Facebook Ad Not Approved? What to Do Know 10 Ways to Dodge It
If you’ve been using Facebook ads for a while, you’ve probably gotten used to getting rejected a lot – sometimes accurate, sometimes wrong. If you’re new to Facebook advertising, you’ve probably been frustrated trying to understand what’s getting approved and what’s not.
Facebook’s advertising policies and their nuances can be overwhelming. But in this guide, we’ll help you understand the Facebook ad approval process, and how long it takes, and then share with you:
- What to do if your Facebook ad isn’t approved.
- How to prevent, fix or appeal a Facebook ad rejection.
- Common reasons for disapproval.
- What to do if your account is disabled.
Read on to learn how to get your Facebook ads approved as quickly as possible.
How long does it take for Facebook to approve an ad?
It all depends on your ad content, your business category, and more. For some ads, it may take 2-3 hours. For others, one day, for others, especially in restricted categories, up to 2-3 days.
This is because the Facebook ad review process is a mix of man (or woman!) and machine. Once you hit publish on an ad, it goes into algorithmic review, where the computer looks for basic information like image/text ratios, prohibited or prohibited content, incorrect grammar, broken links, and more.
At this stage, some ads are approved and published; some are sent back to advertisers for editing, but many (60-70%) move to a manual review process.
During the human review process, people view the ad and evaluate the content based on context, meaning, and quality. Your ad may then be posted or rejected.
So that’s why one ad can be approved in minutes while others take days.
Is your Facebook ad disapproved? Here’s how to do it
If your Facebook ad is disapproved, you’ll get a notification explaining which policy you’re violating, with a link to that policy, and often a [very unhelpful] suggestion to fix the issue. (Like “Don’t violate this policy.”) Other times, it’ll be vague.
Fortunately, most ads are disapproved for small details that you can easily edit and resubmit for quick review and approval.
Be sure to read the policy carefully, then review your ad thoroughly. Then make adjustments to copies, positioning, images, and more. You must now wait for approval, which may take a day.
How to Appeal a Facebook Ad Disapproval
If you’ve determined that the ad is fully compliant with the policy and the edits will not increase the likelihood of approval, you can appeal the disapproval and request another review.
To do so, select the disapproved ad (unfortunately, you can only select one at a time) and click the Edit button.
In the upper right corner of the screen, just above the ad preview, you should see the option to click “Request Review.” A pop-up window will appear where you will confirm your request for a second review (by a human).
In the “Describe Your Problem” section, keep it concise. No essay required! Refer to the exact rules you got and then make your argument. For example, “This ad does not violate _____’s policy. It is ____ and contains ___ to show ____. Please review, thank you.”
Remember, you can only appeal an ad once for the same disapproval, so please check thoroughly to make sure it does not violate the policy in any way.
Side note: Are your Facebook ads approved but still not running? Check out these 4 reasons why your Facebook ad isn’t running (and what to do about it).
How to prevent or fix disapproved Facebook ads
You’ve followed all of our Facebook ad tips and even implemented some of our iOS publishing strategies. You want your ad to be up and running with stats! Use these general rules of thumb to save time and increase the likelihood that your ad will be approved as quickly as possible.
Be aware of objections
The tricky thing about rejected Facebook ads is that between the email address connecting to the account and the delay in the notification center, they can sometimes be easily missed. So make it a habit to check for disapprovals “manually” using Ads Manager or Facebook Business Suite.
Read the policy carefully
If your Facebook ad is disapproved, be sure to read the Violation Policy in its entirety before resubmitting it for approval – nuances need to be considered, and your ad will need to be reviewed manually!
Proceed with caution
Yes, being bold and different is one way to write best-selling copy. However, if you want to run ads fast, don’t take the risk. If it has something you think might be potentially offensive, not inclusive, or even wrongly rejected, don’t try it.
