Google will join Facebook and Paypal in banning the advertisement of all Airsoft products on their Adwords platform by September of this year (2014). An email statement issued by Google on June 16, 2014 outlined the proposed changes to their Weapons Policy Restriction.
Below is a summary of Google’s proposed policy:
Around September, we’ll be clarifying and simplifying our policy on knives, guns, gun parts, and other weapons designed to injure others in combat, self-defense, or sport. Some products that we currently allow won’t be allowed under the new policies. Examples of products that will no longer be allowed include paintball guns, airsoft guns, BB guns, gun scopes, ammunition belts, stun guns, and tactical knives.
This is a blow to the Airsoft industry making it even harder for local retailers and fields to grow. Additional details can be found on Google’s site at : https://support.google.com/adwordspolicy/answer/6014299?hl=en
What our understanding here is that it's more on the Adwords which allow advertisers to be on top of search results or highlighted by the Google search results. But regular search results will still reveal links to firearm and airsoft product pages, news, and stories available online. Thus, what will be suggested is to implement Search Engine Optimisation (SEO) for better placement in search results. But doing even proper SEO is a moving target as Google regularly update their search algorithms to prevent some groups and individuals from gaming the system.
As for us, we'd rather recommend to the advertisers, especially the airsoft advertisers to devote their ad budgets to the struggling airsoft news and information websites who actually have airsofters as their audience and work hard to spread the news about airsoft around. Wouldn't it be best to support them no matter how big or small their readership is? They are not big as Google but sure as hell are helping build the customer base for airsoft business through their efforts to spread news about the hobby everywhere. They deserve the support and it's just a matter of picking the right airsoft websites.