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I spent some time adjusting his account, implementing a few techniques I learned over time, refining here, trimming there. It took about 10 minutes for the changes to propagate through AdWords, and finally the ads showed up as desired.
But not only his and his competitors ads! Now, all of a sudden a new scraper site (Amazon-aff, AdSense and eBay-aff) showed up too!
It's not unusual at all for advertisers to budget so that their ads show only occasionally, or even infrequently. For example if an advertiser has a suggested daily budget of $100.00, and an actual daily budget of $15.00 their ad will show approximately 15% of the time over a 24 hour period.
Lots of advertisers also pause ads Friday night thru Monday morning, or after 6:00 pm on business days, and so forth.
Same thing goes for Shopping.com, which they now own.
And even (as google guy doesn't want to speak on the subject )raised in another thread of who 's bright idea it was to run adwords for soap etc on the koran pages in the gbooks site?