Nonprofits know more than most organizations how important it is to utilize resources in an efficient manner. With limited budgets, however, it becomes challenging to not only provide services & solutions to struggling families, individuals, and communities, but to educate and inform the public that the organization's services & solutions actually exist.

Fortunately, utilizing the web, social media, and other resources, nonprofits can compile an efficient and effective marketing platform capable of scaling to large audiences. On top of that, organizations such as Google offer programs for registered nonprofits to help locate new donors & volunteers, work efficiently, and get supporters to take action. Google isn't going to design and develop your website for you, but they will certainly provide tools and advertising to push your message to a larger audience. In this blog post we'll be covering what Google for Nonprofits can do for your organization and how to get started.

What the Program Includes

  • Google Grants: Free AdWords advertising to promote your website on Google through keyword targeting.
  • YouTube for Nonprofits: Premium branding capabilities on YouTube channels, increased uploading capacity, the ability to select custom thumbnail images, and Call-to-action overlay on your videos.
  • Google Earth Outreach Grants: Free licensing for Google Earth Pro and Maps API for Business.
  • Google Apps for Nonprofit: Free version of Google Apps for Nonprofits with fewer than 3,000 users, or a 40% discount ($30/user/year) on Google Apps for Business for organizations which have over 3,000 users.

Are You Eligible?

To start, you'll first need to find out whether or not your organization is eligible for Google for Nonprofits. Google lists three eligibility requirements:

  1. To be eligible for the Google for Nonprofits program, organizations must:
    • Hold current 501(c)(3) status, as determined by the U.S. Internal Revenue Service; and
    • Acknowledge and agree to the application's required certifications regarding nondiscrimination and donation receipt and use.
  2. Please note that the following organizations are not eligible for Google for Nonprofits:
    • Governmental entities and organizations;
    • Hospitals and health care organizations;
    • Schools, childcare centers, academic institutions, and universities (philanthropic arms of educational organizations are eligible). To learn more about Google's programs for educational institutions, visit Google in Education.
  3. Google reserves the right to grant or deny an organization's application or participation at any time, for any reason, and to supplement or amend these eligibility guidelines at any time. Selections are made at Google's sole discretion, and are not subject to external review.

Google Grants

Effectively giving you free advertising on the world's largest search engine. This will be the bread and butter for a majority of nonprofits utilizing Google for Nonprofits. 

  • Have a daily budget set to $330 U.S. dollars, which is equivalent to about $10,000 per month
  • Have a maximum cost-per-click (CPC) limit of $2.00 USD
  • Have free ad spend for Google Grants recipients
  • Only run keyword-targeted campaigns
  • Appear only on
  • Only run text ads
  • Will run for as long as your organization remains actively engaged with your AdWords account*

* Google does reserve the right to terminate your organization's participation in the Google Grants program for any reason without notice at any time.

YouTube for Nonprofits

Nonprofits utilizing YouTube can:

  • Connect with supporters, volunteers, and donors who can watch and share your videos on YouTube.
  • Drive viewers to action by placing a Call to Action overlay on your videos, which can bring people to your website, donation page, petition, or volunteer form.
  • Customize the look & feel of your channel with your organization’s logo and branding
  • Drive fundraising through a Google Checkout "Donate" button.

Google Earth Outreach

Definitely a niche tool for most nonprofits, but for some this integration is crucial. 

  • Create a custom map of your project sites in 10-minutes with Google Maps
  • Create a narrative Google Earth movie and make it available on YouTube
  • Host geospatial data online with Maps Engine & publish polished maps to the web with a Google Maps Engine grant*
  • Collect data in the field with Android devices and Open Data Kit and map your data
  • Online tutorials to help you get the most out of all available mapping tools

*Google Maps Engine grants not currently available through Google for Nonprofits. Learn more at Google Earth Outreach.

Google Apps for Nonprofits

While Microsoft Office is available to nonprofits free of charge, it's easy to see why many organizations won't see the need to switch any time soon. Microsoft offers a more feature-rich platform and users won't have to go through much of a learning curve upgrading version-to-version; others may be enticed by Google's free cloud storage and collaborative capabilities. 

  • Work better with colleagues through real-time collaboration online
  • Store documents in the cloud; 25GB for email; 5GB of storage for Google Drive
  • Stay connected from anywhere; securely access data anywhere
  • Get things done faster by automating processes
  • 24/7 support; no hardware, no updates
  • Free version of Google Apps for Nonprofits with fewer than 3,000 users, or a 40% discount ($30/user/year) on Google Apps for Business for organizations which have over 3,000 users.


If you meet the eligibility requirements and see how your organization can benefit from Google for Nonprofits, then the first step is to fill out an application.

If you have any questions throughout the process or would like further information, visit the Google for Nonprofits homepage or you may contact AdEasel to guide you through the process.

Written by


AdEasel® is a professional, full-service marketing and advertising agency based in the Midwest with principal offices in Chicago, Des Moines and Minnesota.

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