Google Adwords Linking Policy

A question arose on Google Adwords’ policy toward the URL you use in your paid ads. Does it have to link to your site or can you use an affiliate link? It used to be that you could use your link and have the visitor end up at an affiliate’s web site.

I tracked down the policy statement on Google’s blog.

Essentially, the link you use in your Adwords ad HAS to end up at that domain.

You can use a tracking link in between, but the visitor has to end up on the top level domain that’s used in your ad.

So, your ad can say and end up at, as long as it’s the same top level domain.

But, in another example, if you are using a redirect for misspellings from say, to, in the ad is not allowed.

I recommend “preselling” the product with your own landing page rather than linking directly to the affiliate web site. A little work can make a big difference in conversions.

Plus, Google only allows one Adwords ad per search query to the same domain, so if the company you’re promoting is running ads or other affiliates are running ads, you may be out of luck with your directly linked affiliate ads.


Further Reading:

Google Adwords Linking Policy