How to Reinstate / Recover a Banned Google AdWords Account
Google AdWords can be an effective marketing tool for small and medium-sized businesses. However for certain industries, while advertising on Google AdWords, you can run into problems with AdWords’ quality and transparency policies. This means that Google advises when your ads might not be relevant or do not include all the necessary information for users. Google puts a lot of emphasis on keyword quality, the ads themselves and the landing pages. That’s why you need to be 100% transparent with users when you are picking your keywords and when you’re optimizing the offers on your site or landing pages.
If you have received an email from the Google AdWords Team stating that you have violated their policy and that your ads / campaigns / account have been suspended, it might be difficult to get your account reinstated. You have to go through a certain set of tasks to be able to get this re-authorization to advertise on AdWords.
There are many reasons why Google might suspend your AdWords account:
Refusing To Pay Google
Some advertisers are concerned about click fraud. You might be one of them and you might have disputed a certain amount of clicks or amount of money that you owe to Google. If Google disagrees with your claim, they want you to pay! This creates a problem. Google doesn’t hesitate to suspend your account if you refuse to pay under this circumstance.
Solution: If you rely heavily on Google AdWords for your traffic and business, it’s better to just pay this amount since it’s usually a low amount. Trust me, you will spend much more than that trying to re-instate a suspended account.
Not Enough Transparency
User experience is priority one for Google. So, if your goal is to collect emails and leads by giving as little as possible to the user, Google may well flag that. We have seen really successful businesses (lead generation) that spend millions each month on Google, get suspended. Nobody is immune to this. Google wants you to be transparent with your offer to the user. What do you offer them if they provide their email and phone number on a form to you? If there’s anything suspicious or the business model is not clear, you are vulnerable to a suspension of your AdWords campaign.
Solution: Be as transparent as possible and if you have an email opt-in goal on AdWords, optimize your campaign and offer to give great value to the user. Usually an e-book, a whitepaper is the best way to get approved by Google. But you must make these offers really unique and genuine. Quality is the key here. Hire a great copywriter and promote a great e-book/whitepaper.
You are in a “Cursed” Industry
Yes, precisely! There is such a thing as a “cursed industry” on Google AdWords. If you are selling health/wellness products, pharmaceuticals (and you are not Pfizer), offering financial investment products or advice (penny stocks, et al.) or a lead generation company, you are vulnerable to suspension by Google.
Solution: Be very transparent and try to change/update your business model. Google hates it when advertisers take advantage of their traffic to collect information and sell the market intelligence later (Yes I know, even though you paid for it in the first place). It can’t just be about making money; it needs to be a good experience for the targeted user. Make better offers; create a better site with better content. Get in the good graces of Google.
Major Policy Change
Google has done this in the past. Dropping thousands of advertisers at once is not new with Google. This happens for a couple of reasons. Since Google serves these ads, they’re actually legally liable for damages caused by these ads, if any. They might get sued and lose money because of a specific type of ad, or ads in a specific industry (Mostly regulated industries like financial, legal and pharmaceutical). When this happens, Google may decide to suspend accounts in bulk. The problem here is your product or service might be swept into this mass action making you suffer, whether or not, you have done anything wrong.
Solution: There’s not much to do about this. If your business is truly not in any one of these suspended industries, make your case to Google. But the odds of your account being re-instated are slim, at least in the short term.
Too Many Complaints from Users/Clients
Obviously, if an advertiser is ripping people off with fake brands, bait and switch offers and unethical business practices, they will get complaints. If you receive too many of these, Google will likely suspend your AdWords account.
Solution: Stop doing it and change your business model. I know it’s hard to do but if you do not do it, you will not be in business for a long time anyway. Make sure that your offer is clear and highlight terms and conditions in a manner where the user cannot miss it. If you do this, even if the users complain, Google will see that your offer is prominent on your site/landing pages.
