Pay per click (PPC) is increasingly popular among small business marketers, improving profit revenues as businesses are able to reach a widened pool of potential customers with the click of a button.
However, this does come with a level of risk and experts from Click Guardian are here to tell you more…
What is click fraud?
Click Fraud involves the clicking of online ads to exhaust a company’s daily advertising budget and the efficiency of their campaign.
Click fraud comes in many different forms, from manual clicking at the hands of competitors, to those originating from ‘bot’ software or click farms across the world (where staff are employed with poor pay solely to click ads).
Most businesses using the web for marketing purposes use Google AdWords, Google’s own PPC platform; a channel not immune to click fraud.
If you currently advertise using AdWords, or are thinking of doing so, then it’s likely you would’ve already asked the question; what happens if my ads are repeatedly or maliciously clicked?
This isn’t surprising as click fraud is increasingly concerning for all PPC users.
A £5 billion problem
It has been reported that click fraud cost marketers over £5 billion during 2016 alone.
Click fraud is becoming more and more diverse as technology develops, meaning no ads or platforms (from Google AdWords to BING Ads) are safe from its grasp, and this cost is only set to rise.
The questions is, what steps can you take to prevent click fraud?
Steps to save your business money
Fortunately, search engines seem to be taking this problem seriously, providing users with information on how this can affect advertisers so that they are able to work on improving their online ad campaigns.
For example, users can very easily enable the invalid clicks column on Google AdWords to display their exposure to click fraud including how many invalid clicks they’re receiving and the rate at which these are being detected by the AdWords system.
That said, the information you’re presented with is still limited, as these columns can only be enabled at campaign level.
Due to the lack of information available to users, it can lead them to be left disappointed and confused, especially for those that rely on the simplicity of the process.
Determined PPC managers and advertisers crave more information and rely on accurate insights into their campaign, without unnecessary jargon or hidden costs.
These details have always been kept under lock and key by Google, who are infamously hesitant to admit areas of weakness; such as vulnerability to click fraud.
As a result of this secrecy from the likes of Google, analytical systems have launched as third-party services to combat click fraud in recent years.
These systems are now able to monitor every paid click at an affordable price, suiting even the smallest of advertising budgets.
The main problem with click fraud when left undetected is how quickly this can raise costs, often to the point where advertisers mistakenly conclude that PPC doesn’t work.
Click fraud solutions
Click Fraud solutions such as our own offer an easy-to-use system which monitors every paid click and analyses them to ensure the visitor is genuine.
This tracking is 24hour, differentiating between all organic and paid clicks. For example, once these are separated, Click Guardian offer a series of settings and rules which help to give advertisers complete control with different levels of sensitivity.
Using these types of solutions in the fight against click fraud means you’ll be in control of how visitors interact with your ads, blocking those who abuse your campaign and ensuring full potential of your advertising budget so it isn’t wasted.
This issue has never been more crucial and is set to only become more competitive; investing in click fraud prevention is an invaluable money-saving solution.
Guest author : Roy Dovaston is Operations Manager at Click Guardian, the UK’s number 1 click fraud software solution. Think click fraud could be affecting your campaign performance? Visit: https://www.clickguardian.co.uk