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Ad implementation policies

Ad placement policies

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Avoiding accidental clicks
Encouraging accidental clicks
Unnatural attention to ads
Placing ads under a misleading heading
Website layout that pushes content below the fold
Aligning images with ads
Formatting content to mimic ads
Offering compensation
Distance between ads and flash games

Ensuring proper ad placement
Valuable inventory
Auto-refreshing ads
Ads on thank you, exit, login or error pages
Ads on dynamic content
Ads in emails
Ads in a software application
Ads in a new window
Ads in pop-up windows
Ads on a website with pop-ups
Ads on pages behind a login
Ads on the same page or website as another publisher
Ads on a hosted website (e.g. Blogger)
Displaying a third-party website on your page

Avoiding accidental clicks

Encouraging accidental clicks

Publishers are not permitted to encourage users to click Google ads in any way. This includes implementing the ads in such a way that they might be mistaken for other website content, such as a menu, navigation or download links.

Be careful when placing links, play buttons, download buttons, navigation buttons (e.g., “Previous" or “Next"), game windows, video players, drop-down menus or applications near ads because they might lead to accidental clicks. Even if the layout unintentionally leads to accidental clicks, publishers may still receive a violation notification.

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Unnatural attention to ads

Publishers are not permitted to bring unnecessary or unnatural attention to their Google ads. Examples of this include:

  • Flashy animations that draw a user’s eyes to the ads
  • Arrows or other symbols pointing to the ads

To ensure a safe and positive user experience, we restrict the use of ad implementations on desktop that cause the ad to appear in a “sticky” or “floating” position on the page as the user scrolls or navigates through the page. While we allow Google anchor ads on mobile web, please note that publisher-created mobile implementations are not permitted as we cannot ensure that they have the same quality protections that we’ve built into our product.

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Placing ads under a misleading header

It's important that visitors to your site are not misled in any way and are able to easily distinguish content from Google Display ads. This policy prohibits placing of ads under misleading headings such as "resources" or "helpful links". Publishers can only label Google ads with either "Advertisements" or "Sponsored links".

Additionally, as shown below, a website's heading might be interpreted as an inappropriate ad label. Because ads in such a position might be mistaken for links or listings instead of advertisements, such an implementation is considered unacceptable. Monitor your website and its layout carefully to ensure that this doesn't happen.

Publishers are not allowed to use language to lead users to click on ads, such as:

  • "Feel free to click on an ad."
  • "Contribute to the cause by clicking an ad".
  • "Help keep this website running. Check out our sponsors!"
  • "We need a new server. Support us!"

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Aligning images with ads

Publishers may not attempt to associate specific images with the individual ads appearing on their websites. Such implementation could confuse users, who might assume that the image is directly related to the advertiser's offerings, and is therefore a violation of our policies.

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Site layout that pushes content below the fold

Publishers should avoid website layouts in which the ads push content below the fold. These layouts make it hard for users to distinguish between the content and ads.

Mobile implementations: Publishers should ensure that their mobile website layouts don't cause ads to push the page content below the fold. For this reason, we don’t allow 300 x 250 ad units (or larger) above the fold on mobile as this layout requires the user to scroll down to view website content. To ensure a good user experience, the website content should be clear and accessible above the fold. We would therefore encourage publishers to implement smaller ad units for above the fold placements on mobile websites. See our optimisation guide for the mobile web for tips on where to place your ads.

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Formatting content to mimic ads

Publishers may not implement Google ads in a manner that disguises the ads in any way. This includes formatting neighbouring content to look similar to the ads. If a publisher places ads on non-Google search results pages, then there must be a clear distinction between search results and ads. Review our AdSense for search policies for more information.

In the example below, the content is formatted very similarly to the ads and it's difficult to tell them apart. This implementation is not permitted.

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Offering compensation

Offering compensation or any incentive for clicks on ads is strictly prohibited.

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Distance between ads and flash games

When placing Google ads on Flash gaming websites, we strongly recommend a distance of at least 150 pixels between the ads and the edge of a game. When users are concentrating on a Flash game and clicking frantically, invalid clicks are likely to occur. Since each game and website is unique, some games might require a greater distance based on the type of game and how it is played. For more guidelines, review AdSense for content ads on game play pages.

