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If so, is it possible this change started to take place around the same time that reports in the Adsense console started to no longer simply display, but you to have to watch a little throbber before they finally come up?
In the past, the times when my stats did NOT update hourly were few and far between (Yes, I know, I check far too often). I assumed that when they didn't, there was some kind of problem, or maintenance, or audit happening, and a click dump would follow.
Now, the delays and stuck times seem more frequent, and less predictable. Some go on for a while. Others don't. Some seem to shift clicks to a following day. Others don't.
<speculation>Google is building in a random delay element to make reverse engineering of how the system works more difficult. </speculation>
Or it could just be random variation....
Google is building in a random delay element to make reverse engineering of how the system works more difficult.
Yep. Evil, but possible.
I do believe that someone using a Google service will not get the same service (or service quality, in this case) as another person using the same service at virtually the same time. This is definitely true for SERPs (where we see a geographical variance at least) and Adsense (where even the same ads seem to pay differently). So why not also for statistics, or the delayed access to them?
AFAIK, the stats were never real "real time", and clicks and the revenue updated at different times - which could be an evidence for Google determining the EPC based upon the click itself, or other criteria (e.g. revenue the publisher has generated today, this week, this month, whatever).
By adding an extra delay randomly they make it even more difficult to compare results.
Did I mention that I believe that it is time for a suitable competitor to Google? Microsoft?
Yesterday my CTR was it's worst ever, down 35% compared to the year and month's average. My earnings on one of my two busiest days of the week were not even as much as a normal weekend day.
My EPC compared to the first 10 days of June was down an amazing 11.25%.
Something is evidently wrong somewhere and some of us are paying the penalty for these on-going issues. If this continues for more than a couple of days then AdSense will be removed since I have other advertisers willing to take its place.
This is the second day in a row when I had a big click dump in the morning (almost at the exact same time!) when my normal traffic/impressions are low; while the past two afternoon and evenings my traffic/impressions were through the roof, and few clicks accrued. It's only been two days, but it sure looks like they're updating me the next day for the previous day's activity.
Or else I don't understand my users and their clicking behavior at all, which is of course, entirely possible.
Yesterday rocked for us too - 3x the past month's daily average. And this morning's looking good too. Perhaps, rather than (just) a reporting lag, they tweaked how they're selecting which ads for which pages?
Or it's just random variation and we'll see a reversion to mean over time. The big d20 in the sky.