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Google AdWords Ad Formats

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Display and Destination URL Policies

Google's sophisticated and robust technology detects very slight variances in any ads run in their network, so adhering to their policies to the letter is the only way to have a smooth running campaign. For the most up to date policies, sign in to your AdWords account and refer to the Google AdWords Terms and Conditions section. You can also find help at AdWords Help Center and AdWords Learning Center.

Display and Destination URL Policy

When you create an ad, you have the option to use a display URL (the one that will actually be shown on the ad) that is different from the destination URL (the page that users would actually go to when they click on your ad, also known as the "landing page"). However, there are clear rules regarding the display URL and landing page.

Display URL

  • Must give users a clear idea of where they will go when they click
  • Must indicate who owns the destination URL
  • Must include the .dot extension (.com, .net, etc)
  • www. and http:// are not required
  • Cannot be an email address
  • Must comply with Google's editorial policy

Example of incorrect use:

  • Display URL: bigbookstore.com
  • Destination URL: amazon.com/1245-43543

Landing page

  • Must link to an actual website
  • Must link to a working site
  • Must not link to a site that's under construction
  • Link cannot be broken
  • Must be an HTML page -- the page must not require a program other than a browser to view (for example, it cannot link to a PDF file)
  • Page cannot manipulate the functionality of the browser's back button so that the user cannot get back to the page your ad was displayed within one click
  • No pop ups or pop unders when users enter or leave the landing page
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