Since 2018 Google has required that advertisers running election ads on the platform verify their identity so that searchers have the ability to learn more about political advertisers using Google’s platforms and on 23rd April 2020, Google Ads recently announced they would be extending their identity verification policy to all advertisers.
This update means that all advertisers will eventually be required to complete the Google verification program in order to advertise on Google products. This will involve submitting some personal and business documents to prove who the advertiser is, and in which country they are operating. The update started rolling out first in the U.S. with more countries to follow over the summer of 2020.
The update is designed to increase transparency on the Google Ad network by providing users with more information about advertisers and, allowing them to better control over who is able to advertise to them. This builds on previous features designed to offer choice & control for users, for example, Google’s ad settings tool and 'why this ad'? feature which allows users to control ad personalisation and understand why an ad is being shown to them respectively.
As the programme rolls out you’ll be contacted by Google and provided up to 3 prompts to verify your identity within Google. In order to complete that verification, you’ll need to follow Google's steps.
The requirements for verification do vary depending on if you are an agency, charity, organization or individual, as well as based on your country of operation. For example;
Alternatively, if you’re promoting yourself as an individual, you must submit identity documents, your payments profile name must match your identity document. Acceptable documents by country are listed here.
To view a full list of the verification options you can simply follow the instructions sent to you by Google in the identity verification request email or, find full details and options here.