This article explains how to find out why your ad was disapproved by Google Ads (formerly known as Google AdWords) and how to fix the problem.
We know how strict Google is getting when it comes to overseeing and grading websites from the SEO perspective. With each new update, the main watchdog has been cracking down on thin spammy content, shady link building practices, and other non-white-hat SEO techniques.
However, don’t think that paid advertising is overlooked by Google. Instead, it is getting stricter in an effort to improve the overall quality of ads being shown to users. Every time you create a new ad or edit it, it triggers Google’s approval/review process. If your ad doesn’t meet the advertising policies of Google, your ad is risking to be flagged or even disapproved! Google now is even looking into paused ads.
Yes, Google’s behaviour may sound intimidating. But its intentions behind those rules are positive: Google just wants to give searchers the best experience. Therefore, we need to learn the policies and avoid writing ads that result in poor user experience.
Here at SEM, we work with several Google Ads accounts from various lines of business, and it seems that all industries are being affected in a similar way.
Why Ad Disapprovals is a very serious issue?
So, why should you worry about any possible ad disapprovals? If any of your ads are disapproved, it means that they are not able to run at the moment. In addition, Google can simply suspend your Google Ads account if you have become a repeat offender. A suspended account means that ads will not be shown at all, so your client will see a sharp decrease in leads and conversions. As a digital marketing agency, you should keep in mind that your client will also get those disapproval emails from Google. This can damage your agency’s reputation and may cause business losses for your client.
Below we’ve compiled a List of most common reasons why your ads could be flagged by Google.
Most Common Reasons for Google Ad Disapprovals
- Your ad makes mention of copyrighted content.
How to fix: find a synonym to use instead of copyrighted words. This is one of the trickiest issues regarding Google Ads disapprovals because it can be very tough to find a synonym for the drug name or the brand name (or any established trademarked terms). The best way would be to try get written permission from the owner of that copyrighted word to use the term in your ad copy. If you can get it, then you will be able to request an exception to this rule from Google.
- Your ads contain keywords that are not relevant to the message conveyed.
How to fix: Do not manipulate by using irrelevant keywords. Your ad should make sense for the keywords used.
- Inclusion your business phone number in the ad’s text.
How to fix: instead, you can use phone extensions. It will actually improve your Quality Score and lower your CPC. It’s a no-brainer!
- Your ad copy mentions topics deemed inappropriate by Google. In a nutshell, your ad should be legal, truthful and not offensive to anyone. And you cannot misrepresent facts, data, or pricing.
How to fix: Stay away from anything related to offensive content, adult-oriented content, counterfeit goods, dangerous products (i.e. fireworks, weapons, fireworks, explosives), tobacco-based products, gambling, etc.
- Your root domain is different in the display URL and the destination URL or landing page. For example, you listed abc.com in the display URL and then used xyz.com as the destination URL. Prohibited practices include the use of malware or “cloaking” software to hide the destination of landing pages.
How to fix: Just follow this rule, don’t play any games with URLs. Make sure to match the display URL to your landing page. Also, remember: landing pages are important. If your ad complies with the policy, check your landing page to make sure it is not causing the disapproval and fix any issues with the page.
- Your landing page is not using a secure server for a checkout process.
How to fix: You need an SSL certificate on your website if you want to run ads to drive direct sales. You can’t share any form of data that you collect.
- Your ad copy includes unsubstantiated claims such as your company is “#1″ or “best in” particular line of business or geographic location.
How to fix: Do not use those claims unless you can really support them. Instead, use an alternative explanation of your strong sides.
- You used words in all caps in your ad copy. (ex. 50% OFF – FREE SHIPPING). Do not use spam-like words (ex. “FREE” or “F-R-E-E”) in your ad and expect it to be approved.
How to fix: Do not use words in all caps; the only exception is when you’re highlighting a promotional code. (Ex. 50% Off – Use Code: SAVE50)
- Your ad contains too many exclamation points (ex. Huge Sale!!! Buy Now!).
How to fix: Don’t get too excited when writing your ad copy because only one exclamation point per ad is allowed. And no exclamation points are allowed in the headline!
- Your copy is too long!
How to fix: Remember, the maximum length for a headline is 25 characters and for each description line and the display URL it can be up to 35 characters.
How to fix: Keep your ads text simple and to the point. Use the max lengths as mentioned above.
- Your ad contains “click here” or something of that kind to motivate visitors to click on your ad. Remember, clickbait is prohibited and any ad that says “click” in the copy will be flagged by Google very fast!
How to fix: Avoid the wording similar to “click here”. Make sure to use a different call to action (ex. “Buy Now” or “Shop Now!”).
How to Fix Ad Disapproved by Google:
To get your ad up and running, first find out which ad was disapproved and why. Then, you would need to fix the issue by editing the ad so that it will meet the advertising policies of Google. Then you would need to resubmit your ad to Google for approval.
Steb by Step Instruction:
- Find the disapproved ad by heading to the “Ads and extensions” page.
- Check the ad’s “Status” column to find the reason your ad was disapproved.
Note: Google is using these types of statuses:
Eligible: Your ad is not fully approved yet, only preliminary scanning was done. Google is still reviewing your ad, and it allowed to be shown on a few Google search pages. Typically, Google will review your ad and mark it as “eligible” within one business day.
Under review: Google is still reviewing your ad, and it can’t show until it’s fully approved.
Approved: The ad complies with all policy measures. Congrats!
Approved limited: The ad can run, but only in some cases due to industry restrictions. Some industries are very regulated, there is nothing you can do with this.
Disapproved: The ad is disapproved by Google because it violates its policy. For that reason, the ad cannot run until it is fixed (as we explain in this post).
- If you see a “Disapproved” status, hover over it to get a link to the policy explanation.
- Once you know what is wrong with your ad, hover over the ad and click the “Edit” icon.
- Edit the ad so that it complies with the policy. Click Save.
The GoogleAds approval process examines critical factors on your ad text, including the quality and integrity of your headline and description, use of prohibited terms and keywords, landing page, and other factors. We have discussed them above in great detail. The approval could be annoying and it can take quite some time. But the best approach here is not to cut corners but make sure that your ad is meeting Google’s standards. If you follow the rules, you will likely avoid any disapproved ads. And don’t forget to monitor the status of your ads from time to time. Good luck!