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Google Won’t Show World Cup Ads on SERP

Date June 10th, 2014   | Get Back to News Home - Click Here


World Cup 2014 will begin very soon and according to Google Trends data search volume for World Cup will increase significantly in the coming days. What may surprise the users is the lack of PPC ads on SERP for World Cup related searches.

The organizer of the World Cup, FIFA, has trademark protection on terms such as “FIFA”, “World Cup”, “COPA 2014” and “Brazil 2014”. In fact, if you search for “Brazil 2014”, no ticket or t-shirt selling sites will appear on SERP. Instead of PPC ads Google is showing OneBox, which right now displays upcoming match schedule, team, group information and FIFA website link.

Fifa World Cup 2014

Google has been penalized several times for using trademarks in AdWords ads. That is why, the present third-party trademark usage policy for AdWords allows advertisers to bid for third party trademarked keywords, but prohibits use of such keyword in the ad text. However, over the years, Google has blocked ads for all third party trademark keywords. The recent World Cup search result is a testimony of Google’s transparent business policy. Google is so strict about third party trademark that even if people use keywords related to the word “World Cup”, it won’t show any ad.

However, there are some loopholes in this policy and advertisers may take benefit of those. If a searcher places a query with an intention of shopping, SERPs display ads. For example, if you search for “World Cup gear” ads will appear. Similarly, you won’t see any ads for “Brazil 2014”, but if you search “Where in Brazil is World Cup”, ads will appear.

FIFA and official sponsors of the tournament have the permission to place ads for the trademarked words though.

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