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Understand Google's advertising policies, including ad approval status and account suspension
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Account Suspended with no email notice

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hello,

Our url (www.smallbiz.com) was suspended for violation of the policy, "Sale of free items and official services"  We received the notice of suspension yesterday afternoon, with no prior notice.

 

After examining the page, it appears that Google's belief is that we are violating the section titled, "Paid services associated with official forms or services" as we provide state corporation filing services for small businesses.   We have been advertising with Google for over 10 years and have been saying essentially the same thing on our site pages all this time.  Because we are preparing forms and submitting them to different state agencies, something the state is not allowed to do for people, it wouldn't seem that Google is interpreting that this is something a customer can get for free.   And because we list state agency information right off our home page and other landing pages, the only thing I can see is called into question is providing a disclaimer of non-affiliation with any governmental agency.

 

Otherwise, it seems that we are flying blind here.  Is there any way to get more detail from a Google representitive, including from our Adwords Rep (who cannot be reached now of course because it is the weekend)?  Further, if they have a problem with us, they should then have a problem with all our competitors (whose ads still promently appear when searching related terms).  Lastly, is it unrealistic to expect a little time after receiving notice to investigate and make changes, especially since we haven't changed, only Google's policies appears to have changed? 

 

Thank you for any feedback you can provide.

 

Michael

1 Expert replyverified_user

Re: Account Suspended with no email notice

Top Contributor
# 2
Top Contributor

Hello and welcome;

This site violates several sections of the Policy; (at least in my view)

 

The first, as you said, you "duplicate" content form an official state website, and offer a service of assisting to fill in the forms, and submitting them to local agencies. However, there is no clear disclaimer on that;

 

Second; you are reposting a government content on your site (offering service assisting is submitting forms). I did not see any additional content with some added value for a user. (All that "stuff" can be found on the government official website).

Moshe, AdWords Top Contributor , Twitter | Linkedin | Community Profile | Ad-Globe
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Re: Account Suspended with no email notice

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 3
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hello MosheTLV,

Thank you for your time and your post.  I realize you are giving your view and not that of Google's, but you seem to be more in tune with their policies than certainly are we.  If you don't mind, I have some follow-up questions to each of your points and two additional questions.

 

On your first point; I didn't say that we "duplicate" content, I said we "list state agency information" on state-specific pages (linked from the home page), and available to everyone.  These are actually summaries of information about state requirements, and yes each page has a link to our filing services.  Is it on these pages that you believe we should have a clear disclaimer about non-govenrmental affiliation? 

 

On your second point; what page(s) are you speaking of?  Right from the top of the home page, there is a banner "ad" describing the base service of $25 with points as to what is included, all very overt in pricing and describing what we believe is an "added value for the user."  Otherwise, the home page has links to quote pages or service pages, each with detailed descriptions of what we do.  Please keep in mind, NONE of the state governmental agencies fill out forms, so at the root of the value added is the fact that we actually prepare the forms.  In other words, they may provide the forms, but they do not fill them out.  With this in mind, can you tell me specifically what "stuff" (i.e. All that "stuff" can be found on a government official website) you are referring too?

 

Also, do you believe that they need to see disclaimers on the specific landing pages, or are we speaking of all interior pages linked from the landing pages?  Since we have over 10,000 pages of information on our website, I'm trying to get a sense of where we need to focus our attention.

 

Lastly, from what you are hearing, is it normal for Google to change their policies, then suspend long standing customers, for "new" policy violations, without notice and chance of fixing a deficiency before suspension?  Seems rather suspicious.

 

Again, thank you for your feedback and I would welcome any further comments you have.

 

 

Re: Account Suspended with no email notice

Top Contributor
# 4
Top Contributor

Hello again;

Let start from the end; The general questions first:

Google continuously updating the Policy. I know that it is hard to keep track, but for that reason  there is a "Policy change log"

 

Accounts are routinely submitted for a review. A campaign/ campaigns   could  be approved, and later, submitted to an audit. If found (one or more)  as non-compliance  with the Policy- The account  is  suspended.

 

As for your case;

  1. I think, a clear disclaimer for the type of service means  "on every  page" - before  a user "clicks to contact"( As said  in the Policy- see below) 
  2. As for the added value; this is listed in the Policy section

Paid services associated with official forms or services:
If you charge users for services associated with government forms or services, such as assistance with document preparation or filing, your site must do the following:

  • Accurately represent the added value you're charging for.
  • Clearly and prominently state your affiliation or non-affiliation with the government or official body.
  • Be explicit that the forms or services are available for free or for a lower cost.
  • Provide a working link to the official source of the form or service, and give that link equal prominence at the point of entry to your service.

 

 

Moshe, AdWords Top Contributor , Twitter | Linkedin | Community Profile | Ad-Globe
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