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Google AdWords Forum

This 142 message thread spans 5 pages: < < 142 ( 1 [2] 3 4 5 > >     
An Early Holiday Gift from Google
Banned for Life
mortgagemax




msg:4035865
 2:29 am on Dec 3, 2009 (gmt 0)

On behalf of my wife and children we would like to thank you. After over a half dozen years and many MILLIONS spent in advertising you banned us. We had advertised many affiliate programs through the years. All legitimate products, in fact you approved the ads and worked with us in advertising them. Then one day you didn't like those products anymore. We eliminated any questionable products including those that were downgraded to a QS of 1. That apparently still was not enough. We received no explanation as to why we were banned, we received no warning (it was supposedly sent to an old email account despite you having all my current ones) and best of all there is no appeal process. I have never seen such brutal, harsh and completely heartless tactics. Thank you for absolutely destroying our holiday season.

 

Voxman




msg:4037159
 6:54 pm on Dec 4, 2009 (gmt 0)

The account looks normal but you will quickly notice that none of the ads are generating revenue for Google anymore. This is outrageous to say the least. We had an incident in October where all of our download pages for music software was considered low quality. I had them look into it and they escalated it and a week later we received an email saying it was their fault and everything is just fine now. Then BOOM ... we get banned a few days ago. They won't discuss it except to keep repeating that we are constantly submitting bad landing pages or ads and for the life of me I have no idea which ones they are talking about. We have a product, we promote the product and send them to the page where the product is. We have been with them for almost 10 years now and they are treating us like criminals! I notice they have no scruples about taking the money though.

Maybe if we all initiated a chargeback going back a year that would wake them up. Now that's just me venting and I have no intention of doing any such thing...for now anyway. I don't want to actually act like the crook they are making me out to be. I'm still hopeful they will go back over this and get it corrected for all the honest people caught up in this.

Just before Christmas...can you believe this? They couldn't have picked a worse time to do something like this. Do No Evil indeed. This is a pure witch hunt

Do no Evil?

motorhaven




msg:4037167
 7:03 pm on Dec 4, 2009 (gmt 0)

Question....

What do these banned affiliate Adword accounts have in common? Country of origin? Product type? Destination host country?

makemetop




msg:4037168
 7:05 pm on Dec 4, 2009 (gmt 0)

Just before Christmas...

Remember the Florida update?

[webmasterworld.com...]

Same old, same old :)

smallcompany




msg:4037170
 7:07 pm on Dec 4, 2009 (gmt 0)

What do these banned affiliate Adword accounts have in common? Country of origin? Product type? Destination host country?

And those that are not affiliate...

Not much has been shared so far...

MrHard




msg:4037177
 7:17 pm on Dec 4, 2009 (gmt 0)

Was it a fixed or ARM?

swirl




msg:4037199
 7:35 pm on Dec 4, 2009 (gmt 0)


After over a half dozen years and many MILLIONS spent in advertising you banned us.

On a human level, the situation you're describing is obviously very frustrating and disappointing.

So what do you think you'll do next? (honest question)

Presumably you have investments and savings and live below your means, so not having much in the way of revenue for the time being won't be too much of a hardship?

Voxman




msg:4037203
 7:38 pm on Dec 4, 2009 (gmt 0)

Right now we need the MOTHER OF ALL Class action suits.

Gomvents




msg:4037208
 7:40 pm on Dec 4, 2009 (gmt 0)

surftrack, nobody will refute that because that's EXACTLY what is happening! New rule of the current economy, have 8 months of living expenses in cash and as little debt as you can manage. Don't owe anybody anything, rely or yourself as much as possible... i'm sorry about your holiday season, makes me sick to read this!

Voxman




msg:4037209
 7:41 pm on Dec 4, 2009 (gmt 0)

What we should all do is contact our local media, send press releases whatever....get this firestorm started

J_RaD




msg:4037217
 7:46 pm on Dec 4, 2009 (gmt 0)

surftrack nailed it!

ogletree




msg:4037219
 7:46 pm on Dec 4, 2009 (gmt 0)

You can work with. An agwncy. They have direct contact with google. When I worked at an agency and I was able to get bans removed. Google told me what rhe problem was. I fixed it and told google. They resubmitted it to the spam team and it was removed the ban.

jkwilson78




msg:4037234
 8:10 pm on Dec 4, 2009 (gmt 0)

Do No Evil indeed. This is a pure witch hunt

That assumes Google means their paid customers like us when they say the "do no evil" thing but in reality they mean their "real" customers...the searchers. They can and will do evil against anyone but them.