Check the quality of your ad copy…
Sometimes, the more time you spend on a piece of content, the harder it is to spot errors. So if you double-check your ad and don’t see anything wrong, you should still have it reviewed by someone else, just in case. Better yet, run it through Grammarly for contextual review.
While Facebook’s 20% text limit (and the tools to check it) has been removed, keeping text to a minimum is still a best practice. Facebook talks about it here. Social media feeds are mostly visual, so you should make your images the loudest. Check out our 9 tips for writing the best Facebook ads for more help with your copy.
Facebook ad disapprovals can be very subtle – keep in mind that most Facebook ads are reviewed by humans. So when you’re choosing a clever, bold, or eye-catching ad, keep the “thin line” in mind.
Avoid describing personal attributes in too much detail, which may feel like an invasion of privacy for users, or irony that may be accidentally misunderstood.
If you’re in a restricted category (even if you’re not), make sure you’re not targeting underage groups or other demographics or psychographics that your product isn’t suitable for.
Check your landing page
Also, follow general landing page best practices, such as continuity between ad and landing page, and keep the copy clear, honest, and free of anything that could be misleading. Of course, make sure the page link is not broken!
Check your phone
The landing page experience is a factor in Facebook’s ad approval process, and it’s not uncommon to see unexpected pop-ups, glitches, or unexpected moves and changes on mobile devices. So be sure to test your landing page on a mobile device.
For those in the restricted category, you can try boosting the post. If the post is informational and not commercial, it may be approved.
Why was your Facebook ad disapproved? Common causes
No matter what industry you’re in or what you’re promoting, your campaigns, ads, and landing pages must follow these guidelines. Note, however, that this is a very condensed list for general understanding only. See Facebook’s official advertising policies page for details.
Standard Policy Violation
This is just the term we use to cover the policies you expect. This includes content that is profanity or that violates third parties (think trademarks and copyrights); or that is discriminatory, controversial, violent, disrespectful, unexpected, disruptive, irrelevant, of poor quality, exploitative, inaccurate, misleading, or dishonest.
Think golden rules here and use common sense to maintain the respect, integrity, and authenticity of your ads.
Personal attributes here refer to race, ethnicity, religion, sexual orientation, financial status, physical ability, mental or physical health, income, etc. Your content cannot influence any of these attributes, nor can you request such information in lead ads.
Imagine how creepy you might feel if an ad highlighted the condition you’re being treated for? It will feel awkward! Therefore, advertisers mustn’t exploit any personal attributes they may have access to.
This policy restricts advertisers from using “before and after” images or images that contain unexpected or unlikely outcomes. Ads also must not attempt to create negative self-perceptions to promote health, diet, or weight loss products.
Non-functional landing page
This could mean your page has a 404 error, a disruptive or glitchy popup, or any element that makes it difficult for users to navigate away from the page.
A function that does not exist
Don’t fake it. Your ad or landing page cannot contain elements that look like clickable buttons, checkboxes, and other features that don’t work. Often, ads that are disapproved of this policy require some minor adjustments before they can run.
A policy to prevent circumvention! There are no tactics or techniques, such as cloaking content, designed to circumvent Facebook’s ad review process.
I’ve found that this policy often results in incorrect ads being disapproved. If you violate this policy and do not intend to bypass the review process, all you can do is file an appeal!
Using Facebook Brand Assets
According to Facebook, this is one of the most common reasons for disapproval (besides age-restricted material and too much text in images).
If you mention Facebook or Instagram, there are specific rules:
- You cannot imply endorsement by Facebook, Instagram, or any other entity owned by Facebook.
- You cannot refer to them in a way that is more representative of the brand than the business or the product itself.
- Platform and interface screenshots must be accurate and honest.
- You cannot manipulate logos or trademarked terms or the appearance of the interface.
For more help with this policy, check out the Facebook Brand Resource Center and Instagram Brand Resource Center.
