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Consolidated Billing and MCC account for Agency Accounting

[ Edited ]
Follower ✭ ☆ ☆
# 1
Follower ✭ ☆ ☆

Hello Everyone!


Thanks in advance for any feedback.


I am new to MCC Adwords account but not new to Adwords in general!


I am trying to find out if there is something that I am missing or not possibly setting something up correct.  Basically we own a directory website with 800 clients listed on our directory website.  They are all the same industry.  I have very similar (if not the same) keyword lists, negative keyword lists (same), Similar ads, the same rules, and the same schedule (via timezone).


My concern or issue would be that I do not feel that the MCC account is beneficial at this point and almost harder to use.  Below are the issues I currently have.  If anyone has the answers/help/suggestions, that would be greatly appreciate!


Billing Issues:

Billing: I feel being a new MCC account I am creating a internal accounting nightmare.  

  • We bill our customers directly (before we create the campaign) and there is no real way to do a monthly budget without setting a rule.  i.e. Pause campaign when > $X dollars for last 30 days running twice a day.
  • We are using 1 Credit Card to pay for all the campaigns but how do I account/label the payment in quickbooks when it is almost "random billing".  I know it is once $50 is charged or 30 days...  Which is kind of random billing...
  • Say a client wants to test out the adwords campaign with a $60 campaign.  Whether I pre pay or wait for auto pay I am actually going to lose money cause I will be charged $100 per adwords $50 or 30 day rule.  This can cause way to much time getting the money credited back than is worth bringing on low end customers.

With the billing I am maybe not sure exactly on how it works.  With the threshold does...  Does it bill out once it hits $50 or the 30 days (only the amount used)?  Or I have prepaid some of the accounts and does it bill out once the balance is below $50?  That is a huge difference on how the charges may happen.  I am hoping it is the first one because that would be the answer for the billing today just need to figure out how to record the charges via internal account software.


Account Sharing:

Does the MCC option have the ability to share similar lists (negative keywords) through scripts or an API?


Real Time Reporting:

Is there a way to see campaign activity in real time?  When you are in the main MCC account it shows what is going on but the delay is hours.  Along with the all notifications.  Is there a way to have/view all account notifications/opportunities in 1 location?


The only current way I see this working is having everything in 1 account or creating Timezone accounts which you would have to create individual campaigns for all the customers.  This would not solve the billing issues but is half the battle!  


Invoicing/Consolidate payments is not an option today because of the requirements.  There has not been the spend on the account and a new arm of the business was created in April of 2014 so would need to wait till a minimum of April 2015 in order to do Invoicing.


I have heard their are API's to help with this.  I do have a background in the API would as well as have some contract programmers that can assist in any development work. 


Any help would be greatly appreciated!




Re: Consolidated Billing and MCC account for Agency Accounting

Participant ✭ ✭ ✭
# 2
Participant ✭ ✭ ✭
Hi John C,

It seems your extensive post is not receiving much attention so let me get the all rolling.

With regards to billing I am sure you have referred to the link below:

That should give you an idea of how to tackle the problem. With the billing threshold, you are able to make payments manually to ensure that you don't get billed 2x$50 for a $60 campaign. Alternatively you could just use manual payments and thus be on a credit system. So you would load $60 onto your account for that client and then use that to run the campaign. The other option is just to set up budget orders for each account thus ensuring that they do not overspend on their allocated budgets.

With regards to Negative keyword lists across account. This is not an option that would get used a lot. You can create neg keyword lists in each account but not at an MCC level (afaik). In order to do this the best way that I can think of is through the AdWords editor. You will have to download the neg list from one account and then upload it to each account, or just cntrl c all the keywords and add to each account manually.

This may be achieved through scripts, you could run a MCC level script that grabs the neg kw list for each account, compares them and then ensures they all match (just the beginning of an idea, will have to look into the viability of this, such as dependant on number of accounts and keywords due to time and list size limitations).

With regards to "real time" reporting (ignoring the inherent delay in stats update in an actual account), you are referring to the delay between the MCC overview and the actual stats within each account at that time. Your best bet here is an API platform of some description. You could use scripts but would have to manually run the script everytime you wanted an update on the numbers, so building a platform that interacts with the adwords interface itself is most likely your best bet. I have never worked with the API myself, so perhaps someone with more experience could give you more detail. I am just aware of the power of its potential.

I am sure otherwise will join the discussion, and perhaps suggest better ways to go about what you require, but in the interim, I hope this helps a bit.

Good Luck

Re: Consolidated Billing and MCC account for Agency Accounting

Follower ✭ ☆ ☆
# 3
Follower ✭ ☆ ☆
Hey Clynton,

Thanks for information!

A lot of info to take in with the new MCC accounts. The value of the MCC is slowing being seen by us. I think the major issues is (and completely agree and understand why) Google wants to see that your business is going to be serious and truly want to provide value.

Hence why it seems you do need to jump through a lot of hoops just to get something accomplished. Something as simple as an API we need to first create a test environment and test application to show what we are doing and we know what we are doing.

At the end of the day it does seem like having an Partner Badge is something to be proud of and should not be given to just anyone. So a little work to get your MCC account in order is only helping to get to the Partner status!

I will try to update in a month how everything is going. It has only been a few weeks and maybe I am just thinking the worst when It is all going to work out in the end!