Google Ads advertising policies cover four broad areas:
- Prohibited content: Content you can't advertise on the Google Network
- Prohibited practices: Things you can't do if you want to advertise with Google
- Restricted content and features: Content you can advertise, but with limitations
- Editorial and technical: Quality standards for your ads, websites, and apps
Google Ads prohibits the sale or promotion for sale of counterfeit goods. Counterfeit goods contain a trademark or logo that is identical to or substantially indistinguishable from the trademark of another. They mimic the brand features of the product in an attempt to pass themselves off as a genuine product of the brand owner. This policy applies to the content of your ad and your website or app.
Google wants to help keep people safe both online and offline, so Google doesn't allow the promotion of some products or services that cause damage, harm, or injury.
Examples of dangerous content: Recreational drugs (chemical or herbal); psychoactive substances; equipment to facilitate drug use; weapons, ammunition, explosive materials and fireworks; instructions for making explosives or other harmful products; tobacco products
Google values honesty and fairness, so Google doesn't allow the promotion of products or services that are designed to enable dishonest behavior.
Examples of products or services that enable dishonest behavior: Hacking software or instructions; services designed to artificially inflate ad or website traffic; fake documents; academic cheating services
Google values diversity and respect for others, and Google strives to avoid offending users, so Google doesn’t allow ads or destinations that display shocking content or promote hatred, intolerance, discrimination, or violence.
Examples of inappropriate or offensive content: bullying or intimidation of an individual or group, racial discrimination, hate group paraphernalia, graphic crime scene or accident images, cruelty to animals, murder, self-harm, extortion or blackmail, sale or trade of endangered species, ads using profane language
Google wants ads across the Google Network to be useful, varied, relevant, and safe for users. Google doesn’t allow advertisers to run ads, content, or destinations that attempt to trick or circumvent our ad review processes.
Examples of abuse of the ad network: promoting content that contains malware; "cloaking" or using other techniques to hide the true destination that users are directed to; "arbitrage" or promoting destinations for the sole or primary purpose of showing ads; promoting "bridge" or "gateway" destinations that are solely designed to send users elsewhere; advertising with the sole or primary intent of gaining public social network endorsements from the user; "gaming" or manipulating settings in an attempt to circumvent Google policy review systems
Google wants users to trust that information about them will be respected and handled with appropriate care. As such, Google advertising partners should not misuse this information, nor collect it for unclear purposes or without appropriate security measures.
Examples of user information that should be handled with care: full name; email address; mailing address; phone number; national identity, pension, social security, tax ID, health care, or driver's license number; birth date or mother's maiden name in addition to any of the above information; financial status; political affiliation; sexual orientation; race or ethnicity; religion
Examples of irresponsible data collection & use: obtaining credit card information over a non-secure server, promotions that claim to know a user's sexual orientation or financial status, violations of Google policies that apply to interest-based advertising and remarketing
Google wants users to trust the ads on the platform, so Google strives to ensure ads are clear and honest, and provide the information that users need to make informed decisions. Google doesn’t allow ads or destinations that deceive users by excluding relevant product information or providing misleading information about products, services, or businesses.
Examples of misrepresentation: omitting or obscuring billing details such as how, what, and when users will be charged; omitting or obscuring charges associated with financial services such as interest rates, fees, and penalties; failing to display tax or licence numbers, contact information, or physical address where relevant; making offers that aren't actually available; making misleading or unrealistic claims regarding weight loss or financial gain; collecting donations under false pretenses; "phishing" or falsely purporting to be a reputable company in order to get users to part with valuable personal or financial information
Restricted content and features
The policies below cover content that is sometimes legally or culturally sensitive. Online advertising can be a powerful way to reach customers, but in sensitive areas, Google also works hard to avoid showing these ads when and where they might be inappropriate.
For that reason, Google allows the promotion of the content below, but on a limited basis. These promotions may not show to every user in every location, and advertisers may need to meet additional requirements before their ads are eligible to run. Note that not all ad products, features, or networks are able to support this restricted content. Further details can be found in the Policy Center.
Ads should respect user preferences and comply with legal regulations, so Google doesn’t allow certain kinds of adult content in ads and destinations. Some kinds of adult-oriented ads and destinations are allowed if they comply with the policies below and don’t target minors, but they will only show in limited scenarios based on user search queries, user age, and local laws where the ad is being served.
Learn about what happens if you violate Google policies.
Examples of restricted adult content: strip clubs, erotic cinemas, sex toys, adult magazines, sexual enhancement products, matchmaking sites, models in sexualized poses
Google abides by local alcohol laws and industry standards, so Google doesn’t allow certain kinds of alcohol-related advertising, both for alcohol and drinks that resemble alcohol. Some types of alcohol-related ads are allowed if they meet the policies below, don’t target minors, and target only countries that are explicitly allowed to show alcohol ads.
Examples of restricted alcoholic beverages: beer, wine, sake, spirits or hard alcohol, Champagne, fortified wine, non-alcoholic beer, non-alcoholic wine, and non-alcoholic distilled spirits
Google abides by local copyright laws and protect the rights of copyright holders, so Google doesn’t allow ads that are unauthorized to use copyrighted content. If you are legally authorized to use copyrighted content, apply for certification to advertise. If you see unauthorized content, submit a copyright-related complaint.
