Starting this Monday, January 29, Google plans to update its advertising policies to permit the promotion of specific cryptocurrency products. The shift might lead to the display of ads for newly-introduced spot Bitcoin exchange-traded funds (ETFs) on Google’s search engines.
Following the United States Securities and Exchange Commission’s (SEC) approval of 11 spot Bitcoin ETFs on January 10, investors who buy shares in a spot Bitcoin ETF acquire a stake in the fund’s Bitcoin holdings. This development is in line with Google’s revised advertising guidelines:
“Financial products that allow investors to trade shares in trusts holding large pools of digital currency.”
However, Google’s policy update refers to the allowed products as “advertisers offering Cryptocurrency Coin Trust targeting the United States,” leaving some ambiguity. Notably, one of the largest Bitcoin trusts, the Grayscale Bitcoin Trust (GBTC), recently converted to a spot Bitcoin ETF following the SEC’s approval.
Previously, GBTC shares were only available to accredited investors on the primary market, subject to a six-month holding period. Accredited investors must meet specific financial criteria, such as having a net worth over $1 million or a high-earned income.
In contrast, spot Bitcoin ETFs are available to the general public in the United States and are regulated under the Securities Act of 1933. This makes them a potentially safer option for Google to consider in advertising. The policy update is seen as a positive development, especially given Google’s vast reach and influence in driving awareness and inflows for the 10 spot Bitcoin ETF issuers.
The Crypto Community Optimistic Of The Update
Crypto analysts are optimistic about the potential inflows to Bitcoin ETFs, citing Google’s high transaction processing capacity in searches.
The renowned cryptocurrency trader Michael van de Poppe, has in the past expressed optimism regarding the impact of Google ads on Bitcoin-related products.
This sentiment was particularly heightened as the SEC chair was delving into the exploration of Bitcoin Futures ETFs, which eventually received approval in October 2021.