At the end of December 2017, Google announced a huge change to Google Grants. All Google Grants using Google AdWords need to have a 5% CTR for 2 consecutive months. If a company fails to do this their AdWords grant account would be suspended.
This change really puts the pressure on advertisers to make sure their Google AdWords account is high quality, or they risk losing the $10,000/ month grant.
So what needs to be done so that you don’t lose your free money?
- Make sure your account has at least 2 ad groups. Ad groups are like subfolders within your larger folder that is your campaign. For example, an online candy shop has a candy campaign and have an ad group for gummy candy or hard candy.
- Remove all keywords that have a click-through-rate (CTR) below 2%. Since Google is taking the average of the CTR over the month, removing the lower CTR keywords will be your best bet to increase the overall average.
- Remove all single keywords. By focusing efforts on “long-tailed keywords” rather than single keywords, it helps to increase the quality of the search from users. Our candy store, rather than using the keyword “candy”, use “buy gummy candy online”
- Geo-target to areas that make sense for your non-profit. This should be pretty self-explanatory, but don’t target locations that your company cannot service.
- Have at least 2 site link extensions active. Sitelinks can take users to a specific page on your website that might be of interest to that user. Our online candy store could use site links like; order online, types of candy or chocolates to bring users to a part of their website that might be relevant to their search.
- All keyword quality scores should be no lower than 3. Quality score is Google’s rating system based on how relevant your keywords are to a user seeing your ad.
- Non-profits cannot use branded keywords that they do not own. Previously some industries could get away with bidding on other company names. However, Google is removing this option and you must stick to bidding on your companies brand name only.
Why should you go through all this effort?
Along with Google announcing stricter performance to maintain the grant, it comes with a huge advantage from Google. No longer are Google Grant accounts limited with a $2.00 cost-per-click (CPC). Previously, grant accounts were capped at $2.00 bids, which could result in them being left out of competitive auctions. Now, they stand a chance to actually win auctions on the Google Search Network.
If you want to read more about the Google grant program you can check this blog