Fix placement issues

Occasionally, you may find that your ad isn't showing on websites or other placements you added. Or, it's appearing but not where you expected it to appear. If your ad isn't showing, doing a placement diagnosis can explain why and give you steps to improve your performance. For more information, you can review our list of common issues and fixes.

If your ad doesn't seem to be appearing on Display Network placements, you can do a placement diagnosis to see what's going on. Here's how:

  1. Sign in to your AdWords account at
  2. Click the Display Network tab, and then click the Placements or Topics tab.
    • Placements tab: Under the "Status" column, point to the speech bubble icon Speech bubble next to the status of one of your placements. Diagnostic information will appear.
    • Topics tab: Under the "Status" column, point to the speech bubble icon Speech bubble next to the status of one of your topics. Diagnostic information will appear.
Compatible campaign types

To diagnose and fix your placements, you’ll need to use one of the following marketing objectives or campaign types:

"Display Network only" marketing objectives
  • See your ad
  • Visit your website
  • Buy on your website
  • Take an action on your website
  • Call your business
  • Visit your business
  • Engage with your mobile app
  • Install your mobile app
Campaign types
  • "Search Network with Display Select – All features"
  • "Display Network only – All features"
  • "Display Network only – Mobile apps"
  • "Display Network only – Remarketing"

Check your campaign's Settings tab to make sure you're using one of these types of campaigns.

If you have a different campaign type from the ones listed above, you won't be able to diagnose or fix your placements. Learn about AdWords campaign types.

Besides doing a placement diagnosis, you can also check these common issues and find out what you can do to fix them. Click the link that fits your situation.

Ad isn't showing

Check your campaign setup

Make sure your settings, ad format, and targeting methods aren't preventing your ad from showing. See more on campaign settings and where your ads can appear.

  • You don't have the right campaign type
    If your campaign type isn't "Search Network with Display Select," "Display Network only – All features," "Display Network only – Mobile apps," or "Display Network only – Remarketing," your ads can't show on the Display Network. Check your campaign's Settings tab to make sure you're using one of these types of campaigns.
  • Your reach may be too narrow
    Having too many targeting methods (like topics and keywords, in addition to your placements) limits the number of webpages that meet all your criteria. For example, if you've added managed placements and keywords, your ad will appear on those specific sites on pages that match the keywords you've selected. This means your ad may show on only a few pages, if it shows at all. If your ad isn't showing, try selecting just one or two targeting methods to broaden your reach.
  • Your daily budget is too low
    With standard delivery campaigns, if your daily budget is low in relation to your cost-per-thousand impressions (CPM) bidding or cost-per-click (CPC) bid, our system will spread your ad delivery throughout the day to prevent you from exhausting the entire daily budget too fast. In this case, your ad won't show every time that it could. To maximize your ad visibility throughout the day, try increasing your daily budget to an amount well above your CPM or CPC bid.
  • You can't find your ad because of ad scheduling
    You may not be able to find your ad if you've scheduled it to only run at certain hours of the day, or days of the week. See the scheduling you've selected for your ad.
  • Your keywords aren't relevant
    It's possible that your keywords don't match the content of the placements you'd like them to appear on. Your ads will show on websites when the content matches your keywords. For example, if you've targeted an automotive supply website as a placement, but your keywords are tulips and roses, then your ad probably won't appear because your keywords aren’t related to the content of the placement.
  • Your placements don't accept your display ad format sizes
    If you have a display ad that isn't showing, it may be that the format size you selected for your ad isn't a size that some of your placements accept. For example, if you created an ad that's a 250 x 300 rectangle, and the site you're expecting to see your ad on doesn't offer ad space in that size, your ad won't appear. Use Display Planner to find out what ad sizes your placements accept.

Review your managed placements

  • You targeted managed placements but forgot to check whether your ad is showing on these placements
    You may not see your ad if you've targeted your ad to appear only on specific placements (managed placements) on the Display Network, and you're not looking on those particular sites or pages. You can see which placements you've targeted by following these steps:
    1. Go to the Display Network tab at the ad group level.
    2. Click the Placements tab and look for placements with the status "Managed."
  • You don't have enough managed placements
    If you target your ad to just a few managed placements, you narrow the opportunities for your ad to appear. Try adding more placements on the same topic.
  • Your bids are too low
    Bidding is very competitive on the Google Display Network. If you've chosen managed placements that are very popular, but your ad group bid is very low, then your ad may not appear in those placements. You can try raising your placements bid for the entire ad group or just for the managed placement. Learn how to edit your bids.

