Code Implementation Guide
If you're relatively new to web publishing, you may benefit from a few basic pointers about how to get ad units up and running on your web pages. We do as much as we can for you while you're setting things up on our site, but eventually you will need to take the code for your ad units and add it to your web pages.
1. Copying the code
After you click Save and Generate Code when you're setting up an ad unit, a new page appears with a box that contains your code. Click anywhere in this box to copy all your code to your clipboard. Once you click the box, you can paste the code anywhere you choose.
Your code is now ready to add to your web page. You may want to paste the code into a Notepad file or some other temporary spot first, but if you have your webpage code up and visible on your desktop, you can paste directly to it straight from our site.
2. Paste your code
If you're not familiar with HTML, review step 3 before this section; this section is about working with the code of your web page.
It's crucial to paste the code into your web page exactly as you found it on our site, without any modifications. Not only is modifying the code against our policy, it can result in errors on your page.
Once you've copied your code, open the page you want to work on in your HTML editor. Set the cursor where you want the code (more on this in Step 3), and paste the code. (You can do this from most Edit menus, or by right-clicking and using the display menu, but consult your HTML editor's documentation if you have trouble pasting).
If everything else about the page is finished (for example, if the page was already live on your website), then save the changes, add the changed file to your web server, and publish the page. If you have difficulty publishing the page, contact your web host or consult the documentation you use for publishing pages.
Provided that everything is correct with the page and the code is unmodified, you should begin seeing ads after a brief delay (no less than five minutes).
3. HTML basics
You may not be comfortable yet with HTML (Hyper Text Markup Language), the programming language used to write most webpages. Your website may use a variety of different languages to do different things with data and other things that display on your webpages, but at least part of every page on the web includes HTML.
How to read your HTML
All web pages contain HTML elements composed of bracketed tags, including these 3 basic elements: HTML, HEAD, and BODY. Each will be surrounded by brackets (<>) and appears twice. The second time, the brackets have a slash (</>) added.
First is the HTML element. The opening HTML tag is the first thing you see; its closing tag is at the bottom of the page. These tags start and finish the page.
Next is the HEAD element, which contains your header information (all webpages have some of this), and is not visible when you view the page in your browser. This and the BODY element are both contained inside the HTML element, which is why they're both inside the HTML tags.
Anything you put between the body tags will display in your browser. This includes your ad unit code.
The tricky part is determining where exactly you want your ads to display. Where the ads appear on the page is affected directly by where you put the ad unit code in the source file you're editing. If you're unfamiliar with the other, existing code you see in between the body tags, and don't know where best to paste the code, consult with the person who built the web page to determine the best place.
4. Common Problems
After pasting your code and publishing your page, you may not see ads for up to 48 hours. Before using this section, wait at least 48 hours to make sure your ad unit has had a full chance to begin functioning properly.
Paste your code exactly
If no ad unit appears on the page, or if you see an error on your site (such as HTML ad code appearing), check the HTML source code of your page to make sure the code on your site looks exactly the same as the code in your account pages.
To check the HTML source of your webpage, follow these steps:
Look for extra HTML added to your ad code
Be patient after pasting your ad code
You will not see ads (or changes you've made to existing code that you're re-publishing) for at least 5 minutes, and sometimes as long as 48 hours. Make sure to wait long enough to give the ads a full chance to appear.
Use ad formats that fit your site layout
Using the wrong format can jumble the content of your page, or even cause errors. When you're setting up your ad unit, select the format that will fit the space available on your page--don't change the appearance settings of your ad unit even slightly. If the ad unit doesn't align well visually with your page but it's the closest format for the space available, you'll need to modify your page content to accommodate the ad unit.
Make sure your Robots.txt file is crawlable
When you first place the code for your ad unit on your approved Web page, the ads may not appear if the robots.txt file for your site is not configured to allow access by MSN crawlers.
The robots.txt file must be edited to allow two crawlers:
The www.robotstxt.org site has detailed information about working with robots.txt files.
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