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Everyone who has dealt with the Google advertising environment for a while has heard at least once about the Google Partners program. In a nutshell, it’s an affiliate program offered by Google, aimed at marketing agencies, SEM specialists and others somehow connected with the Internet marketing industry. However, what to do to become such a partner? What requirements must be met and what are the benefits of joining the program? You will learn about it in this article.
What is Google Partners program?
Simply put, it is a program created by Google that brings together advertising agencies, online advertising professionals and others involved in the Internet marketing industry. In order to become a Google partner, an agency or specialist must meet certain criteria, such as achieving an adequate level of performance in managing Google Ads campaigns, having the right knowledge (proven by certifications) and following Google Ads best practices.
The program provides agencies and specialists with access to training and educational materials, technical support and beta testing of new features in Google Ads.
Three levels of the program
Collaboration with Google through the Partners program is divided into three levels of advancement:
- Premium partner;
Each rank has its own benefits, but also requirements that must be met to gain access to them. Participants in the program are the most numerous, while the Premium Partner rank is reserved exclusively for the 3% of participating companies with the best results in a given year.
It is important to remember that advancement to the next levels of partnership depends on achievements and meeting certain requirements. Companies can continue to develop their partnership with Google by improving their skills, offering high quality services and achieving better and better results in online advertising.
The program is a great way to improve the quality of your business.
How to become a Google partner?
Depending on the level of partnership, we will have to meet a variety of requirements. The higher the level of partnership, the higher will be the expectations placed on our company. However, it is worth noting that greater requirements go hand in hand with greater benefits that we can achieve.
It is worth remembering that each level of partnership in the Google Partners program has its own unique benefits. Even as a participant in the program, we can already reap certain benefits, such as access to tools and training. That’s why, regardless of our current capabilities, it’s worth pursuing the next levels of partnership, as it means growing our business, learning new skills and accessing even more resources and benefits.
A participant can be anyone who has a Google Ads account. Simply using your company’s Google Ads manager to join the program. No additional activities or achievements are required.
Here are already specific requirements, divided into three categories: effectiveness, expenses and certifications. Meeting them all allows us to become a Google partner:
- Effectiveness: a Google Ads manager account that belongs to the program must have an optimization score of min. 70%. It doesn’t matter whether Google recommendations are implemented or rejected. What matters is that the agency has control over them and sees the suggestions sent by Google.
- Expenditures: an account enrolled in the Google Partners program must spend min. US$10,000 in a 90-day period. If, even for a moment, spending falls below this amount, Google will temporarily revoke our Partner rank.
- Certifications: a minimum of half of the professionals you employ in your agency (using Google Ads manager) must have Google Ads certifications. If there are more than 200 employees, 100 are enough to be certified. Specialists should have min. 1 certificate from each type of campaign they have run in the last 90 days (provided the spend is min. $500). Certifications are for campaigns:
Certificates can be earned through the SkillShop program. They will only be valid if the employee’s company email address is associated with his/her SkillShop account.
To become a Premium Partner, you need to meet all the requirements for Partners, and be among the best agencies in the country. As I mentioned above, only the top 3% among all Partners, have a chance to become a Premium Partner. The list is updated annually and takes into account factors such as:
- Growth of current customers
- Growth in new customers
- Customer retention
- Diversified range of services: the more types of campaigns the better, search network campaigns alone are not enough. It is worthwhile to lead clients who care about product campaigns, promoting applications, etc.
- Annual advertising expenditure
The rating of these factors is compared with all partners in a given country In addition, in some countries, the Premium Partner rank is not available.
What benefits does Google offer its partners?”
Just like the requirements, the benefits depend on according to the level of cooperation. They are divided into three areas:
- Training and statistics.
- Additional materials and help.
- Recognition and awards.
As you might expect, Premium Partners will have access to the largest number of benefits, while participants will have access to only a few.
Training and statistics
This is, firstly, training and certifications related to Google services. These can be accessed by anyone. That’s logical, given that certifications must be earned to gain Partner status.
The second part is consumer behavior analysis reports. Only Partners and Premium Partners have access to these. Such analyses make it possible to predict seasonal trends, changing user behavior and anticipate future changes.
Beta versions of services are tested changes, such as in the Google Ads panel, which allow Premium Partners to get acquainted with and test new solutions that Google is going to introduce in some time. This allows you to gain an advantage over your competitors, who will only gain access to new features once the beta testing is complete.
Additional materials and help
The standard is that all accounts have access to Google Support, professionally referred to as “Account Support and Support.” This allows us to contact Google specialists via chat, email, or phone.
Premium partners, meanwhile, have access to two more benefits:
- Recognizing the experience of executives.
- Special assistance regarding the account.
Taking advantage of these, however, is not as easy as with the other benefits. Here, our agency must receive an invitation to meet and exchange experiences with executives, or (in the second case) individual assistance on how to run the selected Google Ads account.
Recognition and rewards
The most “tangible” benefit of participating in the program. As with the previous benefits, this one is also broken down by level of partnership.
All, regardless of whether they are participants or partners, have the opportunity to participate in contests organized by Google. In all of them, except the Premier Partner Awards contest, which is exclusively for Premium Partners.
The Premier Partner Awards competition is an annual event organized by Google, which awards advertising agencies that have run the best and most successful Google Ads campaigns in a given year. Awards are given in categories such as best mobile campaign, highest number of customers acquired or highest revenue growth.
Another benefit is the ability to place the Google Partner logo on your website.
In your marketing materials or social profiles. Ordinary participants cannot boast that they are Google Partners. This benefit applies to Partners and Premium Partners.
Additionally, all Partners are listed in the Google Partners directory, making it easier for potential service providers to find their agency. Each agency in the directory has a dedicated space for its name, website address, region and categories of services in which the company has obtained certifications.
There is another benefit that I could not find information about in the official benefits of participating in Google Partners, namely the Google Partners Rewards directory. Once we sign up for the program, Google will assign goals to our agency every quarter, after which we will receive a certain number of points. We can later redeem these points for goodies such as sweatshirts, mugs, pillows or even bicycles branded with the Google Partners logo.
It is worth mentioning that the points collected will reset from time to time. However, we will be informed about it in a pop-up window after logging in a few months before the deadline, so it is worth looking into the store every so often.
Why is it worth being a Partner?
In addition to the benefits listed above, it’s worth being a Google Partner for other reasons as well. Marketing agencies that use the Partner badge in their marketing materials are seen as more credible and professional. In a way, this shows commitment and high standards in the area of online marketing. Courses and training materials allow specialists to develop in their chosen fields, which ultimately translates into work efficiency. Earlier access to new features in tools, also gives a kind of advantage over the competition.
Hi! I have been involved in internet marketing for almost two years. I click on the computer and spend money that is not my own in such a way that it is most profitable for the owner of that money :) Despite a relatively short presence in the marketing industry, I have dealt with the largest Polish e-commerce companies. At UpMore I am responsible for managing projects including: in Google Ads, Facebook Ads and Apple Search Ads.