Ad may be waiting for approval

Ads need to be approved per our advertising guidelines before they appear on sites in the Google Network. If your ad is still awaiting approval, please be patient while we work to review all ads. In the meantime, you can read our advertising policies and guidelines to ensure that your ad is in compliance. Also, check a list of potential reasons your ad may have been disapproved.

Ad is showing, but not where you expected

Ad is showing on contextually irrelevant placements

Sometimes your ads may show on placements that seem unrelated to the display keywords that you’re targeting. In cases like these it’s possible that your ads are being shown to someone based on their recent browsing history, rather than the contents of the page they're currently viewing.  So, your ads are still relevant to the person seeing them.

For example, someone could begin their browsing session by researching a car purchase and then move on to reading the news. We might show your ad on the news site they’re viewing, even though the page itself isn’t about cars.

If you find that these placements aren’t performing as you’d like, try the following:

Check your campaign setup

Make sure your settings, ad format, and targeting methods aren't causing your ad to show where you don't want it to show. See more on campaign settings and where your ads can appear.

  • Your keywords are too vague
    If your keywords are too vague, or not as relevant as they could be to what you offer, your ad may appear on placements that you think aren't the best fit. Here are a few things you can do to get better results:
  • You can't target specific placements
    If you find that you're restricted from adding managed placements to your ad group, below are a couple of scenarios and potential reasons for each.
    • Don't have the option to add managed placements at all
      • Check your target languages: You can add managed placements to an ad group if that ad group is part of a campaign that targets at least one of the languages supported for Google AdSense publishers. This ensures that a significant number of Display Network sites will be available. Find out what languages AdSense supports.
      • If a campaign isn't targeted to at least one of these languages, you also won't be able to add managed placements to new or existing ad groups in a campaign. You can enable placements by changing the ad's target language in your campaign settings. Your placement-targeted ads will only appear to customers viewing content in the eligible languages you add. Adding a new language won't make placement-targeting work for other non-eligible languages in that campaign.
    • Can add managed placements, but can't find the one you want in Display Planner
      • Placement you want isn't in the Google Display Network: Your ad can't show on sites that aren't in the Google Display Network.
      • Publisher has opted out of placement targeting: Publishers in the Google Network can choose not to participate in placement targeting. If a site has made that choice, you won't be able to target it.
Ad is showing on a placement you paused or removed

You can pause or remove a placement in any ad group at any time. If you have keywords, interest categories, topics, remarketing lists, and other targeting methods in the same ad group with your managed placements, your ads could potentially appear on the same placements you paused or removed. This would happen if the websites are relevant to your other targeting methods.

You can exclude sites or categories of sites to prevent your ad from appearing on them. If you want your ads to appear only on placements you choose, and nowhere else, you can create a new ad group with placements only.

Ad is showing on inappropriate or inaccurate sites

You can prevent your ad from appearing on any undesired site by excluding it from your campaign.

  • Showing on inappropriate sites
    We'd like to know about any inappropriate sites. Please use this form to report the webpage to the Google AdSense Team. We'll perform an investigation based on the information you report. If we confirm that the specified website violates our site policies, we'll take immediate steps to remove it from the Google Network.

    We have several systems in place to make sure websites don't feature content that violates our Google Network program policies. Here are the different levels of automated and manual review:

    • Initial review: Websites go through a combination of automated and manual review before they're allowed to join the Google Network.
    • Review when an ad is served: Whenever a visitor arrives at a page in the Google Network, our system looks at the page's content to determine which ads to show. If our system detects content that violates our policies, no ads will be served to that page. This review happens close to real time.
    • Automatic review: Our system continuously scans all the websites in the Google Network looking for content violations. Whenever a possible violation is detected, it triggers a human review. We'll remove the site from the network if we confirm a violation.
    • Reactive review: We investigate all reports submitted by advertisers and other Google users, prioritizing more significant potential violations. For serious cases, we can stop all ad delivery to a site within five minutes.

      Due the dynamic nature of website content, we don't always immediately detect content changes that violate these policies. That's why any reports you submit help us maintain the quality of the Google Network.

  • Showing on inaccurate sites
    Occasionally, a publisher-defined ad placement doesn't display ads as described in the placement name or description. If you notice that an ad placement is being inaccurately represented, you can exclude it from your campaign to prevent your ad from appearing there.

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