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Charging problems yesterday?

Has anyone else had odd click charges?



10:46 am on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Just wondering if anyone else has seen any odd click amounts over the past couple of days? I headed into my account today. To my surprise, I saw that I had spent nearly twice what I normally do. Looked a couple of my orders and noticed that even though my base bids are low (xp or xxp), on one or two keyphrases, I was being charged over £xx per click!

I've emailed support to see what they have to say, but was just wondering if this was a glitch yesterday that has affected other accounts too?


4:27 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Yeah the other thing is that you pause the ads, hours later they are still running, how do I know I am not still being whacked. $900 for one single little click is my record in yesterdays stats and hundreds of other keywords effected to a lesser degree. Overcharged some $4000 and counting and the **** ads wont pause!


4:32 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

"We will never charge you more than the maximum bid amount you have set" or so it says in the adcenter pages.. surely they are never liable when they fail to show your ads etc.. that's all in their

BUT, when OVERcharging their customers, and going on to do so after they
know about the problem, they will be liable for any financial damages this causes.. the msn ppl reading this forum BETTER call some of their legal dept. in quickly. Their MAJOR advertisers surely not posting here, but likely also are hit. and they wont be happy too.

MSN just stop billing immediately and announce that you did so, and that
all REAL cost will be charged when the troubles are sorted out..

you keep records of our clicks etc I hope, no?

[edited by: Drreggae at 4:33 pm (utc) on Feb. 23, 2007]


4:34 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Hit me too--I got 14 clicks at over $100 each on a campaign with a max cpc of .35
at least i'm not the only one....
does seem that they should send out an alert or something to stop people from having heart attacks when they open their accounts.


4:55 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

imagine if this was an issolated case happening to a few.

what could have happened then? it would have taken them an eternity to correct the issue.

now they are force to repair the system ASAP as they have probably millions of dollars in one day to be refunded.

very unhappy situation for a brand . it can kill them if they won;t react fast and won't refund every little cent and more then that if they are sued anyone can ask for damages and loses.

Normally they will work 24/24 and no sleep to correct the situation.


5:02 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Brent, you should elevate this thread to the home page. This is probably the biggest snafu in the history of PPC advertising....


5:05 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member


The adCenter team are still ascertaining the root cause in order to implement a resolution.

We completely understand your frustration with this issue and are pulling out all the stops to bring it to a swift conclusion.

Once we have fixed the issue we will decide on which and how customers are credited for any overspend due to the error and we hope you'll bear with us while we investigate.

We'll post back in the next 3 hours with further updates.

Thanks again for your patience on this matter.




5:05 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

I nearly had a heart attack this morning when I logged in to my adcenter account, my campaign had hit the limit and was paused, and my average cpc for yesterday gone through the roof!

I immediately phoned the call center at about 8.30 this morning (UK), which was answered within about 5 seconds, and the lady I spoke to had only received a couple of phone calls herself regarding this issue.

At the time she couldn't tell me much, only take my details, but she did phone me back later this afternoon and admit it was a balls up their end, that the techs are working on applying a patch to correct the problem, and that she would personally phone me again on Monday to discuss refund/credit and update with the situation.

Now obviously my campaign is paused and I am losing out big time here, especially if I have to wait until Monday, we're going to miss our monthly targets yada yada.

Two things need to happen (aside from the refund which is obvious):

1) The stats need to be fixed. I need that historical data, it is important to how I manage my campaigns and predict trends/future spend etc.

2) I need to know ASAP when this problem is fixed, so I can get my campaigns running again!

Regarding a previous comment about applying the base bid amount to those erroneous charges, well that is plain dumb if they do that. Microsoft should just refund the amount in full if they can't fix the problem properly.


5:10 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

We also paused our msn campaign now, the same CC is also powering two adwords campaigns..
cant afford to stop that traffic on top of the
relatively little msn traffic.. BUT we'll have to see when it stops,
seeing earlier posts in this thread. My biz partner said the CC was
NOT yet charged though, despite reaching the payment limit.. so maybe
adcenter USA did suspend billing...

[edited by: Drreggae at 5:11 pm (utc) on Feb. 23, 2007]


5:13 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

We've also been hit. Spend is up 400%. Average CPC for all campaigns exceeds max bid.


5:20 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Interesting, I just run a report for keyword performance for yesterday, breakdown per hour, and I can't see any erroneous costs. Everything looks to be good and correct.

This is not what I have been billed for however, and campaign management is showing highly inflated prices. 400-500% overcharged!

What do you guys get by running a report?


5:38 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

This has hit us too (adcenter UK).

Luckily we dont spend as much as some in this thread but its still a disgrace.

One keyword went from 32p to £3.29.......... :o



5:38 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member


Interesting. When I run an hourly report, the numbers are *mostly* right, but I'm still seeing some $XX.XX average CPC's.

Just took my account offline.

Spoke to a friend on the phone. His cost basis is up by 800%.

