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Understand Google's advertising policies, including ad approval status and account suspension
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Advertising Gun Accessories

[ Edited ]
Badged Google Partner
# 1
Badged Google Partner

Hello, 

 

We have a client who sells gun and hunting accessories. They do not sell guns of any sort: real, airsoft, fake or any kind. They do not sell ammunition, silencers or products that are necessary to the firing of a gun. I've called numerous times before advertising to see if the site passed, which we were assured it did. However, it was suspended a few months after said assurances. 

 

We understand the policy, and it's necessity, but as far as complying with the policy, we find it extremely difficult. We've called numerous times to Google's support staff and even our agency representative who have provided inconsistent answers. What we're looking to know in the future is:

 

A) What products do Google deem as necessary to the firing of a gun, apart from the four mentioned?

 

B) We've heard a few reports of pictures causing violations. For example, they sell gun cases. To model the gun cases, there are pictures of guns inside (they are not sold with the case). Do we need to remove any instance of a picture where a gun appears including non product related pictures illustrating a person hunting with a gun?

 

C) Can we get the site unsuspended?  We've heard both ways, but it does appear there is a form, https://support.google.com/adwords/contact/site_policy

 

D) Are there any concrete items in regards to gun accessories that Google doesn't mention within their dangerous product guidelines?

 

We appreciate the help a lot. Any guidance will be much appreciated. 

1 Expert replyverified_user

Advertising Gun Accessories

[ Edited ]
Top Contributor
# 2
Top Contributor

@Ricardo O

I think they're several violations here, which are  the source of confusion. But it would be hard to be specific. (A full review of a site of this nature is beyond our scope)

Generally speaking:

Any accessory which is an inherent part of the gun or a component that is required for the gun to function - is not allowed. So if to carry the gun a case is needed - it is not allowed.

The gun pictures of hunting as illustrations, falls  under a different category, even if the illustration is intended to model an accessory. - Promoting violence.

As for being un-suspended: what was suspended? - The site or the account? If the site - then fix it fast, before the account also suspended..... If the account, then any appeal will be considered only after the site and the business model fully comply (i.e. any prohibited item must be removed)

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

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 3
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hi Moshe,

 

I have the same issues with my website and the information you provided does not solve any of our issues.

 

Let me explain - We sell mounts, sights and scopes, conversion kits, foregrips etc...

From the information you provided I can understand why Pistol Grips, Tubes, any part of a gun and magazines are prohibited but the rest of the products are controversial. I mean that foregrip isn't a part of a gun but can also be considered by some professional as a necessary equipment. This is also true for scopes, mount, conversion kits, upgraded buttstocks, rail attachments, body armors and much more.

 

We need the right information to understand how to design our site to match adwords policy. Otherwise business may get hurt because of un-clarity.

 

I have also seen many sites that are advertising prohibited products for a long period of time. That also makes me think when does a product consider prohibited and when it does not.

 

It would be really nice if you could shed some light on this situation.

 

This is the link to adword policy: https://support.google.com/adwordspolicy/answer/6014299

You may see how much it is open for interpretation and for mistakes on both sides of the table.

 

Best Regards,

 

Moshe B.

Advertising Gun Accessories

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 4
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hi Ricardo,

 

Is there any links from your site to content where you can buy guns? This was an issue I had with a client in the gaming industry. Whilst we weren't promoting gaming, we had a link in the nav which directed users to a gaming site and this impacted the features available to us in AdWords. 

 

Regards,

Stephen

Advertising Gun Accessories

Top Contributor
# 5
Top Contributor

@Moshe B;

Checking a specific site is a time and labor intensive and as volunteers here, we cannot  allocate the time to review /audit a specific site.

 

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

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 6
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

@MosheTLV
Thank you for replying.
 
I haven't asked to review a specific site but rather provide a straight forward information on what we can advertise and what we can not. Specific information such as "Pistol grips are not allowed" rather than
"
Any part or component that's necessary to the function of a gun
Examples: Ammunition, ammunition clips, silencers, or ammunition belts
"
One might say that buttplate is necessary to the function of a gun and one might say it isn't. (I know I exaggerate a little but it is possible with the current definition).
 
As I see it now, the guy responsible for suspending sites may think that one site is okay and the other is not but future worker might think otherwise. The information adwords team provided causes misinterpretation on both sides. No one knows what is wrong because no one knows the definition of wrong.
 
I would really like to know how to operate in my industry and I hope that you or someone else would be able to help me with this and I'm sure it will help many other people.
 
Best Regards,
 
Moshe B.

Advertising Gun Accessories

Top Contributor
# 7
Top Contributor

Site review is based on clear check lists and criteria. All advertisers are equal, and no advertiser is favored over another.

Please also note that there could  be several violations and only the major one is mentioned.

There are many nuances, that could impact. It's hard to say without a thorough  review. (And this is beyond our scope here)

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

Badged Google Partner
# 8
Badged Google Partner

Hello, Stephen,

They don't sell guns on their site. From what I can tell about the policy is that because the policy is so vague and open to interpretation, different members of the policy team have different ideas as to what is acceptable. I've called and got a hold of a number of people (probably near five or six) and found their opinions vary quite a bit. I've heard some tell me to Google each item and see what other advertisers are advertising on. However, this method really doesn't work as big budget clients like Cabela's are held to different standards than clients with only a few grand a month budget. If you go this route, it's best to search for the item, and if all you see are advertisements from Cabela's, Sportsman's Warehouse, Wal-Mart, Midway or other large retailers, it's safe to bet that they will be disapproved unless you can ad budget of similar scope as them. A good example of this are picatinny rails accessories. You'll see only the big retailers appear. Doing this with a conservative approach of managing photos so they don't show guns or ammunition within the product pictures will also help. Unfortunately there isn't a consistent standard if you're looking for one. It really is at the digression of the person reviewing it. Thanks for the help.

Best wishes to all on the forum,