Does Google Charge Itself API Fees?
I was looking at our firm's Google AdWords API bill this morning, and all those huge numbers reminded me that as Google becomes more and more of a competitor to the companies comprising the ecosystem around it, they have the distinct advantage of not having to pay AdWords API fees.
Does anyone know if the department within Google that uses the API makes an internal transfer to the department that runs the API? I seriously doubt it.
API access & associated fees are the SEM industry's water rights issue, and Google, as landlord of a large agricultural district that it has come to own fair & square, is now making the same mistake as their presidential candidate = not trusting free markets. By charging API fees to SEM firms but not themselves, Google is preventing SEM firms from investing to their fullest in building solutions that help advertisers profitably spend more on AdWords. Every dollar an SEM firm must spend on API fees is a dollar less spent on support for targeting functionality, or better client services, or marketing to get that technology in more advertisers' hands.
In a real way, Google charging API fees is driving down rents on the land Google owns - not a smart move for a landlord to make. So Google, as you think about how to overcome the macro-economy's effect on your SEM world, please rediscover free market economics and realize that the SEM community - if freed from unequal access to the water you lord over - will do that much more to help your/our customers spend more on AdWords.