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Compare Ad Manager, AdSense, and AdMob

Learn which Google publisher solution is right for your websites or apps

Google Ad Manager, AdSense, and AdMob are powerful products that help you sell ads on your site or app. Each provides different features suited for different kinds of publishers. This article helps you choose the product that's the right fit for your advertising needs. 

AdSense 

AdSense acts as an ad network, providing you access to demand from advertisers and helping you set up your ad inventory. AdSense is best for publishers who want more automation, easy to implement ad solutions, and have a small dedicated ad management team.

AdSense is for you if you need:

  • A place to monetize your website—blogs, forums, and online services perform exceptionally well on AdSense
  • A fast and easy way to implement ad delivery
  • Google to optimize your ad inventory for you and maximize your revenue through Auto Ads
  • Easily accessible performance reports

Sign up for AdSense

AdMob 

AdMob is a mobile ad network and monetization platform for mobile developers who want to earn money from ads, gain actionable insights, and grow their app business. As a network, AdMob allows you to monetize your mobile apps by helping you serve ads globally. As a monetization platform, for developers who work with multiple ad networks, AdMob helps you maximize ad revenue across all of your third-party network partners.

AdMob is for you if you need:

  • Access to high-performing mobile app ad formats with strong controls for brand safety
  • An easy-to-use solution to help you maximize ad revenue across Google and third-party networks with waterfall mediation and Open Bidding
  • A holistic view of ads performance and user engagement with Google Analytics for Firebase
  • Automated tools to streamline your day-to-day tasks with features such as Ad Network Optimization
  • A solution to balance in app purchase and ads-based revenue streams based on user behavior with smart segmentation

Sign up for AdMob

Google Ad Manager is an ad management platform for large publishers who have significant direct sales. Ad Manager provides granular controls and supports multiple ad networks, including AdSense, Ad Exchange, and third-party networks.

Ad Manager is for you if you need:

  • A central place to monetize all of your inventory types (websites, mobile apps, videos, or games)
  • To manage ad revenue that mainly comes through direct deals from buyers
  • To use third-party networks to compete for ad inventory
  • More complex reports to gain granular insights

Sign up for Ad Manager

Common misconceptions

"Ad Manager serves higher quality ads"

Not true. AdSense, AdMob, and Ad Manager publishers have access to the same premium Authorized Buyers. You can serve high-quality ads from all three platforms.

"Ad Manager is a premium version of AdSense"

Not true. Ad Manager is a different product from AdSense and AdMob. Ad Manager is a unified platform with granular inventory controls and other features that allow you to manage direct sales, third-party networks, and programmatic demand across desktop, mobile web and apps.

Differences between products 

 

Google Ad Manager
(ad platform)

Google AdSense
(ad network)

Google AdMob
(ad platform)

Google AdMob
(ad network) 

Inventory types available

Web + App 

Web

App

App

Use other ad networks or negotiate directly-sold ads

Yes

No

Yes

No

Just tag pages to see ads

Yes, if you allow AdSense to show through Ad Manager

Yes

N/A

N/A

Make AdSense or AdMob network compete with other ad networks to maximize revenue

Yes

No

Yes

No 

Consistent reporting across all ad serving activities

Yes

N/A

Yes

Yes

Google manages payments to you and billing your advertisers or collecting payable amounts from ad networks

Yes, for Authorized Buyers, Open Bidding, and transactions through Programmatic Direct

Yes

No, payments to you come directly from your advertisers or ad networks and you manage billing and collection

Yes

No, for traditionally negotiated line items, payments to you come directly from your advertisers or ad networks and you manage billing and collection

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