Digital marketing and SEO blog
Google Ad Grants: Free advertising for NGOs and museums
15 June 2021
Of all the products and services offered by Google, probably the one of donating (albeit with some conditions) 10,000 USD per month to NGOs to advertise on the search engine is, paradoxically, one of the most unknown.
It seems unbelievable, but it is true. And now you know what it’s called: Google Ad Grants!
Below we tell you exactly what it is, what benefits it can bring you (we can tell you that they are very important), how to apply for it and what are the requirements you have to fulfil. If you want to relaunch your NGO’s projects, keep reading and contact us if you have any doubts during the process.
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What is Google Ad Grants?
Google Grants provides a free budget of $10,000 USD per month, divided into $329 USD per day, to invest in Google Ads, which Google offers exclusively to NGOs and museums. This is not a version of Google Ads for NGOs as the platform is strictly the same, and the ads compete with those of other advertisers (the ones that do pay). It should also be taken into consideration that this budget can only be invested in the search network, i.e. it does not include Display or Shopping.
Requirements for the NGO and the Google Ads account
In order for your NGO to be a beneficiary of Grants, you have to follow the following steps according to Google itself:
- Submit an application to Google for non-profit organisations. The NGO in question must have charitable status. In the link above you can check the requirements for charitable status depending on the country you are in.
- Accept the certifications required by Google regarding non-discrimination, as well as the receipt and use of donations.
- Have a high quality website that complies with the Ad Grants website policy.
- Be approved through the Ad Grants pre-screening process after registering your organisation with Google for Nonprofits.
Once you meet these requirements, you can start creating your first ads.
Requirements once you have a Google Ad Grants account:
There are a series of requirements to be able to maintain the advertising investment through Ad Grants once we have already been chosen. According to Google itself, these are the requirements
- The website must belong to the NGO, i.e. you must be the direct owner of the website to which you are going to target the ads. Closely related keywords and at least two active ads per ad group.
- Your website has to be of quality, i.e. have relevant content of the organization, load fast, not contain broken links, be protected with https and explain the mission of the NGO in detail.
- The main purpose of your website can’t be a commercial activity, i.e. you can’t focus on profit or fundraising without explaining the purpose of the funds.
- You cannot use Adsense on your website.
- Your account must have an active search campaign.
- Your account must have two active ad groups, each with a set of closely related keywords and two different text ads.
- In the case of ad extensions, you must create at least two site links for your ad.
- Your campaign must be geographically targeted to those locations where you perform your support or services.
- You must maintain a monthly click-through rate (CTR) of 5%.
- You must track conversions at the account level.
- Your campaigns must be smart bidding.
These seem like a lot of conditions, but they are all logical conditions that have a common goal: that you advertise responsibly to your audience.
Advantages of Google Ad Grants
The advantages of this program are the same as those of advertising on Google Ads, i.e. more visibility and more clicks, which means: more donations, more volunteers and, in short, a significant growth of your project to improve the world.
One type of ad you could do would be the following:
Searching for the word “NGO donation”, you will see two ads at the top of the page for two NGOs that are likely to use Google Ad Grants to advertise. These two NGOs have a much higher chance that the person searching for this keyword will end up making a donation on their websites.
Another example is shown below, as Médecins Sans Frontières takes advantage of advertising in Google Ads, also predictably from Grants, to present site extensions (coloured boxes) different from the organic results, to direct the customer to up to 12 different landings (counting the titles), depending on their interests.
Google itself, in the following link, provides success stories of international NGOs that have benefited from the program.
The world wants to know how brutal your projects are and Google makes it easy for you, or rather, it makes it free.
At SEOCOM we can help you with both your Google Grants campaigns and your regular paid campaigns. Contact us if you have any questions about the article, or if you want us to take a look at your project without obligation.