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Understanding Adwords Express Billing

About AdWords Express billing


As the Google AdWords Express Community Manager, I've received a lot of questions about billing and how the AdWords system charges accounts. I'd like to take this opportunity to explain, in simple terms, how the billing process works. Any new ideas or questions related to this topic are welcomed.


How AdWords Express billing works :


AdWords Express runs ads based on advertisers' monthly budget.


In AdWords, if we have a $10 daily budget, we assume that, at the end of the month, the charges won't exceed $304 because the charges will be calculated as $10 (daily budget) X 30.4 (average number of days in a month). Note: Your spend might go 20% over your daily budget on any given day.


Unlike AdWords, where an advertiser's budget is used on a daily basis to run ads, AdWords Express charges on a monthly budget basis. If we set a monthly budget of $300, but start running our ads on the 20th day of the month with a $10 daily budget,  only $100 will be spent ($300 X 10 / 30).


But, if the ad starts running in the middle of the month, AdWords Express will prorate the monthly budget. Let's say an advertiser sets a $100 monthly budget to run an ad and starts advertising on the 15th of the month. She assumes that she'll be charged only $50, as she's advertising for only 15 days. However, she'll actually be charged the entire $100 because AdWords Express is automated and will charge to run the ad based on the monthly budget amount set by the advertiser.


The same scenario is expected if the advertiser starts advertising on the 25th day, the 26th day, and all the way through the last day of the month. AdWords Express will try to use the entire budget to show the ads on the Google Search Network and Google Display Network to generate the maximum number of clicks.


We can see in the table below the similarities and differences between the billing structure and billing threshold of AdWords and AdWords Express.


Both AdWords and AdWords Express

The charges are based on billing threshold.

Advertisers can contact the Support team and change the threshold limit.

Advertisers can download a monthly invoice for a month on the "Billing" page.

If an advertiser's budget changes in the middle of the month, the new but prorated budget will be used as the maximum budget for the remaining days of the month.


Similarities between AdWords billing and AdWords Express billing



AdWords Express

Advertiser can set a daily budget.

Advertisers need to set a monthly budget to run ads.

Advertisers are charged by the daily set budget or once the budget limit is met.

Advertisers are charged by the maximum monthly budget that they set.

If an advertiser starts advertising on the last day of the month, he or she is charged by the daily budget that was set.

If an advertiser starts advertising on the last day of the month, the ads will run within the monthly budget that was set,not by the daily budget.


Differences between AdWords billing and AdWords Express billing


Understanding the billing threshold vs. the monthly budget


Now let's talk about the concept of the billing threshold in relation to the monthly budget in AdWords Express. While the monthly budget is used to run ads for a monthly period, charges are calculated according to the billing threshold in the account.


The billing threshold* is a cap set on the account for advertisers who use automatic payments. This means that, once the threshold is reached (or, in other words, once there are enough clicks amounting to the threshold), AdWords Express charges an advertiser the threshold amount.


*The threshold remains the same as AdWords, for example, $50, $200, $350, $500, and $1,000. For Canada the threshold starts at $75, $250, $375, etc.

Here's an example: If an advertiser starts advertising on the 1st day of the month with a monthly budget of $150, then, ideally, he or she will spend $5 a day and will reach the threshold of $50 within 10 days as the billing threshold states. The threshold will be met once $50 is spent or 30 days pass, whichever comes first. In this scenario, the advertiser will be charged once the threshold is met, not within the 30-day period.


Here's another example: If an advertiser starts advertising on the 1st day of the month with a monthly budget of $45, then, ideally, he or she will spend $1.50 a day and the threshold will be $50 or 30 days, whichever comes first. But, in this scenario, he or she will be charged only $45, not $50, because the threshold wasn't met and the 30-day period passed. The advertiser will be charged only for the amount spent until the 30th day of the month.


We hope this simple explanation helps you better understand how AdWords Express billing works.


If you have any questions or suggestions, please let us know.


Siddhant Sooji

AdWords Express Community Manager

Social welfare O

Dear adwords manager,


I ve been trying to update my billing statue, but is telling me that my mastercard number is invalid or no supported form of payment. please i want you to help me amend this problem. thanks.

shawn s

how much does it cost, for each time someone clicks your ad, or calls. 

Peter M
March - last edited March

I turned off my Ad Words Express account and I keep getting billed even though I am not using it.  How do I stop the billing? I am not using it!

I have gotten no clicks or activities on my website, so how am I being charged?

Hi Social Welfare O,


Did you get your billing issue resolved? 


Kind Regards,



James_Clemens Top Contributor
March - last edited March

Hi Shawn,


The cost of each click is dependent upon many factors since it is a live, dynamic auction system. Please take a look at this help file to learn a little more about AdWords Express. If we can answer any specific questions, please do let us know. 


All the Best,



Hi Peter M,


It sounds like the account was not closed out correctly. Please give AdWords Express support a call so they can access the account with you and see what is happening. Call 1-866-246-6453 Monday-Friday, 9:00 am to 8:00 pm (EST).


Kind Regards,



Peter M

well if there is no activity how can there be a charge...

I dont have time to spend on the phone during those hours as I work.

Is there an email address I can deal with?


Hi Peter,


I do understand. 


Please use this interactive web form


All the Best,



wendy w

Dear sir , My account goes on and off , I don't know why , I have clicks and then after somtimes every thing stops but my ads still shows active but no clicks untill the next day or untill up to a certain time and the ads goes back online and I start having clicks ,what my be the problem , please let me know thanks 

Hi Wendy,


It sounds like your budget is too low to show them all of the time? Being active means everything is okay with them (they are not disabled), but it does not mean they will show 24/7... unless your budget can afford it.


Kind Regards,