Bulletin: Ad cost prioritization

  • What's changing: Cost prioritization per reporting method
  • Where's it changing: Aggregate data reports 
  • Publication date: February 4, 2020
  • Who is affected: Advertisers, ad networks, and agencies

Before the change

Campaign costs--for a single media source on a given day--might be reported using more than one reporting method. This led to duplicate cost reporting.

After the change

Cost reported using the highest prioritization method is the cost shown in the dashboard.

Now, you can report cost using multiple methods, but the ad-cost prioritization mechanism ensures that duplicate costs are not reported.

  • Change impacts aggregate data reports and dashboards.
  • But, there is no change to click costs in the raw data.



Scenario: An ad network reports cost per click, but you decide to enable the ad network's Cost API.

Result: Cost is reported by both click and Cost API. Since Cost API has priority, click costs are ignored.


  • Possible to implement multiple cost-reporting methods. The actual reported cost is affected by the cost method priority rules set out in the table below.
  • Change affects agency-generated traffic in the same manner. This includes both transparent and non-transparent agencies. 
  • The change has retroactive impact. Historical aggregate cost data can change. 
Method Description

Cost API

  • Highest priority
  • Most precise [best practice] method
  • Cost API vs. Ad Spend Ingestion: If an integrated partner has Cost API, then Ad Spend Ingestion is disabled. Note! This occurs even if Cost API isn't activated.
  • Enable Cost API: 
    • On any day Cost API is enabled click cost is ignored. 
    • On the day you enable Cost API it gets cost data for the entire day; it doesn't matter at what time during the day it was enabled. Click cost is ignored for the entire day.
    • It may take several hours for data to be available after you enable the API. 
  • Disable Cost API: On the day you disable Cost API click cost is ignored until the beginning of the next day. Example: On Monday at 14:00 Tokyo time, the API is disabled. On Tuesday from 00:00 Tokyo time, clicks are no longer ignored.
Ad Spend Ingestion
  • At the campaign level, has priority over clicks 
  • Ad Spend Ingestion vs. Click on a given campaign day:
    • Priority is given to cost recorded by ingestion for that day; click cost is ignored. 
    • Example: abc_campaign on 5 and 10 December
      • Record ingest campaign costs.
      • Click costs are ignored.
      • No other campaigns or dates are impacted.
  • If an ad network has a Cost API, then Ad Spend Ingestion is disabled for that same ad network.

Lowest priority

Cost method priority rules


Preparing for the change

  • If possible, use the more precise Cost API.
  • Remember, implementing the ad-cost prioritization mechanism can affect historical cost records.
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