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Another Tool Maker Forced To Choose Between AdWords API And Scraped Data

by on December 11, 2012

Last week, search marketing software provider Raven decided to stop using scraped data after Google’s AdWords API team threatened to revoke the company’s token. Now, a second tools provider, Ahrefs, says it, too, will remove functionality that uses scraped data, to maintain access to the AdWords API.


Ahrefs announced the change on its website

A third provider, SEOmoz, has said it has lost access to the AdWords API, but didn’t elaborate on the reason.

Though Google denies conducting any sort of crackdown, it does seem that the team monitoring compliance with the AdWords API’s terms of service are being more zealous than they’ve been in previous years, as Raven, for one, has operated for years with no complaint from Google. In informing customers about the change, Ahrefs seems to recognize that the landscape has changed.

“We decided to stop paying for scraped data as it violates Google’s Terms of Service and puts our service on shaky ground nowadays.,” said the Ahrefs team in a blog post, later adding, “…Google is strongly discouraging the use of scraped data and we will stop providing keyword tools, them being a useful addition but not the main focus of our service.”

Ahrefs will continue to offer its Keywords Analysis feature through January 11, and the offering — along with export capabilities — will be free to all registered users between now and then. The company says the change will allow it to focus its efforts on maintaining its index of back links.

Related Topics: Google: AdWords | Google: APIs

About The Author: is a contributing editor for Search Engine Land and Executive Features Editor at Marketing Land. She’s a well-respected authority on digital marketing, having reported and written on the subject since 1998, including a stint as managing editor of ClickZ. She’s also worked to help monetize independent publishers’ sites at Federated Media Publishing. She blogs about media and marketing at The River and about cooking, gardening and parenthood at Free Range. She can be found on Twitter as @pamelaparker.

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