Prohibited and restricted categories
Of course, there are also prohibited and restricted business categories, most of which are common sense. Read on for a general overview, but be sure to check out the full policy details here for the exact terminology and details of each rule.
Unfortunately, if your business falls into one of the banned categories, you will not be able to use the Facebook advertising platform.
Some of the more obvious categories are body parts, weapons, illegal products or services, tobacco, recreational drugs, malware, or deception.
Some you may not know about include payday loans, salary advances, bail bonds, vaccine suppression, multi-level marketing schemes, or get-rich-quick opportunities.
These categories are eligible for advertising, but have special requirements and additional restrictions:
Alcohol, branded content, dating services, health and medicine, cryptocurrency, online gambling, political and social issues, cosmetic procedures, finance and insurance, and subscription services.
Here are some tables for these categories:
- Online pharmacies, telemedicine, and prescriptions must have written permission here.
- Addiction centers must use this form.
- Cryptocurrency advertisers can apply for approval here.
- Online gambling and gaming advertisers require prior written permission.
- How to deal with duplicate or high volume Facebook ad disapprovals
It’s important to keep an eye on ad rejections, not just for obvious reasons, but because they signal to Facebook that your account is in good standing.
When ads are rejected in bulk, I recommend that you seek support when multiple ads are rejected at the same time.
The appeal process must only happen one ad at a time, so managing a large number of ads can be very difficult. Typically, if you open a chat with support, you can share the campaign ID and ask them to view all disapproved ads in the campaign.
Unfortunately, I also have clients who regularly reject ads by mistake. At this point, we’ll automatically contact support as soon as a new campaign or ad is launched. I wish there was a better way, but unfortunately, this is the best process I’ve found.
What to do if your Facebook Ads account is disabled
It’s easy to feel a little helpless when your Facebook ad account is disabled. There are usually not many reasons for disabling given. Unfortunately, if you seek support, they are generally not allowed to discuss disabled ad accounts or provide any details about why your account was disabled.
If your account violates the above policy multiple times, there is a good chance that it will not be reinstated, but accounts are often disabled by mistake. A few years ago, Facebook had a glitch and they disabled a large number of ad accounts within a few days.
Unfortunately, if your account is disabled by mistake, your only recourse is to request a review. You can do this by visiting the Account Quality page in your account. From there, you’ll be able to follow the steps to request a review.
What to do if your Facebook user login is restricted by ads
In addition to ad account disabling, individual user logins can also restrict ads. Unfortunately, this is no less stressful than ad account disabling.
In terms of support, getting support for individual user logins is more difficult – probably because in the platform’s view individual user logins are not directly related to revenue.
Similar to ad account restrictions, if a user is deemed to have repeatedly violated the policy, the user will most likely not have ad functionality restored.
However, if the account is wrongly restricted, it will most likely be reinstated after a review. To request a review, visit the Account Quality page and request a review.
While losing ad access is uncommon, it’s not *uncommon*, so it’s important to be prepared. I bring this up because advertisers should be aware of it.
If there are no other users in the account, or in particular no other administrators, it may mean that no one has access (or no one has administrative rights) to the currently running ad account.
Yes, it has happened, and no, Facebook support won’t work harder to help you regain access in these situations.
While you shouldn’t be required to have multiple administrators for your ad account, it should be considered a best practice as users are sometimes mistakenly restricted from ads so often that this becomes a real problem.
Again, “fast” is relative. For ads in restricted categories, fast might mean two days instead of three, and in other categories or situations, it might mean less than an hour.
Either way, here are some tips and best practices for getting your Facebook ads approved as quickly as possible:
- Check regularly for objections.
- Carefully read the policy you are violating.
- Don’t risk using ads that you want to post quickly.
- Proofread your ad copy.
- Minimize text in images.
- Keep your tone friendly.
- The target is appropriate.
- Check your landing page for all requirements.
- Make sure your ad is mobile-optimized.
- Try boosting posts if you’re in a prohibited or restricted category.