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The difference between Ad spend and Transactions

This article explains the difference between Ad spend and Transactions.

Ad spend

  • PaymentAd spend is how much your campaigns cost
    • This number can vary depending on the CPC amount, the number of views, etc., depending on the type of campaign and its reach.


  • A transaction is a single charge to your payment method from the ads account
  • Google and Facebook set a specific threshold amount and will automatically charge your payment method each time the amount is accrued in Ad Spend
  • You can adjust the threshold amount depending on how often you prefer your payment method to be charged.

Why are these numbers different?

  • While both amounts technically represent how much your dealership spent in digital marketing, each number is calculated differently for the same month and will lead to different results
    • Ad Spend is a rolling balance that is paid down by incremental Transactions. Ad Spend built up at the end of one month may not be charged for until the next threshold is met in the following month
  • February’s Ad spend may total $1000 but results in 3 transactions. Transactions will continue to pay down the Ad Spend each time it reaches the threshold.

  • If an Ad Account stops running ads and there is a remaining ad spend balance, it will be charged the balance regardless of the amount

  • Ad Spend Totals can be broken down by campaign performance, Transactions can not
  • Transactions appear on your credit card statement and will more directly impact your accounting effort

Last Updated: Feb 26, 2020 1:36 PM

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