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Google overspent my Max cpc for the display network

[ Edited ]
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# 1
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I created a new Ad Group [using a different Google Account] in which Display campaign where I targeted in market audiences. I bid £0.25 max ppc and set the max budget of the Campaign to £50.

 

An hour later I had reached the max budget. I reduced the bid to 0.05 and changed the budget to £100. 

However, the system still charged me £0.25 per click and used up another £50 in half an hour.

 

Clearly, the system did not realise that I had changed my max cpc.

 

I contacted Google support, where after verifying the truth of the story, I was offered a good will credit of the Amount I spent - (Amount of Clicks * 0.05 which I was ready to pay). The caveat was that as this is a good will gesture from Google, by accepting the £40 or whatever it is I will not be eligible for other goodwill gestures again.

 

I declined, and explained to them that I request a refund, not a good will gesture as the mistake was entirely on their part. The Google Rep told me that it takes Google a few hours to register my change of Max Bid and they dont count it as a mistake on their part.

 

In the past 2 months, I have spent  > £10,000 with them and had I not had a very low max budget on my campaign, Google would have spent a lot of my money against my will.

 

Is this right? How is this not their fault? Has anyone else experienced a delay of max CPC bids taking place for display network campaigns? Where is it written in their docs that there is a 3-4 hour delay like they told me?

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Accepted by topic author Zevi S
September 2015

Re: Google refuse to refund money they wrongfully spent

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# 11
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I would just like to let people who followed this thread know that Google has sorted this out for me.

They have offered me a generous Credit amount and I will still be eligible for future Credits in the future should the need ever arise.

I am very impressed by the caring and patience of the Google staff, Kate and especially Allison. Thank you both very much for helping me arrive at a pleasant solution.

Zevi

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Re: Google refuse to refund money they wrongfully spent

Top Contributor
# 2
Top Contributor

Hi Zevi,

 

Did you look into your account's change history? What time does it reflect for the changes that you made to CPC and Budget?

 

If your changes were not registered or if they had a time much after you actually made it, there might be a possibility that your changes were not saved in time. Sometimes it may happen because of temporary internet disconnection or browser not responding issues.

 

However, I never experienced something similar. 

 

My thoughts.

 

Thanks
Ratan Jha

 


About Me: Community Profile | Ratan Jha INC.
If this or any other post solved your question, do not hesitate to accept it as the solution.

Re: Google refuse to refund money they wrongfully spent

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# 3
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Hi Ratan,

In the change history it is clear that the budget was only increased to be able to spend £100 after the Max cpc was lowered.

This proves the system knew that the max cpc was lowered before it spent more.

Re: Google refuse to refund money they wrongfully spent

Top Contributor
# 4
Top Contributor
This is a billing issue. I will ask a billing specialist look into that.
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: Google refuse to refund money they wrongfully spent

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# 5
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Thanks very much @Moshe

Re: Google refuse to refund money they wrongfully spent

Explorer ✭ ☆ ☆
# 6
Explorer ✭ ☆ ☆
If they take 3-4 hours to update the new bid, they should have taken the same time to update the new budget too!!
If the scenario is exactly the same how have you stated here, I don't think there is any reason you don't get refund.

Re: Google refuse to refund money they wrongfully spent

[ Edited ]
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# 7
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@Rohit K exactly.

 

This is the message I received from them:

 

Hello again,

When you make a change to a Max CPC bid, it can take 3-4 hours for the change to be fully applied in your account, so it is possible that those clicks you received right after changing your bids were still charged at the higher cost.  At the end of the day, it is going to be very difficult to pinpoint an exact time when those bid changes should have been applied, so at this point the best thing for us will be to simply move forward.

 

Although I don't think that they system ran the ads out of the ordinary (which is still impossible to check when the ad group is paused, because I can't see how it is performing today), I am more than happy to offer you a credit towards future advertising, much like a gift card, to make up for the miscommunication and misunderstanding of the way the system typically operates.  I'm able to pursue a credit of £40 on your behalf (the £40 is because if you had gotten 190 clicks for only £10, the average CPC would have been the £0.05 you wanted).  It requires one final level of approval by our Finance team that I can obtain once I have your authorization.  Please note, the credit can only be applied towards future advertising costs.  Accepting this credit will mean that you won't be eligible for any additional courtesy credits in the future. 


To proceed in pursuing this credit, reply directly to this email confirming that you would like to accept the £40 credit. I look forward to your response!

Sincerely,

Re: Google refuse to refund money they wrongfully spent

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# 8
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Re: Google refuse to refund money they wrongfully spent

Rising Star
# 9
Rising Star

Any changes you make to your AdWords ad serving are not going to take instant effect. It takes time for those changes to be processed by the servers and passed out to the live ad serving environment. I don't think there's a posted notification about this--it's just common sense.

 

This is not a question of sending a file to some other computer--something that can be done in 30 seconds. Thousands of computers around the country or around the world can be involved. 

 

Google's turn-around time for getting edits pushed out to the live environment is actually very fast, especially considering the scale of the process.

 

It's very, very tricky to try to manually manage your budget on a daily or an hourly basis. Using automated rules (if you do need to micro-manage spend) is a better approach--that tells the system that a change is scheduled when X condition is met and the system is more-or-less "alert" for the point when X condition is close to being met. It's not foolproof and there will always be overlaps between ad serving and edits in the process of being pushed out, but it's more accurate than making manual edits based on data in the UI which is 3-4 hours out of sync with the real-world environment. (A notification about this data delay is in your AdWords UI.)

 

~*~*~*~.

 

As I read what you have written here, you were offered your money back but have refused because what you actually want is for Google to both reimburse you and to say they were wrong, leaving the way open for you to ask for future reimbursements.

 

I am sorry to have to say that from my perspective, you are the one who was wrong. You didn't understand how the system works and spent more money than you anticipated. Google generously offered to reimburse you for the learning experience and you turned them down. 

 

If I were them (and this is purely a personal opinion) I would consider the topic closed.

 

 


Theresa
Google AdWords Top Contributor
*~*~*~*~*~*~*~*

Re: Google refuse to refund money they wrongfully spent

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# 10
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@Theresa_Zook you have missed out something important in your equation. If there is a delay in a max cpc bid, then there should be a delay in the budget increase too. To allow the speed of one or not the other would seem unfair. 

 

I was micro managing the budget as I was testing out the average cost for certain audiences I was targeting.

Thanks for the tip about Automated Rules.

 

Regardless I have sorted this out with Google as you will see in my next post.