Google Ads took R1499.99 without my permission

newklear

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 15, 2008
Messages
655
#1
Good Day MyBB'ers

Yesterday R1499.99 was withdrawn from my Capitec Account with a full Google Ads Reference.
Last month November, I ran an Ad campaign and budget was R1000. Payment was deducted for that campaign in November.

When I log in to https://adwords.google.com, There are no active campaigns.

I have contacted Google with no response as of yet. I have been to Capitec and changed cards. The reversal is under review by Capitec and was told it can take up to 30 days for a refund. I had to pay R60 for a new card in the meantime and have been warned there might be additional charges.

Questions:
Has something similar happened to someone else and how did you rectify ?
Can I take Google to small claims court for the inconvenience and costs involved in recouping the money ?
 

Bond

James Bond
Joined
Nov 22, 2009
Messages
17,655
#5
He says when he logged in there are no active campaigns. @newklear is the transaction on your google account?
Yes, there aren't any active campaigns, but the money was debited because of his account, not someone else's. Hence why I don't think it's fraud, rather Google's mistake. If it's really Google themselves, what is the likelihood of that happening? Employee funneling funds through expired ad campaigns.
 

newklear

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 15, 2008
Messages
655
#6
Yes the transaction was on my google account. Same account that I previously ran the campaign on in November.

The SMS I received pretty much looked the same as the one before in November:
bummerGoogle.png
 
Joined
Apr 15, 2008
Messages
655
#7
After numerous attempts to contact Google on this issue it seems like I am banging on a brick wall. Google will not budge and insist it was a legitimate purchase, despite me showing screen shots of when campaign started and campaign ending. I feel Google's business model is designed to milk people and they are very reluctant to assist once money has been processed.

I have also been in contact with Capitec almost weekly chasing this up and have been told "It's still under investigation".

The amount of money is moot, just merely the principle of having unauthorised charges, with little say as a layman is shocking. Also having to waste money on phone calls, waste-age of time, hassle of changing bank account numbers and having to change this with all the various monthly debit order merchants has been an unpleasant experience. Lesson learned ;)
 

newklear

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 15, 2008
Messages
655
#9
Can google provide an invoice for the R1499 charge if they say it is legit, they are a business and obliged to do so?
I can see what Google have done. They carried over my daily limit and campaign even though I manually stopped & paused it 1 day later. See below:

2.png


And as for Google's last correspondence: "As per your recent e-mail, I would like to inform you that you have set up a daily budget of ZAR 1000 for your campaign which means (1000*30.4) your monthly budget is ZAR 30,400. However, you received clicks worth ZAR 1999.99 on Nov 23, 2018 exceeding your daily budget of ZAR 1000 and we realize that you did not intend to run the campaign for 30 days so we have not charged you for the remainder of the days outstanding."

In the email they have linked me to many references stating they cannot be held for the cutoff times of campaigns as there is a delay etc...
Also Googles claims a whole lot of hits and impressions, but when I check my domain stats for that period, I hardly had any traffic and registered 2 unique IP's.

When I argue that I paid R1000 that day of the campaign and was charged another R1499.99 on 23 December 2019, total I have paid comes to R2,499.99 which has not even been justified by their emails let alone value for money in product.

In my opinion Google have just purely ripped me off, with little room for recourse.
 
Last edited:

airborne

Executive Member
Joined
Jul 13, 2007
Messages
8,540
#10
So basically they have one of those stupid policies where they can't give an exact amount you will be charged ahead of the campaign, you set a limit and just hope that the final bill is around about that?

Is it not possible to prepay for the advertising, ie I only 1 day and only R1000 worth of advertising, once the R1000 has been used up they terminate the campaign?
 

chrisc

Executive Member
Joined
Aug 14, 2008
Messages
7,090
#11
I stopped using Google advertising when they said there had been 26 emailed enquries from the ad. During the period there was 1

Asked where the other 25 were, got no response. Told bank to stop all payments to Google
 

newklear

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 15, 2008
Messages
655
#12
So basically they have one of those stupid policies where they can't give an exact amount you will be charged ahead of the campaign, you set a limit and just hope that the final bill is around about that?

