Google Grants is the non-profit version of the Google AdWords pay per click advertising tool. It provides free AdWords advertising to eligible non-profit organisations. Recipients of the grant need special help and advice in order to manage their advertising campaign effectively. The challenge is for the recipient of the grant to use this grant funding carefully in order to extract maximum benefit.
I have recently spent some time working with a charity which has been accepted on the Google Grants programme, and whilst the grant is a wonderful gift, it also presents specific challenges that are unique to this charitable programme.
I was delighted to be invited in to spend a day with the charitable recipient of the grant and help them to build their skills and confidence to use the grant effectively, and to measure the impact the grant has on the organisation.
What is Google Grants?
Google Grants is a form of free advertising using the Google AdWords platform for eligible not for profit and charitable organisations. The principle of Google Grants is to help organisations accepted onto the program, to extend the reach of their messages locally, nationally or globally, free of charge.
Charitable organisations can use their free advertising grant a number of ways:
- Use online advertising to reach donors, volunteers and consumers when they’re searching on Google
- Raise awareness by choosing relevant keywords and creating unique ads to highlight your work
- Track online donations, newsletter sign-ups, volunteer registrations and more so you can see what’s working and what’s not
- Promote your organization’s website on Google with in-kind AdWords advertising
Google Grants is one of a series of products available as part of the Google For Non-Profits Premium Products.
Who is eligible for Google Grants?
In order to be accepted onto the Google Grants programme there are various requirements that need to be met by nonprofit organisations, particularly in terms of charitable status and website standards.
Google also clearly lists which organizations are not eligible for Google Grants on their website.
What are the rules?
In addition to organisation requirements, there are also guidelines regarding the management of the AdWords account and parameters which need to be operated within to remain eligible for Google Grants funding – some of these include:
- How your adverts link to your website
- How often you log in and manage your campaign
- The nature of your advert copy and mission statements
- The nature of your web content and affiliate programmes
What are the restrictions?
Once accepted onto the Google Grants programme, although the advertising is ‘free’ there are limitations and restrictions which means that the AdWords campaigns need to be carefully managed. Some of the rules and restrictions are:
- A total daily budget of $329 (approximately £210) per day
- A maximum cost per click bid limit of $2.00 (approximately £1.27)
- You can only run keyword targeted campaigns on the Google Search Network
- Your adverts can only appear on Google.com
- You are only able to run text based adverts on the search network
Google Grants campaign management
With strict restrictions on budgets and keyword bid levels then it is essential that Google Grants campaigns are planned, constructed and managed very carefully.
Choosing the right keywords based on detailed keyword research and your business objectives is key, and these then need organising into tightly themed ad groups which represent the various services of your organisation.
Carefully crafted adverts which sit in line with Google’s guidelines, yet deliver your organisations mission effectively will need creating and testing over time.
Your website may also require some work to ensure that your content and page optimisation is in line with your target keywords, adgroups and adverts – this will help to achieve higher keyword quality scores, which in turn can help to improve click through rates and lower average click costs – something which will be essential when operating with a strict budgets in competitive markets.
Hallam is a Google Adwords accredited digital marketing agency, with several individually qualified AdWords consultants working for a range of clients using both standard and Google Grants AdWords Campaigns.
We have experience of devising, creating and managing Adwords campaigns of varying budgets and would be happy to help anyone looking to maximise the potential of their Google Grants campaigns. Visit our PPC services page for more information.