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Advertiser landing page redirects and false/misleading URLs in ad body
Is this a violation of the AdWords TOS?
inactivist




msg:3009612
 5:40 pm on Jul 15, 2006 (gmt 0)

Are misleading / bogus URLs in the ad body a violation of Google's AdWords TOS? I've looked, but can't find anything in the current TOS that forbids it. In fact, this is the only relevant help I could find (concerning redirects in landing pages) :

Why does AdWords visit my ad's landing page? [adwords.google.com]

The page at the URL above says nothing more than:

The AdWords system will visit and evaluate all pages specified by your ad Destination URLs. It will also follow redirect URLs. (Redirect URLs send a user to another website page without any action on the user's part.) To fully understand the quality of your specified page, the system may follow other links on the page.

So, it appears that landing pages that do redirects are not in violation of the TOS.

I'm seeing a lot of these on my site, and many of them show false URLs in the ad body itself - "ebay.com" when it actually goes to some other url in the initial URL, and if there are redirects, the redirects end in some obvious MFA site.

This makes banning what I consider to be spammy, low-quality advertisers ("[subject] Ringtones!" and "Win a free [subject]") from the site a chore, to say the least (which is, I assume, the reason why these advertisers use the technique.)

I would think it'd be trivial for the Google engineers to see if the URL in the ad body matches the ultimate destination of the landing page and/or any redirects contained therein.

 

jenkers




msg:3009657
 6:12 pm on Jul 15, 2006 (gmt 0)

I haven't checked just now but I'm certain that you aren't allowed to link to a landing page that automatically redirects to another page.

I seem to remember at some point in the past I had to clear it with adwords:

I needed to do a redirect from my landing page to the destination page in the adwords url (was tracking clicks to an affiliate). As the display url and the end destination were the same they did let me do the redirect.

But I only asked becasue in the TOS it said this was not allowed.

inactivist




msg:3009661
 6:14 pm on Jul 15, 2006 (gmt 0)

I haven't checked just now but I'm certain that you aren't allowed to link to a landing page that automatically redirects to another page.

I seem to remember at some point in the past I had to clear it with adwords:

I needed to do a redirect from my landing page to the destination page in the adwords url (was tracking clicks to an affiliate). As the display url and the end destination were the same they did let me do the redirect.

But I only asked becasue in the TOS it said this was not allowed.

If you know of a URL in the AdWords TOS that prohibits this, please post it here.

I'm finding about 5-10% of advertisers redirecting from their landing page, on some of my pages, using the AdSense preview tool to investigate. These advertisers are not always near the top of the ad list, so it's not yet a huge problem.

Oh, and this seems to be a big hole in the "landing page quality program" I've heard so much about.

jenkers




msg:3009776
 8:19 pm on Jul 15, 2006 (gmt 0)

Hi,
there are 2 paragraphs on the 'Editorial guidelines' page that deal with redirects:

the Affiliates paragraph mentions it directly and the paragraph entitled 'Display URL Must be Accurate' says that the destination url cannot belong to a different domain from (fixed typo) the actual destination - although the para does not mention redirects logic tells me if the browser is redirected automatically to a different domain then this is the same nett effect.

Report the problem to G adwords support and see what they say.

inactivist




msg:3010136
 4:20 am on Jul 16, 2006 (gmt 0)

Report the problem to G adwords support and see what they say.

Thanks. I'll do that next time I do my checks.

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