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What You Need To Know About Click Fraud

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What you need to know about click fraud

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What You Need To Know About Click Fraud

For anyone working in the digital marketing industry, click fraud is something dreaded as it can get in the way of what could have otherwise been a successful campaign for PPC. The goal of every advertiser is to get as much ROI through the ads that you strategically display where you think your target audience will find them. The problem with click fraud is that it makes you spend money on clicks that are actually fraudulent.

Click fraud is a waste of resources because you’re paying for fake clicks and at the same time your data’s reliability is affected as well.

While there’s no way to stop click fraud entirely, it can help if you understand what click fraud is and where those are coming from. 

Here’s what you need to know about Click Fraud.

What Is Click Fraud?

According to Wikipedia, “click fraud occurs when a person, automated script, computer program or an auto clicker imitates a legitimate user of a web browser, clicking on such an ad without having an actual interest in the target of the ad’s link”

In other words, click fraud is a type of ad fraud wherein they generate clicks for the purpose of sabotaging competitors. This can be done manually by people or it can be performed by a click bot. 

A good example of click fraud is done on mobile phones, when you install an app and you suddenly see an ad right before you install it. This is called click injection wherein a click bot injects itself right before you hit that last click. 

What happens is that they take credit for that action taken. In a nutshell, it’s getting rewarded when it’s not even doing anything in relation to that app installation.

Click fraud is prevalent because of how much money is involved in Pay Per Click advertising. Offenders either directly or indirectly get the funds for those ads.

Who Is Behind Click Fraud?

Click fraud offenders target all businesses, no matter how big or small across all industries. Here are some of those offenders:

Competitors

There are certain strategies that can help you rank high for keywords, but there is only one ad at the top of the ranks. Your competitors could be wasting your ad budget through fraudulent clicks. Say, you set a daily limit for clicks then your ad will be taken down once that limit is reached. Then your competitor has the rest of the day to work on ranking first.

Fraud Rings

Believe it or not, there are actual groups of people whose sole intention is to do fraudulent acts. In the case of those behind click frauds, they aim to gain ad revenue through fake clicks and they do it on a massive scale. Most of these rings own multiple websites and IP addresses. Just how big can they go? Methbot, the largest ad fraud ring to have been discovered, was able to generate over $36 million in fraudulent earnings between 2014-2018.

Webmasters

Webmasters are those publishers who own ad spaces on their websites. They then charge advertisers for each click from site visitors. While there’s technically nothing wrong with that, there are some who abuse this by generating fake clicks so they get higher ad revenue. Because these do not come from actual site visitors, the advertisers do not gain anything from it and they end up wasting money.

Are you suspecting that you might be a subject of click fraud?

Click fraud is indeed one of the worst threats for PPC campaigns. To ensure that you won’t be a victim of it, you should get a seasoned digital marketing consultant to manage your campaigns who could help you decide how much budget you should allocate for ads and monitor their performance.

Related article: How to avoid click fraud

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