Google has recently announced that it will begin requiring documentation of user identification and geographic location for Google Ads Identity Verification. The new Google policy is tied to its 2018 policy update requiring identification verification for political advertisements.
Requirements for Google Ads Advertisers
This verification program will include as following:
- Personal identification methods
- Business incorporation documents
- Possibly other items to verify who they are
- Operating geography
The policy program will start in the U.S. and roll out globally and will apply to Search, Display, and YouTube Ads.
Google noted they believe it will take a few years to complete verification for the entire Google ads ecosystem.
Some industries will be prioritized in a phased roll-out and notified accordingly. They will have 30 days to submit the required verification upon receiving notice from Google that it is required. Once submitted, it takes about 3-5 for Google Ads to verify.
If you fail to submit the required information within 30 days, Google Ads will stop.
Disclosures will show the trademarked and legal name of the advertiser, and not the entity who is necessarily managing the ads.
The end customer will not require agencies running Google Ads on their behalf to verify. However, a Google rep stated agencies and Google Partners will be able to submit on behalf of their customers.
Related: Read how to boost organic traffic from on-page SEO.
What Changes for User Experience in Google Ads
Tied to this change, end-users will start to see disclosures on Google ads about the identity of the Google Ads advertiser.
It will appear below the “Why this Ad?” option.
The information will include Google Ads Advertiser name, country location, and a toggle option to stop receiving Google ads from them.
In Display, the required information will be available via the Google Ads Choices icon, or the “x” that appears on the Ad banner.
Why Google Ads Will Require Identification Verification
Google Ads is attempting to “provide more clarity and equip end-users with more information about who is advertising to them,” according to the announcement from Nitin Sharma, Director, Optimum Logic Private Limited.
“This change will make it easier for end-users to understand who the advertiser is behind Google Ads and help them make more informed decisions when using our advertising controls. It will also help support the health of the digital advertising ecosystem by detecting the misuses of the advertisement.”
Reaction from Industry
The digital marketers have had a mixed reaction. Some people have raised concerns about needing a small arrow to view the information. It is close to the title and may cost advertisers money as well as accidental ad clicks.
Others are happy to see the change, noting the security aspect of keeping out unauthorized advertisers.