The Google AdWords advertising grant can be an excellent tool for certified non-profit organizations. The Google AdWords grant is an in-kind donation program awarding free AdWords advertising to select charitable organizations.
Currently about 4,000 organizations are enrolled in the program. The typical grantee in the Google AdWords program receives just over $300 worth of advertising on Google.com per month.
Non-profits can use their advertising account to increase traffic to their website, which will help with general outreach, announcing fundraising activities, and recruiting volunteers.
Eligible nonprofits include, but are not limited to, the following focus areas:
* Animal rescue & conservation
* Disaster & relief services
* Science & technology
* Voluntarism &community outreach
* Youth advocacy & programs
Ineligible nonprofits include, but are not limited to, the following concentrations:
* Commercial non-profits
* Credit-counseling services
* Mutual membership benefits (networking, professional, alumni, and other membership organizations)
* Portals and directories
Any sites with “political/lobbying content; religious content which proselytizes or discriminates on the basis of religion; Google AdSense; car/boat/real estate donation-focus; and entirely fee-based programs” are NOT eligible for the program.
What You Will Need To Apply For The Google Grant
Google has kept their Google Grant application process reasonably easy. To begin, non-profits groups will need to
* Meet basic requirements – namely, be designated as a 501(c)(3) non-profit group by the IRS; groups need to provide the 501(c)(3) certificate with their application to prove they are in fact a non-profit organization. Non-profit groups that are religious or political in nature, including groups whose mission is to lobby for political and/or policy change, are not eligible for the Google Grant. Google also restricts applications from groups currently participating in the Google AdSense program (note, however, that AdSense is a good revenue resource for groups that are not eligible for the Google Grant).
* Gather your documents – again, that all important 501(c)(3), the key to getting your application foot in the door. In addition, Google will ask you to submit sample advertising copy and keywords for your ads. Google will also ask your group to include a short statement outlining how your group will benefit from an in-kind donation of Google AdWords services.
With application requirements met, all that is left is to submit your application and wait to hear from Google.
If You Are Awarded A Google Grant
If your application is approved, Google will notify your group via email. Google reviews and selects Grant recipients once each quarter. It may take 3-6 months to find out if you’ve won a grant from Google. It is a good idea for groups to use this time to optimize their site and its message and promotions so that if an award is granted you will be ready for increased visitors, thereby making the most of each visit.
If you have never run ads via an online advertising program, make sure you educate yourself as much as possible beforehand. In order to take full advantage of your advertising grant, visit Google’s Tips For Success In Google Grants to learn about creating effective ads and selecting keywords.
Google Grants are awarded for a minimum of three months of free AdWords advertising. In the email, Google will provide instructions for setting up the account and give you an activation deadline – if your account is not set up by the deadline, your grant may be forfeited to another.
Google has gone to great lengths to provide the Google Grants to deserving non-profit organizations. Groups are enjoying increased traffic which translates into unsolicited donations, increased fundraiser sales, and increases in volunteer support. To be sure, the Google Grant is proving to be a very worthwhile time investment for successful non-profit applicants.
More details about the Google AdWords Grant.