My fellow affiliates, I’m sorry but things do not look too bright for you. Google does not really like affiliates and you cannot blame them. So many affiliate accounts have been suspended on Google. “Quality” is the main reason here. Do not get me wrong, there are many legitimate affiliates advertising on Google with real offers, however if you do not have a unique business proposition (other than just offering coupons), my belief is that sooner or later, Google will suspend these accounts. As more advertisers (manufacturers, wholesalers, physical stores, new ecommerce sites) come into the marketplace, there will be less and less space for 3rd parties.
Solution: Create a great site with really original content and offers. Be different from everyone else; do not be just another affiliate. Make Google see that you are different and you really care for user experience. This is more difficult, of course, however, it is really what you will need to do sooner or later.
My “Favorite:” No Warnings, No Information; Just Suspension
We have seen this as well. Rarely, Google will just suspend an account and will not provide a legitimate reason. You will basically never know even if you are not in the aforementioned reasons. Not much to do in this case other than creating a new LLC under a new name, new URL, new credit card and starting over. Even then, there is not guarantee you will ever get in.
The main problem is that Google has SO MANY advertisers and most of the time they do not really get to analyze a suspended account. When the suspension happens because of a policy change or a legal matter, many accounts get suspended unfairly and it’s much more efficient for Google to suspend accounts in bulk than to genuinely review EACH and EVERY account in question to see if they REALLY violate a policy. Let’s not also forget the effects of ALGORITHYM here. Yes! I believe that Google definitely has certain automated metrics to send warnings and suspensions without a human looking at an account. And guess what? Machines make mistakes…
What NOT TO DO If Your Account Is Suspended
- Please do not remote desktop into another machine in another state to create a new account with the same website and content, and hope to get re-instated by Google.
- Please do not use another IP or email address and use the same credit card to get re-approved by AdWords.
- Do not offer to pay more to Google for clicks (We have seen it happen folks)
- Do not assume that Google is stupid! They know who you are, your name, your credit card number, your content, your site, your server, your landing pages, your domain registration information etc.
- DO have some respect for the people who build the best search engine that ever was!
Communication: Firstly, listen to the Google team and really understand why they suspended you. Learn if there is ANY CHANCE that they might re-instate your account if you make changes. You can speak to Google representatives; try to find someone smart and someone who cares, and learn as much as possible from them. Work with them every step of the way to make the changes. (As stated above; better offer, better content, more transparency etc.)
Quality and SEO: I’m not sure if you ever thought about this, but the ultimate goal of the AdWords team is really to have every advertiser on Google to run an “SEO-Quality” campaign. That means to build a website for the user, with the user in mind (thus the search engines) with great content, great offers, full transparency. If your site is great enough to rank high on Google, it will be more than good enough for Google AdWords! Does that make sense to you?
If All Else Fails
Now, I do not really recommend this. But I have seen people get really desperate because sometimes it’s their livelihood. This is a last resort solution! DO NOT do this unless you have tried all of the ABOVE.
- Scratch and DELETE everything you have ever done with your suspended AdWords account. That means keywords, campaigns, ad copy, website, domain registration, landing pages, backlinks; everything!
- If you were spamming before or were really violating policies, CHANGE your business model!
- Create a brand new domain, brand new site with a new design and new content. Content needs to be great! Prepare this site as if you were trying to rank #1 on Google organic.
- Form a new legal entity. Get a new credit card under a new name and a new billing address
- Register a new domain under a different name. Hide with “Domains by Proxy”. (It always works to use your brother, sister, uncle etc.)
- Get a new hosting account. And put your site on that hosting.
- Possibly build the site on WordPress. Google loves WordPress.
- Create new offers with the USER in mind. (EBooks, whitepapers, web based tools)
- Create the new AdWords Campaign; keywords, ads, ad groups and landing pages FROM SCRATCH.
- ONLY and only when you have done all of the above, sign up for a new Google account and try to get into AdWords.
No guarantees! There is a chance that you do all of this and fail again! However, we have experienced this work before with heavy EMPHASIS on “Restructuring Offers, Business Model” combined with quality SEO simultaneously.
Contact us if you have tried all of the above and still need help. I know we can help you!