If you are one of the 35,000+ nonprofit organizations benefiting from Google's Ad Grant donation program and your Google Ads account has been suspended, you will want to resolve this as soon as possible. (If you are not familiar with the Google Ad Grants program, read our introduction about it here).
This guide is designed to explain you the most common reasons for suspensions, as well as how to fix those and reinstate your suspended account afterwards.
Please note that if your account was suspended after March 1st 2018, it might be because you did not respond to the email survey Google has sent to all Ad Grant users. Those had to be completed by the 1st of March.
If you do not have access to the email address associated with your Ad Grants account, you will need to contact Google so that they can help you get access to the survey. With that out of the way, let’s jump into our top three reasons Grant accounts get suspended.
3 Most Common Reasons for Ad Grant Suspension
1. Violation of the mission-based campaigns policy
The mission-based campaigns policy has been updated, now stating the following:
"To help you to get the right audience and to help users find what they're looking for, each ad and keyword in your Ad Grants account must reflect your organization’s primary mission, be relevant to your nonprofit's programs and services, and be specific enough to provide a good experience for the user seeing your ads."
After reading the above, you will see that quite a bit has changed. Some of those changes could be the reason your account was suspended. To give you a better overview of the changes, we have summarized them in the table below:
If you believe a violation of the mission-based campaigns policy is the reason your account was suspended, you can make the necessary adjustments above. Next, you can call Google Ads support and request a review. If everything above has been resolved, your account should get reactivated.
Tip: To avoid having your account suspended because of low quality score keywords (lower than 3), you can set up an automated rule to pause them automatically. You can then review the paused keywords and make the necessary adjustments. Consider using negative keywords, it will help reduce irrelevant traffic coming from your broader keywords.
2. Violation of the website policy by promoting an unauthorized domain
According to the new website policy you can only use website domains authorized through the Ad Grant enrollment process. Accounts found in violation of this policy are hit with an automatic suspension without notification.
If you would like to submit an additional domain, you can use the request form Google provides for that.
3. Violating the account management policy
The changes to the account management policies contain some of the most impactful changes for Grantees. Here is what changed at a glance:
If you think your account might have been suspended due to some of the reasons above, here are some steps you can take to resolve them.
Account Click-Through Rate
This is probably the hardest change for most Grantees we have worked with. If you are new to Google Ads account management, the mandatory account level Click-Through Rate of 5% may be difficult to maintain. If this requirement is not met for two consecutive months, your account may be suspended or cancelled.
Is your account Click-Through Rate below 5%? Check which campaigns, ad groups or keywords are bringing it down the most and consider pausing them. If they are important to your organization, try to improve their CTR. We cover some strategies on how to do that in this blog post. Once you have increased your CTR to 5% or above, for the last 7 days of account activity, you can submit your account for reactivation.
Make sure your location targeting is relevant to your organization and campaign topics. This should also help increase relevance and quality which is an ultimate goal of all these policy changes.
Double check every campaign and make sure it contains at least two enabled ad groups. If you have a live campaign running with only one enabled ad group, create a new one or split your ad group into two.
Check your campaigns and ad groups and make sure you have at least two approved sitelink ad extensions enabled. Once you have addressed all requirements above, you can call Google Ads support and request a review.
Although the above-mentioned points are not the only reasons why accounts get suspended, they are some of the most common. Google may not reinstate accounts that are continuously getting suspended, so it is important that you abide by their policies.
Dive deep into your account and check for all of the above issues.
If you have more questions about this topic, feel free to leave a comment or reach me directly.