UPDATE: about two months after posting this article my account was working again, finally!!
Which problem am I talking about? I am talking about a problem I have experienced over the last few months which has had no resolution. I can login to my Google Adsense account but when I try and grab some ad code the following comes up on the screen:
“We apologize for the inconvenience, but we are unable to process your request at this time. Our
engineers have been notified of this problem and will work to resolve it.”
At first I thought: “Ok fair enough their engineers are on to it. I’ll wait for it to be fixed.” But logging in day-after-day nothing was getting fixed. Which I thought was strange, I need to take action here. Yet my Adsense ads are still showing fine on my sites so my account must be ok.
Long story short. If you don’t have time to read this whole post (it is quite long), the basic result is that:
- You are left with a critical issue.
Which you believe is being fixed when it isn’t.
You have no idea what has caused it.
No idea how to fix it.
With no way of getting help.
Isn’t that brilliant! Well done Google. If you want to read more about it read my journey below.
Searching the Exact Phrase
I typed the exact 2 sentences I was seeing in my account in to google surrounded by speech marks. I was hoping maybe one or two other people had experienced the same before and hopefully had a solution. Somewhat ridiculously the search engine returns 29,800 results for that exact phrase. I was pretty shocked, straight away realising this was a more common issue then I expected, and it was spanning back years.
I’ve clicked on quite a few of the results, they include many forums (including Google’s own), as well as blog posts, social posts and sites like Hubpages. This clearly then is something that many people have experienced. And this is just people who have reached out and pasted the exact 2 sentences, I would expect others have done so without pasting the exact message, and others will have not reached out at all and tried to fix it in private.
So how many people have been affected over the years? Obviously it’s hard to say, but given the amount of people on the 29,800 results asking for help, and adding on top those who haven’t pasted the exact code or reached out at all. It surely has to be well in to the thousands.
The ridiculous thing is; there is absolutely nothing officially about this from google. There are thousands of users who experience a serious issue (in that it debilitates their Adsense account, you can’t get much more serious) and yet there is no help for it, absolutely nothing, not a sausage. Add on top of that; if you only generate small amounts of revenue you can’t even contact another human being at the company for help. You are left well and truly in the dark. How pathetic. To my mind they shouldn’t be allowed to let you have an account and then not allow you to contact them. That should be illegal when money is involved.
What rub’s quite a lot of salt in to the wound is that the message says “Our engineers have been notified of this problem and will work to resolve it.” Clearly though that isn’t the case because my account has been the same for many months now, and I haven’t received any communication about the issue or anything. To say your engineers are on to something, when they clearly aren’t, is horrible.
The end result: You are left with a critical issue, which you believe is being fixed when it isn’t, you have no idea what has caused it, and no idea how to fix it, with no way of getting help. Brilliant Google, absolutely brilliant.
I understand massive corporations like Google have billions in revenue and a vast amount of users. So to them the small guy like me is irrelevant. Could they give a toss I can’t grab my code, obviously not, because first they lie saying their engineers are on to it, and second they don’t even give me the ability to communicate with them. But when you have it affecting a lot of people like this over a long period of time. That is not acceptable.
And they are harming themselves too, some small Adsense publishers will go on to grow their website significantly and generate much higher Adsense revenues. I have put a lot of work into this website and have a new regular publishing schedule planned. Some of my tests have gone very well with news articles getting traffic levels far ahead of my expectations. Once my regular publishing kicks in (when my monetisation plan is completed, somewhat ironically given this issue!) I expected to be generating some reasonable Adsense revenue (my plans have obviously changed now). This is a prime example. Yet this issue is stopping that.
With this issue, and not helping users with it. They are stopping themselves getting revenue.
From the users’ point of view of the Google company, you have to ask yourself “What kind of a company leaves thousands of users with a critical issue?”. And from a business and/or investment point of view you have to ask “What kind of a company is happy to let revenue slip away like this?”.
What Actions Have I Taken to Remedy it?
On a couple of forums I had seen people mention to try different browsers, remove an ‘adblocker’ Firefox extension and try different computers. So with this advice here are the actions I took.
Efforts made to fix the issue.
- Tried using IE, Chrome, FF and Opera. None Worked. Tried using PC and laptop. No fix.
- Removed all of my browser extensions. Also deleted all history and the restarted the browser. No fix. Restarted whole laptop. No fix.
- Sent a dissapproved resubmit request to Google. In case my account had been disapproved, despite me not receiving an email or anything like that. Reply came back saying no issue assosciated with the account, therefore is it still approved.
- Asked a question on the Google forum for help. No responses, even after a bump.
- Sent feedback form from using the ‘New Homepage’ in Google Adsense, no response yet.
- Tweeted @adsense (Tweet), no response.
- Deleted all files in %temp% folder. No fix.
- Got rid of ‘Rapport’ installation on my laptop. No fix.
- Performed a ‘whole computer scan’ on laptop using AVG to check is clean. Was all clear.
- Then disabled AVG to try again. No fix.
- Turned off pop-up blocker. No fix.
As you can see I spent a long time trying to sort it. And even now as I publish this it still isn’t working. It has been 3 months like so I think I have given them a long time to sort it. But nothing.
If you have experienced the same thing and are here looking for a solution. I would recommend you look at alternatives to Adsense. Consider your businesses revenue generating methods and take a proper look into placing highly targeted affiliate ads instead. Get that right and you no longer have to rely on one company. With optimization affiliation can also get higher revenue, so don’t see it as a problem, see this is an opportunity.
Sorry Google, but it’s a joke to let so many users and have this problem, and offer no support and no resolution. Horrible.