I have an account that has been suspended. The reason was:
Untrustworthy Behavior "Misleading Content and Missing Information"
My appeal was denied:
"Thanks for your continued patience during this process. We’ve confirmed that your account is in violation of our AdWords policies. Since this decision is final, the account will not be reinstated. Please avoid creating additional AdWords accounts, as they will be subjected to the same suspension."
My site is irs-tax-id-filing (DOT) com
I need to get the site suspension lifted so I can shut it down and not have it affect other marketing projects. What should I do next? Any assistance will be greatly appreciated.
Unfortunately, once an account is suspended, that individual is never again permitted to advertise with Adwords. The unsuccessful appeal confirms the original suspension.
There is little you can do in this situation other than use different platforms to advertise your services.
Thank you for your response. Allow me to clarify my question; Please look at my website and tell me what you think the issue is. I want to start there. I want to know what other contributors think the issue may be since I don't nor ever had any idea what the issue is. I'm trying to learn. I'm a newbie to advertising and any terms infraction were unintentional, so I would like to have a clear understanding what the issue is/was. Not an interpretation of the email received.
Suspended account[ Edited ]
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Untrustworthy behaviour is a severe violation and it normally means that your business model or adopted business practices have been deemed unacceptable by Google.
No one here will be able to give you an exact explanation about your business specifically in relation to an untrustworthy behaviour violation. Quite simply, we do not know the criteria and methodology that Google uses to make these assessments. However, there are sometimes similar types of business (i.e. same field/doing the same thing) that will appear on here with the same violation.
In your case, I suspect it could be that Google believes your business might be taking advantage of people who need an EIN. Your website title is "Apply for an EIN Tax ID Number with the IRS" and domain is "irs-tax-id-filing.com", both of which are likely to be issues. Furthermore, although you have some disclaimers, it might also be that Google still considers it to be misleading people into paying for something that they can get for free from the IRS.
I know in the past, that Google clamped down on these sites advertising help with applying for ESTA visas. Many people believed they were applying for an ESTA through the genuine DHS site, when they were third parties who charged significant fees for no added value.
Suspended account[ Edited ]
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Andrew, thank you for your reply. This is the first piece of helpful information I have received: "Apply for an EIN Tax ID Number with the IRS" and domain is "irs-tax-id-filing.com". The domain name was chosen for SEO reasons but apparently, the use of IRS is considered misleading? I'm assuming that there is no way to change the domain name in the account so that the site/account can be brought into compliance?
"it might also be that Google still considers it to be misleading people into paying for something that they can get for free from the IRS." You do not have to be a lawyer or an accountant to fill out and submit the SS-4 Forms to the IRS to obtain an EIN but it sure would help! The IRS has come up with a designation, "Third Party Designee" to assist people with the filing process because the IRS is aware that the form filing process can be confusing for some people and the IRS understands that some people would like help in filing, so the IRS has created a way for people to seek assistance. We answer questions from people every day on certain aspects of the filing process. We help people to understand the form and make sure that it is filled about completely and as accurately as we are able to assist. Some people are not quite sure or have a hard time understanding all of the verbiage you are confronted with when dealing directly with the IRS online system. As I understand it, one of the Tenents of Google Advertising is that if your Grandmother was to use your website, she can understand it. This defines our type of service industry. There are people who genuinely need/want assistance is filing because they are not 100% sure about what the IRS wants or needs from them. We are there to assist. So, to mention or dismiss the service with the statement "Google still considers it to be misleading people into paying for something that they can get for free from the IRS." is very inaccurate. This is a very busy business that requires patience, attention to detail and answering a lot of questions for people. Not to mention maintaining and meeting all of the very strict legal requirements laid out by the IRS.
So, just to reiterate the above question: If it is the domain name that could possibly be the issue is there a way to change or fix that? The url was chosen for SEO purposes, not an attempt to Mislead.
Thanks in advance for taking the time to answer my questions. It is greatly appreciated. As I have been going through this, I have received a lot of bad information that I'm sure has worked against my case and getting any clear answers has been akin to pulling teeth!. So I truly appreciate it.
Thanks again and I look forward to receiving a response. Have a great day.
Rob, thank you for bringing this up. I was going to save it for an additional Post, but since it has been brought up I can ask this further question.
Call the above site (ein-irs-...) Site A and call (irs-tax-id...) Site B. I was encouraged to change the URL of Site A to the URL of Site B for SEO purposes. (I was working with a group that made this suggestion to me). I spoke to my Google AdWords Account representative and ran it by him what I was doing and we had a discussion on the best way to go about this so as that it would not be construed that I was trying to advertise the same service under two different names.... trying to be my own competition. It was determined that stopping all advertising for Site A before starting advertising for Site B should be acceptable. And once the advertising for Site B had started, then I should cancel the AdWords Account for Site A. It has never been suggested that this is an issue but do you think that it could be? And if it is how can I go about rectifying the situation? I mirrored a site to change its name. I took one down and replaced it with another. I can see how that may throw a flag but if that is an issue, the progression of documented changes to accounts can easily explain the rationale behind it. And also, that entire process was implemented and finished successfully prior to the suspension.
I look forward to any comments or suggestions you may have. Also, I appreciate your help and willingness to share. As I have been going through this process, getting any answers has been like pulling teeth.
I've only given my opinion based on what I've seen and where I believe the reasons might be for the suspension. Google is ultimately the final arbiter of their policies and they don't explain their actions.
I think it's always a risk using the name of an official body or organisation in your URL and then advertising services when you are in no way associated. I'm sure @RobSkelton and @MosheTLV will be able to confirm this.
I'm aware that dealing with the IRS might be complicated for some people. I would say that your application page appears to be nothing more than a replication of the SS-4 form itself. If you're asking for the same information that's already requested in the form, it might be questionable what value you're adding for your service fee.
It's also entirely feasible that Google might only allow qualified accountants or lawyers to advertise services similar to what you're offering. I'm not sure what the IRS requirements are for third party designee in terms of their certification or qualifications.
In terms of the 'untrustworthy suspension' policy violation, it's extremely rare for an appeal to overturn this. I'm sure the resident experts here will be able to reiterate this.
Having multiple AdWords accounts without good reason is very risky and often leads to permanent suspensions.
But in this case it is your business model, and possibly your URL as well. We have seen many sites like yours suspended and discussed here.
We don't know what they criteria is, but most likely Google's bots look for certain keywords on sites, flags them, then a human looks and makes a decision based on a set of rules. If they don't like your business model, that's Google's choice not to let your ads run, and there's nothing you can do to fix it.
While your site might be legit, Google cares about user experience primarily, and anything like a scam can get bundled up with the actual scams.