Programme policies

AdSense programme policies

All publishers are required to adhere to the following policies – so please read them carefully. If you fail to comply with these policies without permission from Google, we reserve the right to disable ad serving to your site and/or disable your AdSense account at any time. If your account is disabled, you will not be eligible for further participation in the AdSense programme.

Since we may change our policies at any time, please check here regularly for updates. In accordance with our online Terms and Conditions, it's your responsibility to keep up to date with, and adhere to, the policies posted here. Exceptions to these policies are permitted only with authorisation from Google.

Invalid clicks and impressions

Publishers may not click their own ads or use any means to inflate impressions and/or clicks artificially, including manual methods.
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Clicks on Google ads must result from genuine user interest. Any method that artificially generates clicks or impressions on your Google ads is strictly prohibited. These prohibited methods include, but are not limited to, repeated manual clicks or impressions, automated click and impression generating tools and the use of robots or deceptive software. Please note that clicking on your own ads for any reason is prohibited.

Encouraging clicks

Publishers may not ask others to click their ads or use deceptive implementation methods to obtain clicks. This includes, but is not limited to, offering compensation to users for viewing ads or performing searches, promising to raise money for third parties for such behaviour or placing images next to individual ads.
Learn more

In order to ensure a good experience for users and advertisers, publishers participating in the AdSense programme may not:

  • Compensate users for viewing ads or performing searches, or promise compensation to a third party for such behaviour.
  • Encourage users to click the Google ads using phrases such as "click the ads", "support us", "visit these links" or other similar language.
  • Direct user attention to the ads using arrows or other graphical gimmicks.
  • Place misleading images alongside individual ads.
  • Place ads in a floating box script.
  • Format ads so that they become indistinguishable from other content on that page.
  • Format site content so that it is difficult to distinguish it from ads.
  • Place misleading labels above Google ad units. For instance, ads may be labelled "Sponsored Links" or "Advertisements", but not "Favourite Sites" or "Today's Top Offers".

Content guidelines

Publishers may not place AdSense code on pages with content that violates any of our content guidelines. Some examples include content of an adult or violent nature, or content that advocates racial intolerance. Please see our prohibited content article for more information.
View full content policies.

Sites with Google ads may not include or link to:

  • Pornography, adult or mature content
  • Violent content
  • Hate speech (including content that incites hatred or promotes violence against individuals or groups based on race or ethnic origin, religion, disability, gender, age, veteran status or sexual orientation/gender identity), harassment, bullying or similar content that advocates harm against an individual or group.
  • Excessive profanity
  • Hacking/cracking content
  • Illicit drugs and drug paraphernalia content
  • Content that promotes, sells or advertises products obtained from endangered or threatened species.
  • Sales of beer or spirits
  • Sales of tobacco or tobacco-related products
  • Sales of prescription drugs
  • Sales of weapons or ammunition (e.g. firearms, firearm components, fighting knives, stun guns)
  • Sales or distribution of coursework or student essays
  • Content regarding programmes which compensate users for clicking ads or offers, performing searches, surfing websites or reading emails
  • Any other content that is illegal, promotes illegal activity or infringes on the legal rights of others

Publishers are also not permitted to place AdSense code on pages with content primarily in an unsupported language.

Copyrighted material

AdSense publishers may not display Google ads on web pages with content protected by copyright law unless they have the necessary legal rights to display that content. This includes sites that display copyrighted material, sites hosting copyrighted files or sites that provide links driving traffic to sites that contain copyrighted material. Please see our DMCA policy for more information.

Counterfeit goods

AdSense publishers may not display Google ads on web pages that offer for sale or promote the sale of counterfeit goods. Counterfeit goods contain a trademark or logo that is identical to or substantially indistinguishable from the trademark of another. They mimic the brand features of the product in an attempt to pass themselves off as a genuine product of the brand owner.

