Google Changes AdWords Keyword Rules

August 16, 2005


Google AdWords™ Announcement
New Keyword System Released
Hello from the Google AdWords Team:

We are happy to let you know that we have implemented our new keyword status system. We have simplified our keyword states and introduced quality-based minimum bids, giving you more control to run on keywords that you find important. With these improvements, your keywords will now either be active or inactive, depending on their quality and maximum cost-per-click (CPC).

We suggest you log in to your account to view these changes. Any keywords that were previously normal, in trial, or on hold are now labeled as either active (triggering ads) or inactive (not triggering ads). Any keywords that were disabled before implementation will remain labeled as disabled in your account for several weeks. This gives you the opportunity to review and activate any disabled keywords you would like to run on before we delete them. However, we will no longer disable any new keywords you enter into your account.

Here are some resources that will help you get better acquainted with the new keyword status system:

bullet The new performance monitor
bullet What has changed FAQ
bullet New keyword states

We believe these system changes will give you more control to run on keywords you find important and result in higher quality ads, enabling you to reach your potential customers more effectively.

The Google AdWords Team

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Contact us: If you have any questions, please contact your Google representative or email us here.

Email preferences: You have received this mandatory email service announcement to update you about important new AdWords features.



July 17, 2005


What are the AdWords keyword status changes?

In the coming weeks, we will simplify our keyword status system and introduce quality-based minimum bids, giving you more control to run on keywords you find important.


How it works

Each keyword will now be assigned a minimum bid that is based on the quality (also called Quality Score) of your keyword in your account. If your keyword or Ad Group's maximum cost-per-click (CPC) meets the minimum bid, your keyword will be active and trigger ads. If it does not, your keyword will be inactive and will not trigger ads.

Key changes


bullet The keyword statuses normal, in trial, on hold, and disabled will be replaced with active (triggering ads) or inactive (not triggering ads). In addition, accounts will no longer be slowed. Currently, accounts are slowed when they do not meet our performance requirements and your ads appear rarely for your keywords.
bullet New keywords will no longer be disabled or have a minimum click through rate (CTR) threshold. Instead, your keyword will trigger ads as long as it has a high enough Quality Score (determined by your keyword's CTR, relevance of ad text, historical keyword performance, and other relevancy factors) and maximum CPC.
bullet Ad Rank, or the position of your ad, will continue to be based on the maximum CPC and quality (now called the Quality Score).
bullet Remember: The higher the Quality Score, the lower the CPC required to trigger ads, and vice versa.
bullet You can move an inactive keyword to an active state and show ads by (1) improving its Quality Score through optimisation, or (2) increasing its maximum CPC to the minimum bid recommended by the system.
What you should do before implementation

If you are happy with your current keyword list, there is no need to make any changes. However, if you have any on hold keywords that you do not want to trigger ads, we suggest you delete them from your account. This is because any keywords with a high enough Quality Score and maximum CPC could be activated and accrue ad clicks. You can use our Find and Edit Keywords tool, available in your account's Tools page, to quickly search for and delete any keywords in your account.

Managing your account after implementation

We will email you and post an announcement in your account after we implement these changes. You should then log in to your account and monitor your keywords' performance under these new guidelines. Any disabled keywords at the time of implementation will remain labelled as disabled in your account. After a few weeks, we will delete them. This short interval gives you the opportunity to review your disabled keywords and re-activate them.

Quality remains the most important factor in determining your keywords' performance. So to ensure your ads are optimised for performance, we suggest you continue to improve your keywords and ad text for relevancy. Here are some resources that will help:
bullet How to create a targeted keyword list.
bullet Optimisation Tips page.


January 07, 2005

Google Affiliate Link Policy Change

Google AdWords Announcement: 
 Affiliate Policy Change
Hello from the Google AdWords Team:

In January 2005, Google will incorporate a new affiliate advertising policy that is designed to provide a better user and advertiser experience.


What is changing:

With this new affiliate policy, we will only display one ad per search query for affiliates and parent companies sharing the same URL. This way, users will have a more diverse sampling of advertisements to choose from. As always, your ad will be displayed based on its Ad Rank for given searches.

For instance, if a user searches for books on or anywhere on the Google search and content networks, Google will take an inventory of ads running for the keyword books. If we find that two or more ads compete under the same URL, we will display the ad with the highest Ad Rank.

How this will affect you:

If you are an affiliate, this means that you no longer need to identify yourself as an affiliate in your ad text. However, your current ad text will continue to display your affiliate status until you change it.

Affiliates or advertisers using unique URLs in their ads will not be affected by this change. Please note that your Display URL must match the URL of your landing page, and you may not simply frame another site.

What you should do:

We recommend that you continue to monitor your ads' performance and optimise your ads as needed to ensure that they are bringing you the best results. Please visit our Optimisation Tips page for more information.

We look forward to continue providing you with the most effective advertising available.

The Google AdWords Team


Disclaimer: As a business Google must make decisions regarding the advertising we accept. As stated in our Terms and Conditions, we reserve the right to exercise editorial discretion when reviewing AdWords ads created within the program. This only concerns our advertising and in no way affects the search results we deliver. Google offers broad access to content across the web without censoring results.


Contact us: If you have any questions, please contact your Google representative or email us at

Email preferences: You have received this mandatory email service announcement to update you about important new AdWords features.

© 2005 Google Inc.


December 29, 2004

See Google Sponsored Links Only

There is a new way to see ads, and only ads, at Google. If you want to see only the sponsored links for a particular search term, visit Google's new Sponsored Links Search.


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