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Tailored Advertising

I understand that the original intent of that "Ads by Google" sidebar was to create an advertising banner that corresponds to the content of the site, thus advertising products that the site's readers may be interested in. Almost no one reading Penny Arcade is going to be interested in buying from an online vacuum cleaner site, but the video game ads probably get a fair number of hits. It's kind of a cute idea, but the ads seem to work by latching onto certain keywords from the title or content of the individual pages, not from the site itself. Sometimes, it works, like in the recent article about hand health by Dylan Meconis, where all of the Googled ads are for arm braces. But then, a review of Dave Kelly's Lizard offers several online dealerships that sell reptile cages, this column by Dalton Wemble seems to have a thing for charities, and my personal favorite, a review of Dominic Deegan: Oracle for Hire brings up offers for a free psychic reading. Just how much click-through are these guys getting?

The forum page for my comic "Digger" over at Graphic Smash was running ads for post hole diggers and ice augurs for awhile, pretty much to the exclusion of any other products.

I can't imagine they made many sales off that, but it did give me a chuckle.