Follow the checklist below from the top down until you find your problem (the most common issues are at the top).
This is worse than not showing any ads at all because your client is spending their hard-earned money to buy clicks that go to a dead web page and are suffering brand damage at the same time. And, it’s more common than you might think. Unless you can quickly point your ads and sitelinks to the correct URL, it’s best to pause the ads/sitelinks and seek direction from the person in charge of the website (often the client).
This issue can sometimes be quite an easy fix (change wording in an ad for example) but sometimes it can be quite difficult to get on top of. We have seen many cases where Google’s application of policy violation disapprovals is not consistent, even within the same account. For example, in one adgroup an ad may get disapproved yet in another adgroup the same ad copy gets approved! If you are having trouble with disapprovals and you are compliant with the policies, here are a couple of tips that might help:
With small ad accounts, it’s incredibly important to get your conversion tracking set up correctly from the start, as you will likely be relying on smart bidding and that requires reliable conversion data to work well. Given these accounts often have very small budgets, it may be appropriate to set up micro-conversions (time on site, video watched, pdf downloaded etc) as well as macro conversions (form fills, phone calls etc) in order to give the automated bidding algorithm more data to work with.
Watching to make sure that these conversion events continue to fire over time is critical – otherwise, the fuel you are putting into your bidding engine will be contaminated, and your engine will start to sputter and possibly stall.
Finally, and by far the most important check of all, is the “account has stopped serving ads” check. If your whole account grinds to a halt it’s a massive red flag and should be identified and fixed asap.
The most common cause is credit card failure, but sometimes we see account suspensions or identity checks not being done which also result in no ads being shown.