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Google Certified Publishing Partners: What is GCPP?

At OKO we’re proud to be recognised by Google through the Google Certified Publishing Partner program. It’s recognition that we have worked hard to achieve and continue to work at to keep. Google Certified Publishing Partners are organisations recognised by Google as being experts in publisher support. Although the Officially GCPP website gives an overview of the program there is confusion amongst some publishers about what it means. We thought it would be useful to put together a blog post answering some frequent questions about GCPP and sharing some of our own thoughts on the program.

If you have a question about the program, or OKO’s involvement in it that isn’t answer here, please ask it through the comments and we’ll try to answer it for you.

About certification

What are Google Certified Publishing Partners?

Google Certified Publishing Partners are those companies that Google has recognised as being experts in supporting web publishers (websites serving ads) with Google’s suite of tools: AdSense, DoubleClick for Publishers and DoubleClick Ad Exchange. Each company certified in the program.

Is GCPP the same as AdSense Partner / GASCP ?

The Google AdSense Certified Partner program was retired by Google on December 31st 2015 and companies should not be promoting themselves based on the retired program. GCPP replaced GASCP, but required tougher criteria and higher standards. As such not all Google AdSense Certified Partners achieved Google Certified Publishing Partner status. Whereas the old GASCP program focused on AdSense alone, GCPP requires that certified companies demonstrate expertise in AdSense, DFP and AdX. Tougher standards were also introduced in terms of the standards of the business itself and customer satisfaction.

Is GCPPP the same as “Network Partner Managers”, “Google Channel Partners” and “Google Partners”?

In short, No. Google Partners work with AdWords on the buy side of the system. As such the program isn’t relevant to monetization. “Google Partners” is also a term that is vaguely used by some companies to insinuate a relationship beyond access to tools. Google Certified Publishing Partners are a very specific group of companies with a verified skill set.

“Network Partner Managers” and “Channel Partners” are terms used to describe a particular type of Ad Exchange account. Whilst most GCPP are Channel Partners/NPMs, GCPP requires specific certification that most Channel Partners do not hold.

About Partners

Why does Google need partners?

Google has a history of partnering with other companies to help grow areas of it’s business. It’s proven that publishers develop faster when they have access to expert help. Whilst AdSense / Ad Exchange account managers can some of that expertise, there are limits to that approach. Google is a large company with a surprising small workforce. Partner companies are able to provide much higher levels of contact, work at greater depth and bring in expertise and services that complement Google’s offering.  This allows publishers to grow without causing huge problems of scale for Google’s account management structure.

Why do publishers need partners?

This varies from publisher to publisher. In very general terms, most publishers we work with are either looking for access to tools and demand that they cannot access alone or are in need of additional expertise, either to skill up or increase their capacity. Other GCPPs work in different ways and may service different needs.

Are all GCPPs the same?

Definitely not. We all meet the same certification standards, but offer varying products, services and approaches. When looking for a GCPP it is important to really understand what each is offering as there are very marked differences. At OKO we think that is a great thing.

How do GCPPs charge

Again, this varies depending on the partner and the service offered.  Most offer some form of revenue share model for at least some services.

OKOs involvement in the GCPP program

How did OKO become Google Certified Publishing Partners?

We originally became Google AdSense Certified Partners when that original program had it’s public launch in 2013. We were invited to apply for that program by our Google account manager of the time. He put us forward as Google were actively seeking a UK partner with a good track record with Google’s publisher products and experience in supporting publishers with those tools. We moved to GCPP three years later.

What do OKO get from being GCPP?

The most tangible benefits we get are in terms of Support, access and training. We have direct, responsive, points of contact at Google to help us get the job done for publishers. We also have receive partner exclusive training and access to tools/features that are not commonly available. Less tangibly, our GCPP involvement continually pushes us to improve a company – which is something that is important to us. There is also a clear benefit when talking to publishers in terms of us being recognised by Google as stand-out experts in the field.

Do OKO pay to be certified?

No, there are no fees for us to be involved although there are costs in terms of the additional time we put into our partnership with Google.

Do OKO work for Google or for publishers?

Definitely for publishers. We are measured against the results that we achieve for publishers are our publishers pay the bills. One of the advantages of working with an independent GCPP over  (or alongside) an AdSense account manager is that a GCPP can give you independent advice. Google will never advise a publisher than another network might pay more. We can.

Working with a GCPP

How do I know if the company I am using is Certified by Google?

Many companies claim to be certified or claim special relationships with Google, but only a few are certified. All certified companies are listed on this Google page. Simple select the country where their head office is located. If they are not on that page then they are not GCPP qualified.

Do I need to work with a GCPP listed in my country?

No. Almost every GCPP works internationally. At OKO we work with publishers on every continent.

How do I choose a Certified Publishing Partner to work with?

The GCPP website doesn’t give much information. We’d always advice reading the websites of likely partners and talking to one of their team to get a feel for whether they are a good match for you and your site. Start by contacting OKO today. We’re always happy to talk.




Mat Bennett :

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