The Google Grants programme has just celebrated its 10th birthday. Launched in April 2003, this scheme has evolved over the years and Google works with registered charities, providing them with grants to spend in Adwords. However, the number of charities that are actively using this suggests that the majority of UK charities are either overlooking the benefits of this, or are simply not aware of the scheme’s existence. This additional resource of up to $10,000 per month can make a huge difference to a charity’s marketing budgets and so although it can take several months for a grant application to be approved by Google, if you have not yet applied, it is definitely worth doing so here.
This grant does come with a number of restrictions, such as that the ads must only run on Google UK, links in the ads must only be to the pre-approved domain, the ads must be text only and not commercial, there must be no adverts on your own site such as Adsense and each bid must cost no more than $2.
The last criterion is a reasonably new update as Google increased this limit from $1 per click at the end of January. However, this increase in bids came with the announcement that all Grant funded adverts would now be featured underneath any self-funded company or charity adverts. So while this change may open your organisation up to being able to target keywords that were previously outside of this bid limit, sites are likely to have seen a decrease in traffic due to featuring lower down the listings.
However, with the changes that were announced to Adwords just a couple of weeks after this, PPC account managers have been given the opportunity to better manage these adverts. By upgrading to enhanced campaigns, you are now able to manage all devices in one campaign, manually adjust the bid for mobile ads and show call extensions on these mobile ads. This shift from legacy to enhanced campaigns is going to be enforced automatically by the end of June for any accounts that have not made the change themselves. Google have since released a tool that allows you to change campaigns in an account in bulk.
Beyond that, Grant accounts should largely be run in the same way as normal Adwords campaigns. These accounts should be maintained (if you do not work on your account over a 3 month period then Google will stop your funding), the accounts should be well structured and you will need to optimise the account to ensure that you are getting the most out of your spend. Ensure that the keywords that you target are relevant to your organisation and the pages that you are sending visitors to are also relevant and contain a call to action in order to get the best return from your spend.
If you are running a Google Grant account, we would love to know what impact have you noticed since these changes were implemented.
In conjunction with the launch of FocusON for PPC month, we are giving away a Google Chromebook to one lucky reader. Simply visit the PushON Prizes app over at the PushON Facebook page and follow the three simple steps to be in with a chance of winning. HINT: You may want to read FocusON: An Introduction to PPC Marketing first!