads
- Link units themselves are not ads, the resulting page from the link unit only will display Google AdSense ads and you will be paid if the user clicks on these ads.
- AdSense publishers are allowed to click on link unit ads on their own webpages.
- Publishers are not allowed to click on any Google ads on the resulting page showing ads.
- Clicking on own link unit ads has the potential to inaccurately inflate impressions and affect your reporting metrics.
- Earlier, Google was showing your backup ads if there are no relevant link units available. However, this option has been removed and you will see a blank white space or no ads or an empty search box labeled “View ads about.”
- Users can enter their own search terms into this box to view ads related to their query. You will be paid for valid clicks on the ads displayed on the search results similar to Google Search box.
- Currently there is no way to filter out the topics that appear in link units. However, you can filter out specific ads that might appear after your users click on a topic.
- You can create and view the report for link units similar to any other ad units.
Ad coverage of link unit ads is considered only when it is clicked and viewed. Hence, using many link unit ads in a page will result in low ad coverage percentage. This may result in low CPC and less earnings for you.
Google Retired Link Unit Ads
It was a confusion among AdSense publishers that link units are not part of AdSense accounts created during past few years (see comments below). However, it continues to exist with old AdSense accounts. Finally, Google communicated to all publishers that they retire link unit ads from 10 Mar 2021. Below is the excerpt from the email communication we have received:
- You will no longer be able to create link ad units.
- Your link ad units will be renamed with [previously link ad unit] added to the end of the ad unit name. This will apply to both responsive and fixed-size link ad units.
- Responsive link ads will begin to serve display ad units on your site(s).
- Fixed-size link ads will stop serving on your site(s).We will collapse each ad unit where possible. In other cases we will show a blank ad.
If you already serve responsive link unit, they will start showing display ads after the retirement. In case if you are using fixed link unit ads, you have to remove it from your site or replace with another display ad unit code.
It is sad to see Google retiring the link ads. My site used to perform well on link ads. Now my earnings slumped after the link ads retired…sad..sad..
Really a great article. Thank you, Sir. But I have a question. many people just covert display ads to link ad, and just using them. they just change the HTML code ad format “auto” to “link” and it’s working. but does it safe to use like this ??
How can I get this type of ad unit,? I can not find a “link ad unit” in my Adsense account?
So what is the requirement to fulfill get this ad unit, plz reply
This is not available for new accounts (at least in the past few years). However, if the advertiser choose to show it may appear as part of display ads. You don’t have control in your AdSense account.
I don’t see any option for Link ad unit in my adsense account. What should I do?
hello admin, thanks for the wonderful post. I need to know if link ads units can still be created in 2020 because I can’t see the option from my Adsense dashboard
It is only available on old accounts and new accounts do not have. We believe, link unit is included in display ads (like keywords block) and you do not have a control to choose.
Thanks for sharing this article, but current time ads link not available in google adsense account, However today I search for my website to place link ads, on YouTube channel and here I found most of video which is shown to edit your simple text display ads code to convert into link ads. Is it safe step for adsense account.
What do you have to say about this, i’m waiting for your reply
Hello. Please let me ask if my adsense “link ads” does not exist, what is the reason. Thank you very much
Nice article, I just placed link text ads on my site and I noticed that they are the best performing. My adsense earnings have like doubled.
Currently testing various ad positions to see the results.
Is anyone seeing great results with link ads?
Please share your results.
Link units are one of the worst performing because of the nature that user needs to go to the advertiser’s page then click. Also, Google removed link unit ads from new AdSense accounts, so this will be retired soon or later and go under display ads.
Not able to see any such option in my Adsense account
Adsense stopped it for new accounts, and subsequently retired entirely earlier in March 2021
Iam getting 500 impressions a day, 100 visitors but i am not getting any clicks especially fro lockdown period
It all depends on your content and ad placement. If you get more clicks for 100 visitors then your account will be banned.
There is no link ad unit option on the new google adsense dashboard
You can’t do if it is not available. What we understand from lot of comments is that new users do not have link unit ads enabled or Google disabled this for all new accounts. At any case, this is one of the lowest CPC ads, so you can use responsive ads instead.
728 x 15 – Displays four links in horizontal format looks good. Is it gonna be responsive?
You need to select responsive link unit ads.
I have recently got approved google adsense. But link ads not appear in my adsense account. Will you please help how to get link ads in my adsense account.
I see links ads on another website. But in my AdSense, I have not found any such ads types.
can you please suggest me how should I add link ad to my website.
Unfortunately, you can’t do anything if it is not available in your account.
Nothing like link ads on my adsense dashboard.
We understand, it depends on the publisher account and mostly the newly approved accounts don’t have link ad units. However, we don’t find any formal update from Google on this.
I don’t see any option for Link ad unit in my adsense account. What should I do?
