The Google Ad Grant programme provides free Google Ads to select charitable, non-profit organisations. Google is offering $10.000 a month in free advertising on the search network (check our previous blog to find out more on the differences between Google’s search and display network).
Imagine the potential of having $10.000 of free advertising per month for your organisation. Not only can you can increase awareness for your cause, but you can attract more people who are willing and actively looking to donate, recruit volunteers and share your story.
Who can apply for the Google Ad Grant?
Google Ad Grant programme is only available to non-profit organisations, excluding governmental entities and organisations, hospitals and medical groups, schools, academic institutions and universities. For more information you can read the official Google Grants eligibility guidelines.
When your application is approved you must meet Google’s strict programme policies. We’ve picked out the most important criteria:
- Ads must be mission based and relevant to your organisation
- Maximum bidding of $2 per keyword
- Maximum spend of $329/day ($10.000 per month)
- Ads can only run on Google Search Network
- Account must maintain a minimum click-through rate (CTR) of 5% each month
In order for you to maximise the potential of the Google Ad Grant you need to consider the following:
1. Have a plan
Create a plan for running your Ads – don’t just run them for the sake of having Ads. Create Ads for a specific purpose or objective, so that you can measure their impact, such as increasing donations, event registrations, signups or calls.
2. Optimise your website copy
Website copy is important for running Google Ads, you will need to optimise SEO copy on your website which correlates with your Ads. Explain what your organisation is about and what you do in order to help generate more interest in your Ads – and don’t forget to include specific call to actions on your website.
3. Organise your campaign
An important part of the Google Ads process is the campaign organisation. Divide your campaigns into groups separated by the different audiences with different call to actions for users to take. This will help you identify which campaigns are working and which aren’t, so you can constantly optimise their performance.
4. Pick the right keywords
Selecting the right keywords is the most important part of the setting up your account for the Google Ad Grant. Keywords determine if your Ads are eligible to show or not, so you must perform extensive research in order to find the most suitable ones for your organisation. Use phrases that are relevant to your organisation and don’t forget to include them in your Ad copy.
5. Optimise your Ad copy
Optimise your Ad copy and make sure it’s relevant to your website copy and the keywords you are using. Google Ads have a quality score which determines if your Ads are eligible to show based on a user’s search. Link your Ads to related landing pages only, if the landing page isn’t relevant it will have a negative impact on your quality score.
6. Make the most out of your Ads
Google Ads offer extensions which helps you present users with relevant information and can be displayed below your Ads. Some of the most useful extensions are:
- Phone number
- Business hours
- Sitelink extensions
Sitelink extensions allow you to link to different pages on your website. The use of Ad extensions also helps you improve your quality score.
7. Link Google Ads with Google Analytics
Make sure you link your Google Ads account with your Google Analytics account. This will allow you to track the performance of your Ads, against your website, for example you’ll be able to see how much traffic is being generated by your Ads to your site. You can also you can set up goals on your Google Analytics account and import them into your Google Ads account to track important conversions.
If you are working or volunteering at a non-profit organisation, having a Google Ad Grant account is definitely worth it. While the cost of running the Ads is free, managing the campaigns is time consuming, and many non-profits do not have the skills in house to do it effectively. You might want to consider assigning the campaign creation and management to a digital marketing agency which can help you maximise the value from this fantastic opportunity from Google.