Strange Google Ads Appearing For Tests In San Francisco

I have been using this browser checking tool for quite a while now. It has been one of my all time favorite tools!

In our website the advertisements are managed by our internal team and we display ads on the basis of our own inventory. We no where display ads from Google Adsense or other ad programs.

While conducting tests for the home page and a few other pages in the last 5 days particularly in the San Francisco region, we are seeing that our ads are getting replaced by ads served by Google, that too of a competitor website! Please take a look:

This is almost impossible since the control of the ad code rests with us and no one else can alter the code under any circumstances.

(I know chances are very less but still let me ask this question) Is it possible that while taking the screen shots of the webpage, the ads are being replaced by the screenshot tool (webpagetest) itself? Is that possible?


Nope, I can GUARANTEE you 100% that the screen shot is exactly what was in the browser. Do you have a fallback path that uses network advertising of some kind if inventory isn’t available?

Yes, incase that scenario arises, we run inhouse ads.

FWIW, looking at the waterfall, it looks like this call: is probably the one that resulted in the adsense call.

If you have the ability to enable logging of some kind in your ad serving systems I strongly suggest turning it on because it really looks like they are punting to adsense under some circumstances.

Regarding test:

I’m having problems with 302 errors and wondering about advertising static content slowing down my site:

I ran the test with all plugins turned off including W3 total cache

What’s your take on all the 302’s, especially those tied to the domains below?

ts: 87/100


CDN’s Used: : : Cloudflare : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : : Limelight

How do I identify the ad companies that are causing CloudFlare to extra seconds loading a web page jumping from server to server?

Ads are sort of the necessary evil of the Internet and you basically don’t have many options (Adsense is one of the better ones because it’s all loaded asynchronously in an iFrame). 302’s aren’t errors, they are redirects which are generally a waste of time but just about every ad network relies on them quite heavily for tracking.

I’m assuming you have some ad tags on your page and cloudflare is doing something to merge them because I don’t see any js calls that I recognize. A lot of the calls look to be happening in parallel so I’m not sure how much time hey are really adding. If there IS an ad call that you are making that I just don’t recognize, you can block it and see how it performs without the ads to get an idea for the performance.

Are you using rocket loader? Just wondering because it looks like the bulk of the activity is after onload. I’d recommend capturing video so you can see what the user experience looks like.

That said, the 2 second first byte time is a pretty big problem. If it’s regularly that long (nut just an outlier result) then you should take a look at your back-end first.

I’m running only one ad for WP-Touch in the left column.It doesn’t show most of the time since. standard layout is two columns.

Regarding blocking ad calls, is that something CloudFlare does or me? When I tested MaxCDN, few of the currently showing static ad URL’s appeared.

Yes, I’m running rocket loader. The 2 second first byte changes depending on web page, generally better when W3 Total Cache is on.

MobileBeyond runs on Genesis Prose Theme. Although I’m usually very happy with Genesis, as a small business owner without IT staff, it’s taking more of my time, fixing things and working with web hosting, domain, CDN and measurement companies.

If you don’t mind, I’ll share your thoughts with CloudFlare techs and see what they think.


P.S. What is that bright red line (error 11051?) that shows up on the 66X66 png file?

Sorry, blocking content is a feature that WebPagetest provides. Under the advanced settings there is a “block” tab and it will block any requests that match the patterns you put in there. For example, to block Google Analytics you could put:


into the box and it will block the request for the javascript for analytics (and anything that would have loaded as a result).

For the 66x66 png, it looks like the error is 12152 which is one I’ve never seen before:

               The server response could not be parsed.

The list of IE’s 12xxx error codes is here:

I don’t understand what you mean. I’m not trying to block data on the report. I’m trying to find an answer to all the internet traffic diversions to ad sites.

When you say, “ads are the necessary evil of the Internet,” what do you mean? Are you saying that ad content contained in MobileBeyond is causing Cloudflare to divert to the servers containing the ads?

The blocking can help you narrow down what request is causing the ad traffic. FWIW, a lot of it looked like tracking, not necessarily advertising. You should compare your site with and without cloudflare to see if it is something in the original page or something they are injecting.

I was figuring that the original page had the ads but it sounds like that might not be the case.