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Ads preempted by malicious third party

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Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 1
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

In the past week our brand campaign ads stopped showing.  The ads' quality scores are 10/10 and have been for years.  These ads and their keywords have been performing with a value-to-cost ratio north of 50 for years, but suddenly they are not showing.  The reason given for the ads not showing is that another ad is rating higher than ours.  The ads that show in search are not ads written by us, but appear to be ads for our company.  Someone--not an affiliate--is bidding on our brand and sending them to our site.  What's to complain about?  I will tell you.  We don't get the stats--but someone else does.  So for a price, someone gets to see how successful our brand is.  A competitor perhaps?  Doesn't matter.  That's our information, not someone else's.  So we upped our bids and kept upping them.  We're now at $1000 (a thousand dollars!) per click and after 3 days we're still not showing.  Really?  We have a 10/10 score and someone can out bid us?  What gives?  Calls and emails to Google staff get us nowhere.  They say that's impossible and that everythings working fine.  So, is Google saying that someone is paying more than $1000/click to send people to our site out of the goodness of their hearts?  I'm not buying it.  Please advise.

2 Expert replyverified_user

Re: Ads preempted by malicious third party

Top Contributor
# 2
Top Contributor

Hi Dean,

 

I'm curious about a couple of things here, perhaps you could elaborate on.

 

1.  I assume that you are no longer receiving impressions at all at this point?  Is this campaign(s) all search or both search and display?

 

2.  How are you testing this out?  Searching the web?  Ad preview tool?  At the office?  At home?  Mobile?

 

3.  Any chance you are in a geographic region that is not covered by your account?  Sometimes actual location and Google's interpretation of location are different.

 

4. Nothing in your account would lead you to believe that there are any problems at all?  All keywords and ads are ok to serve?

 

5.  Where are these ads sending users to your site?  Is it a dedicated landing page or a homepage (seeing that it is a branding campaign)? 

 

I'm not passing any judgement or anything here, I trust that this story is accurate but quite odd I must say. There could be some creative ways to get around this once your able to grasp what is actually happening.

 

Anything else you feel like sharing would be helpful - screen shots, URL's etc...

 

Looking forward to more details.

 

-Tom

 

 

Tommy Sands, AdWords Top Contributor | Community Profile | Twitter | Philly Marketing Labs
Did you find any helpful responses or answers to your query? If yes, please mark it as the ‘Best Answer.’

Re: Ads preempted by malicious third party

Participant ✭ ☆ ☆
# 3
Participant ✭ ☆ ☆

Hello,

 

After reading your problem, i think (not sure) some other one is running campaign for your website from different account, as you mentioed The reason given for the ads not showing is that another ad is rating higher than ours.

 

Only Google can diagnosis the problem, so I'll suggest you to try to contact the Google Adwords once again for this click on Contact Adwords on top right of page.

Dinesh
My Blog

Re: Ads preempted by malicious third party

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 4
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hi, Tom.  Thanks for getting back to me.  Here are some answers.

 

1.  I assume that you are no longer receiving impressions at all at this point?  Is this campaign(s) all search or both search and display? **A very few impressions are sneaking through--probably some lingering cache our there.  The ads are all search.

 

2.  How are you testing this out?  Searching the web?  Ad preview tool?  At the office?  At home?  Mobile? **Ad preview tool and by searching, both from HQ here, and out of state.  Google is telling us that our ads aren't showing for these previously very productive brand keywords.  This info comes up when we mouse over the bubble next the keyword status.

 

3.  Any chance you are in a geographic region that is not covered by your account?  Sometimes actual location and Google's interpretation of location are different.  **This has never been an issue before.  But just to be sure, we have had out-of-state contacts do searches for us.  We don't believe this is an issue.

 

4. Nothing in your account would lead you to believe that there are any problems at all?  All keywords and ads are ok to serve?  **Correct.  There are not problems.  We have approx. 70 campaigns, 550 ad groups, and 20,000 keywords running fine, except for these handful of brand keywords which, until 6 days ago, out performed everything.

 

5.  Where are these ads sending users to your site?  Is it a dedicated landing page or a homepage (seeing that it is a branding campaign)?  **All go to the home page.

 

Here's what the mouse-over dialog bubble says:

 

>>>>>>>

Keyword: beprepared.

Showing ads right now?
No
 
  • Your ad shares a similar Display URL with a competing, higher ranking ad. What can I do?
Quality score Learn more 
10/10
 

Ad Preview and Diagnosis

>>>>>>>

 

So, in theory, to out place such a keyword, they would have to pay for more per click than us.  But $1000/click is the max CPC possible, and... nothing.

 

Hope that info helps.

 

Dean

Re: Ads preempted by malicious third party

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 5
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Yeah.  We tried that.  We're posting here because Google isn't being helpful at all.

Re: Ads preempted by malicious third party

Top Contributor
# 6
Top Contributor

Hello Dean_Hale; welcome;

Please do NOT open multiple discussion on the same topic


I should say that this speculation of yours, has been raised by someone else on the Community. ( I tried for a more than half an hour to find the discussion, but haven't been able) . When posted - it seemed as "unlikely" to happen....

My questions:

  • Is your business a brand - name
  • Based on the info you gave - it looks that your competitor spends a fortune (I don't even know if a bid of 1000USD is allowed... Smiley Frustrated) to "beat" you. Do you have any clue why?

-Moshe

 

 

 

Moshe, AdWords Top Contributor , Twitter | Linkedin | Community Profile | Ad-Globe
Did you find any helpful responses or answers to your query? If yes, please mark it as the ‘Best Answer’

Re: Ads preempted by malicious third party

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 7
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

Hi, Moshe.

 

Yes, our brand name is trademarked, if that's what you mean.

 

We have no clue why someone wants to pay so much to send people to our own homepage.  But they're no actually paying that much.  The bid simulators for the associated keywords suggest amounts well under $3 and most under $1.  The handful that have slipped through on our keywords have paid at most $2.61.

 

So us putting up a $1000/click is making no difference with Adwords.

 

Dean

 

 

Re: Ads preempted by malicious third party

Participant ✭ ☆ ☆
# 8
Participant ✭ ☆ ☆

This is just a guess: If a new advertiser with a display URL similar to yours is bidding on the same keywords, they might be bumping you out of the auction.  They will sometimes get impressions.  However, once their initial grace period is over and they establish a real QS, your ads with QS 10/10 and high bids should trump theirs.  So, if this is correct, just sit tight for a few days (or few hours?).  Again, just a hunch.

Re: Ads preempted by malicious third party

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 9
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

It's been going for a few days now.  Some of the ads just started showing, but if we lower the bid below $426, they stop showing, but these are the most blatent misspellings of our trademark. The most accurate versions of the trademark still do not who, even at the max $1000/click.

Re: Ads preempted by malicious third party

Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭
# 10
Visitor ✭ ✭ ✭

FYI, the links used in the malicious ads go through shortener sites that have no online presence.  They are:

 

ukryty.net
o-limpia.net
calliopex.net

 

 

(All return 404 errors.)