AdSense Ads Are Not Shown Because of Broken Or Missing Ads.Txt

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If you want to learn how to make more revenue by using an ads.txt on your website read this article:


Today, i need to write about a serious issue where ads are not shown because of a broken or missing entry in the ads.txt file. This is problematic and many publishers are facing this issue nowadays.

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Let’s start first with explaining the ads.txt and how and when to use it:

What is Ads.txt?

Ads.txt is a method for publishers to declare who is authorized to sell their ad inventory. It is part of a common standard and is supported by all serious ad networks and sell side platforms (SSP).

Ads.txt is a small text file which can and in some cases even must be placed in the root of your website domain for legitimating certain ad networks on your website. The ads.txt file contains a list of allowed ad networks. As an example, for Google DFP and AdSense it’s looking like this:, pub-383599332971XXXX, DIRECT, f08c47fec0942fa0

The only parameter which is unique and needs to be modifed for your own website is the publisher id starting with pub-.

Do I Need a Ads.Txt On My Website When Using Google AdSense Ads?

Google itself is writing officially that the use of an ads.txt file is recommended but not mandatory when using AdSense ads on a website.

Unfortunately, there seems to be a few exceptions:

  • We experienced cases where AdSense ads are not shown on a website because of the ads.txt missing
  • If here is an ads.txt in your website root domain and it does not contain any related related entry to or it does contain a entry but not with the correct publisher ID than there are no AdSense ads shown at all.Take this serious, especially if you are using AdSense together with other ad networks or if you are using a third party plugin which assists you with adding ads on your site.It’s likely that another plugin is adding an ads.txt to root of your domain for another ad network without adding the also important google entries.
    As a result no AdSense ads are shown than.We experienced the exact same issues on customer websites and it took us a long time to find out why AdSense was not shown there.

This is very hard to track down because you will get no error, warning or anything else on your website or in the Google AdSense dashboard.

If your AdSense ads are not shown, check the root of your website for the existence of an ads.txt file. If there is one, it must contain a entry for as shown above.

How to Solve Issues With Ads.txt

  • If your AdSense ads are not shown, check first if your website contains the ads.txt file. If it’s there is one edit it and if there is no entry in it put this one on top of the file. Do not remove other lines from the files as they are probably needed for other ad networks on your website.You need to wait up to 24 hours until changes to the ads.txt are recognized by google.
  • If AdSense ads are not shown and you have no ads.txt you can try to create one with the entry. Wait up to 24 hours and check again if ads are appearing.You can also check out the AdSense documentation about using ads.txt on your website.

Who Invented Ads.Txt File?

The ads.txt has been created by iab,  a global, non-profit, research and development consortium focused on promoting common technology to the digital advertising supply chain. You can read more about ads.txt on the official site.

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