You can work with. An agwncy. They have direct contact with google. When I worked at an agency and I was able to get bans removed. Google told me what rhe problem was. I fixed it and told google. They resubmitted it to the spam team and it was removed the ban.

I wish this were the case as the agencies I've worked with and have contacts with are getting pretty much nowhere these days. If anything the close direct relationships agencies have seem to back firing for some of their clients.

They alert Google to some things with a particular account and suddenly a chain reaction of more problems start to magically happen after Google gets a closer look.

Personally, I don't want anyone with any kind of relationship with Google near anything I do.

SuperF




msg:4037246
 8:45 pm on Dec 4, 2009 (gmt 0)

Question....

What do these banned affiliate Adword accounts have in common? Country of origin? Product type? Destination host country?

Seems to be Landing Page Quality Score, something that many of us had never previously heard of, something that the was never penalized previously except for higher click costs. Suddenly there is capital punishment, even if the offence occured years ago, no rights of appeal, and the policy was never announced.

It has arisen from Google's battle with spammers, and Google's tactic of being as secretive as possible, so that spammers don't learn how to beat Google. A lot of good customers have lost their accounts in the war against spam.

The solution is using humans rather than algorithms, but that will cost Google $$ and they have only got a few billion in the bank.

Voxman




msg:4037261
 9:01 pm on Dec 4, 2009 (gmt 0)

I wonder how they would react to everyone going to their credit card company and initiating chargebacks going back a full year.

Voxman




msg:4037264
 9:03 pm on Dec 4, 2009 (gmt 0)

scratch that...you can only go back 120 days

Copeland




msg:4037271
 9:13 pm on Dec 4, 2009 (gmt 0)

While I feel bad anytime someone has their income torn away from them, Google's behavior regarding AdWords should be no surprise to you. Anyone operating as a middleman -or one step further as a middleman between another middleman- should have seen this coming a long long time ago.

Every dollar the middlemen earn is a dollar Google doesn't keep and/or the end advertiser doesn't save. Google wants to maximize their revenue from Adwords AND deliver the advertising with the best ROI for the advertisers. Note: If you are a middleman than you are not the advertiser, you are an agent spending money on behalf -directly or indirectly- of the advertiser.

Smart pricing, quality scores, etc are all meant to eliminate the middlemen so that Google keeps a larger share of each ad dollar and passes more savings on to the end advertiser. If you are spending money on AdWords and you aren't marketing your own product, Google wants to eliminate you from the Adwords platform.

The arbitrage gravy train was nice while it lasted but if you were fool enough to convince yourself it was permanent, well, I have some sub-prime mortgage pools I want to talk to you about.

Lastly, someone will surely try and make the argument that middlemen drive up the click price thereby making Google more money per click. This was true before smart pricing. Smart pricing is designed to set a price floor to clear out the middlemen.

zohan777




msg:4037273
 9:14 pm on Dec 4, 2009 (gmt 0)

Voxman - I think that's a very good idea! even 120 days is enough...but enough people need to do this or it wont mean a thing.

netmeg




msg:4037274
 9:17 pm on Dec 4, 2009 (gmt 0)

Since the vast majority of advertisers aren't getting kicked out, it probably won't take off.

Voxman




msg:4037331
 11:05 pm on Dec 4, 2009 (gmt 0)

hey give them time...the google forum is lit up with people who have been kicked out. We did nothing wrong and we got the boot so to all who haven't yet...I wouldn't go out and buy that porche just yet. As for charging back. We are now seriously considering it as that would be quite a bit of money back we can spend in other ways. I'm going to give them a week or two to see if they can come to their senses and if not...then what the hell.

I'll even send them a 'canned' email telling them that

"We have found your service to be egregious in it's repeated collection of money for clicks that are highly suspect in nature. Due to this and other indicators that we can not divulge for security reasons we have decided to reverse all charges going back to 120 days.

If you contact us again we will ignore your emails and requests for contact and any future charges will also be reversed.

Go BING!

Dlocks




msg:4037336
 11:18 pm on Dec 4, 2009 (gmt 0)

We are now seriously considering it as that would be quite a bit of money back we can spend in other ways.
I payed AdWords always afterwards (not via CC) and also considered not paying my last bill (worth $50,000) that I received from them and see where it would end. But in my country Google could get the money very easily within a couple of weeks via legal ways. Perhaps in the US you have more options.

