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Image links are illegal?

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hi there-

 

I hope all is well. Smiley Happy

 

I'm sorry to say that my experience with AdWords over the last 2-3 weeks has not been very pleasant. My ads were disapproved and my account suspended. I was charged with violating the Bridge Page policies, which was inaccurate, and after much back and forth, it was finally conceded that there was nothing wrong with my website.

 

Except...

 

I am now being told that we cannot have any image links on our site (clickable images that will take you to another site). I run an e-book website, and right now visitors can click on the book cover to go to the Amazon Kindle page for that book.

 

I wrote back asking for clarification several days ago but haven't heard back from anyone yet, and I am writing today because I have been unable to locate information about this in the advertising policies myself. (I would not be so wary of what I've been told except that I've been actually been given a lot of inaccurate information already.)

 

So I just want to know, is this true? If so, where can I find more information about it? I would be especially interested in some sort of explanation regarding the rationale behind this, as it is such a common thing that it seems to me millions of sites would probably be in non-compliance. Can you help me find more information about this policy?

 

Thanks in advance for your time and assistance.

 

Best wishes,

Kristen

 

PS - my site is http://zwoodlebooks.com, if that helps in any way. Smiley Happy

2 Expert replyverified_user

Re: Image links are illegal?

Top Contributor
# 2
Top Contributor

Hi Kristen,

 

Thanks for the website link you provided. Unfortunately a database error comes up when clicked on. 

 

"I run an e-book website, and right now visitors can click on the book cover to go to the Amazon Kindle page for that book."

 

Based on the description you gave us your website may, in fact, be a bridge page. In case the sole purpose of the website is to get users to click thru to a different web property it might be regarded as a bridge page. The rationale is that bridge pages fail to ensure the high level of user experience Google is after whereby it may be found violating the appropriate policy which is here: 

 

 

* Bridge Page Policy

 

http://support.google.com/adwordspolicy/bin/answer.py?hl=en&answer=190435

 

 

"it seems to me millions of sites"

 

They are okay on the net in general just that you will not be allowed to run Google ads.

 

Best,

Lakatos

Re: Image links are illegal?

Top Contributor
# 3
Top Contributor

Hi Kristen,

 

I'm sorry to hear about your experiences. 

 

First, I was unable to reach your website..."Error establishing a database connection".

 

Secondly, it's difficult to say but the AdWords Arbitrage Policy covers this a bit.  You could potentially fall under this statement "Websites whose main purpose is for users to click on ads that redirect to other sites" are not allowed. I can't say that your images are indeed ads or not but if they are linking off to amazon or some other site, there is potential for that to be interpreted as such.

 

Unfortunately, none of us here are policy decision makers but we have seen and dealt with many similar situations and based on the little info we have about your situation, I would say that it's not out of the realm of possibility...it's just hard to say definitively one way or another.

 

-Tom

Tommy Sands, AdWords Top Contributor | Community Profile | Twitter | Philly Marketing Labs
Did you find any helpful responses or answers to your query? If yes, please mark it as the ‘Best Answer.’

Re: Image links are illegal?

[ Edited ]
Top Contributor
# 4
Top Contributor

Needless to say it's a basic requirement to link your ad to an existing website .... Robot LOL

 

On another note I'd add that image ads are per se okay. 

Re: Image links are illegal?

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 5
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hi guys,

 

Of course, within minutes of me posting my question, my hosting provider (GoDaddy) went down. I'm somewhere between LOL and grr on that. lol *sigh* I think it's back up now, though...

 

AdWords and I kind of hashed it out back and forth over the last couple of weeks, and they determined I'm not a bridge page. As an example, I am not linking just to Amazon, but to several different sites. Due to the proprietary nature of e-books, I cannot actually offer them for sale on my site. One of my biggest gripes was that a direct competitor who does the exact same thing is allowed to advertise on the network.

 

But they did actually look at my site instead of going off of whatever automated algorhythm or whatever they use (finally), and the image links are the only issue now.

 

I'm mostly looking for information about the image link policy online. I'm trying to understand why it would be a concern, I guess, because it's going to be a very time-consuming process to change all of my posts. I'd like to understand the image link rationale.

 

Thanks for all the input so far. Smiley Happy

Re: Image links are illegal?

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 6
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Aaand it looks like they're down again. It's apparently going to be hit or miss. But I can assure you that it's a fully functional website! lol *sigh*

Re: Image links are illegal?

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 7
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Ah, and as you'll no doubt see, the outage is kind of a big deal.

 

http://techcrunch.com/2012/09/10/godaddy-outage-takes-down-millions-of-sites/

Re: Image links are illegal?

Top Contributor
# 8
Top Contributor

This outage is very widespread....going to be interesting to see how long it lasts and if ads end up getting disapproved all over the place because the Destination URL's cannot be found...

 

Very interesting...

 

-Tom

 

Tommy Sands, AdWords Top Contributor | Community Profile | Twitter | Philly Marketing Labs
Did you find any helpful responses or answers to your query? If yes, please mark it as the ‘Best Answer.’

Re: Image links are illegal?

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 9
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Everything seems to be back up, but I wonder how many people will have problems, like you said.

 

As to my other issue, they finally wrote back to me. Instead of sending me the information, like I've asked for twice now, they said I have too many links on my site. 

 

I honestly get a different answer every time I speak with someone. Every time. Sometimes five different answers from the same person. Or they don't listen, and just copy/paste the same unhelpful information that has nothing to do with my site.

 

I'm getting frustrated, and I'm about to give up. It's been three weeks of back and forth hassle. I can't get a straight or consistent answer from anyone, and when I called in on the phone, as the e-mail rep suggested, they refused to let me speak to a supervisor.

 

I'm pretty much done.

 

I know Google is the 400lb gorilla in cyberspace, but perhaps that's the problem. Too many hands, and none of them are talking to one another. Maybe it's time for me to take my money elsewhere.

 

Thanks for the help you guys have tried to offer, though. I do appreciate it.

Marked as Best Answer.
Solution
Accepted by Zee (Community Manager)
September 2015

Re: Image links are illegal?

Top Contributor
# 10
Top Contributor

Hi Kristen,

 

I am sorry about your disappointment. I think the info you got about image ads was of course BS but the latest info you just received seems correct. When I looked at the website it seemed to me that you have too many outgoing links on the landing page. What you should be doing is maintainig a healthy ratio between genuine original content and outgoing links. Currently you seem to be very far from such a ratio, try to add much more content. 

 

I know you have doubts reg our opinions, however that's what I think. Let it be my 2 cents.

 

Best,

Lakatos