Webmaster guidelines

AdSense publishers are required to adhere to the webmaster quality guidelines.
View excerpts
  • Do not place excessive, repetitive or irrelevant keywords in the content or code of web pages.
  • Avoid hidden text or hidden links.
  • Avoid "doorway" pages created just for search engines or other "cookie cutter" approaches such as affiliate programmes with little or no original content.
  • Do not include deceptive or manipulative content or construction to improve your site's search engine ranking (e.g. your site's PageRank).
  • Create a useful, information-rich site and write pages that clearly and accurately describe your content.

Traffic sources

Google ads may not be placed on pages receiving traffic from certain sources. For example, publishers may not participate in paid-to-click programmes, send unwanted emails or display ads as the result of the action of any software application. Also, publishers using online advertising must ensure that their pages comply with Google's Landing Page Quality Guidelines.
Learn more

To ensure a positive experience for Internet users and Google advertisers, sites displaying Google ads may not:

  • Use third-party services that generate clicks or impressions such as paid-to-click, paid-to-surf, autosurf and click-exchange programmes.
  • Be promoted through unsolicited mass emails or unwanted advertisements on third-party websites.
  • Display Google ads, search boxes or search results as a result of the actions of software applications such as toolbars.
  • Be loaded by any software that can trigger pop-ups, redirect users to unwanted websites, modify browser settings or otherwise interfere with site navigation. It is your responsibility to ensure that no ad network or affiliate uses such methods to direct traffic to pages that contain your AdSense code.
  • Receive traffic from online advertising unless the site complies with the spirit of Google's Landing Page Quality Guidelines. For instance, users should be able to find easily what your ad promises.

Ad behaviour

Publishers are permitted to make modifications to the AdSense ad code, so long as those modifications do not artificially inflate ad performance or harm advertisers.

Ad placement

Publishers are encouraged to experiment with a variety of placements and ad formats. However, AdSense code may not be placed in inappropriate places such as pop-ups, emails or software. Publishers must also adhere to the policies for each product used. Please see our ad placement policies article for more information.
View full ad placement policies.

Google ads, search boxes or search results may not be:

  • Integrated into a software application (does not apply to AdMob) of any kind, including toolbars.
  • Displayed in pop-ups or pop-unders.
  • Placed in emails, email programmes including webmail or on pages where dynamic content (such as live chat, instant messaging or auto-refreshing comments) is the primary focus. (Does not apply to AdMob.)
  • Placed in emails, email programmes or chat programmes. (Does not apply to AdMob.)
  • Obscured by elements on a page.
  • Placed on any non-content-based page. (Does not apply to AdSense for search, mobile AdSense for search or AdMob.)
  • Placed on pages published specifically for the purpose of showing ads.
  • Placed on pages whose content or URL could confuse users into thinking it is associated with Google due to the misuse of logos, trademarks or other brand features.
  • Placed on, within or alongside other Google products or services in a manner that violates the policies of that product or service.

Site behaviour

Sites showing Google ads should be easy for users to navigate. Sites may not change user preferences, redirect users to unwanted websites, initiate downloads, include malware or contain pop-ups or pop-unders that interfere with site navigation.

Google advertising cookies

AdSense publishers must have and abide by a privacy policy that discloses that third parties may be placing and reading cookies on your users' browsers, or using web beacons to collect information as a result of ad serving on your website.
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Google uses the DoubleClick cookie on publisher websites displaying AdSense for content ads. Subject to any applicable laws, rules and regulations, you will have the sole and exclusive right to use all data derived from your use of the DoubleClick cookie for any purpose related to your business, provided that Google may use and disclose this data subject to the terms of Google's advertising privacy policies and any applicable laws, rules and regulations.

If your current advertising services have a contract with Google or DoubleClick that already has a specific provision defining data ownership, that provision instead of this policy will govern the data collected under that contract.

Learn more about preparing your privacy policy.

Identifying users

Publishers must not pass any information to Google:

  • that Google could use or recognise as personally-identifiable information; or
  • that permanently identifies a particular device (such as a mobile phone's unique device identifier if such an identifier cannot be reset).

Privacy

You must disclose clearly any data collection, sharing and usage that takes place on any site, app or other property as a consequence of your use of any Google advertising service. To comply with this disclosure obligation with respect to Google’s use of data, you have the option to display a prominent link to How Google uses data when you use our partners’ sites or apps.

Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA)

If you implement any Google advertising service on a site or section of a site that is covered by the Children's Online Privacy Protection Act (COPPA), (a) you must notify Google of those sites or sections of sites covered by COPPA using the tools found here: https://www.google.com/webmasters/tools/coppa, or the method for apps described here: https://developers.google.com/mobile-ads-sdk/docs/admob/additional-controls, and (b) you must not use interest-based advertising (including remarketing) to target: (i) past or current activity by users known by you to be under the age of 13 years or (ii) past or current activity on sites directed at users under the age of 13 years.

Gambling content

AdSense restricts the placement of ads on gambling sites and gambling-related content. We have different policies for gambling content based on the country in which a publisher is located. Publishers outside a limited group of countries are not allowed to place ads on any gambling content or on any pages with links to gambling content. This includes any content that allows users to place bets or play games in exchange for an opportunity to earn money or other prizes.
Learn more

In this select group of countries, publishers are allowed to monetise pages with online gambling, information about online gambling content and pages that link to gambling content. Gambling content includes: online casino games, sports betting, bingo, lotteries, tips, odds, handicapping, mahjong, educational/supplemental materials and bonus codes.

Austria Greece Portugal
Belgium Ireland Romania
Canada Italy Serbia
Denmark Israel Spain
Finland Norway Sweden
France Peru United Kingdom

Currently, these publishers must meet Google’s stringent requirements for consideration and need to be selected and approved by the AdSense Policy Team before ads can be shown. If you're eligible, AdSense will be certain to contact you. Publishers located outside these countries aren’t permitted to place ads on content that allows any type of betting or has links to such content.

To keep the Global Display Network family safe, ads will only be shown on gambling content if both the publisher and the page’s visitor are located within a gambling-approved country and if the visitor is of legal age.

Additionally, publishers now have the opportunity to opt in to receiving gambling ads through the category filtering feature. If you don't wish to receive gambling ads on your site, no action is required on your part.

Examples

Publishers who have not been selected or approved for gambling content:

Allowed Not allowed
  • Sites with play-for-fun games, contests, sweepstakes, raffles
  • Location-based gambling sites (hotel casinos and destination travel sites)
  • Sites promoting fantasy sports
  • Sites selling books, ebooks, magazines, TV shows that discuss gambling-related activities
  • Discussion forums or blogs about gambling that don’t drive traffic to online gambling sites
  • Sites selling gambling equipment
  • Online gambling sites, such as online casinos or online wagering sites
  • Sites that drive traffic to online gambling sites, such as through organic links

Publishers who have been selected and approved for gambling content, and are located in one of the following countries: Austria, Belgium, Canada, Denmark, Finland, France, Greece, Ireland, Italy, Israel, Norway, Peru, Portugal, Romania, Serbia, Spain, Sweden or the United Kingdom:

Allowed
  • Online gambling sites, such as online casinos or online wagering sites
  • Sites that drive traffic to online gambling sites, such as through organic links
  • Sites with play-for-fun games, contests, sweepstakes, raffles
  • Location-based gambling sites (hotel casinos and destination travel sites)
  • Sites promoting fantasy sports
  • Sites selling books, ebooks, magazines, TV shows that discuss gambling-related activities
  • Discussion forums or blogs about gambling that don’t drive traffic to online gambling sites
  • Sites selling gambling equipment

Product-specific policies

AdSense for content: Publishers may place up to three AdSense for content ad units on each page. Out of those three ad units, no more than one can be size 300x600. Publishers can place more than one of all ad sizes, except the 300x600, on each page. In addition to three AdSense for content ad units, publishers may also place up to three link units and two search boxes on each page. These policies apply to both desktop and high-end mobile optimised sites.

AdSense for search: A maximum of two Google AdSense for search boxes may be placed per page. Also, a single link unit or image ad only may be placed on pages with AdSense for search results. Queries must originate from users inputting data directly into the search box and cannot be modified. This includes pre-populating the search box with terms or hard-coding direct links to search results pages. AdSense for search code may not be integrated into any software application such as a toolbar.

Additional products:

Last updated: 31 March 2014