Adding Advertising

(Josiah Sprague) #1

I know this isn’t the most exciting topic, but I’m wondering about the possibility of integrating advertising with Discourse. I haven’t seen any discussion about doing so, but I would like to use Discourse for a community I am thinking about sustaining through advertising revenues. How difficult/advisable would it be to try to integrate something like Google AdWords or another ad network into discourse?

Best way to include ads?
Custom advertising
(Sam Saffron) #2

The difficult thing is not the technicality of adding advertising, its just that google adwords is very unlikely to pay the bills as @geek would attest to.

We don’t have a facility for it now, nor a priority for building this feature. Nonetheless, I would only estimate it would take a few days to set something up.

(Jeff Atwood) #3

It is definitely on our list of things to do!

If you have particular ideas about how you think it should work, don’t hesitate to post that here.

(Josiah Sprague) #4

I may explore the idea of integrating it on my own. Just wanted to see if it was a compatible idea before I start exploring implementation. I don’t necessarily think Google AdWords would pay the bills. It was just a theoretical example.

(Sam Saffron) #5

Go for it! Would be more than happy to review your proposed design, this is something that should be in core, so take baby steps here, multiple PRs to get it going is the right approach.

(Tattoo) #6

How about an AD plugin?

1 Like
(finid) #7

An ad plugin or even a core feature that’ll make it easy to insert AdSense or other display ads at specific parts of the site will be nice to have.


I think there is a big problem with Adsense (which is critical to monetize most forums).

I’m not sure about the way to solve this, don’t want to think on using iFrames or things like that.

(Richard - #9

Iframes won’t work very well anyway, since the AdSense bot will access your server and request the same page in order to look for any content to target it’s ad towards. When using iframes, it will retrieve a blank page and give you crappy ads which won’t earn you any money.

I think the only thing you can do is
a) make sure you keep the existing ad upon client side refresh one way or the other


b) make sure that whenever the Adsense bot comes by, it is presented the correct contextual content. This is probably already implemented for SEO HTML fallback.

(Pedro_Sousa) #10

Beside adsense, a word replace filter will be a good way to monetize with affiliate programs.

(Example: The word “wordpress themes” replaced with a affiliate link to some wp premium themes or even envato marketplace).

Google adsense dont allow iframes anymore (its on T&C).

(Richard - #11

I don’t think there are any reliable generic services for this since AdBrite went down?


Any idea about any other webapp with this type of model & adsense? (I mean, heavy clienside javascript and adsense).

(Martin Potthast) #13

Perhaps it is not so much the possibility of putting ads somewhere, but that of putting all kinds of personalized contents to specifically designated containers on a Discourse instance.

I’m thinking about wide images at the top of a page and about some vertical contents left or right of a thread in which to put adds or personalized navigation that points to different parts of a web site that also hosts a Discourse instance. Also, personalized page footers would be a good thing.

What do you think?

(finid) #14

Just what I’ve been thinking.


Don’t understand your idea very well.

Main issue with this app, is that all the layout is build on the client, not on the server. So, Adsense or anything related, simply does not works.

(Sam Saffron) #16

Custom headers are already supported. Not sure where you would fit content vertically, but I guess we could inject content between posts.

(finid) #17

I have a local installation. What’s the process of adding a custom header?

(Sam Saffron) #18

Go to admin/customization and add a customization

1 Like
(Martin Potthast) #19

True, for AdSense this might not work very well since they expect server-side assembled pages. A generic content box might be worthwhile nonetheless.

(Martin Potthast) #20

About the custom headers, I didn’t realize.

About vertical content, one possibility would be to place it right of the posts, though this might interfere with the topic-links. Question is, how many topic links are expected on your average topic, and whether most of them would be at the top post, anyway.

Adding content between posts would be really nice.
Besides that, the only thing missing is footers.