"We have found your service to be egregious in it's repeated collection of money for clicks that are highly suspect in nature. Due to this and other indicators that we can not divulge for security reasons we have decided to reverse all charges going back to 120 days.

If you contact us again we will ignore your emails and requests for contact and any future charges will also be reversed.

Did you really send that to them? :P

Leosghost




msg:4037343
 11:32 pm on Dec 4, 2009 (gmt 0)

Copeland ..I could refer you to what I posted in another thread but ( that would be bad form ) one tries to avoid referencing ones own posts as IMO it constitutes "spamming ones own nick as if it was authoritative" ..hope everyone gets my point :)

So ..as regards removing the middlemen ..

Why leave the big shopping comparison sites and the fake B2B sites ?

Could it be that they spend way way more than the little guy affs ..cynical me ..wonders

Does it help the advertiser ?

Not according to the hundreds of advertisers ( whom I have spoken to trying to source product over the last two weeks ) who are the actual manufacturers of the products ..and yet still are being told by Google that the only way to beat the "whitelisted" big dog affs and the fake B2B sites that Goog allows to run ads on their names and products and trademarks ..is to up their bids ..

Nope ..surfers dont benefit ..nor do advertisers who actually make things ..

Who does benefit ? ..google ..and the big dog affs and fake B2B sites and ebay ..and all the self appointed adwords pros who suggest that what the people who got kicked out really need is tha eyes of an adwords pro ( hint "themselves" ) to look over their account and try to "see what went wrong" ..for a fee of course ..

And of course Google are really going to reinstate an account because an adwords pro says that they have looked at the account and can see why ..

Reminds me of the pitches run by cults and "I'll square you with god religions" ..taking advantage of the lost , confused ..and in some cases abused .

googs serps and adwords needed cleaning ..( but they encouraged the crap just to get the data )..they have not cleaned up ..they have just removed the little guys and some innocent bystanders ..and left some self styled "pros" hinting that they can maybe revive dead accounts ..

it all leaves a bad taste ..even to those of us who dont use adwords ..

Voxman




msg:4037387
 12:39 am on Dec 5, 2009 (gmt 0)

Dlocks...no I didn't send that to them...just if I did charge them back...that's what I would send. As far as them getting their money? Not sure what legal means you have in your country...but I couldn't care less. We are a US company in name only owed by a Canadian company. If we go under why would I care...the money would be gone before they ever got their hands on it...just sayin ;p

Copeland




msg:4037394
 12:55 am on Dec 5, 2009 (gmt 0)

Leosghost...Every industry in the history of free markets has -and does- cut out the middleman. The big comparison shopping sites you mention are middlemen as well and Google IS endeavoring to cut them out over time. See Google's move into lead generation and development of it's own affiliate network. A perfect world for Google is one where Google gets all the ad spend and shares revenue with nobody.

Anyone lamenting the fact that Google has cut them out as middlemen should have been banking cash all this time and thinking of new business models that are more defensible than arbitraging traffic on AdWords. Paid search has had a market inefficiency on which arbitragers were able to capitalize the past 8 years. That inefficiency is getting less and less inefficient by the day. I don't wish business pain on anybody but marketers who act surprised that Google views arbitragers as adding little value have been asleep at the wheel. They have been sending and resending that message almost since inception.

In the end, the less you own your traffic the less defensible your business is. The more dependent you are on buying traffic the more defenseless your business is.

Does it leave a "bad taste" as you mention? Sure it does. Capitalism is ruthless. When you are on the wrong side of it, it hurts.

Or the flip side is, many marketers have been able to earn a ton of cash exploiting Google Adwords' inefficiencies for a long time. Those profits should have been invested in traffic channels that are not dependent on Paid Search. It's called spreading your risk.

My point is not to defend Google but to point out that a business built arbitraging paid search is a high risk business. There was/is great money to be made in paid search but high return comes with high risk.

Google is no joy to deal with and a case can be made that they are much more close to evil than not. They could likely handle moves like this better as well but the decision to cut out the middleman itself is just plain smart business.

arizonadude




msg:4037406
 1:17 am on Dec 5, 2009 (gmt 0)

Yes, for an evil empire like Google, it is a good decision to destroy lives and ruin businesses. That's captialism at it's finest.

Their problem is not in the short term, but rather long term. To steal a phrase from their own book, "they have poked the bear" and now that bear, the bear being the large masses of webmasters and business owners that have made Google what it is, are now turning way from them and they are spreading the word. It will take time, but the shift in search dominance will come and Google will no longer be calling the shots because they have become the more evil of the two players.

