Are you thinking of choosing an agency to manage your Google Ad Grant? There are several things to take into consideration when making your selection. As an agency focused exclusively on the Google Ad Grant, we’ve coached lots of people through the decision-making process of finding an agency that makes sense for them.

Google Ad Grants Certified Professionals 

The first thing to consider when selecting an agency is whether or not they are certified by Google. Google has created a directory called the Google Ad Grants Certified Professionals. Every agency included in this directory has gone through Google’s certification program which proves they are experienced with the Google Ad Grant. You can filter the list by geography and language so that you can easily locate agencies that might be a good fit for you.

This is a really important step because there are thousands of agencies in the world that “say” they will help with the Google Ad Grant, but there are only a few dozen that are actually certified. It’s really important to be certified because the Google Ad Grant is very different from normal Google Ads. There are a host of compliance rules associated with the grant. We often see situations where a new agency takes over the Google Ad Grant account and the account gets suspended because the agency was not up to speed with Google’s requirements. Once suspended, it can be a painful process to get the account in compliance and reactivated. It is an issue best avoided entirely by hiring an agency certified by Google.

What Is the Agency’s Focus?

The second thing to look at is if the Google Ad Grant is the main focus of the agency. Often times, agencies will offer many services, and the Google Ad Grant will be one of them. The reason this can lead to issues is that the program changes quickly and there are often new features available. If an agency doesn’t have a team dedicated solely to the Google Ad Grant, it can be easy to fall behind the turf.

Pricing Model

Another thing to evaluate is the pricing model. Because what agencies charge can vary wildly, it’s worth doing your homework and investigating to make comparisons. Charging a set-up fee is not standard market practice, so find out if the agency you’re considering charges a set-up fee. Most agencies will walk you through the application process and procure the Google Ad Grant on your behalf at no charge. It’s kind of a reverse set-up fee. They do work for you on the front end. Again, this is a good thing to look for because it lets you vet agencies while you’re still in the set-up process and haven’t yet paid anything.

Agency Case Studies

Another interesting thing to research when selecting an agency is their case studies with organizations similar to yours. Most agencies will list case studies on their website. Many different nonprofits are similar based on their industry, and often the lessons learned from other clients will be immediately applicable to your account. This experience helps your account get started much faster.  Sort through their case studies to see what types of organizations the agency works with and then filter to see which organizations are similar to your own.

Reviews And Testimonials

Another key factor when making your decision should be agency reviews. A good place to start is by looking for Google reviews and Facebook reviews. See which of their clients are willing to put their names out there and publicly say that they recommend the agency and are appreciative of the work they’ve done. If they don’t have a lot of reviews, it’s worth wondering why. Maybe it’s because they don’t manage the Google Ad Grant for many clients or it could be another reason. 

Response Time

Finally, what is the agency’s response time? When you email an agency, are they emailing you back on the same day? Or does it take multiple days? Do they email you back at all? We’ve heard lots of interesting stories of messages being sent and disappearing into black holes. Similarly, when booking a call with an organization, are they calling you at the time specified, or are they calling late? This is important to keep in mind and helps you get a sense of the professionalism of the agency and the quality of the service they’re willing to provide.

Are there other criteria that you use to evaluate an agency? We’d love to hear your thoughts. And, if you have any questions, drop us a line because we’d love to answer those for you.