This + the Google quality score update hitting the same week = whiskey time


5:39 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

Same here. Lots of $20-30 clicks which is insane for my niche. All I can say is that if they were to charge everyone the max CPC for all of these clicks, they will lose half their advertisers for good and have a class action lawsuit on their hands within 5 minutes.


5:56 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Ha - thought I'd better check my account after reading this thread to see how much extra I had been charged. I had been ignoring my adcenter account for the last couple of months since it doesn't bring that many visitors and thus doesn't cost much.

The good news: I was not overcharged at all.

The bad news: All of my orders were "expired" and thus not showing any ads. As I remember they required you to have an "ending date" for orders when you initially set them up (at least in the beta testing) and so all of my orders had stopped showing ads about a month ago. I now have to go and reset all of my orders to "no expiration date".


6:18 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

I spoke with customer support and they will be refunding the money when the issue is resolved. They recommended that all campaigns be shut down, and I was given many assurances that the fallout from this issue would corrected.

I was paying $1,100 per click! max bid $1.97!

Also all of my campaigns were paused immediately, I asked if they would be sure to expedite the campaign change and they said it wouldn't be a problem.

It may be worthwhile to withstand the long hold times to make sure you're campaigns are shut down.


6:42 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Hi everyone,
I just got word from the Support team that this issue is now resolved and those of you who were overcharged, we're working on a plan to credit your accounts for over-charges as soon as possible.

I will keep you posted here and will update you as soon as I know more.

Thank you for your patience with this.



6:56 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

so .. now does anyone have the balls to restart their campaigns?


7:01 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member


Can you confirm it is ok to resume campaigns now then?


7:18 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

I can confirm that the campaigns are now working properly, I just received a call from MSN tech support stating that the problem is now resolved. Now to see how long its going to take to get or REFUND!


7:54 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Another customer support call.

Good News: Confirmed it is safe to turn accounts back on. Indicated that I would be charged average pricing not max pricing.

Bad News: Indicated that credits for advertising would be issued rather than refunds. The CSR was not certain, but could not guarantee a refund.

I am curious whether or not people think credits rather than refunds are an appropriate resolution to this issue. Whats your opinion?


8:16 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

This is not the first time I have been billed by adcenter for charges that were not due. They always credit the account and never refund. Although it may not be their intention, it gives the appearance of taking your money, then only giving you an adcenter credit so you will have to spend it with them. IF IT'S NOT DUE TO YOU GIVE IT BACK.


9:11 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Well I am not reactivating ads until I get the data for today in the morning.

Seriously though the support reps were not given enough info on how to respond to this, the adcentre site said 'no service issues' and its easy to move on and forget this but this has really mucked up my profitability analysis this month, my main concern now is that all my accounts are properly examined for credit/refund.

The other thing is that if they attempt to charge these massive extra costs to my credit cards they are going to refuse them, which means the accounts go offline and lets just say it can take rather a long time on the phone with adcenter to get the billing resumed based on past experience.

I think on one hand this is very embarrasing but on the other it means having to spend extra time each day now, ensuring everything looks normal. I believe in adwords you can see your daily spend for the current day so far, why not in adcenter? This might also enable quicker indication on any abnormal spend rather than having to wait a day to find out that its gone crazy.


9:30 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

On the Campaigns screen under "Yesterday", the high avg. cpc amounts that were previously showing are now back to where they normally are and monthly spend is now showing as less than it was earlier today. However the Billing section still reflects the abnormal click costs. Anyone else seeing this?


9:34 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

on one account it seems that my the charge from yesterday that was :

around $117 was reduced to $39 now as i look into my adcenter.

you should do the same


9:49 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Reports appear to have been normalized. Campaign interface for yesterday appears normalized.

Invoices including amounts described as "pending" still reflect overcharges.


9:51 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

campaigns is now showing the correct amount for me, as reported by the report tool earlier today.

Billing is still whacked out though. I should be getting a support call tomorrow and hopefully they will let me know about credit/refund. Obviously I think refund would be the preference for everyone, but certainly credit would be the easiest option for Microsoft.


9:52 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

i just talked to them.

the bug they say is gone and the part that is still no done is for the charges that will be automatically substracted from each account , no complaint needed to be done .

I hope they will fix this ASAP also.

i am putting my campaigns up and see what will happen

brrr brrr


10:29 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member


Apparently, you have balls the size of large cantaloupes. :)

Think I'll wait just a bit before restarting my campaigns.


10:36 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

5+ Year Member

Hi everyone,
Just a small update here -

Those of you who were affected by this issue - your account will automatically be credited the amount you were overcharged.

If your account has gone into a paused state due to this issue - the adCenter team is currently investigating this as a top priority and I'll will let you know when I have more details.

I apologize for this inconvenience and thank you again for your patience.



10:57 pm on Feb 23, 2007 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member


By credited do you mean that we will be refunded, or given credits forcing us to buy advertising on MSN. Many of us who were forced into pausing campaigns as a result of this, may not want to restart those campaigns.

Please clarify.

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