Keeping up with Compliance: Google Ad Grants Policy Update & free workshop - by Jason Williams

'Twas the weeks before Christmas 2017 and NGOs across the world were long into their festive fundraising campaigns, when an update was announced for the Google Ad Grants management policy.

'Twas the weeks before Christmas 2017 and NGOs across the world were long into their festive fundraising campaigns, when an update was announced for the Google Ad Grants management policy.

The announcement came in an email, which celebrated Google lifting the programme’s $2.00 bidding cap, Merry Christmas everyone! Or so we thought. The email also included a selection of links to updated policy sections and in these were the really important announcements.

Ad Grants AdWords accounts must have:

  • Specific geo-targeting to show ads in locations where users will find your nonprofit's information and services useful.

  • At least 2 active ad groups per campaign each containing a set of closely related keywords and 2 active text ads.

  • All Ad Grants AdWords accounts must maintain a 5% click-through rate (CTR) each month.

  • Responded to programme survey.

These policy updates were effective as of January 1st 2018 for all Ad Grantees, but Google didn’t start enforcing and serving account suspensions until 2 months later.

Since March 2018, thousands of Google Ad Grant accounts have experienced suspensions for failure to comply with the main policy requirements listed above.

Whilst this may be frustrating for many nonprofits, the policy updates are designed to raise quality standards. Too many charities were guilty of only measuring success by how much of the $10,000 grant they could eat through each month.

Nonprofits that understood the changes and have adapted to the new Google Ad Grants policy requirements, are feeling the benefit but for others this may require radical change and a steep learning curve. Google has raised the quality bar and at the same time thrown down a challenge to charities all over the world, start taking AdWords seriously or we’ll take away your grant.

To help charities get on board, Jason Williams is running free workshops in Bristol for nonprofits that have a Google Ad Grant and would like to better understand these policy changes, how you can keep up with compliance and how to improve your AdWords account performance.