Getting Banned from AdSense
It’s a terrifying thought. You go to bed feeling happy and content, making a healthy and consistent income from your blog through Google AdSense. When you wake up the next morning, you make some coffee and check your email. What’s this? An email from Google?
“Your account is currently disabled. It has come to our attention that you have violated our Terms of Service. Please reach out with any questions.”
There goes that feeling of contentment.
Getting banned from AdSense does happen, and not always to people who were doing something wrong.
This is a very frustrating and scary situation that many website owners and bloggers go through at some point. Google takes their Terms of Service seriously and will ban accounts without notice if they find a violation. It is totally within their rights to do this, but that doesn’t make it sting any less.
How do you handle getting banned from AdSense?
So how should you deal with this situation? Well, for starters, it is NEVER too early to start diversifying your revenue streams from the web properties you own. Try out different ad networks, affiliate programs, product creation, subscription services… anything that might make you money and protect you from risk. Ideally you did this before you got banned, but if you didn’t, it’s time to get started now. Reference this post for further ideas on alternatives to AdSense.
In addition to finding other income streams, though, there are steps you can take to try to get back in good standing with that little search company we call Google. Read through this FAQ that Google provides, it has a link to an appeals page where you can contest their decision to ban your account:
According to Google, you should make sure to review their top reasons for banning accounts. Then, you should ask yourself whether anyone you know of may have artificially clicked on your ads. You should also go through the user flow on your site to determine whether a user might accidentally click on an ad. Anything that doesn’t seem clean as a whistle could have been the cause of your ban.
If you honestly can’t think of any reason why Google should pick you out, you’re not alone. One reason accounts get banned that is unfortunately pretty common is that a site’s competitor will “click-bomb” their site, essentially pumping clicks onto that page’s ads to make it seem like fraudulent activity. If it goes according to the competitor’s plan, Google will ban the site that was click-bombed, and in doing so direct more precious advertising dollars towards the site that did the click-bombing.
Obviously, this is an illegal and scummy practice, but it does happen, and it is very hard to prove. It’s okay to be upset and it’s okay to complain, but you have to pick yourself up and figure out a way to get past it. Try to view your account being banned as a reason to become more creative in your business, to diversify and find better and more profitable ways of monetizing.
Google is very good and getting better at detecting violations
There’s a reason Google pays data scientists $400k a year to detect patterns that might indicate fraudulent activity. Google’s reputation is incredibly valuable, and they take their obligation to protect it extremely seriously. In order for their business to work, they need advertisers to trust that any results they get from their ad campaigns are authentic; without this trust the entire AdSense platform would crumble. This is why they pour money into making sure everyone plays by the rules. Their ability to detect fraud is good and it’s only going to get better, so it is definitely in your best interest to play by the rules and stay on the right side of their Terms of Service.
For more information on this topic, check out this high-quality article from an unlucky business owner who had his entire portfolio kicked off of AdSense: http://www.nichepursuits.com/i-just-got-banned-from-google-AdSense-now-what/