Advertisers will now have to verify their identities to advertise on Google, the company announced on April 23. They will have to submit their personal identification, business incorporation documents or other information to prove their identity and their country of operations. Users will be able to access this information about the advertisers from this summer. This verification process is currently available only for US advertisers and the company expects this process to “take a few years to complete” globally.
Since this process will be carried out in a phased manner, Google may prioritise certain advertisers to complete their verification first. This includes advertisers of goods and services (retail, media and entertainments, travel, technology, B2B), of informational, advisory or educational content, and of regulated industries (gambling, financial products/services, healthcare products/services). Advertisers that are selected by Google to complete their identity verification will have to submit their documents within 30 days or their ads will not be displayed.
Google had started the verification process for political ads in 2018.
Grounds for additional verification
- Unclear or misleading ads: Google may ask some advertisers to complete business operations verification if their advertising behaviour is “unclear” or their ad content is deemed to be “potentially misleading”. If such businesses do not meet Google’s verification standards, they will not be allowed to advertise on Google’s ad networks.
- Regulated industries such as finance and healthcare: Google may ask the businesses in regulated industries to prove that they meet their local licensing requirements, and to complete additional identity checks.
- Access to advanced ad features and formats: To access advanced ad formats and features of Google Ads, the company may ask advertisers to complete addition verification.