How personalized ads work

In this article

About ads on Google

As you use Google services, like Search and YouTube, you may see ads. These ads help keep many Google services available for no charge. Ads you see on Google are either personalized, using factors like your choices in My Ad Center, or non-personalized. Open the sections below to learn more about the factors used to show you personalized and non-personalized ads.

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Personalized ads on Google

Personalized ads on Google are ads shown to you based on:

For example:

  • You might see an ad for a new car because you've watched a YouTube video about the best new cars this year.
  • You might see an ad on YouTube about cooking because you’ve looked for recipes on Google Search.
  • You might see an ad for running shoes because you’ve customized your ads on My Ad Center to see more about the Fitness topic.

Your choices in My Ad Center, like your preferred ad topics and brands, only affect the ads you see on Google services. Those preferences are not used to personalize ads on partner sites and apps. Visit Partner ad settings to control personalized ads on partner sites and apps.

Non-personalized ads on Google

Non-personalized ads on Google are shown to you according to factors like the time of day, the topic of the website you're visiting, your general location, or your current search.

For example:

  • You might see a restaurant ad for lunch specials because it is noon in your timezone.
  • You might see an ad for a local plumber because you are searching for plumbing services.

About ads on partner sites and apps

Websites, like news sites and shopping sites, and apps often have space reserved for ads. When sites and apps would like to show ads, they can partner with Google or a number of other ad technology providers to manage those spaces and show visitors relevant ads. 

Millions of sites and apps partner with Google to help fund their content using ads paid for by advertisers. These partner sites and apps specifically use Google technology to show ads. They show ads with the Google Display Network, a Google platform that helps advertisers show ads on sites across the web. 

Ads you see on partner sites and apps  are either personalized or non-personalized. Although these partner sites are neither owned nor operated by Google, you can choose whether or not the ads you see on these sites are personalized using the Google Display Network.

Not every website or app uses Google technology to show ads. For example, social media sites and apps may have their own advertising platforms.

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Personalized ads on partner sites and apps

Personalized ads on partner sites might be based on your:

  • Info that you’ve given that website or app like your email address, age, or gender.
  • Interactions with content on that website or app.
  • Interactions with ads on that website or app.
  • Google Account activity depending on your Google settings.
  • Account settings for that website or app.

For example:

  • You might visit a news site and see an ad for a cooking magazine because you’ve previously read an article about food on that website.
  • You might visit a website and see an ad for a new car because you've read an article about this year’s new cars.
Your choices in My Ad Center, like your preferred ad topics and brands, only affect the ads you see on Google services. Those preferences are not used to personalize ads on partner sites and apps. Visit Partner ad settings to control personalized ads on partner sites and apps.
Non-personalized ads on partner sites and apps

Non-personalized ads on partner sites and apps are shown to you according to factors like the time of day, the topic of the website you're visiting, or your general location.

For example:

  • You might see a restaurant ad for lunch specials because you’re reading a blog about lunch recipes.
  • You might see an ad for a roofing business because you are on a website about home repair.

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Turn on or off personalized ads

Google provides many ways you can turn on or off personalized ads. You can control your settings for personalized ads:

On Google Services

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When you're signed in to your Google Account

While you are signed in to your Google Account, My Ad Center controls whether ads are personalized on Google services and partner sites and apps. To turn on or off personalized ads when you’re signed in to your Google Account:

  1. Go to My Ad Center.
  2. Select Onor Off, next to "Personalized ads."
  3. Confirm your selection.

Go to My Ad Center

When you turn on personalized ads with My Ad Center:

  • The ads you see on Google services may seem more relevant because the choices you’ve made in My Ad Center, as well as your info and activity, may be used to help show you ads for products and brands that interest you.
  • Personalized ads on partner sites may also be turned on, and the ads you see on partner sites and apps may seem more relevant because your info and activity may be used to help show you ads for products and brands that interest you

When you turn off personalized ads:

  • The ads you see on Google services won't be personalized– that is, they will be based on general factors like the time of day or the topic of the video, website, or app you're viewing.
  • The ads you see on partner sites and apps won't be personalized by Google.
  • Your preferences in My Ad Center, like the topics and brands you’ve customized, will be deleted.
  • The info or activity saved to your Google account won’t be used to show you ads.

Where this setting applies:

Turning on or off personalized ads in My Ad Center affects the ads you see on Google services across all the devices where you are signed in.

This setting might not be available to you:

This setting might not be available to you because personalized ads are already turned off on Google services. Personalized ads might be turned off for you, for example, because your Google Account shows that you are under 18 years old.

