Losing Your $10,000 Google Grant

It’s a new year, and new changes are happening to the digital advertising industry…


1. Accounts must maintain an overall 5% CTR
2.  Each campaign must include 2 Ad Groups
3. Sitelinks and Geo-location targeting must be used
4. Bidding on single-word and competitor keywords is not allowed
5. Keywords with a QS of less than 3 will not be shown
6. The $2.00 Max CPC is waived if utilizing CPC (cost-per-conversion) bidding

The changes to the AdWords Grant for Nonprofits Program have caused quite a stir within the AdWords community.

Many nonprofits are getting their accounts suspended and some agencies are removing Grant Management from their services altogether.

(If your account has been suspended, you can contact me here for a free evaluation)


The Grant itself, entitling nonprofits to $10,000 of free AdWords Search advertising per month, has been a favorite of agencies in the past due to a high level of spending and relatively “no strings attached.”

Many agencies limit the amount of time spent managing an account, and pocket the monthly fee with doing little to no work on the account.

Google knows this.
  Since the search engine giant implemented the generous Grant program, the company has promoted several incentives to keep nonprofits managing their own Grant.

Some of these incentives include the user-friendly AdGrants Express, which just underwent a new overhaul to make the interface even more user-friendly.

However, as with any digital marketing strategy….


With using the basic AdGrants Express, nonprofits will lose out on potential traffic. On the other hand, the new policies make it even more difficult for a nonprofit to manage a regular Grant account on their own.

While these new policies may lower the amount of Grant Dollars an account is able to use each month, it’s important to understand why the new policies are a good change.

In the past, the “no strings attached” mentality of the program has been taken advantage of.

Many Grant accounts are filled with unrelated keywords and sloppy ads, resulting in a high bounce rate on the website and little to no conversions.

While being able to use the full $10,000 a month in free advertising is an ego boost to anyone, it is crucial to understand how it can also be harmful to a brand.

Just like with aggressive remarketing, serving a consumer with ads that are unrelated to their search can create a negative association with your brand.

(clickbait isn’t fun for anyone)


The new updates are the perfect time to examine your Grant’s performance.

How does your account align with the new policies? Are you driving quality traffic to your website? What types of conversions is your Grant delivering?

A grant that is being ethically managed should be able to conform to the new policies.

On the other hand, if you are concerned about your performance moving forward, it might be time to seek a second opinion.

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