How the new Google Ads Destination Requirements Policy will effect your Google Ads campaigns?

There probably isn’t an internet user who hasn’t had a frustrating experience with online paid ads.

The major vendors who make their money on selling ad space online are aware of this and are trying to do something to improve it.

If you buy ad space for your business from Google, or Microsoft or Facebook then you need to be aware of some forthcoming changes.

The Better Ads Standards are a set of ad experience guidelines that were developed by the Coalition for Better Ads, an industry group that includes Google, Facebook, Microsoft, and many other companies.

The standards define what constitutes a “bad” ad experience, and Google has committed to ensuring that all ads on its platforms conform to these standards.

Destination Requirements Policy Update

Destination policy google 2022

Google recently announced that the Destination requirements policy will be updated in October 2022 to require that all ad destinations comply with the Coalition for Better Ads’ Better Ads Standards. 

This is a big change for Google and will impact all advertisers who are running ads on Google’s platforms.

The update to the Destination requirements policy is just one way that Google is working to improve the overall quality of ads on its platforms.

To make sure that websites follow the Better Ads Standards, Google runs a scan called the Ad Experience Report.

If any ads lead to destinations with ad experiences that do not meet the new standards, those ads will be disapproved.

Destination experiences that will be disallowed

While there are many nuanced and fairly technical reasons that an ad may not be compliant with the Better Ads Standards and thus be refused or blocked, some of the more common ones are as follows.

For a more complete list with specific examples please check out Googles Destination Requirements

Content or destinations that are difficult or frustrating to navigate.

For example: websites that have pop-ups or interstitials that block the user’s view of the content requested; sites that disable or interfere with the browser’s back button; websites that take a long time to load on most popular browsers and devices, or require downloading an additional application to view the landing page (aside from common browser plug-ins).

Links that prompt a user to download a file from the ad directly, or that lead to an email address or another file.

Images, video, sound, and documents are just a few examples. Please note that pharmaceutical advertisers are allowed to use PDF landing pages, as long as they meet the certified requirements.

Destinations that contain abusive experiences.

Websites that redirect the page automatically without user action; websites that display ads that look like system or site warnings or error messages.

Destinations with Insufficient original content such as:

  • Destinations whose content is designed primarily for the purpose of showing ads.
  • Destinations whose content is copied from another source and published on a website without adding anything new or beneficial.
  • Destinations where instead of being a destination in and of itself, these destinations are only intended to move users elsewhere.
  • Weird or confusing destinations such as blank pages or gibberish.

Destinations with mismatches

  • Ads that do not accurately reflect the user’s final destination.
  • A domain or domain extension in the display URL that is different from the final and mobile URLs.
  • Redirects from the ultimate URL that take the consumer to a different domain.

Destinations using unacceptable URLs

  • URLs that do not follow the acceptable syntax
  • Having an IP address as the display URL
  • Display URLs that use disallowed characters such as @, #, !

Phone numbers that are unverified or unacceptable

  • Phone numbers that are not verified by Google.
  • Inactive, irrelevant, or phone numbers that don’t connect to the company being advertised.
  • Fax numbers, premium-rate numbers, or vanity phone numbers. Examples would include 1-900 numbers as numbers such as 1-800-GOOG-888 instead of 1-800-466-4888.
  • Ads using a phone number that is not local or national to the nation you’re targeting.
  • Phone numbers without working voicemail services.

What do you need to do to avoid having your ads disapproved?

Google will begin disapproving ads that lead to destinations with these experiences starting October 2022. So if you have any ads that lead to these types of destinations, make sure to update them before that date.

To ensure that your ads are not disapproved, please take the following steps:

  • Update your ads to lead to destinations that meet the requirements of the updated Destination requirements policy.

If you have any ads that are currently disapproved for not meeting the Destination requirements policy, make sure to fix the issues on your destination so that your ad can be reapproved.

Where can I learn more?

To learn more about which types of ad experiences are disallowed, please visit the Coalition for Better Ads website. For detailed instructions on how to use the Ad Experience Report, please visit the Web Tools Help Center or post in the Ad Experience Report Forum.

The Coalition for Better Ads better ads standards page has more information on the types of ad experiences that will be disallowed.

If you have specific questions about some of your ads and if they are compliant with the new Google Policies please call 604-630-0767 and one of our Google-certified experts will be pleased to help.