Guidance on Google Ads Verification for Sole Traders in the UK


  • The Complexities of Verification
  • Verification Steps for Sole Traders
  • Examining Billing Settings
  • Final Remarks

Disclaimer: This article aims to assist UK-based advertisers. There might be variations in procedures for those residing in other countries.

For Sole Traders utilising Google Ads, it’s likely you’ve been informed about the necessity to authenticate your business entity by a designated deadline.

Google’s initiative to verify all advertisers aims to create an ecosystem of credible, legitimate businesses. This process must be executed by someone with administrative rights to the Google Ads account or the payment profile.

While this might initially seem manageable, Google’s initial verification blueprint overlooked the unique requirements of Sole Proprietors. As a result, the procedure for Sole Traders differs from that for limited companies, involving additional steps beyond the verification interface.

This article will guide you through this specialised process.

Complexities in Verification

Upon accessing your Google Ads account, a notification banner related to verification is typically displayed. It’s important not to disregard this prompt.

Image: Google Ads Verification Alert

Verification Procedures for Sole Proprietors

After initiating the process with the “Get started” button, you’re presented with a panel that, confusingly, is tailored for Limited companies rather than Sole Proprietors.

Many Sole Proprietors in the UK aren’t VAT registered and lack a Certificate of Incorporation, making it difficult to proceed with the provided form.

This often leads to a dead-end for numerous Sole Proprietors. The solution is to navigate to the HELP section in the menu bar.

Are You a Sole Trader?  Click ‘HELP’

At the bottom of the help panel, you’ll find the ‘Contact Us’ option.

It’s advisable to bypass the community forums, as they typically offer information you may already be aware of. Alternatively, you might find assistance at the following link: Google Ads Support.

Contacting support via email is recommended, as it ensures a record of the communication and avoids issues related to phone support such as time zone differences and poor call quality.

This approach allows for the creation of a support ticket. Google will subsequently contact you via email or phone, and they may instruct you to modify your account type.

Understanding Account Type Modification

Initially, you might have established your Google Ads account as an “organisation”. This is common since many businesses start as Sole Proprietors and later evolve into limited companies. If you’ve remained a Sole Proprietor, your account setup might now be misaligned. Therefore, Google requires your authorisation to transition your account from an ‘Organisation’ to an ‘Individual’.

Upon receiving Google’s email, it will typically contain instructions like the following:

One Time Approval Template

On behalf of my company, [YOUR COMPANY NAME], I authorise Google to make various modifications in my Google Ads Account without prior notification:

[YOUR COMPANY NAME] will bear responsibility for any impact these changes have on the account, including any effects on campaign performance or spending.

Before responding to Google, ensure that you verify your payment details and account preferences, noting down the current settings. This is crucial to ensure that the details provided in your response match those in your account’s billing section.

Verifying Billing Settings

To check your billing settings, follow these steps:

  • Click ‘Tools and Settings’, then select ‘Preferences’.
  • Ensure that your details are accurately filled out. This step is crucial, even though it’s not mandatory for account setup.

It’s vital that the information you provide to Google matches exactly with your account’s billing information to avoid rejection of your verification application.

Concluding the Verification Process

After updating your settings and responding to Google’s email, you should receive a confirmation within about 72 hours, indicating that your account type has been modified.

However, the process doesn’t end there. Return to your Ad account, navigate to ‘Tools and Settings’ > ‘Billing’ > ‘Advertiser Verification’.

This action will lead you to a modified verification screen. Look for the option “Send instructions to an Admin” and select it.

A popup will appear, indicating that Google has emailed the payment admin. If you are the admin, you simply need to follow the instructions in the email to complete the verification process.

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