Google announced changes to its AdWords policies on software principles, arbitrage, advertiser claims and relevance, clarity and accuracy on October 15. Arbitrage is defined by Google as websites created by advertisers to drive traffic to their websites at a low cost and pay for that traffic by earning money from the ads placed on those websites.
The new AdWords policy is designed to place an even stronger focus on the quality of paid search advertising. While Google’s Quality Score has always been an important metric for any PPC campaign, this time it appears that Google really means business. Knowing these new rules is essential for your online advertising.
Marketers that do not heed the new policy updates risk receiving penalties. Your ads could be disapproved and in some cases your domain could even get suspended. Serious violations risk account suspension.
Google has added specific examples of the kinds of advertiser behavior “typically associated with arbitrage”. These include:
- Websites designed for the sole or primary purpose of showing ads
- Websites with interstitial ads (unexpected pages that appear when navigating from one page to the next)
- Websites with scraped content from other sites
- Websites with gibberish content that makes no sense or seems auto-generated
- Templated or pre-generated websites that provide duplicate content to users
- Websites with deceptive navigation, where users can’t find an advertised product or service
- Websites with indistinguishable ads, where you can’t tell ads from the rest of that site’s content
- Websites that are malicious or frustrating, where any click on the site results in clicking an ad
- Ads that are targeted with keywords unrelated to the topic and/or business model of the website
- Ad text that is unrelated to the topic or business model of the website
Google’s Global Advertising Policy Lead, Mansi Goel said, “We’ve made it even clearer how advertisers must be fully transparent in their ads when describing the experiences on their landing pages. We’ve beefed up our rules about the use of keyword insertion in ads.”
Advertisers unsing Adwords need to become familiar with the new rules and avoid using any of the banned behaviors.
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