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Three Strikes and You're Out – Google Ads Implements New Policy For Repeat Offenders New Google Ads Strike System Will Suspend Accounts After Multiple Violations

author image Written by: Nicole McCormick           Categories - In The News, Paid Ads

Taking inspiration from America’s favourite past-time, Google Ads is implementing a new “three strikes and you’re out” policy, with the goal of “creating a trustworthy ad experience for users, advertisers and publishers.”

According to a recent blog post from Google, beginning in September, anyone who violates Google’s Enabling Dishonest Behavior, Unapproved Substances, and Dangerous Products or Services policies will be issued a warning, followed by up to three strikes for any subsequent offenses. Once you have been issued a third strike, your account will be suspended. 

So, What Exactly Is Considered A Strike-worthy Offense?

Google states that this includes ads promoting “deceptive behavior or products such as the creation of false documents, hacking services, and spyware, as well as tobacco, drugs and weapons, among other types of content.”

It’s important to note that these types of ads have already been prohibited for a while, Google is just now implementing a stricter policy for offenders.

How the Strike Process Will Work 

Anytime a strike is issued by Google, advertisers will receive an email informing them that their ads are in violation of Google’s policies. Upon receiving your first and second strike, you must correct the violations and submit an acknowledgement form to Google in order to continue running Google Ads. Strikes can also be appealed.

Strikes will expire after 90 days, and if you do not commit any additional violations after a strike is issued, your account will be considered in good standing. If you do not correct the violation and are issued a third strike, your account will be suspended.

But that’s not all – Google says it plans to expand this new strikes system in phases so that it can be applied to more Google Ad policies.

“Our goals are to increase accountability for advertisers and to also encourage them to learn more about our advertising policies to prevent future violations, creating a better overall experience,” said Google. “We will continue to provide resources in the Help Centre to make it easier for advertisers to comply with our policies and optimize campaigns.”

Nicole McCormick

Nicole is a wordsmith wizard, passionate about the written word and an avid storyteller who uses creatively crafted prose to help bring your brand’s story to the next level. A former journalist with writing credits in both local and national news publications and a few newspaper awards under her belt, Nicole now enjoys telling your stories and finding new and creative ways to create valuable content that resonates with audiences in the digital landscape.

Google Ads Makes Keyword Matching More Predictable

09/24/2021

Some big news came from Google ads yesterday. To summarize, the search engine announced changes to how it uses BERT to better understand keywords and search intent. However, there’s a bit more to unpack.

The biggest changes relate to how Google handles phrase and broad match keywords when they match, what happens when they are not identical, and how BERT is used to match keywords to queries.

See Google’s full statement below:

“What consumers want and how they search for it is constantly changing. In fact, we see billions of searches every day, and 15% of those queries are ones we haven’t seen before1. To help you reach these new, relevant searches while still meeting your performance goals, we recommend using broad match paired with Smart Bidding. On average, advertisers that switch their exact match keywords to broad match can see more conversions and a higher conversion value.”

Over the past year, we’ve made it easier to find success with this strategy by improving broad match relevance, recommending new opportunities to switch to broad match, and making keyword matching more predictable. However, we’ve also heard that you want higher quality and more control over which keywords match a search. That’s why we’re rolling out new improvements based on this feedback, including improved understanding of search intent and more predictability in how keywords match.”

Now, let’s dive a bit deeper.

Improved Understanding Of Language And Intent

Because keywords can match to multiple different queries, Google is using technology like BERT to interpret language, queries, and search intent, which helps with broad match.

Google provided the following example:

“A highly specific query like “1995 5 speed transmission seal input shaft” is now able to match with the broad match keyword auto parts because we can tell they’re related, even though none of the words in the query and in the keyword actually match. This means that broad match can now help you find more relevant, high-performing traffic using fewer keywords.”

For those who are unfamiliar, BERT is a neural network-based technique for natural language processing pre-training. Google uses this tool to better understand the context of words in search queries.

READ MORE: An In Depth Look At Google’s Most Recent Colossal Update BERT

Better Predictability in Matching Keywords

It’s a common occurrence for multiple keywords to match with a particular search, search, which often leads to searches being matched with less relevant keywords.

Google has made the following improvements to help ensure the most relevant keywords are being selected:

When A Search Is Identical To One Of Your Keywords

Google previously announced that exact match keywords that are the same as a search query will now always be preferred. Now, Google says that both phrase and broad match keywords will follow the same rule.

See Google’s example below: 

“Let’s say someone searches for “sushi delivery near me”, and you have the broad match keywords sushi delivery and sushi delivery near me. Before this update, both of these keywords would be eligible to serve. Now, the keyword sushi delivery near me is preferred because it is identical to the search term. Note that if you have an eligible exact match keyword that is identical to the query, it will still be preferred over the phrase and broad match keyword.”

When A Search Is Not Identical To Any Of Your Keywords

In the good old days, you would have multiple keywords eligible to match, none of which were identical to a search. In these instances, your Ad Rank would decide which keyword matched best. Now, Google is looking at relevance signals along with Ad Rank to help determine which keyword will be chosen.

Learn more about the keywords that are eligible along with how they are selected by checking out the official Google Ads announcement.

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Google Ads Search Terms Report Now Has 6.5 Times More Data Than in 2020

09/10/2021

Interesting news from Google this morning – the search engine is now reporting that its Google Ads search term report now has around 6.5 times more query data compared to September 2020’s hide search term data. This means that advertisers will now see 6.5 times more queries in their reports.

This news comes only a month after Google Ads briefly stopped hiding search term data.

So, what does this mean for you?

“We’re able to show you more queries that meet our privacy standards in the search terms report for Search and Dynamic Search Ads campaigns,” said Google.

Google further explained that “this data will now be shown in your reports for queries you received starting from February 1, 2021. This update can help you identify more relevant keyword themes, making it easier to optimize your ad copy, landing pages, and more. These metrics will now be more consistent with the rest of the metrics in Google Ads.”

The data will be available for all searches on or after February 1st, 2021 when these reports and resources are used:

While this sounds fine and dandy, there is a catch. Some of your query data that does not meet its privacy requirements will be removed by the search engine.

This will apply to historical query data collected before September 1, 2020, that “doesn’t meet the current thresholds for the search terms report will be available in your reporting until February 1, 2022.”

So, the takeaway here is to go download this data immediately in order to access it before it’s removed. Other than that, Google Ad managers will have more data available compared to the last 12 months, but less compared to before September 2020, if that makes sense.

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