How to Calculate Refunds in Google Ads

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Google Ads is a popular advertising platform that offers businesses and marketers the ability to reach their target audiences with ease. While the platform is generally reliable, there are occasions when invalid clicks or ad impressions lead to wasteful spending. Fortunately, refunds are available to help you recoup the lost funds. In this article, you will learn how to calculate refunds in Google Ads and take advantage of the platform's refund policy.

Understanding Google Ads Refunds

Before we delve into the specifics of calculating refunds in Google Ads, let's first get an overview of the refund process. A refund in Google Ads refers to the funds returned to your account by Google due to invalid clicks or impressions that occurred on one of your ads. Essentially, if Google deems certain clicks or impressions to be fraudulent or invalid, they'll refund you the cost of those clicks or impressions automatically.

Reasons for Google Ads Refunds

So, what constitutes invalid clicks or impressions? Invalid clicks or impressions are clicks or impressions that are deemed fraudulent by Google. It includes clicks or impressions that may result from malicious actions such as click farms or bots. Clicks or impressions that are too frequent and originate from a single IP address are also considered invalid.

However, it's important to note that not all clicks or impressions that you think are invalid may be deemed so by Google. For instance, if you notice a sudden surge in clicks or impressions on your ad, it may not necessarily mean that they're fraudulent. It could be due to a legitimate increase in interest in your product or service. It's always best to let Google investigate the issue before assuming that the clicks or impressions are invalid.

Google Ads Refund Policy

Google has a solid refund policy where it refunds the cost of any clicks or impressions that it deems invalid. This refund policy applies to all Google Ads campaigns and it's also available to merchants on the Google Merchant Center that run Google Shopping Ads. The refund is usually credited directly to your Google Ads account and you can use it to offset future ad costs.

It's important to note that Google Ads refunds are not a guarantee. While Google does have a robust system in place to detect and prevent invalid clicks and impressions, it's not foolproof. There may be instances where Google misses some invalid clicks or impressions, or where it deems some legitimate clicks or impressions as invalid. In such cases, you may not be eligible for a refund.

Additionally, it's important to monitor your Google Ads account regularly to ensure that you're not falling victim to click fraud. Click fraud is a type of online fraud where someone intentionally clicks on your ad with no intention of actually engaging with your product or service. Click fraud can be costly and can negatively impact your ad performance, so it's important to take steps to prevent it.

In conclusion, understanding Google Ads refunds is crucial for any advertiser. By knowing the reasons for refunds and Google's refund policy, you can ensure that you're not losing money due to invalid clicks or impressions. Additionally, by monitoring your account regularly and taking steps to prevent click fraud, you can ensure that your ad performance remains strong and effective.

Setting Up Your Google Ads Account for Refunds

Now that you have an understanding of Google Ads refunds, it's time to set up your Google Ads account to receive refunds. Here's how to go about it:

Linking Your Google Ads and Google Merchant Center Accounts

If you're a merchant on the Google Merchant Center, you'll need to link your account with your Google Ads account to receive refunds. To do this, go to your Merchant Center account, click on "Tools," then "AdWords," and follow the prompts to link your Merchant Center and Ads accounts.

Enabling Refund Settings in Google Ads

To enable refunds in Google Ads, head over to your Google Ads account and click on "Tools & Settings", "Billing & Payments", then "Payment Profile". On the Payment Profile page, scroll down to find the "Automatic refunds" section. Ensure that the "Enable" button is toggled on.

Identifying Invalid Clicks and Ad Impressions

While Google Ads automatically detects and refunds invalid clicks and impressions, it's important to monitor your account regularly to identify suspicious activities. Here's how to go about it:

What Constitutes Invalid Clicks and Impressions

Invalid clicks or impressions can come from many sources, including bots, script-generated traffic, clicks from a competitor, or even a mistake. It's essential to keep an eye for any unusual activity on your Google Ads account as it could be an indication of fraudulent activities.

Monitoring Your Google Ads Account for Suspicious Activity

To monitor your Google Ads account for suspicious activities, navigate to the "Campaigns" page in your Ads account. Look for campaigns with unusually high click-through rates (CTR) or conversion rates, as these could indicate fraudulent clicks or impressions. It's also a good idea to check for campaigns with lots of clicks or impressions but no conversions.

Requesting a Refund for Invalid Clicks and Impressions

Once you've identified invalid clicks or impressions on your account, the next step is to request a refund. Here's what you need to know:

Gathering Necessary Information for Your Refund Request

Before requesting a refund, you'll need to gather certain information to support your refund claim. You'll need to provide details like campaign, ad group, and ad ID to prove that the clicks or impressions were invalid. You'll also need to provide screenshots of the suspicious activity to support your claim.

Submitting a Refund Request through the Google Ads Interface

To submit a refund request, navigate to the "Billing" tab on your Google Ads interface and select "Request a refund". On the refund request page, provide details of your refund request, including a detailed explanation of the invalid clicks or impressions. Submitting this request will start the refund process.

Following Up on Your Refund Request

After submitting your refund request, it's essential to monitor your account activity and follow up with Google to ensure the refund process is progressing. If you don't hear back from Google or don't receive the refund you expected, don't hesitate to follow up with them.

Calculating Refunds for Disapproved Ads and Campaigns

While invalid clicks and impressions are the primary reasons for refunds, it's also possible to receive refunds for campaigns that Google disapproves of. Here's how to go about calculating refunds for disapproved campaigns:

Reasons for Ad Disapproval

Ad disapprovals can result from issues like a violation of a Google Ads policy, improper punctuation or capitalization, a broken link, or a mismatch between the landing page and the ad.

Requesting a Refund for Disapproved Ads and Campaigns

To request a refund for disapproved ads or campaigns, head over to the "Policy issues" tab on your Google Ads interface and click on the "Request a review" button. Upon review, if Google finds that your ad was disapproved in error, they'll refund you the cost of the disapproved ad or campaign.


Google Ads is an excellent platform for businesses and marketers to reach their target audiences. However, there are instances where invalid clicks and impressions occur, leading to wasteful spending on adverts. Knowing how to calculate refunds in Google Ads is an essential skill for anyone that wants to take their advertising seriously. Follow the steps outlined in this article to set up your Google Ads account for refunds, identify invalid clicks and impressions, and request refunds. With proper monitoring and follow-up, you can seamlessly recoup losses, while keeping your advertising budget in control.

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