Understanding why you've been charged

  • With Google Ads, you won't be charged for more than your advertising costs, not including tax and fees that may apply to some countries.
  • Your charge covers your advertising costs and unpaid costs from previous billing cycles, plus tax and fees that may apply to some countries.
  • However, your charge won't exceed your payment threshold.

Your charge

Your charge covers your advertising costs, tax and fees (if any) as well as any unpaid costs, which include tax and fees, from previous billing cycles.

Charged amount = Current costs

(costs from this billing period)

+ Outstanding balance

(unpaid costs from previous billing periods)

If your total advertising costs are greater than your payment threshold (the amount that triggers a charge), the extra costs will be added to your outstanding balance for the next charge.

Example 1

Your monthly spend is less than your payment threshold (the balance amount that triggers a charge), such as in the following circumstances:

  • Your last payment date was on July 15th
  • Your payment threshold is $50
  • Your monthly spend for August is $49 
  • In the above example you’ll be charged for $49 on August 15th.

Example 2

If your monthly spend is greater than your payment threshold (the balance amount that triggers a charge), such as in the following circumstances:

  • Your last payment charge was July 15th
  • Your payment threshold is $250
  • Your monthly spend for August is $275 
  • In the above example you’ll be charged for $250 in August, on a date when your balance crosses the $50 payment threshold. Additionally, you’ll  be charged for the remaining balance of $25 on August 15th.

Common questions about charges

Click the links below to answer questions about charges that you've seen.

Charged more than once in a month

Charges don't usually happen once a month or at the end of the month. They can happen multiple times throughout the month, and are based primarily on thresholds—or the set amount of costs that your account reaches. This amount triggers a charge, so it means you might be charged more than once in a month. If you never cross your payment threshold amount within a month, then you will get automatically charged on the same date every month (there may be changes to your automatic payment date to allow for shorter months or leap years). 

Example

If your threshold is $500, then you'll be charged every time that your costs reach $500 within the same month. If your costs total $1500 in a month, you'll be charged $500 three times (3 x 500 = 1500).

Example

If your last automatic payment was on August 31st, your threshold is $500, and you never go above that threshold within a month, then your next automatic charge will happen on September 30th and all future months. Keep in mind: February has fewer days, and during February you’ll be charged on the 28th (or February 29th in a leap year). 

Identical charges

This rarely happens, but if you see two identical charges from Google Ads on your credit card or bank statement, there might be two reasons:

  • Authorization request: This is a request between our billing system and the bank that issued your credit card. It happens nearly every time a payment is made, and the request appears as a pending amount that's identical to an already processed charge. These requests normally disappear within several days, although this can vary by bank.
  • Double charge: An error can cause a double charge, which means your account is billed twice for the same amount, and neither charge is marked as pending on your statement.

If your bank statement shows a double charge, or if it shows an authorization request that doesn't go away on its own, contact your bank for help.

Be sure to review your outstanding balance by clicking the tool icon  and then under "Billing," click Billing summary. See if both payments are there and the balance is correct. If they are, there's no need to contact Google.

Charged for more than average daily budget on some days

Internet search traffic fluctuates from day to day. To make up for these fluctuations and to ensure that your campaigns reach their potential, Google may allow up to 2x more interactions in one day than your average daily budget specifies. We call this overdelivery.

However, our system makes sure that in a given billing period, you're never charged more than the number of days in that billing period multiplied by your average daily budget.

For example, if you budget US$10 per day, and you're charged for a monthly billing period, the maximum you would pay is US$300.

If Google overdelivers your ads and you accrue more costs in a billing period than your budget allows, a credit will automatically be applied to your account. For instance, if you accrue $35 in clicks in one month, but you have an average daily budget of $1 per day (and therefore $30 per monthly billing period), you'll receive a $5 overdelivery credit.

Note: pay for conversions campaigns are billed differently, and can be billed for more than 2 times the average daily budget. 

To see whether you've received any overdelivery credits:

  1. Sign in to your Google Ads account.
  2. At the top of the page, click the tools icon  and then under "Billing," choose Summary. Go there now
  3. Click Transactions from the menu on the left.
  4. Click Campaign activity.
  5. Any credits for excess activity will be labeled Overdelivery credit.
Charged after already initiating a manual payment

If you use the automatic payment setting and then make a manual payment, you might be charged on your automatic billing cycle. Here's why:

  • An automatic payment was already in progress when you initiated your payment: The automatic payment cycle is punctual, so if you made your payment when this process was underway, you might still be charged. This is most likely to happen if you make a payment when you're close to your billing threshold, at the end of the calendar month, or at the end of a monthly billing period.
  • You reached the end of your billing cycle: After you make a manual payment, your account returns to its usual billing cycle. You'll receive an automatic charge after your account costs reach your payment threshold, or after on the same payment date as your last automatic payment, whichever happens first.
Charged after entering a promotional code

Once your promotional credit runs out, your ads will continue to run and you'll accrue advertising costs—if you're on the automatic payment setting, that is. If you've used up your credit and want to stop accruing costs, pause your campaigns.

Charged outside billing cycle

You might be charged outside your billing cycle in the following cases:

  • You've made a manual payment (by clicking on the Make a payment button in your account). Although automatic payments are processed within a set billing cycle, you can make a manual payment at any time.
  • Your account might recently have been upgraded to a new billing interface. When this happens, you're charged for your account balance at the time of this upgrade—you're not being charged for the upgrade. This one-time charge is outside of your normal billing cycle. All your future charges should be within your usual billing cycle.
Charged after you stopped your ads or canceled your account

When you stop your ads from running—by canceling your account or pausing or removing your campaigns—the Google Ads system can take several hours to halt your ads completely. At this point, you won't accrue any more costs.

However, you'll be billed for any unpaid advertising costs that accrued before your ads stopped running. Our system operates on a monthly billing cycle, so you might not receive your final charges for several weeks.

To see whether you have any unpaid advertising costs, click the tools icon  and then under "Billing," choose Summary, then look at your current balance at the top of the page.

Charges on bank statement don't match your Google Ads account

Sometimes, your bank statement charges look a bit different from those you see in your Google Ads account. Here are some common reasons why:

Charges are off by a day or two
In most cases, this is expected because charges can post to Google Ads and bank statements on different days. Since both Google Ads and banks operate on different systems, payments don't always happen at the same time.

Bank charges aren't appearing in Google Ads
If this happens, here's what you can do to review the two accounts:

  1. If you have more than one Google Ads account, check each account to see if the charges appear (in many cases, your 10-digit customer ID number is shown on your bank statement). See more about how charges appear below, or learn more about unauthorized charges.
  2. If you still can't figure out where the charge is coming from, you can contact our support team. Have a screenshot or scanned copy of the charges in question ready. This will help us research the charge more easily. And be sure to block out all charges and other information that isn't associated with the charge in question—your privacy is important to us.
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