Google expands definition of U.S. Election ads

Google is updating its Political Content policy this month, expanding the definition of U.S. Election ads.

Key changes. The new definition will include ads featuring:

  • Current officeholders or candidates for federal elected offices.
  • Current officeholders or candidates for state-level elected offices.
  • Current officeholders or candidates for U.S. territory-level elected offices.
  • Federal, state, or territory-level political parties.
  • State or territory-level ballot measures, initiatives, or propositions that have qualified for the ballot.

Why we care. This update broadens the scope of what constitutes a U.S. Election ad, potentially affecting a wider range of political advertisers and content.

What’s required. All advertisers running U.S. Election Ads must be verified by Google and complete Election advertising verification.

The big picture. This policy update reflects Google’s ongoing efforts to increase transparency and accountability in political advertising on its platforms.

What to watch. How this expanded definition impacts the landscape of political advertising on Google’s platforms, especially as the 2024 U.S. elections approach.

Between the lines. The policy update could potentially capture a broader range of ads, requiring more advertisers to go through Google’s verification process.

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About the author

Anu AdegbolaAnu Adegbola

Anu Adegbola has been Paid Media Editor of Search Engine Land since 2024. She covers paid search, paid social, retail media, video and more.

In 2008, Anu’s career started with

 delivering digital marketing campaigns (mostly but not exclusively Paid Search) by building strategies, maximising ROI, automating repetitive processes and bringing efficiency from every part of marketing departments through inspiring leadership both on agency, client and marketing tech side.


Outside editing Search Engine Land article she is the founder of PPC networking event – PPC Live, host of weekly podcast PPCChat Roundup, and brand evangelist at ClickTech. 


She is also an international speaker with some of the stages she has presented on being SMX (US), SMX (Munich), Friends of Search (Amsterdam), brightonSEO, The Marketing Meetup, HeroConf (PPC Hero), SearchLove, BiddableWorld, SESLondon, PPC Chat Live, AdWorld Experience (Bologna) and more.

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