Dana Berg | Jan 8 2023
Click fraud is a growing problem for pay-per-click (PPC) advertisers all around the world and for all types of industries, with estimates suggesting that the cost of digital ad fraud worldwide increased significantly between 2018 to 2023, reaching a cost of 100 billion dollars. In the United States alone, the cost of ad fraud activity in 2022 is estimated to have reached 81 billion dollars. This is a significant increase from previous years and highlights the importance of taking steps to prevent, detect, and protect your business from fraudulent activity.
So, what is click fraud and how does it impact PPC advertisers? Simply put, click fraud is the practice of artificially inflating the number of clicks on an advertisement through the use of automated processes or manual clicks. This can be done by competitive advertisers, publishers, or even site owners in an attempt to earn more money from PPC advertising, it can be committed through the use of bots or other automated software, or through manual clicks by individuals.
The impact of click fraud on PPC advertisers can be significant. Not only does it waste advertising budget, but it can also distort data and lead to inaccurate tracking of ad performance, generating the wrong ROI. This can make it difficult for a business to optimize its campaigns and make informed decisions about their Google Ads and other PPC strategies. In addition, click fraud can lead to decreased trust in online advertising and discourage businesses from investing in digital marketing.
So, what can PPC advertisers do to protect themselves from click fraud? Here are some tips:
- Implement filters to block automated fraudulent clicks: Advertisers can use Clixtell to identify and block immediate and automated clicks from bots and other types of malicious software. Our filters can help to eliminate a significant portion of click fraud, as a large portion of click fraud is committed through the use of automated software.
- Analyze traffic patterns to identify unusual activity: Google Ads Advertisers can use Clixtell’s analytics report to identify patterns of traffic that may indicate click fraud, such as a high number of clicks coming from a single IP address, IP range, or a high number of clicks in a short period of time. By analyzing traffic patterns, advertisers can identify anomalies and investigate further to determine whether click fraud is occurring and block them imminently so that in a new search the paid ads won’t appear again to the attacker.
- PPC Advertisers can use Clixtell’s real-time click fraud monitoring tool to identify suspicious activity as it occurs, such as multiple clicks from suspicious networks, device ID, Wrong GEO locations, VPN’s or clicks that do not result in a visit to the advertiser’s website and block it immediately. We can help advertisers to quickly identify and stop click fraud as it happens, minimizing the impact on their campaigns.
- Obtain a refund: If click fraud is suspected, marketers can use the click fraud report provided by Clixtell to document the fraudulent activity and potentially obtain a refund from Google and Bing. While obtaining a refund will not completely eliminate the impact of click fraud, it can help to offset some of the costs and provide some financial relief for affected advertisers.
In addition to the steps listed above, a business can also take steps to reduce the risk of PPC fraud by being careful about who they partner with for advertising. This includes carefully vetting publishers and avoiding working with those who have a history of click fraud. Advertisers should also be wary of offers that seem too good to be true, as these may be scams designed to defraud advertisers.
Preventing and detecting click fraud can help protect your business and make sure your advertising budget is being used effectively. Click fraud is a big issue, but being proactive can reduce its impact on your campaigns.
It is important for all Google Ads, Bing ads, and Facebook ads customers to stay vigilant and stay up to date on how to prevent and detect click fraud, with all the latest news from us and Google. By taking these steps, advertisers can protect their businesses and ensure that their advertising budget is being guarded and used effectively.