You can see the option under “Ads > Ad units > Link unit”, we have also updated the article showing the screenshot with options.
Sir in my AdSense account there’s no tab of links ad …what should I do ? And how to quality criteria for that links ad? please suggest me answer
Recently a new update of adsense there is no link ads option so can I create and add on my website is it right or not for adsense policy.
The option is still available to create link unit, the article is also update with how to create link unit your AdSense account for easy reference.
I know you keep responding to people that the article is “updated” but these people are all correct. Link ads also do not show up as an option in my account either. I have the first 4 ad types, but not the last one.
Pageviews: 22k … Clicks: 40 … Revenue: $1 … Here is my test about link ad units. I dont make money from this ads. So, the worst ad units are link ads and matched content ads. (in my opinion)
the effectivity on depends website type and content, some websites make the majority of revenue with link ads, others prefer display units or whatever, what is your website about?
Anyway, Google retired link ad units from AdSense. You have no other options to get rid of them and replace them with display ad units.
Thanks a lot for this, i recently make used of of 200 by 90 link unit and it works great for me especially on mobile and the cpc is very great and i appreciate this full break down article that clears all my doubt.
This adsense broken down post content is one of the best i’ve seen online so far. I implemented the link units, and i later checked and compared the clicks.
I then figured out that site visitors are likely going to click link ads than the generic image/text ads.
I wanted to know one thing…. if I have a website on the topic say technology and I put some content on health tips so in text ads which type of ads will show technology or Health???
Where can I placed link unit ads to my AMP template?
Can you please suggest me what are the best places to put link ads. Some Graphics will clear the idea. Thanks.
i like the article and i use link ads a long time ago
got increased earning reached to more than 70% than normal adsens unit
now i got a quistion, can i place link-ad unit inside article content ?
in the middle of the article ?
Yes, you can place anywhere on your site as long as it provides good user experience.
Hello, can you help me to understand where can I remove Link Ads from my website? Now, I am using Header Bidding on my website with Adsense and other systems, in Adsense side, as you know, we don’t create any ad units, all the configurations we give in Ad Manager. So, in both Adsense and GAM I can’t find a place to block or remove that kind of ads from my website. That kind of ads is irritating. Any help is appreciated.
My friend got high CPC with link ads but i get to low CPC, may be because Niche of article.
My download site very good with Link Ads but my news site really bad with this one.
I discovered that link ad comes with a lot of crawl back in earnings at the end of the month, who else noticed this? Is it a problem specific to my blog? Thanks.
Adjustments are done for unnatural traffic and clicks, also Google does not disclose this fact transparently. As far as we have checked, this is not related to particular ad type.
this type of ad will show when your traffic is high? is it right?
No, you need to create link unit ad from AdSense account. This should work for all publishers regardless of the traffic.
Is there any difference in the CPC of responsive links vs normal links? Thanks.
No relationship between CPC and responsiveness. It depends on your keywords and in general link ad units will have lower CPC compared to display ads.
Hi, thank you for your article. I have a question.
The ad unit titles are perfect for my web app, but if I look the ads after the click, the ads are irrelevant. Do you have any suggestion? (Thank you for your time.)
That’s the problem with advertisers, showing different business name or title on the display and then link to some other irrelevant site on actual ad. If you notice this, you can block the advertiser or ad from your account.
But can’t get rid of this irrelevancy completely.
I am facing an issue with Link Ads. In a “New Ad Unit”, I added a new Link Ad. Link Ad created successfully but in the status column, it is howing “New” instead of Active. How to active that site. It’s been 7 days created that ad.
Other ads are working perfectly fine. Any Solution to this?
Thanks for the informative post though. Really Appreciated
I want to know , using of link ad make your cpc is low or not..because after using link ad my cpc is low..
Yes, CPC will be much lower compared to display ads.
Now a day, I see some of sites able to show 4 or 5 links in responsive ad unit. i am using the same responsive unit but my site not showing more than 3 links in that link unit. If any special setting need to be done?
AdSense link units generally shows three links, probably that could be text ads.
Ok. Its informative. Does the link work like Google Custom Search ads?
Custom search ads work like regular ads, link ads work as explained above.
Thanks for the easy to understand explanation of link ads. :)
i want to know if i can format my content to be like Link ads ! so my website will be uniform
Coz adsense will not pay us for the first click , and also link ads are deceivable some times
Your account will be banned if you do so.
Nice post brother , But I want to know —- How to create link unit ads for blogger? I have a blog with approved Adsense account and I am showing only content ads unit in my blog.
I would like to know about content ads. I see there are few Recommended Articles which are I think ads. will you please explain how to create and place ads like them to my website? The name of my website is https://www.techuworld.com Please reply
Those are matched content ads. You can read this article to get more details – https://www.webnots.com/how-to-use-google-adsense-matched-content-ads/.