All I can say is, it's about time.

La_Valette




msg:4037432
 2:00 am on Dec 5, 2009 (gmt 0)

the decision to cut out the middleman itself is just plain smart business.

Sounds like more of a conspiracy theory to me - I doubt there's any such decision on Google's part. Their stated objective is to improve landing page quality here.

The automated way in which this is being done does need work IMHO - it seems like there are many false positives being generated. I can only hope Google has a good appeals process in place now and that appeals will be handled quickly so that the false positives will have their accounts restored asap.

Leosghost




msg:4037436
 2:03 am on Dec 5, 2009 (gmt 0)

Copeland :) I have no problem with google removing the middleman ( it's just that I dont think that they are going to remove all of them ..just the smallest ..and will leave the big guys ..and the worst IMO..which is what they have done in place in order to offload the admin costs of dealing with all those mom and pops and small companies )..

Agreed that any business that depends on PPC is built on shaky ground ..however Google seems to be shoring up some of the very worst whilst hitting some of the least offensive ( albeit irritating ) ..and hitting many directly advertising businesses that use no middlemen ..

If you knew how many more middlemen there are in the average transaction in France compared to the USA or the UK ..and how frustrating that is when one wants to find a real manufacturer or importer here via the yellow pages ( where any corner shop is allowed to list itself as an international manufacturer ..if it pays the adspace ) or the Goog serps ( organic or ads here have far more shopping sites and fake B2B than in anglophone countries ) ..they need to clean up the entire system ..and what goog is doing is pretending ..it's window dressing ..and is far from automatic ..the "whitelisting" is blatant ..

I have no problem with capitalism ( unlike many of those who live where I do ) ..my problem is with cronyism and corruption and hypocrisy ..and in throwing real actual manufacturers and not middle men under the fake bus of cleaning up adwords

Cancellara




msg:4037444
 2:17 am on Dec 5, 2009 (gmt 0)

And if anyone was wondering why AdSense program is so lame, here you got your answers. They probably banned all the good advertisers hahahaha

Voxman




msg:4037474
 3:48 am on Dec 5, 2009 (gmt 0)

I know they banned one me. How could selling music instruction books and dvd's be poor quality and I dare say our sites are some of the best looking ones on the net. Better than our competition who have yet to be banned.

smallcompany




msg:4037528
 5:03 am on Dec 5, 2009 (gmt 0)

How could selling music instruction books and dvd's be poor quality

Is there anything on your site that is in a connection to one or more other sites?

Anything like submission forms, cart, etc...

profitpuppy




msg:4037546
 5:45 am on Dec 5, 2009 (gmt 0)

I just got banned also. In my opinion my site is completely white hat and has absolutely zero reason why they should ban me.

I had one site which had low quality. The reason for low quality I had already determined was because I was using a 3rd party email provider for my email list. For some reason they don't like that I am sending people to that site to sign up for the email list. This site has a small signup to the email list section on the page. There is no free software or malware or anything like that. In fact the whole site is completely white hat, there is no issue with it. I already discussed the low quality with them and they made some suggestions and I was in the process of implementing those suggestions.

There are no affiliate programs on any of my sites.

All of the sites are completely white hat, very nice, great value. They are not affiliate sites, they are simple stuff like a job search site for example.

I just sent them a really angry reply.

I'm also thinking now of removing myself from all google services including gmail as I think google cannot be trusted. Perhaps they will shut down my email account for no reason also.

This is completely rude and unacceptable.

ppc_newbie




msg:4037555
 6:00 am on Dec 5, 2009 (gmt 0)

I haven't been hit yet(X fingers) with the slap, but I haven't run any AdWords in the last year. They overpriced min bids to the point where it wasn't worthwhile. Even on specialty items where there was no competing ads, and the site was still getting 8-10 QS.

I've since moved on mainly to spot buys in vertical markets.

They just don't seem to get the ideal that people only want to place an ad, not SEO the crap out of the site. And then you can't even get on the first page with all the "Google" garbage like their news, images, videos, YouTube, domain information sites, shopping comparison sites, and of course the black-hat spammers, etc., etc....

Their stated objective is to improve landing page quality here.

So we get.....
People are worrying more about making sure their websites appease the Google gods instead of worrying about making their site sell well

This 142 message thread spans 5 pages: < < 142 ( 1 [2] 3 4 5 > >
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