Google AdWords To “Strictly Enforce” Display URL Policy

PPC Hero wrote that Google would be making changes to the AdWords display URL policy on April 1st. I asked Google for more details on this policy change and they informed me that the policy is remaining the same, but starting April 1st, Google will begin “strictly enforcing” it.

Last Saturday, account managers began notifying advertisers that the display URL policy will be enforced, as a ‘heads-up’ to those advertisers. Why is Google now going to enforce this policy? It seems like more and more advertisers are complaining that competitors are not playing fair, but there can be other reasons. Google told me it is their “goal is to have policies that are fair, consistent, and adaptable.”

Google also sent me a more detailed explanation of the policies that will be more strictly enforced to help current advertisers prepare for the policy enforcement. Here it is:

Display URL Policy:
To ensure a positive user experience, we require that your ad’s display URL match its destination URL (the URL of your landing page). We monitor and do not allow ads with display URLs that redirect to different destination URLs.

For example, if your destination URL is www.Google.com, your display URL must also be www.Google.com. The following would not be acceptable display URLs for an ad for www.Google.com:

  • www.Google.co.uk – this URL leads to a different site
  • www.Gogle.com – this URL simply redirects to www.Google.com
  • www.Gooogle.com – this URL leads to a page showing content identical to www.Google.com

We do not allow the use of multiple domains or branding and vanity URLs. Please also be aware that we do not permit multiple ads from the same or related company, person or agency to appear on the same search results page. For more information on our Double Serving Policy, please visit https://adwords.google.com/support/bin/answer.py?answer=14179.

Tracking URLs We understand that many advertisers utilize tracking URLs within the destination field of their ads. If the URL of your landing page matches that of your Display URL, your ads will be approved.

For example:

  • display URL www.google.com/adwords >> destination URL www.trackingurl.com/google123 >> landing page URL www.google.com would be acceptable
  • display URL www.google.com/adwords >> destination URL www.trackingurl.com/google123 >> landing page URL www.trackingurl.com would not be acceptable

Related Topics: Channel: SEM | Google: AdWords

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About The Author: is Search Engine Land's News Editor and owns RustyBrick, a NY based web consulting firm. He also runs Search Engine Roundtable, a popular search blog on very advanced SEM topics. Barry's personal blog is named Cartoon Barry and he can be followed on Twitter here. For more background information on Barry, see his full bio over here.

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