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Google Grants can help charities promote themselves online


By: Simon Choy and Charles Dieu, ConnectAd

If you are using a search engine such as Google to surf the web everyday then you have been coming into regular contact with pay-per-click (PPC) advertisements. PPC ads are those text and link based advertisements that you see on the right-hand side of your search engine’s results page. Web users find them curious; wondering what they are, where does the ad take them if it is clicked, and how does the ad always manage to be related to what the web user is searching for on the internet. 

How it works

PPC advertising is a part of the $13.5 billion search engine online marketing industry and it is an effective form of paid online advertising targeting anyone using a search engine, which is pretty much everyone who uses the web. It starts with advertisers selecting a variety of keywords related to what they are promoting. These keywords are what search engines look for in matches for a search. Advertisers are charged on a cost per click basis each time someone clicks on the ad to find out more. PPC advertising can become costly in the long run as the number of clicks accumulates.

A program offered by Google called Google Grants makes it affordable for registered charities to become PPC advertisers. The grant offers up to $10,000 worth of free PPC advertising per month exclusively to registered charitable organizations. This ad-spend budget is used to bid on the keywords mentioned above and create PPC ads. If a charity displays active management of the grant and is maximizing the initial monthly $10,000 advertising budget, then Google may potentially offer a $30,000 increase to that charity’s monthly ad-spend budget, making it up to $40,000 worth of PPC ads per month.

How Google Grants can help your charity online

A Google Grant can fund PPC ads that can tackle a variety of marketing initiatives for your charity. Out there on the web there are many people already searching for your organization and PPC advertising can help increase your visibility on search engine results pages. PPC ads will make it easier for people to search for and find the website you have possibly spent a lot of time and money developing. Also, multiple PPC ads with differing marketing objectives can be launched and run online simultaneously creating many opportunities for people to find your website.

Not only will this grow your website’s traffic, but the ad can target and attract a diverse group of search engine users to your organization’s website. For example, call to actions in PPC ads can attract donors (both one-time and monthly), potential users of your charity’s services and programs, and supporters such as volunteers, board members, and corporate sponsors. Also, each PPC ad can be set to land on specific pages of your website when people click on them. This way clicking on an ad calling for donations will bring you directly to the “donate to our cause” page while an ad about providing programs for the community will link to the “about us” or “what we do” page.

Using another Google tool called Google Analytics to review and analyze the web traffic being brought in by a PPC ad can help fine tune and narrow the target audience of an ad. It is possible to look at very specific demographics using Google Analytics. For example, you will be able to see which towns or cities people are from, their age, their gender, and more when they visit your website. With this information you will be able to adjust your PPC ads to target the right audience. 

Final Thoughts

All charities should consider looking into applying for a Google Grant today. There is no real downside risk. The application is free. Google is not looking for anything in return of their in-kind advertising donation. The program continues on indefinitely as long as your charity shows good and active management of the grant funding. It is the opportunity to grow your brand’s search engine visibility and web traffic on someone else’s dime. Take some time to consider it. Go to this link to review Google’s eligibility criteria:

Interested in learning more? Simon and Charles hosted a free webinar about Google Grants on Thursday September 29. Watch the recording to learn more about how to get Google Grants and make the most of it.

About the Authors

ConnectAd is a for-profit company on a social mission to help charities raise money and awareness online. Our award-winning solution is designed to provide professional fundraising services that are affordable, accountable, and low risk for charities. We achieve this by offering free consultation to ensure charities get a $10,000 per month online advertising grant from Google Grants, and managing that grant on your behalf to maximize its effectiveness and save you time. ConnectAd was incorporated in 2010 and is based out of Toronto, Canada

Charles Dieu: From an early age, Charles has had a lot of exposure to entrepreneurship from involvement in family business ventures. He has worked on start-ups in the restaurant, real estate development, and wine and spirits exportation industries. Charles' previous work experience in start-up companies will help him grow a start-up venture like ConnectAd. He is a traveller ready to experience other cultures, he is a relentless urban stroller, he is a cook that does not like recipes, and he is a great appreciator of food, art, music, and film.

Simon Choy: Simon's experiences working with nonprofit organizations and IT firms led him to the initial concept of ConnectAd. With his industry experience in PPC ad campaign management, Simon is able to provide effective management of the technical aspect of ConnectAd. In his spare time, he loves playing tennis, competing in dragonboat racing, and jamming on his acoustic guitar.