A few notes:
  • Turning on or off personalized ads when you're signed in doesn't affect ads not shown by Google or the ads you see on sites that have their own ads platforms.
  • Your choices in My Ad Center, like your preferred ad topics and brands, only affect the ads you see on Google services and are not used to personalize ads on partner sites and apps.

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When you're signed out of your Google Account

If you're not signed in to your Google Account, your ad settings are saved to your device or browser. Turning on or off personalized ads when you're signed out of your Google Account affects the ads you see depending on where you change your settings. You can turn on or off personalized ads when you're signed out of your Google Account: 

For Google Search

Personalize ads on Google Search controls the ads you see when you’re signed out of your Google Account and using Google Search

Since Personalized ads on Google Search controls your experience when you’re signed out of your Google Account, it only applies to the specific browser or device that you’re using.

To turn on or off Personalized ads on Google Search, when you’re signed out of your Google Account:

  1. Go to Ad Settings.
  2. Select Search.
  3. Turn on or off Personalized ads on Google Search.
  4. Confirm your changes.

For YouTube

Personalized ads on YouTube controls the ads you see when you’re signed out of your Google Account and using YouTube.

Since Personalized ads on YouTube controls your experience when you’re signed out of your Google Account, it only applies to the specific browser or device that you’re using.

To turn on or off Personalized ads on YouTube, when you’re signed out of your Google Account:

  1. Go to Ad Settings.
  2. Select YouTube.
  3. Turn on or off Personalized ads on YouTube.
  4. Confirm your changes.

For the Web

When you’re signed out of your Google Account, you can turn on or off personalized ads on partner sites. This option only applies to the specific browser or device that you’re using

To turn on or off personalized ads on partner sites, when you’re signed out:

  1. Go to Ad Settings.
  2. Select Web.
  3. Turn on or turn off Personalized ads on sites that partner with Google
  4. Confirm your changes.

When you turn on personalized ads:

The ads you see on Google services may seem more relevant because your info and activity may be used to help show you ads for products and brands that interest you.

When you turn off personalized ads:

  • The info or activity saved to your Google account won’t be used to show you ads.
  • The ads you see won't be personalized– that is, they will be based on general factors like the time of day or the topic of the video, website, or app you're viewing.

These setting might not be available to you:

The above settings might not be available to you because your browser or device may prevent the use of cookies for personalized ads across multiple websites.

A few notes:
  • Turning on or off personalized ads when you're signed out doesn't affect ads not shown by Google or the ads you see on sites that have their own ads platforms.
  • Your choices in My Ad Center, like your preferred ad topics and brands, only affect the ads you see on Google services when you are signed in to your Google Account.

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On partner sites and apps

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When you're signed in to your Google account

To turn on or off personalized ads on partner sites, when you’re signed in to your Google Account:

  1. Go to Partner Ad Settings
  2. Turn on or off Get personalized ads when you visit sites that partner with Google.
  3. Confirm your selection.

When you turn on personalized ads:

When you turn on personalized ads, the ads you see on partner sites and apps may seem more relevant because your info and activity may be used to help show you ads for products and brands that interest you.

When you turn off personalized ads:

  • The info or activity saved to your Google account won’t be used to show you ads.
  • The ads you see on partner sites and apps won't be personalized– that is, they will be based on general factors like the time of day or the topic of the video, website, or app you're viewing.

Where this setting applies:

Turning off personalized ads with Partner Ad Settings affects the ads you see on partner sites and apps across all the devices where you are signed in

This setting might not be available to you:

This setting might not be available to you because personalized ads are already turned off on Google services. Personalized ads might be turned off for you, for example, because:

  • Your Google Account shows that you are under 18 years old.
  • Your browser or device may prevent the use of cookies for personalized ads across multiple websites.
A few notes:
  • Turning on or off personalized ads on partner sites and apps does not affect the ads you see on Google services.
  • If you turn off personalized ads in My Ad Center, personalized ads on partner sites and apps are also turned off.
  • Turning on or off personalized ads when you're signed in doesn’t affect ads not shown by Google or the ads you see on sites that have their own ads platforms.
  • Your choices in My Ad Center, like your preferred ad topics and brands, only affect the ads you see on Google services and are not used to personalize ads on partner sites and apps.

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When you're signed out of your Google Account

To turn on or off personalized ads on partner sites, when you’re signed out of your Google Account:

  1. Go to Partner Ad Settings
  2. Turn on or off Get personalized ads when you visit sites that partner with Google.
  3. Confirm your selection.
Go to Partner Ad Settings

When you turn on personalized ads:

The ads you see on partner sites and apps may seem more relevant because your info and activity may be used to help show you ads for products and brands that interest you.

When you turn off personalized ads:

  • The info or activity saved to your Google account won’t be used to show you ads.
  • The ads you see on partner sites and apps won't be personalized– that is, they will be based on general factors like the time of day or the topic of the video, website, or app you're viewing.

