Does Google Adwords Allow Gambling Ads?

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I heard that Google is now allowing gambling ads in Adwords. As an affiliate, is there any way that I can benefit from this?-SusanThere are several ways that you can take advantage of the new Google Adwords policy. If you’re going to get approved to advertise gambling-related sites, however, there are a few things you should know.

First, Google Adwords has only opened up gambling ads to the UK. This dictates both who the ads will be shown to and who can bid on gambling related keywords. Secondly, tracking PPC performance as an affiliate requires more software than what Adwords will tell you. Google is excellent at providing metrics on click-through-rates (CTRs), but it can’t tell you how much that click made you.

Adwords & Stipulations

For starters, the advertising for online gambling websites is not permitted to target locations outside Great Britain (England, Scotland, and Wales). Consequently, such ads won’t be displayed in other countries. What this means is that unless a user is in the UK and has a UK IP address, they won’t see gambling-related ads on their search engine results pages (SERPs). As an affiliate, then, you shouldn’t even try to target users from other counties.

The stipulations don’t stop there, however. Google will also only let you promote sites that are licensed to advertise gambling in the UK or any EU country that permits such advertising. Any UK site that you promote through Adwords, then, needs to be registered with the Gambling Commission and must have a valid operating license number. If you want to promote a site that is not in the UK but accepts UK players, then that site needs to be licensed to advertise online gambling in their respective country.

Google enforces this caveat through their application process. If you want to promote online gambling through Adwords, then you have to set up a new and separate Adwords account. Once you have done that, you have to fill out an application and legal declaration. During this process, you will need to provide details on the operator’s gambling license – e.g. license number, regulatory authority, etc.

This leaves you with two options: (1) convince the operator that you are promoting to share their licensing number with you, or (2) apply for a license to advertise gambling yourself.

Tracking Your PPC Performance

Now, there is little doubt that Google Adwords will provide you with extensive market reach through its SERPs and offers users some excellent metrics on click-through rates (CTRs) and average cost-per-click (CPC). What Google cannot tell you, however, is how much a click made you as an affiliate – and this is because Adwords is not integrated with the software that powers your affiliate program.

What you need as a PPC affiliate, then, is tracking software that can provide you with this kind of reporting. Being able to track what a keyword costs you, how well it converted, and the value of that conversion is integral to effectively managing your PPC efforts. After all, the real cost of that click is calculated by comparing what you paid for the click against the revenue that that click generated.

For instance, the Income Access affiliate management software features ACID (or Affiliate Custom ID). It allows PPC affiliates to track how well certain keywords convert in a referral by using their affiliate links. They can then view full detailed reports on the players, deposits and revenues being generated by each key phrase.

Understanding your ROI as a PPC affiliate is all that much more important because you’re paying for your traffic with each click you buy. If you pay more for traffic than it makes you, then you’re losing money. This is why you need comprehensive metrics on which keywords convert and how well they did. Then you can cut out keyword sets with low margins, focus on those with higher conversions, and maximize the time you spend on your PPC efforts.