google grants for charities uk

The Ultimate Guide To Google Ad Grants For Charities

Get Up To $120,000 (£84k) With The Google Ad Grants Each Year


The Google Ad Grants program is up and running in 60 countries worldwide, offering monthly  $10,000 (£7000) worth of Adwords credit to eligible companies. Designed to help non-profit organisations (NPOs) and charities generate greater donations and recruit more volunteers, it’s the perfect way to spread news about your good cause!

Who Are The Google Ad Grants For?


Before we tell you about how you can receive the grant, you need to be aware that only certain organisations are eligible for the advertising credit.


First of all you need to hold a valid charity status, no matter your shape or size. This varies from country to country, so you should check the requirements for your particular country here. It’s worth noting that all governmental, health care and academic organisations are exempt from applying (except what Google terms “philanthropic arms of educational organisations”).


Next you need to apply for Google for Non-Profits. Charities (companies) that aren’t registered will not be considered.


Finally, you need to have a live website with substantial content. This means that you can’t just be running a social media page, or website that hasn’t been updated in a considerable amount of time or features only a few pages.

charity google grants ppc

How Do Google Ad Grants For Charities Work?


Quite simply, the Google Ad Grants work exactly like your standard Google AdWords account. You set keywords, and then the amount you want to pay-per-click. Of course you have a great deal of filters to choose from, but let’s not get into that now.


The key difference is that as a part of the grant scheme you will receive $10,000 each month in credit to spread the news about what you do. It’s worth noting that you can concurrently run a separate paid-for AdWords account, though you will want to avoid bidding on the same or similar keywords. This can constitute ‘double-serving’, which is seen as abuse of the ad network, and can see you account suspended.


In terms of the adverts themselves:


  • They can only be text-based, and all campaigns must be keyword targeted.
  • The maximum bid for cost-per-click is set to $2.00
  • The adverts will only be displayed on search results pages and not the whole Google network.

How To Apply For The Google Ad Grants In The UK


This is a simple 4 step process that you can complete in a few minutes. There is a fair bit of hanging around waiting for an answer, however…

  • To begin with you need to apply for the Google for Non-Profits program. You are required to fill out an application form, and will need your valid charity ID number number, so be sure to have it close to hand.

  • Wait. A lot of accounts will be reviewed in a matter of seconds, but certain charities will need to wait 2 business days for their account to be approved.

  • Once approved you will need to sign back into your account and configure it for the Google Ads Grant program. This can be a fairly complicated if you aren’t savvy with Google Adwords, though this 6 step process to set up your account ought to help you get started.

  • Wait a little bit longer. Google need to verify that you account was set up correctly to receive the Ads Grant, which can take up to two weeks. If you’ve done everything correctly, you will receive an email confirming your account. If not, Google will send you an email explaining which errors you need to correct.

How To Configure Your Google Ad Grants Adwords Account


After approval, you need to then configure your Ad Grants account. Don’t worry, this is fairly straight forward.


  1. 1. If you haven’t done so already, you need to create a Google Adwords Account.
  2. 2. Do not add any credit card information, even though you will be prompted to do so! You’re going to receive the grant after all…
  3. 3. You must set your currency to US dollars, regardless of whether you are in the UK.
  4. 4. Create your first campaign! Make this something simple to begin with, unless you know exactly what you’re doing.
  5. 5. Make sure the following features are not enabled: Display Network, Display bids, managed placements, managed placement bids, and automatic bidding.
  6. 6. Submit your account for review.


Once again you will need to wait for Google to review and activate your account. This can take up to 30 days, and in some cases longer depending on the amount of applications that Google is currently processing. Accounts with errors will need to be resubmitted, which can cause a substantial delay in approval. Approved accounts can then be converted to Adwords Express accounts if you so choose.

Want To Find Out More About How You Can Get The $10,000 Google Ads Grant?

We’re be happy to talk you through what you need to do in order to make yourselves eligible and get your Adwords Grant up and running!

Creating An Ad Grants Campaign

Now here’s where things get interesting, and a damn sight trickier. The following is the process we use when helping clients develop their Ad Grants account.


Discern Your Objectives


Before you begin any campaign, you need to establish exactly what you hope to achieve with your Adwords campaign. Do you want to generate donations? Get more volunteers? These goals need to be set up before you begin anything and can be started whilst you wait for approval.


Based upon your end-goals, you need to set up KPIs which will measure the success of your campaign. This is best configured with Google Analytics tracking in order to get a proper grasp of the data.


Establish Targeted Keywords


Perhaps the most important aspect of running a successful Google Ad Grant campaign, you need to be smart in the keywords that you choose to bid for. You will find that many terms such as “donate” or “volunteer” cost a lot more than your spending cap of $2 per click. As such, you will need to look at long-tail keywords specific to your charity.


For instance, a charity which seeks to help impoverished children get access to education would want to run a campaign for the keywords,



“African education charities”


Draft Your Adverts


With Adwords you only have a couple of sentences to explain why your advert ought to be clicked on. As such, the copy for your advert has to be to the point and persuasive. Consider how you can individuate your charity from the crowd. How can you get your USP across in a couple of words? We highly recommend drafting multiple copy to explore the efficacy of each.


Evaluate, Redraft And Optimise


In order to make the most out of your Ad Grant, you will want to constantly reevaluate your existing campaigns and explore new strategies. This is where Google Analytics comes into its own. You can track the how users interacted with your website after they clicked your advert, and determine which ones produced the desired results.


Campaigns with a poor conversion rate need to be investigated and understood. Perhaps the page you are linking to isn’t optimised to produced the desired conversion rate, or the message between the advert and the on-page content is incongruous. Put yourselves in your users shoes and understand why they’re not completing the goals you’ve set!


Receive Up To $40,000 With Grantspro


Just when you thought ten thousand bucks sounded like a huge boost to your advertising budget, there’s a further $30,000 available! Though space is limited. As such, this further grant is only available to companies who are going the extra mile.


In order to apply for the additional credit you must meet the following criteria:


  • Advanced conversion tracking must not only implemented, but successfully running, having shown at least one user-input conversion.
  • Have spent $9,900 a month for at least two months of the last 6.
  • Have achieved and maintained an average click-through-rate of 1% or higher in the last 6 months.
  • Be in what Google calls “good standing” with their grant program.
  • Have someone actively managing your Adwords account at least twice a week.


As with the Google Ad Grants program, approval doesn’t necessarily guarantee continued usage of the credit, and your organisation’s eligibility must be maintained under constant review.


The Success of Google Ad Grants


Whilst the NPO Grants are still in their infancy, a similar program for “Science Buddies” (connecting thousands of students with innovative science content), has shown remarkable success.


Generating 18.2 million clicks to eligible websites, the registration of 100,000 students and 1,500 resource downloads, it has helped some of the biggest and smallest organisations really boost awareness.


Philip Likos-Corbett

Information Architect

The smartest, best looking and most captivating guy at Spot Studio, Philip also writes these biographies.