AdWords Troubleshooting – Pick Your Torture Method

Paid Media Advertising

In my short time as a PPC apprentice, I have tackled some fun AdWords problems. One thing I learned about PPC people, besides unicorns are awesome, is we share with each other. So I am sharing some issues I have had, and ways to remedy the situation without causing yourself to end up rocking under your desk or screaming at your computer (it’s not the computer’s fault, theoretically).

Problem #1: Ad/Sitelink/Structured Snippet is approved (limited)

Ad/Sitelink/Structured Snippet is approved (limited)

If you run an account that deals with anything that can be considered pharmaceutical, you will run into this problem. Sometimes the issue relates to how Google reviewed your account. If you are only targeting the US, don’t worry, your stuff will be showing. This only affects countries with certain pharmaceutical laws/policies. If you are targeting outside of those areas, or if it just really bugs you, contact Google Support and they will sometimes work with you.

If this seems like it will be a reoccurring issue or it is one, then contact your Google representative. This will make your life easier.


Problem #2: Structure Snippets Disapproval.

When structured snippets came out I was excited to try it. However, with some accounts I feel like your guessing game has to be on point to win. I followed their examples of how it should “work” and rarely does it work that way.

Most of the time I just change the header and it works. I have had to contact Google over this problem though because they disapproved one that was perfect and did not fit another header. They were able to fix the problem quickly, but I feel like it’s an unnecessary problem and a waste of time to have to fix.


Problem #3: Broken URLs


This problem drove me slightly insane for a few days – don’t worry I found my marbles. If your ads or sitelinks were disapproved here is a chart with the steps I took to alleviate the problem (minus the anger), hopefully, you don’t have to do all of these.

Broken URL

Keep in mind, there are 50 other reasons you could have a broken URL. So pull up the policy details to see if you can fix it. Still unsure? Contact Google support.

Also, if you need to use the GeoPeeker tool, it’s free and Google uses it to check your links.


Contacting Google: What’s Your Method of Torture?

Contact or run? Once you have tried other channels and have faced your imminent doom, you decide to contact Google. Keep these pros and cons in mind while you decide your fate.

Phone Method


  • Quickest way to talk to a person directly
  • No worries about your internet cutting out (Only if you have Comcast!)
  • Get small issues fixed quickly
  • Easier to verbally persuade them to do what you need immediately


  • Hope you don’t mind holding for a “minute”
  • Sometimes they are hard to understand
  • Sometimes they don’t understand what you are explaining
  • You can’t show them what you mean

Email Method


  • You know how to get ahold of the person you talked to originally
  • You can send a screenshot of your issue
  • If another problem arises while you are still emailing them, you can add that on
  • You have a record of what the issue and solution is… if they give you the solution. Like when you try and remove AdWords Express


  • Takes usually 24 hours or more for them to get back to you
  • Even when they do get back to you, you may have to clarify and then wait again

Live Chat Method


  • Quick response time
  • Usually, fix the problem in a few minutes, if it is a simple one
  • Can send screenshots
  • You can easily do other things while waiting for them to respond


  • Doesn’t always show up as an option in AdWords
  • They can still take a little bit of time to answer questions
  • You are at the mercy of your internet provider – lost internet, lost help (again, only if you have Comcast!)
  • Easy for them to push off fixing the problem

Try Your Google Representative


  • They may have some familiarity with your accounts
  • If the problems occur more than once they can fix it for you with little explanation
  • If the call drops or you lose your internet connection, you have other ways of getting ahold of them


  • Google changes your rep ever so often
  • They may not be available at the exact time you need them
  • They may have to research what you are talking about to help you, just like the rest of your options

About the Author

Nick Footer

Nick Footer is an entrepreneur and founder of Intuitive Digital, a national award-winning digital marketing agency in Portland, Oregon. With over 15 years of experience, he has helped hundreds of businesses improve their online presence through search engine optimization, paid advertising, and website design.

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