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How to Use Section Targeting in Google Adsense

Samyak Lalit | March 2, 2012 (Last update: September 22, 2017)

Samyak Lalit is an Indian author and disability rights activist. He is the principal author and founder of projects like TechWelkin, WeCapable, Viklangta, Kavita Kosh among many others.

Google has realized that on websites (especially on blogs) there occurs some information which should not be used for deciding which AdSense contextual ads be displayed on that page. Such information mostly lies in the sidebars and footers. Sometimes, Google’s ad serving algorithm gets confused and take this irrelevant information in account while deciding which ad to show on your blog.

Section Targeting is a mechanism to ensure that the algorithm gets the right content to decide about ad serving. The mechanism is very simple. You just need to put Section Targeting “section start” and “section end” markers in your blog’s code to tell the algorithm about the content that should be considered as context for ad serving.

Marking content that should be considered

For this, Google has provided the following HTML tags. These tags are recognized by the Google ad serving algorithm:

<!-- google_ad_section_start -->
<!-- google_ad_section_end -->

Read: Out Google AdSense Tips (a must read for AdSense Success aspirants)

You should enclose the content you want to target within these start and end tags. You can do so by placing these markers in your single post code. For example, in case of WordPress, you may consider enclosing the_content() function within these Section Targeting tags:

<!-- google_ad_section_start -->
<div class="entry-content">
<?php the_content(); ?></div>
<!-- google_ad_section_end -->
Marking sections to be ignored

If you want certain portions of your web page to be totally ignored by the AdSense ad serving algorithm; you can add weight=ignore to the start tag. For example, if you want comments on your page should be ignored –then WordPress code could look like this:

<!-- google_ad_section_start weight=ignore -->
<?php comments_template( '', true ); ?>
<!-- google_ad_section_end -->
Is it worth to do section targeting?

Yes, it appears to be a good idea to implement section targeting while using Google AdSense contextual ads. It helps ad serving algorithm to select the best ads to be shown on your webpage. This would help increase your AdSense CPC and CPM rates.

I hope this AdSense tip was useful for you. Properly using AdSense ensures that you earn better income from your online business. Do let me know if you have any questions regarding this. Happy blogging!


20 responses to “How to Use Section Targeting in Google Adsense”

  1. Misha says:

    Why you don’t use targeting tags on this website ?

  2. Gaurav Verma says:

    Adsense section targeting is good for increase Adsense earning. Finally, I found the code for Adsense section targeting

  3. King says:

    Thanks! You are a saint

  4. Sanjeev says:

    Thanks for the tips, however I do not see this implemented on your own webpages.

    • Lalit Kumar says:

      Sanjeev, all bloggers have their own strategies. So, everyone implements different tips as per their own requirements.

  5. Youthcave says:

    Love this article, but here is a question. I am using theme for my site, does theme have this code or should i put them?

    Thank you.

    • Youthcave says:

      And does it makes a diference becauce i am using plug in for Google adsense? I didn’t put ad code.

    • Lalit Kumar says:

      You need to manually add this section targeting code in your theme. It would not make any difference if you’re inserting AdSense ads using a plugin.

  6. John Freier says:

    Hey Lalit,
    As per AdSense’s latest documentation ( ) this is no longer relevant or needed!

    Too bad kind of because I thought it was sometimes convenient.


    • Lalit Kumar says:

      Hey John,

      Yes, it was only a matter of time before Section Targeting was to be made obsolete. Now it’s very easy for Google’s algorithms to understand the overall context of the webpage content. Google does not need help of section tags anymore.

      Thanks for the comment! Cheers!

  7. Lokesh Kumar says:

    Really very well done..I am totally going to use it.

  8. rahul says:

    Thanks lalit for this great article.. I am using adsense and traffic of my site ranges between 1200-1500 daily but Adsense earnings are very low.. so i was looking for some legit ways to increase em… I am going to implement this and share my results soon.. keep up the good work mate.. cheers

  9. Rob says:

    Just the code I was looking for. Thanks Lalit.


  10. Rafaqat says:

    I was wondering why my adsense income is low,especially cpc,but after going through the article i will definitely increase my adsense cpc.
    Thanks for awesome trick

    • Lalit Kumar says:

      Rafaqat, section targeting may prove to be useful in increasing your AdSense income. But there are lots of other factors as well that affect it.

  11. Yos M says:

    nice tips ..thanks

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