Using consolidated billing

Consolidated billing is a popular choice for agencies, resellers, and large advertisers who work with multiple AdWords accounts and want to streamline their billing by receiving just one monthly invoice. To use consolidated billing you'll need to have, or create, a My Client Center (MCC) account.

We'll show you how to find out whether you qualify to use consolidated billing, how it works, how to set it up, and how to use consolidated billing once you've enabled it for your account.

You can use consolidated billing if the following applies to you:

  • You pay for AdWords on the monthly invoicing payment setting. That is, you receive a line of credit from Google and pay down your costs according to agreed-to terms and conditions. If you don't use monthly invoicing, you might be eligible to apply.
  • The same currency is used by all the accounts that you want to put on one invoice. If not, you can receive one consolidated invoice per currency.
  • You don't currently use Manager Defined Spend on any of the accounts you want to put on one invoice.

How it works

As you might know, in AdWords there's a difference between an AdWords account and an invoice setup. 

AdWords account

Invoice setup

This is the account you access when you sign in, and it's used to create ad campaigns. An AdWords account is connected to a single invoice setup.

This is used to pay for products and services. You can use an invoice setup to pay for multiple AdWords accounts.

If you pay for multiple AdWords accounts, you'll receive an invoice for each one. But if you put those AdWords accounts on consolidated billing, you'll receive just one monthly invoice. On the invoice, you'll see the amount spent for each AdWords account, the purchase order number, and a total amount due. You'll only need to make one invoice payment to cover all your costs.

Here's a comparison of standard billing and consolidated billing:

Standard Billing:

Standard billing

One AdWords account

Invoice created for one account

Invoice delivered

Consolidated Billing:

Consolidated billing

Multiple AdWords accounts

Invoices consolidated for all accounts

Invoice delivered

If you'd like more detailed information about costs in each AdWords campaign -- clicks, impressions, adjustments, or credits, for example -- you can download a spreadsheet (in .csv format). And if you pass along ad serving costs to your clients, we'll provide a .zip file containing a monthly cost report, showing activity for each AdWords account.

Set up consolidated billing

To set up consolidated billing, you need to have a My Client Center (MCC) account and contact an online specialist to set up permissions. Once they're ready, follow these steps to set up consolidated billing:

Put a new client's account on consolidated billing
  1. Sign in to your AdWords MCC account at https://adwords.google.com
  2. On the My Client Center tab, click the Budget tab.
  3. Click the account that you’d like to put on consolidated billing.
  4. Click the gear icon and choose Billing.
  5. On the "Account Setup" page, click the drop-down menu to select the country or territory where your billing address is located. Then click the Continue button.
  6. In the "Who pays" section, you should see your business or organization listed (as set up by your online specialist).
  7. If you want to pay for this account, select your business or organization and click the Continue button. If you're not responsible for paying for this account, select Create a new profile and follow the prompts to complete the process. This will create an account using the manual or automatic payment setting.
  8. On the next page, you'll select an existing invoice setup to be used for consolidated billing.

    Note

    If this is your first invoice setup or an invoice setup in a new currency, you'll see steps to set up standard billing, not consolidated billing. Don't worry -- you'll have a chance to set up consolidated billing once you have more AdWords accounts to combine on a single invoice.

  9. In the "Invoice setup" section, select Bill these costs to an existing invoice setup (consolidated billing) to add the client account to an existing invoice setup.
  10. Select an existing invoice setup that you'd like to use for consolidated billing or click the Change link if you’d like to select another available invoice. If your invoice setup is in a different currency, you won't be able to select it. Click the Continue button below.
  11. Next, in the "Ordering options" section, you'll create a budget order. You can leave the default settings or fill out the budget amount, requested start date, and other information.

    Tip

    It's a good idea to add a purchase order number to help your finance department verify the order.

  12. Click the Continue button.
  13. Review any agreements that have been accepted or need to be accepted before continuing. When ready, click Submit for review. Once your changes have been approved, your ads can start serving. Usually, this takes up to 20 minutes.
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Put an existing client's account on consolidated billing

If you've already set up billing for an AdWords account, you can put this existing account on consolidated billing.

While most accounts can be put on consolidated billing, some can't be for various reasons. If the steps below don't match what you see in your account, contact your online specialist.

