Google rejects about 200,000 ads or more each year. Considering how many ads are submitted and approved, this is a small number. Still, it’s not just spammers that this happens to, overlooking simple details can get your ad denied. Not only is a rejected ad crushing to your ego, but it can also be worrisome to your overall web presence. Does this mean that your site will be banned from AdWords?

If your advertisement does happen to be turned down by Google, you will not be kicked off of AdWords. This is not something Google wants to do. Instead, Google wants you to fix the issues and rewrite the ad properly. What could have gone wrong with your ad in the first place? Quite a few things, actually.

Let’s explore the best ways to ensure that your ads get the green light by Google.

Only include your phone number in a call extension.

Google used to allow phone numbers in the text, but this has changed. Now, Google wants you to use click to call so they can get credit for the call and get paid.

There are pros and cons to this. On one hand, you are responsible for paying every time a lead contacts you via phone. On the other hand, you can now track the calls as conversions. This wasn’t possible to do when contacts entered the phone number manually. Call extensions increase click-through rates, so it’s typically worth the cost.

If you really want your phone number to be in the text, you can use Bing Ads. They still allow this. But, the better option is to use the call extension feature on Google. Your phone number will be proudly displayed, and standard CPC rates will apply.

Only advertise permitted items.

Google has restrictions on promoting content that can be hazardous or dangerous to human health. You can find the list of prohibited content here, but you probably have a pretty good idea of what to expect. For example, you can’t advertise tobacco, alcohol, weapons or most medications.

If you make a claim, have a third party back it up.

You might think that you have the best pizza in the world, but unless it has been proven, you can’t say this in your ad. If you want to say something about your business being “Number 1” or “Top Rated”, be sure to have a third party link to back it up. The good news is that it’s much less painful and expensive to have your ad rejected by Google as opposed to a lawsuit, which has happened to brands like Red Bull and Airborne.

Always use appropriate grammar and punctuation.

As excited as you may be to share your offer, you have to tone down the punctuation marks. This makes ads look sloppy and spammy, which is why Google rejects them. Google has strict guidelines to follow when it comes to punctuation. Only one exclamation point can be added per ad, and no exclamation points can go in the headline.

Google also has rules for capitalizing letters. You are not allowed to use all caps to spell out words, unless they are common abbreviations such as USA or ASAP. Also, coupon codes may contain capital letters as well as any words that are consistently capitalized throughout your web content. Other exceptions include trademarks, brand names and product names.

Avoid using copyrighted material unless you have permission.

Any ad copy that another company has trademarked cannot be used in your ad. If you want to include services from a particular company and use their name, you’ll need to get their written permission. Before creating the ad, make sure you have this permission and request an exception from Google. This will prevent your ad from being denied.

The root domain of your display URL and destination URL must match.

The display URL is the URL that shows up below your text ad, while the destination URL does not appear in your ad. Instead, it’s the link that the user is taken to when they click on your ad. Google does not expect your display URL and destination URL to be exactly the same, but the root domain should be.

Your landing page performs well.

You wouldn’t want leads to click on your ad and be brought to a landing page that is under construction. This would cost you money and put a dent in your credibility. Fortunately, Google watches out for you by assessing the quality of your landing page and ad. If anything looks out of place, your ad will be rejected, and you can fix the missing pieces.

Here are some of the specifics that Google looks at.

  • Correct URL

  • Properly loading landing page

  • Fast loading website

  • Crawlable website

  • Working keyword URLs

  • Working tracking URLs

  • Adequate information  

A privacy policy is included for retargeted ads.

If you plan on running a remarketing campaign, you must have a privacy policy to share with users. The reason for this is because you’re adding cookies to the visitor’s computer when they visit your website. The user has a right to block your ads if they wish, so a privacy policy is essential. Be sure to follow Google’s content policies. You will be expected to include specific information such as Google’s use of advertising cookies.

Final Thoughts

When you first see an ad rejected by Google, it’s easy to feel annoyed. But, consider it an opportunity to make your ad better before it’s shown to tens of thousands of potential leads. For example, if your landing page is not working properly, why would you want to pay to send traffic there? You would be wasting money and losing customers. Of course, you don’t want to make rejected ads a thing. The best way to avoid rejection is by preventing the issues above. It will save you time and lead to higher performing ads that you can be proud of.