The full text of this Message Of Doom is Ads are disabled on one or more of your sites – no ads are serving on one or more of your sites because of policy violations. Please investigate the reasons for this in the Policy Centre.
The Policy Centre provides a top level summary of how many of your websites are affected at the top, and then a list of the sites themselves. Click on a site to get details of the misdemeanour. I use the word “details” loosely, as, in my case, the “detail” was pretty vague and unhelpful. What on earth is “Valuable inventory: Templated page” supposed to mean??
My confusion was exacerbated when, after attempting to fix my site, I requested a review and within ten minutes I received an email saying they were unable to enable ad serving as my site was still in violation. This prompted a series of panic driven knee jerk tweaks and review requests in quick succession, each resulting in the same frustrating email telling me my site was still in violation and ads wouldn’t be enabled.
Despondent, I scrutinised the text in the Policy Centre one more time and found this snippet: “The review for this site was submitted on 24 Feb 2019 and is currently pending.” So, if the review is still pending, why the f did I receive an email saying my site is still in violation?! They couldn’t know this if the review was still pending… Duh.
G pays ridiculously scant attention to the user experience, as per usual.
The description of the violation did actually change during the course of my panic tweaks, and at one point it said something along the lines of “Ads are pushing content below the fold on mobile devices”. This was pretty easy to both understand and fix. On phones and smaller resolution devices, the initial display of a web page on my site would be of the first ad block on the page, with the content appearing below it. I couldn’t quibble with this complaint and added some CSS rules to not display any ads at all on mobile devices. I don’t get much mobile traffic on the problem site, so the difference this change makes will be negligible.
The changing description of the site violation made me think that a review had been made though. So I’m getting contradictory feedback. On the one hand I received almost immediate email responses to my review request, but on the other, Policy Centre tells me I have a review pending. Is it the case that “Ads push content below the fold” can be detected automatically and doesn’t require a manual review. Hmmm, maybe.
It is now five days since my last review request and I’m still waiting. I think I read somewhere that I may have to wait 10 days for a review, but we’ll see.