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AdSense phasing out Text-only ad units and other ad settings changes

Today Google AdSense emailed Publishers (including me) a notice that they will be updating and simplifying the ad unit options in Ads Tab. The changes reflect a shift towards richer media in ads and more reliance on Google's optimization algorithms and machine learning, rather than custom settings.

It will include the following changes, which are rolling out in the coming weeks:

All ad units will be Responsive by default. Responsive sizing allows the ads to adjust to different screen sizes. You will still be able to create ad units with a fixed size.

Text-only and display-only ad units are being phased out. "Text ads only" and "Display ads only" ad units will be renamed "Display ads" and will be updated to serve all ad types.

Custom text ad styles are being deprecated. You will no longer be able to create ad styles for new ad units and existing ad styles will have "Google-optimized text ad styling."

Custom "If no ads available" option is being removed. If no ad is available for an ad unit, it will default to collapsing the ad space or showing a blank space.

No longer possible to change ad code type to synchronous.  If you are using Google Ad Manager or other ad server that does not support asynchronous ad code, you can modify your ad unit code to make it synchronous following these instructions in the AdSense help center: How to generate synchronous ad code for your ad units.

Obsolete ad unit settings Experiments will be removed. AdSense will stop irrelevant experiments in the coming weeks and remove the experiments report from the Reports tab.

The option to add a custom channel when creating an ad unit will be removed. Custom channels are currently only used for tracking ad performance, as advertisers no longer can buy placement-targeted ads. You can still see Custom Channels reports, but in the future you will need to add the custom channel ID to your ad code manually to track performance that way. An easier option is to view the "Ad units" report, and filter to only show data for selected ad units.

Note that these changes will not affect ads on YouTube.

Learn more in the AdSense Help Center: Recent updates to ad units