Google has announced its soon-to-be-launched pilot program called ‘Three Strikes System’. Starting in September 2021, Google will issue a warning, followed by up to three-strikes, with the third strike resulting in an indefinite account suspension.

This program applies to violations of Google Ads’ Enabling Dishonest Behaviour, Unapproved Substances and Dangerous Products or Services policies. “This includes ads promoting deceptive behaviour or products such as the creation of false documents, hacking services, and spyware, as well as tobacco, drugs and weapons, among other types of content,” the company said in its announcement. These types of ads have been prohibited for a long time. However, the Three Strikes program follows an increasing penalties (strikes) system to deter and encourage compliance from repeat ad policy offenders.

The first disapproval for violating any of these three policies is displayed as a ‘warning’ and only impacts the offending ads. However, continued violation of the same policy within the next 90 days, results in the first strike which impacts the entire account. Additionally, the first and second strike result in a temporary hold of the account for three and seven days respectively i.e., none of the active ads will run during this duration.

These strikes will be communicated via email and in-account notifications and should be appealed within a period of 90 days after each strike. The third strike results in the suspension of the entire account for an indefinite period, prohibiting the account from running and creating new ads.

Here’s how you can protect and prepare your account for Google’s Three Strikes System.

  • Audit your account and its assets – ad copy, ad extensions, images, destination URLs, and landing pages. Remove any content that violates Google’s policies and can be picked up by Google’s automatic reviewing system.
  • Familiarise yourself with the warning and strike appealing process to ensure optimal account health.
  • Explore and utilize other forms of advertising channels such as SEO, display advertising and social media marketing.

Need help to protect and optimize your account? Get in touch with ADMATIC today to find out how we can help.