When they finally approve you, patients, they most likely will, eventually... anyhoo, once you are in, then you can start adding ad units to your site. That's the fun part, it does take some finesse to add the ads in the best place, you want them visible, but not so much IN YOUR FACE that your visitors leave in disgust, see your webpage like your visitors, go to some other web sites, look at ones that you like, look at the ones that you don't like, try to figure out how to incorporate what you like into your site, don't use what you don't like. It's not rocket science.
Pick out the ad units you want to use, you can choose the size, number of ads per unit, you can customize the colors to match your site. Google decides what your page is about and delivers relative ads, if your page is about purple dinosaurs, then your ads will be about purple dinosaurs and related things. You can also choose to place other things besides ad units, you can choose:
Adsense for Content
These are the regular (and most popular) ad units you see
Adsense for Search
This adds a search box to your site, you can either have it search your site or the web
This one allow you to choose specific products or groups of products to advertise on your site, again these are tailored to the content on your site
This one is fun, you choose YouTube videos to be viewed on your site, little Google ad unit appears within the video box
The fun part of all this is you, the webmaster get paid for each click, most of the time, you get a few cents per click, but sometimes you get lucky and one of the clicks will really pay out! Once you reach $100.00, you get paid, either by check, or by direct deposit into your checking account.
Google Adsense has some rules, these are meant to protect the advertisers, these are the people who are paying you to have your visitors click on their ads. If you break any of these rules, then Google WILL cut you off, the ads will not show, you will see the space where they should go, but no ads will appear. So the main thing to do is to read the rules, yes, all of them, because you could accidentally be doing something wrong and not even realize it.
The number one no-no is to ASK or ENCOURAGE your visitors to click on your ads, as tempting as that may be, you run a big risk of getting caught, (someone WILL turn you in eventually), if you are caught you could lose your revenue or even be banned from Adsense. I have seen people asking their visitors to support their site by clicking on ads, that is a very quick way to lose your Google Adsense account, that is why I have never done that in all the time I have been with Google Adsense, though I personally would not turn anyone in for breaking that rule, there are those who would turn you in, in a heartbeat.
You want your visitors to click on ads they are truly interested in, hopefully if your visitors are at your site, then they are interested in what is on your site, therefore the ads Google serves up will also be of interest. Google does track your site's clicks, if they detect that you are getting too many clicks (percentage wise) from the same region, they look at it suspiciously, they assume you are having the same people, or your family and friends clicking for you, especially if the clicks are coming from the same area where you live. They might remove some of your revenue if they suspect clicks to be fraudulent. Placing images near the Google ads is also a no-no, arrows, pointers, anything that would unduly draw extra attention to your ads could be grounds for removal. Never, NEVER click on your own ads, if you happen to see something that you are interested in, most of the time, the ad will have the URL written on it, type it in manually, do not click on it, that will cause problems for you. Tell anyone who uses YOUR computer not to click on any ads on your site, you MIGHT be able to explain that away to Google, yeah and the dog ate my homework and the check's in the mail too... It's best to prevent it from ever happening in the first place.
The idea is to have your normal traffic to hopefully be interested in what is being served and will click on your ads, this is a win-win situation, the advertiser gets more traffic, and you get paid for it.
With that being said, signing up for Google Adsense and adding it to your website or blog is one way to earn some money. If you have any questions about monetizing your website or blog, please feel free to ask me. I have been with Google Adsense since March 06, I have been paid by them, I really appreciate the opportunity Google has given to me to be able to participate in this program.