Google supports responsible gambling advertising and abides by local gambling laws and industry standards, so Google doesn’t allow certain kinds of gambling-related advertising. Gambling-related ads are allowed if they comply with the policies below and the advertiser has received the proper Google Ads certification. Gambling ads must target approved countries, have a landing page that displays information about responsible gambling, and never target minors. Check local regulations for the areas you want to target.
Examples of restricted gambling-related content: physical casinos; sites where users can bet on poker, bingo, roulette, or sports events; national or private lotteries; sports odds aggregator sites; sites offering bonus codes or promotional offers for gambling sites; online educational materials for casino-based games; sites offering "poker-for-fun" games; non-casino-based cash game sites
Google is dedicated to following advertising regulations for healthcare and medicine, so Google expects that ads and destinations follow appropriate laws and industry standards. Some healthcare-related content can’t be advertised at all, while others can only be advertised if the advertiser is certified with Google and targets only approved countries. Check local regulations for the areas you want to target.
Google supports responsible political advertising and expect all political ads and destinations to comply with local campaign and election laws for any areas they target. This policy includes legally mandated election “silence periods.”
Examples of political content: promotion of political parties or candidates, political issue advocacy
Google wants users to have adequate information to make informed financial decisions. Google policies are designed to give users information to weigh the costs associated with financial products and services, and to protect users from harmful or deceitful practices. For the purposes of this policy, Google considers financial products and services to be those related to the management or investment of money and cryptocurrencies, including personalized advice.
When promoting financial products and services, you must comply with state and local regulations for any region or country that your ads target — for example, include specific disclosures required by local law. Refer to our non-exhaustive list of country-specific requirements for more information.
There are multiple factors that determine when trademarks can be used in ads. Along with the factors described in Google Policy Center, these policies apply only when a trademark owner has submitted a valid complaint to Google.
You’re always responsible for ensuring that you comply with all applicable laws and regulations, in addition to Google's advertising policies, for all of the locations where your ads are showing.
Google restricts certain kinds of businesses from advertising with Google to prevent users from being exploited, even if individual businesses appear to comply with other Google policies. Based on Google continuous reviews, and feedback from users and consumer protection authorities, Google occasionally identifies products or services that are prone to abuse. If Googl feels that certain kinds of businesses pose an unreasonable risk to user safety or user experience, then Google may take a conservative position and limit or stop related ads from running.
There are multiple factors that determine access to advanced ad formats and features on Google Ads. Certain ad formats are not available for all advertisers until they meet Google specific requirements or complete the certification process.
Editorial & technical requirements
Google wants to deliver ads that are engaging for users without being annoying or difficult to interact with, so Google has developed editorial requirements to help keep your ads appealing to users. Google has also specified technical requirements to help users and advertisers get the most out of the variety of ad formats Google offers.
In order to provide a quality user experience, Google requires that all ads, extensions, and destinations meet high professional and editorial standards. Google only allows ads that are clear, professional in appearance, and that lead users to content that is relevant, useful, and easy to interact with.
Examples of promotions that don't meet these editorial and professional requirements:
- overly generic ads that contain vague phrases such as "Buy products here"
- gimmicky use of words, numbers, letters, punctuation, or symbols such as FREE, f-r-e-e, and F₹€€!!
Google wants consumers to have a good experience when they click on an ad, so ad destinations must offer unique value to users and be functional, useful, and easy to navigate.
Examples of promotions that don't meet destination requirements:
- a display URL that does not accurately reflect the URL of the landing page, such as "google.com" taking users to "gmail.com"
- sites or apps that are under construction, parked domains, or are just not working
- sites that are not viewable in commonly used browsers
- sites that have disabled the browser's back button
To help Google keep ads clear and functional, advertisers must meet Google technical requirements.
In order to help you provide a quality user experience and deliver attractive, professional-looking ads, Google only allows ads that comply with specific requirements for each ad format. Review the requirements for all ad formats that you're using.
Note that Google doesn't allow Non-family safe ads in image ads, video ads, and other non-text ad formats. Read more about Google Adult content policy.
Advertisers participating in beta programs of new ad formats should reach out to their Google Ads representatives or Google Ads customer support to learn about format-specific policy requirements.
Examples of ad format requirements: character limits for the ad headline or body, image size requirements, file size limits, video length limits, aspect ratios
About Google Ads policies
Google Ads enables businesses of all sizes, from around the world, to promote a wide variety of products, services, applications, and websites on Google and across our network. Google wants to help you reach existing and potential customers and audiences. However, to help create a safe and positive experience for users, Google listens to their feedback and concerns about the types of ads they see. Google also regularly reviews changes in online trends and practices, industry norms, and regulations. And finally, in crafting our policies, Google also thinks about their values and culture as a company, as well as operational, technical, and business considerations. As a result, Google has created a set of policies that apply to all promotions on the Google Network.
Google requires that advertisers comply with all applicable laws and regulations and the Google policies described above. It's important that you familiarize yourself with and keep up to date on these requirements for the places where your business operates, as well as any other places your ads are showing. When Google finds content that violates these requirements, Google may block it from appearing, and in cases of repeated or egregious violations, Google may stop you from advertising with Google.