If Google AdSense is giving you this warning, “Earnings at Risk – You need to fix some ads.txt file issues to avoid severe impact to your revenue.”
This is NOT a good sign, my friends. But worry not, we are going to get you fixed up so you can continue to earn revenue!
Here’s how you can fix it. You are going to need a paperclip, a hair dryer and a fork. I’m kidding, all you are going to need is access to your Google AdSense account and access to your Hosting service.
By the way, if you need help finding a web hosting service then check out my guide on how to find a web hosting service that’s right for you.
What is an ads.txt file?
The acronym ADS stand for Authorized Digital Sellers. This files helps ensure that your digital ad is only sold through authorized sellers such as Google AdSense. This file helps prevent counterfeit ads from being put on your site.
This can help visitors to your site to buy from a verified and legit vendor and buy doing so, your audience is going to trust your site more and may continue to keep making purchases without fear or concern.
Plus, you don’t want random people putting ads to your site that you won’t receive revenue form it, right?
Google AdSense | Check Your “ads.txt” File
So let’s first do a quick check to see if you even have a ads.txt file that Google AdSense is asking you for, all you have to do is type in your URL and at the end just add “ads.txt” and press enter.
Here’s an Example:
If you have one then you should see this for Google AdSense.
google.com, pub-52145657656756333, DIRECT, f08c47fec0942fa0
So you have the file but you are still getting the error well then either:
- Google is not listed in that file
- your Publisher ID is wrong
- or the file is corrupted
Where to find your “ads.txt” file…
If you get a 404 error or a Not Found error then there is a high chance that you don’t have that file in your hosting service.
So you can do two things but first you need to download or view the “ads.txt” file from your Google AdSense account. This is where you can find it.
- Click on the Alert message on your AdSense homepage and then click on “Fix now”
- Click the Down arrow to open the “Create an ads.txt file for…” message
- Click Download. Your ads.txt file is automatically downloaded to your specified location. The default location is your Downloads folder on your computer.
How to add your ads.txt file into your Hosting service
Now that you’ve downloaded your ads.txt file to your computer, this is how you can add the file to your Hosting service.
So Google AdSense wants you to put that file in your “root” directory of your Hosting service. Depending on your hosting service’s structure it’s typically directly under your Domain Name folder but sometimes it could mean under your public folder as well.
In this example, I’m using NameCheap for my domain name and Hostinger as my web hosting services. If you don’t already have a domain or web hosting then you should definitely check them out since they always have some kind of promotion which makes them the best budget services for personal to small business.
Anyway this is the process:
- Login into your web hosting service
- If you have multiple domains then select the one that has the issue
- Find and go into your File Manager or Files section
- For our example it will be under domains sub folder
- Select the domain name
- Select the public_html folder
- Click on the Upload Files icon
- click on Select Files and it’ll prompt you to find your ads.txt file you downloaded earlier
- Once you selected the file then click Open
- and then click UPLOAD
Now if you go back to check your URL by typing:
You should see your Google AdSense information.
google.com, pub-52145657656756333, DIRECT, f08c47fec0942fa0
Just keep in mind that if you go back to your AdSense account, the error message may still be present. It may take a few days for Google to crawl your site again to find that file and verify it.
But if you can’t wait then you can always go to Google Search Console and request Google to Index your ads.txt URL. Doing this may or may not speed up the process.
Organically, it took 2 days for my error message to be fixed but your time length may vary.
See Video for step by step walkthrough and Guide.
Watch the video on other platforms.
Editing your ads.txt file…
If you have an ads.txt file in your hosting service but you have other companies that you are using that are also utilizes the ads.txt file then you can edit the ads.txt file instead of completely replacing it by simply:
- Open your ads.txt file with a editor like notepad
- Select and copy your information
- go into your web hosting file system
- find the ads.txt file
- Select to edit it and paste your information into that file
- click save
Using WordPress? Try a plugin…
If you are using WordPress you can also use plugins like Advance Ads to fix the error as well. It seems like there’s a plugin for everything these days. simply just download the plugin that you want and either login to your Google AdSense account through the plugin or follow the instructions of the plugin to get the error fix.
Every plugin has their own procedure so I’m not going to list them all here but it’s pretty intuitive, just follow the directions on the plugin and you should be all set.
If you tried all of the above and you are still getting an Google AdSense error then there is a chance that your file is corrupted so it’s best to replace the ads.txt in your hosting service completely and see if that resolves your issues.
But if you have to do that then save your current ads.txt information somewhere first before you do it, just in case you might need that information again.
If you haven’t already, learn how to create Ads and place them on your website with my step by step tutorial.
Here is some more information from Google AdSense regarding your ads.txt file.
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