  1. Sign in to your AdWords MCC account at https://adwords.google.com
  2. Click the client account that you'd like to put on consolidated invoicing.
  3. Once in that client's account, click the gear icon and choose Billing.
  4. Click the Billing settings link on the side of the page. There, you should see the invoice setup that is currently paying for the account. Click the Change invoice button.
  5. On the next page, in the "Provide a requested change date" section, select when you'd like this billing change to take effect.
  6. In the "Who pays" field, you should see your business or organization listed (as set up by your online specialist).
  7. Hover your cursor over the invoice setup that you'd like to link to this account and click the Select button that appears. Click the Continue button.

    Notes

    • If this is your first invoice setup, you'll see steps to set up regular billing, not consolidated billing. Don't worry -- you'll have a chance to set up consolidated invoicing once you have more AdWords accounts to put on a single invoice.

    • If your invoice setup is in a different currency, you won't be able to select it.
  8. Next, you'll create a budget order. You can leave the default settings or fill out the order budget, requested start date, and other information.

    Tip

    If you put an existing account on consolidated billing, keep in mind that all costs accrued in the account before the billing change date won't be transferred to the consolidated invoice. In other words, only costs accrued after this change takes effect can be combined on the consolidated invoice. We recommend you pick the first of the month as a start date to avoid receiving multiple invoices for a given month.

  9. Click the Continue button.
  10. Review any agreements that have been accepted or need to be accepted before continuing. When ready, click Submit for review. Once your changes have been approved, your ads can start serving. This can take up to 20 minutes.
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After setup: Using consolidated billing

If you manage AdWords accounts through MCC and you've set up consolidated billing, click the links below for directions about the following actions you can take.

View transaction history for a client account
  1. Sign in to your AdWords MCC account at https://adwords.google.com
  2. From the My Client Center tab, click the client account that you'd like to visit.
  3. Click the gear icon and choose Billing. You'll see a message letting you know that your AdWords account is part of a consolidated invoice.
  4. Adjust the date range as needed to view specific activity on the Transaction history page (by clicking the gear icon and choosing Billing).
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View and create budget orders for a client account
  1. Sign in to your AdWords MCC account at https://adwords.google.com
  2. From the My Client Center tab, click the client account that you'd like to visit.
  3. Click the gear icon and choose Billing. You'll see a message letting you know that your AdWords account is part of a consolidated invoice.
  4. Click the Orders link on the left-hand side of the page.
  5. If you want to create a new budget order for your client's account, click Create new budget order. You can also edit existing budget orders.
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Accessing invoices
  1. Sign in to your AdWords MCC account at https://adwords.google.com
  2. From the My Client Center tab, click any client account that's on consolidated billing.
  3. Click the gear icon and choose Billing.
  4. Click the Invoices link.

The Invoices page shows a summary of budget orders from all the AdWords accounts that are combined on this consolidated billing invoice setup. Budget orders can't be edited in the consolidated billing view. Visit a particular client account to do that.

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View and change your billing settings
  1. Sign in to your AdWords MCC account at https://adwords.google.com
  2. From the My Client Center tab, click any client account that's on consolidated billing.
  3. Click the gear icon and choose Billing.
  4. Click the Billing settings link.

On the Billing settings page, you can change the settings for your consolidated billing, including invoice delivery options and invoicing address.

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Find previous billing setups
If your client account has been converted from a different invoice setup to consolidated billing, you’ll be able to see your past billing data and invoices in the "Billing setup history" section. Here’s how:
  1. Sign in to your AdWords account at https://adwords.google.com
  2. Click the gear icon and choose Billing.
  3. Click the Billing setup history link on the left-hand side of the page.
  4. Click the billing account for which you’d like to see past billing data and invoices.
  5. Click the Invoices link on the left to see invoices.
  6. When finished, click “Return to current billing account” in the top right-hand corner.
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Types of access

The pages you’ll see under the gear icon and Billing vary depending on permissions.

  • Someone who uses MCC with standard and administrative access, and who manages a client account under consolidated billing, can access the following pages under the gear icon and Billing: Transaction history, Invoices, Orders, Settings, Billing Profile, and Billing setup history (if applicable).
  • Anyone who doesn't access the client account through the MCC will have view access to the client account's transaction history, Orders page, and the "Who pays" section on the "Settings" page.

Tip

Whenever you give your invoice setup a name, make it a memorable one, such as "consolidated billing." This will help you recognize it later when you set up consolidated billing for more AdWords accounts. Visit the Billing settings link (located under the gear icon and Billing) to edit invoice setup names.

Next steps