Google Changes the Rules of the Game Google Changes the Rules of the Game

Google Changes the Rules of the Game

by ,
on 6 March 2018


To place this article in the proper context, what are Google Ad Grants?
This is a program created by Google which aims to allow nonprofit associations the use of Google Adwords free of charge.
That is to say that as an association you can place advertisements on the search engine with an aim to increasing notoriety or even collecting donations.

The original perimeter: a $10,000 monthly budget but a bid cap that could not exceed $2. One can imagine that within such a perimeter, the playing field is more that comfortable.

Except that:

  • Everyone places their own bids at $2 as that’s the limit and one is not invoiced. Ad placement is then a game of keyword quality scores.
  • Google Grants advertisements are necessarily placed after advertisers who really pay their bids (even if lower than yours).

Finally, as the budget is more than comfortable, it is easy to give in to simplicity and buy a little bit of everything. As the $10,000 monthly budget is rarely attained, why limit yourself to truly qualitative keywords only? At any rate, you don’t pay anything, and at worse, it generates traffic and so notoriety, and at best, you gain a few extra conversions.

Except that starting this 2018, Google has done a little housekeeping!

New conditions:

Before addressing the “bad news”, here’s some good news:

  • Google has removed the $2 maximum bid cap when using the “maximize conversions” bidding. In fact, this strategy should automatically define the bid as a function of performance. And so, it is not possible to seek a higher bid.

The following concerns the new measures that serve, from my point of view, to requalify the Google Grants accounts and as a result, what is placed on the search network.

In fact, here are the new rules:

  • Searches and ads can only include a brand name if you own it.
  • Single keywords are not allowed with several exceptions such as “association” or “contribution”.
  • Keywords that are considered too generic (example: free videos, digital books, etc.) are not allowed.

You’ll easily understand that Google wants to limit what could be qualified as abusive use of its Google Ad Grants program.

While at the same time, improve the Internet user experience for those making the search.

To back up this argument, Google added two conditions to the program:

  • Each keyword must have a quality score of 2 or greater.
  • The overall account must have a click through rate greater than or equal to 5% every month. And if the CTR is not achieved for 2 consecutive months, the account is cancelled.

If your account is cancelled as a result of one or more of these rules, it will be possible to reinstate the account after having made the necessary changes.

In conclusion, Google Ad Grants remain a very interesting solution for associations looking to grow their traffic and collect contributions from private individuals.

However, it will be even more necessary for associations to manage and monitor their Google Adwords account to ensure that it meets the new rules.


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Google Changes the Rules of the Game