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Ensuring proper ad placement

Valuable inventory

Advertising and other paid promotional material added to your pages should not exceed your content. Furthermore, the content you provide should add value and be the focal point for users visiting your page. For this reason, we may limit or disable ad serving on pages with little to no value and/or excessive advertising until changes are made.

Examples of unacceptable pages include but are not limited to:

  • Mirroring, framing, scraping or rewriting of content from other sources without adding value;
  • Pages with more advertising than publisher-provided content;
  • Automatically generated content without manual review or curation;
  • Hosted ad pages or pages without content;
  • Pages that don’t follow our Webmaster Quality Guidelines.

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Auto-refreshing ads

Publishers are not permitted to refresh a page or an element of a page without the user requesting a refresh. This includes placing ads on pages or in placements that auto-redirect or auto-refresh. Additionally, publishers may not display the ads for a preset time (i.e. pre-roll), before users can view content such as videos, games or downloads.

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Ads on thank you, exit, login or error pages

Publishers are not permitted to place ads on any non-content based pages like thank you, error, login or exit pages. These are pages that visitors see on a website before potentially leaving the domain or after performing a specific action on the website such as a purchase or download.

Ads that are the main focus on these types of pages can confuse a visitor into thinking that the ads are actual content, so do not place ads on such pages.

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Ads on dynamic content

Publishers cannot place Google ads on pages where dynamic content (e.g. live chats, instant messaging, auto-refreshing of comments, etc.) is the primary focus of the page.

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Ads on emails

To ensure the effectiveness of Google ads for both our publishers and our advertisers, publishers cannot place Google ads inside email messages. In addition, publishers cannot place Google ads alongside email messages when they are the primary focus of the page.

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Ads in a software application

Publishers are not permitted to distribute Google ads or AdSense for search boxes through software applications including, but not limited to toolbars, browser extensions and desktop applications. AdSense code may only be implemented on web-based pages and approved WebView technologies.

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Ads in a new window

Publishers are not permitted to open Google ads in a new window or alter the result of clicking on an ad. For more information, review Opening the ads in a new window. Please note that this policy does not apply to AdSense ads served via dynamic allocation through DoubleClick for Publishers (DFP).

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Ads in pop-up windows

Publishers are not permitted to place Google ads in any window that is not initiated by a user's click. Additionally, ads may not be placed in any web browser window which lacks navigational controls, including back and forward browse buttons, and an editable URL field. AdSense ad code also cannot be implemented on pages where navigational elements have been removed.

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Ads on a website with pop-ups

Publishers are not permitted to place Google ads on websites which have more than three pop-ups. If pop-ups are displayed on a website, then they may not interfere with website navigation, change user preferences, initiate downloads or distribute viruses.

Additionally, websites using AdSense may not be loaded by any software that triggers pop-ups, modifies browser settings, redirects users to unwanted websites or otherwise interferes with normal website navigation. It is your responsibility to ensure that no ad network or affiliates use such methods to direct traffic to pages that contain your AdSense code.

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Ads on pages behind a login

Publishers are welcome to place Google ads on password-protected pages as long as those pages comply with our programme policies. When applying for AdSense, make sure that you provide us with a non-password-protected page for review.

If your pages require a login and irrelevant ads are appearing, then you can help improve ad targeting by granting our crawler access to login-protected pages.

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Ads on the same page or website as another publisher

If a website is in compliance with our programme policies and the company or owner of the website has given you permission to display ads on their website, then you may place your ad code on the same page as the other publisher's ad code. You will, however, need to contact your web hosting company or the owner of the website to obtain permission to display ads on their website. Additionally, you will only be credited for clicks and impressions on the ad units associated with your account.

Bear in mind that every publisher is responsible for the content of a site on which their ad code is placed. If a website is found to be in violation of our policies, we will notify any publisher(s) whose ad code is on the site.

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Ads on a hosted website (e.g. Blogger)

You are welcome to place AdSense on any page which complies with our programme policies, including hosted websites. However, note that in order to use AdSense, you might need to have access to your website's HTML source code. It is also your responsibility to check with your host and determine if using AdSense is a violation of their terms of service.

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Displaying a third-party website on your page

When a website displays someone else's site within a frame or window, this is considered framing content. Placing Google ads on such pages is strictly prohibited.

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