A bug in the way Google determines quality scores for its pay per click advertising customers could be causing concern for online marketing service providers for the second time in three weeks.

Search Engine Land's Barry Schwartz reported in October a glitch in the company's system had resulted in many advertisers seeing their ratings drop, which can lead to a higher cost per click expenditure and prevent a business being competitive.

Google reassured customers that the problem was a reporting issue and would have no impact on ad prices, explaining the bug was displaying "quality score as incorrectly low in the account interface, while ad serving itself is not affected".

It appeared the error had been corrected, but now the analyst is reporting a similar bug has been affecting marketers.

He quoted a representative for the company as stating the new error was a "similar but separate issue" which the firm was investigating as a priority.

Mr Schwartz added any advertiser who witnessed their quality score dropping recently may have been affected by the bug and advised people not to panic.

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