It's not everyday that you hear about Google (NSDQ: GOOG) scrapping an advertising product, but that's just what's happening. Google is dumping its Video AdSense program. By the end of April, publishers will no longer be able to sign up for the revenue-sharing service, and those with AdSense videos embedded on their page will have their videos replaced. Google was careful to note that publishers would still be able to embed YouTube videos onto their pages, but they would have to do it the old-fashioned wayby going directly to the site and pulling embed code from individual videos.
Under the current AdSense program, publishers sign up through a dashboard provided by Google where they can choose what videos to be included in their AdSense player through a user-friendly menu. According to a Google blog post , the program didn't perform up to snuff. Presumably the click-through rates were low, which isn't a huge surprise; while consumers have become accustomed to clicking on links embedded in web pages, that's less the case with video.
The sunsetting of Video AdSense is the end of a short tenure for the service. It was introduced in beta form in February 2008 as a way for publishers to increase the amount of video content on their sites and earn a little money doing it. As with the more traditional Google AdSense programs for text and banners, Google served cheap overlay text ads onto its video content that were relevant to the video being played on the player and split the revenue with the publisher.
By Rory Maher