The mission to improve user experience and weed out spammers, bots, and hard-to-use websites continue with the Google Ads' latest destination requirements update.
A small but significant update, the requirements for ad destinations are changing to emphasise the user's experience when they get to the ad's landing page. Simply put, Google wants users to have a good experience when they click on an ad, so landing pages must offer unique value to users and be functional, useful, and easy to navigate.
In Googles Words:
In October 2022, the Destination requirements policy will be updated to include a new policy requiring ad experiences on destinations to conform to the Coalition for Better Ads' Better Ads Standards. Destinations containing ad experiences that do not conform to the Better Ads Standards will be informed via the Ad Experience Report. Any ads that lead to such destinations will be disapproved.
What You Need to Do
To ensure that your ads are not disapproved, you must adhere to the new policies Google has laid out. Below are examples that the policy requires you to avoid. Ensure that none of your ads does these, and you will be fine.
Your ads will get disapproved if:
- Destinations or content on your landing page are unnecessarily tricky or frustrating to navigate
- Your ad destination links initiate a direct download from the ad or that lead to an email address or a file
- Your destination contains abusive behaviour
Insufficient Original Content
Your ads will get disapproved if:
- Your destination has more ads than original content
- The content on your destination mirrors content from another website
- Your destination is solely designed to send users elsewhere
- Your destination provides no services – i.e. a 'coming soon' or 'under construction message is shown
- Your destination doesn't make sense or is incomprehensible, i.e. blank page
Make sure you avoid:
- Ads that don't accurately reflect where the user is being directed
- A domain or domain extension in the display URL doesn't match the final and mobile URLs
- Redirects from the final URL that lead to a different domain
- Tracking templates that don't lead to the same content as the final URL
Destination Not Working
Only one thing to remember here, destinations that don't function properly or have been incorrectly set up will not be allowed.
Destination not Accessible
This means your destination must be accessible in the targeted locations you are advertising.
Destination Not Crawlable
If your landing page is blocked by robots.txt and can not be crawled, it will get disapproved.
App or web store policy violation
Destinations that violate their app or web store policies will get disapproved.
The following is not allowed:
- URLs that do not follow the standard syntax
- Using IP addresses in the display URL
- Display URLs have unacceptable characters in them (?!&)
If the app has been deleted or suspended, Google will not recognise it and will disapprove the ad.
Unacceptable Phone Number
In Call-only, call extension, and location extension ads, phone numbers will get disapproved if:
- The phone number has not been verified by Google (call-only ads)
- Fax numbers, premium or vanity numbers used
- Phone numbers are not local or domestic for the country you are targeting
- Phone numbers that do not have an active voicemail service
Who Will This Affect?
To ensure advertisers comply with these new updates, Google Ads will start flagging any ads as disapproved if these requirements are not met.
Similarly, this will negatively affect websites with outdated or poor designs and user experience.
Remember that it is not about just one ad getting disapproved and no longer running; when ads are disapproved in Google Ads, your account quality will go down, and in the case of repeated offence, your account might even get suspended, affecting the performance of the rest of your Google Ads campaigns.
The good news is that websites that use best UX practices don't need to worry! Your website will already consider most of these points (if not all), and your ads will likely not be impacted.
If you are worried about your ads and how this update may affect you, the ExtraDigital team are here to help. We pride ourselves on our marketing and development teams working closely together, enabling us to know the best UX and design practices that boost our client's marketing efforts.