adgrant_blog_post_graphic copy

Digital Marketing

How to Apply for The Google Ad Grant

Last Updated on September 9, 2021

If you’re a nonprofit looking to promote your organization, the Google Ad Grant may be the perfect solution for you. It provides organizations up to $10,000 of free digital advertising on the Google Ads platform. Plus, applying for the Google for Nonprofits program also gives you special features in YouTube, free access to Google Apps like Gmail and Google Drive, and listings on Google’s fundraising app, One Today

And thankfully, unlike most grant applications for nonprofit organizations, the Google Ad Grant is easy to apply for and can be done in just a few easy steps.  

Before learning how to apply for the Google Ad grant, double-check to make sure your organization is eligible. 

Who can apply for a Google Ad Grant? 

Certain 501(c)(3) are excluded, including hospitals or healthcare organizations, government agencies or entities, and schools, academic institutions, or universities. Educational institutions should check out the Google for Education program.

Ready? Let’s go through the step-by-step process to apply for the Google Ad Grant.

 

Table of Contents 

  1. Register with TechSoup and get a validation code 
  2. Enroll in the Google Nonprofits program
  3. Apply for the Google Ads Grant 
  4. Keep your Grant account in good standing 

 

1. Register Your Organization With TechSoup and Get a Validation Code

Registering with TechSoup is fairly simple. However, getting validated can take up to 30 days. Depending on your organization, it may also require more information or documentation than is outlined in the initial process.

  1. Visit the TechSoup registration page
  2. Select the country your organization is based in and your preferred language
  3. Select New Member
  4. Register and agree to the terms and conditions 
  5. Wait for the validation code to arrive. 
  6. When successful, you should receive an email with a code that looks like this: 123z456@OrganizationName. 
  7. Save this email for Step 2. 

2. Enroll in the Google for Nonprofits Program

Now that you have your validation code, the next step is to apply for the Google for Nonprofits Program

  1. Go to the Google for Nonprofits registration site.
  2. Agree to the terms and non-discrimination statements.
  3. Enter the validation code from TechSoup.
  4. Fill out your personal contact information and your organization’s contact information, and agree to be contacted by Google. Be sure to use an email that you check regularly because important updates about your Google Ad Grant Account will be sent to it. (You don’t want to miss those.)   
  5. Submit your information. 
  6. Look for a confirmation email from Google. Google generally reviews your information within a few days.

3. Apply for the Google Ad Grant

Finally, we get to the reason you’re reading this: The actual Google Ad Grant Application. We’ll walk you through the step-by-step process to enroll in the Google Ad Grant program. If you want to make sure you didn’t miss any steps, check out a helpful beginner’s guide from Google.

  1. Follow this link to Get Started with setting up your Google Ads Account
  2. Follow the prompts and submit your information. 
    1. Take note of your account ID in the upper-right corner. It should be 10 digits in 123-456-7890 format.
    2. Do not enter any credit card information, even if it asks for it. You can ignore screens and emails requesting payment information. Adding payment information will create a standard account instead of an Ad Grant account, and you’ll have to start step 3 over again.
  3. Submit the pre-qualification survey to give Google a clear idea of your organization’s goals. 
  4. Complete the Google Ad Grant Training and Quiz.
    1. This training is a quick 5-minute video and quiz to ensure you understand the requirements to maintain your Google Ad Grant status. Even if you hate quizzes, you’ve got to take it. Your ad grant will not be approved if the quiz questions aren’t answered correctly! 
  5. Submit a pre-qualification review. This is a multi-step process but should go pretty quickly. Once these steps are submitted, you should hear back from Google within 5 business days.
    1. Sign in to your Google for Nonprofits Account
    2. Look for the option to “Activate” under Google Ad Grants
    3. Use your customer ID (123-456-7890 format, from the top-right corner of your account)
    4. Provide an answer to the “How did you hear about Google Ad Grants?” question
    5. Submit your account by clicking “Enroll”
  6. Once you’ve received approval from Google, set up your first campaign.
  7. Once your campaign is set up, submit your account for review by Google again by following the same steps as you used for the pre-qualification review. 

Keep Your Ad Grant Account in Good Standing

Now that you’ve been approved for the Google Ad Grant, you’ll need to maintain your ad grant status. 

Some of the most common maintenance and quality standards an advertiser must keep up with include: 

  • Log into the account at least every two months and make a change within the account
  • Maintain an overall click-through rate of 5% and a quality score of 2/10 for keywords.
  • Set up at least one goal in Google Analytics and import it into the Google Ads account. 

 

For the full list of policy and compliance rules, read the Google Ad Grant Policy Guide.

We realize this adds to the work you’re already doing. And sometimes, you’ve already got enough to do. That’s why USDP often manages and optimizes Good Ad Grant accounts for our clients. Reach out to our team if you want to start using Google Ad Grants.

Steve Gantzer Image Alt

By: Steve Gantzer

Steve is a digital analyst at USDP. He loves baking and watching sports.