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Google Lets Users Limit Ads About Dating And Weight Loss Via @sejournal, @brookeosmundson

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In a world of online dating, it seems the options (and ads) are endless.

If you’ve grown tired of seeing countless ads for personal events in your life, there’s good news ahead.

Google is now expanding its categories of “sensitive ads” on YouTube and Display, specifically.

What Does This Mean For Users?

Up until now, Google’s sensitive categories on YouTube limited ad frequency on addictive gambling or alcoholic products.

Now, Google is looking to limit ad serving for more personal, and sometimes traumatic subjects.

The expanded category options on YouTube and Display now include:

  • Dating
  • Pregnancy and Parenting
  • Weight Loss
  • Alcohol (previously added)
  • Gambling (previously added)

Google updates its sensitive ad categories to include weight loss and dating.Image credit: Google.com, May 2022

If you select to see fewer of these ads, your settings will automatically apply to the Display network as well. For reference, the Display network comprises of more than 2 million websites, videos, and apps.

How To Limit Sensitive Categories

First, you’ll want to go to your “Ad Settings” page and scroll to “Sensitive ad categories on YouTube.”

Google personalized Ad Settings.Image credit: Google.com, Screenshot taken by author, May 2022

Then, you’ll click “See Fewer” for any of the categories you want to limit.

You do have the option to allow these choices back at any time in your ad settings page.

Pro-tip: while you’re reviewing your sensitive categories, you can view all the ways your ads are personalized based on categories.

If you don’t want to fit into a certain category or interest anymore, you can simply click the category and then choose “Turn off”.

An example of how your ads are personalized to you.Image credit: screenshot taken by author, May 2022

You can turn off personalization for any category you are listed in.Image credit: screenshot taken by author, May 2022

A Foolproof Solution?

While Google is trying its best to limit these types of ads for a better user experience, this option doesn’t mean you’ll never see these topics in an ad.

For example, the policy states that “it does not allow advertisers to personalize ads based on certain topics, like alcohol and gambling, but you may see ads about these things based on related interests.”

To break it down, limiting these features will not allow advertisers to personalize ads on these topics for you.

If you chose to see fewer ads for Weight Loss, for example, you wouldn’t get ads for Weight Watchers, Gyms, etc.

However, you may see an ad for a product unrelated to weight loss, but the image may feature a person hiking or doing some type of physical fitness, for example.

What Does This Mean For Advertisers?

If your company is in one of these sensitive categories, don’t panic.

Even though Google is allowing users to limit this type of content, it doesn’t mean that you’re not allowed to serve ads to anyone.

On a positive side, this change will help you reach a better targeted, more receptive audience because they haven’t limited these ad categories.


Featured Image: New Africa/Shutterstock

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