Where this setting applies:

Turning off personalized ads with Partner Ad Settings, while you’re signed out of your Google Account, only affects the ads you see on the specific browser or device that you’re using.

This setting might not be available to you:

This setting might not be available because your browser or device may prevent the use of cookies for personalized ads across multiple websites.

A few notes:
  • Turning on or off personalized ads on partner sites and apps does not affect the ads you see on Google services.
  • Turning on or off personalized ads when you're signed out does not affect ads not served by Google or the ads you see on sites that have their own ads platforms.
  • Your choices in My Ad Center, like your preferred ad topics and brands, only affect the ads you see on Google services and are not used to personalize ads on partner sites and apps.

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On your devices

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Mobile devices

Ads you see on your mobile devices may be personalized based on its Advertising ID. Sometimes Google links that advertising ID to an advertising cookie on the same device in order to coordinate ads across your mobile apps and mobile browser. This can happen, for example, when you see an ad within an app that launches a web page in your mobile browser.

You can control your Advertising ID on each device you use.

To control personalized ads on your Android devices, you can:

  • Reset your device’s advertising ID, which replaces the current ID with a new one. Apps can still show you personalized ads, but for a while they may not be as relevant or interesting to you.
  • Delete your device’s advertising ID, which deletes the advertising ID and doesn't assign a new one. Apps can still show you ads, but they may not be as relevant or interesting to you. You won't see ads based on this advertising ID, but you may still see ads based on other factors, like the information you’ve shared with apps.

Your Advertising ID will be reset or deleted, but apps may have their own settings using other types of identifiers, which can also affect the types of ads you see.

Learn more about how to reset or delete your advertising ID.

In the YouTube app on your Android device

When you’re signed in

When you turn off ad personalization in your YouTube app, Google won’t personalize ads in the app on this device. Ads will be based on general factors like the time of day or the topic of the video you’re watching.

To turn off personalized ads in your YouTube app when you’re signed in to your Google Account: 

  1. Select Account and then Settings.
  2. Scroll to "History & Privacy."
  3. Select Google Ad Settings.
  4. Turn off the switch next to "Ad Personalization is ON."

Learn more about how to reset or delete your advertising ID.

When you’re signed out

To turn off personalized ads in your YouTube app when you’re signed out of your Google Account,  go to Android settings and select “Delete your device’s advertising ID”.

Learn more about how to reset or delete your advertising ID.

When you select “Delete your device’s advertiser ID” in your Android settings, the YouTube app will no longer personalize ads on this device. Ads will be based on general factors like the time of day or the topic of the video you’re watching.

Android TV

Ads you see on your Android TV may be personalized based on its Advertising ID. You can control your Advertising ID on each connected TV you use.

To control personalized ads on your Android TV, you can:

  • Reset your device’s advertising ID, which replaces the current ID with a new one. Apps can still show you personalized ads, but for a while they may not be as relevant or interesting to you.
  • Delete your device’s advertising ID, which deletes the advertising ID and doesn't assign a new one. Apps can still show you ads, but they may not be as relevant or interesting to you. You won't see ads based on this advertising ID, but you may still see ads based on other factors, like the information you’ve shared with apps.

Learn more about how to change your ad settings on Android TV.

Non-Google Devices

Many connected TV devices support identifiers for advertising and offer ways for users to opt out of personalized advertising. A full list of those devices, and ways users can opt out, is kept updated on the Network Advertising Initiative’s website.

Learn more about how to opt out of personalized ads on your non-Google device at the Network Advertising Alliance.

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On other ad networks

With AdChoices

Google is one of many ad networks that personalizes ads based on your activity online. Go to AdChoices to control ads from Google and other ad networks.

Go to AdChoices

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Control data saved from partner sites to your Google Account

When you visit sites that partner with Google to show ads, browsing data from partner sites and apps may be saved to your Google Account. This info is used to help personalize ads across the browsers and devices you use so the ads you see will be for products and brands that interest you.

Start or stop saving data to your Google Account

To start or stop saving data to your Google Account from partner sites and apps:

  1. Go to Partner Ad Settings 
    or
    On an ad you see, select Closeand thenReview settings for these ads.
  2. Check or uncheck Also save data in your Google Account from sites and apps that partner with Google.
  3. Confirm your changes.

Got to Partner Ad Settings

When you stop saving data from partner sites to your Google account:

  • Google won’t save any of your future browsing data from partner sites to your Google Account.
  • Google won’t use your Google Account activity and info to personalize ads on partner sites and apps. 

Where this setting applies:

This setting only applies on browsers or devices where you’re signed in to your Google Account.

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