Is it not possible to prepay for the advertising, ie I only 1 day and only R1000 worth of advertising, once the R1000 has been used up they terminate the campaign?
I was under the impression I was pre-paying for 1 day period with a budget of R1000. I even made sure the next day to cancel and pause the campaign when I noticed a deduction of R1000 was already taken off my account. See above image (seems to load now even though I am battling constantly to update this thread)

What honestly irks me so much was that I had left enough money to go Christmas shopping in my Capitec account on Christmas eve for the children in our family. If I had known Google Ad's were going to take another R1499.99 I would have left more money available. I was unable to do that so felt like a proper twat come Christmas day when I had invited my family over.
 

newklear

Senior Member
Joined
Apr 15, 2008
Messages
655
#13
I stopped using Google advertising when they said there had been 26 emailed enquries from the ad. During the period there was 1

Asked where the other 25 were, got no response. Told bank to stop all payments to Google
Yep lesson learned the hardway now. Have come across quite a few horror stories from perusing the Google Ad's Forums.
 

jezzad

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 2, 2013
Messages
274
#14
I stopped using Google advertising when they said there had been 26 emailed enquries from the ad. During the period there was 1

Asked where the other 25 were, got no response. Told bank to stop all payments to Google
How did they report this to you? If you link analytics and have correct attribution and goals setup you should be able to track this yourself.

I use Google Ads for a handful of clients with various degrees of success.

In terms of driving relevant and converting traffic to a site its much much better than Facebook and a hell of a lot cheaper than Linkedin
 

jezzad

Well-Known Member
Joined
Jan 2, 2013
Messages
274
#15
I can see what Google have done. They carried over my daily limit and campaign even though I manually stopped & paused it 1 day later. See below:

View attachment 603316


And as for Google's last correspondence: "As per your recent e-mail, I would like to inform you that you have set up a daily budget of ZAR 1000 for your campaign which means (1000*30.4) your monthly budget is ZAR 30,400. However, you received clicks worth ZAR 1999.99 on Nov 23, 2018 exceeding your daily budget of ZAR 1000 and we realize that you did not intend to run the campaign for 30 days so we have not charged you for the remainder of the days outstanding."

In the email they have linked me to many references stating they cannot be held for the cutoff times of campaigns as there is a delay etc...
Also Googles claims a whole lot of hits and impressions, but when I check my domain stats for that period, I hardly had any traffic and registered 2 unique IP's.

When I argue that I paid R1000 that day of the campaign and was charged another R1499.99 on 23 December 2019, total I have paid comes to R2,499.99 which has not even been justified by their emails let alone value for money in product.

In my opinion Google have just purely ripped me off, with little room for recourse.
Unfortunately there is no daily budget limit for google. I also find this frustrating. Most clients have a monthly budget and I have to continuously monitor and adjust the daily limits to make sure we stay within their set monthly limits.

I agree that its not fair for them to charge you more when you have set a cap.

Double check the invoice in your account as you sometimes get refunded for fraudulent clicks.
 

theratman

Executive Member
Joined
Jan 21, 2008
Messages
7,940
#16
I had the same thing happen to me for adverts that Google later start running due to the content. Still charged me monthly for ads that weren't running and was a mission to get the payments cancelled. Lost around the same amount as you but just took it as school fees.
 
Joined
Apr 15, 2008
Messages
655
#17
Unfortunately there is no daily budget limit for google. I also find this frustrating. Most clients have a monthly budget and I have to continuously monitor and adjust the daily limits to make sure we stay within their set monthly limits.

I agree that its not fair for them to charge you more when you have set a cap.

Double check the invoice in your account as you sometimes get refunded for fraudulent clicks.
Figures have been adjusted and I can no longer open my previous campaign up for reference, just happy I made the time to screenshot. I have R6.62 in credit and Googles's attitude is that they have done me a favour. Still Google can GFY's as their invoicing doesn't even add up to the amount they have withdrawn.

Still waiting for Capitec's response and have given them all 48 hours before proceeding with charges.
 
Joined
Apr 15, 2008
Messages
655
#18
I had the same thing happen to me for adverts that Google later start running due to the content. Still charged me monthly for ads that weren't running and was a mission to get the payments cancelled. Lost around the same amount as you but just took it as school fees.
Sorry to hear about that, money is money irrespective of the amount. The principle is, theft here for me whether it is 5c or R5k.
 

theratman

Executive Member
Joined
Jan 21, 2008
Messages
7,940
#19
Sorry to hear about that, money is money irrespective of the amount. The principle is, theft here for me whether it is 5c or R5k.
I completely agree, if I'd had the patience I'd have fought it too. It was charged to the company so I just wrote it off. It did bring in a good bit of business (during the world cup) and it made the loss tolerable. I did immediately remove all stored payment methods afterwards though.

I really wish they'd use the Facebook billing model which is much more manageable. I hope you are able to recover the funds op.
 
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