I turned on Google's AdSense GDPR Consent Message two days ago, and the results have been horrendous. I went with the default, two button message popup as it's straightforward enough. One options button, one I consent-button. Nothing special.

My Consent Rate over my first 20 000 messages shown is only 9% which seems absurdly low, and my Impression RPM has dropped from about 25 to 8. The site I show ads on is a simple daily word game with a mostly older and very kind userbase, that I would expect to just give their consent. I ask for nothing out of the ordinary.

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Has anybody experienced anything similar? I have no idea what I'm doing wrong, and even if it's only been a day and a half it's alarming.

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  • That consent dialog doesn't even look like it will comply with many logs because the not consenting is more clicks than consenting. Dec 15, 2023 at 19:51
  • Google has been emailing me that I need to do this for my site, but I think I'd rather just not have personalized ads at all than that annoying consent dialog with such a low consent rate. Dec 15, 2023 at 19:52
  • Hi @StephenOstermiller! This is the default consent dialog google offers, except that I made gave the button different colours (they both default to blue). Can you please clarify what you mean? Edit: I'm almost sure I've done something wrong to get such a low consent rate. I'm completely sure 91% of users did not reject this. Seems impossible. Or am I mad?
    – Klobloblob
    Dec 15, 2023 at 20:03
  • Personally, I'm surprised anybody consents. Why would anybody. Rates should be close to zero. Dec 15, 2023 at 20:05
  • That's fine of course but surely you agree that you're not representative in that opinion? Most users will just want to use the website and get rid of the message. We see versions of it on every website and we hate it. In any case I do agree that it's not a great message, but since it's the one Google offers it made sense to just use it out of the box.
    – Klobloblob
    Dec 15, 2023 at 20:11

1 Answer 1


I eventually figured out what caused the bad consent rate stat.

In the AdSense Privacy and messaging section you can set up purposes for your own use. This impacts what users see when they click Manage options, and also what they agree to when they click Consent.

It's difficult to know how this works behind the scenes without being an expert, so I ended up selecting a big range of purposes and since doing that the Consent rate has shot up to the 85 % I was expecting, and subsequently my RPM has recovered as well.

I'm going to mark this answer as accepted even if it's imperfect, as it might help somebody avoid making my mistake for too long.

  • I don't think this answer changes anything, it did nothing for me, and from what I understand it only impacts the options page which probably no-one is going to dig into. I'd rather think that the fact that you changed this made the consent box reappear, and your users consented more often this time (maybe because you changed the layout or the button color?).
    – Certitude
    Jan 18 at 15:32

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