What is click fraud?

It’s estimated that one out of five clicks on sponsored links is generated by a fraud. This can waste up to 20% of your budget, not to mention your ads aren’t delivered to potential customers and don’t lead to conversions.

What is click fraud?

Click fraud is a phenomenon that concerns businesses advertising their products online in pay-per-click (PPC) billing model. In PPC, an advertiser pays for each click on an ad. It doesn’t matter if that click was followed by a conversion or a purchase, or it brought the person who clicked your ad only to visit and leave your site. Each click will charge your budget. This is both an asset and a disadvantage of that system because PPC billing method is often used by unfair competition. How can they harm you exactly?

Imagine you have just launched an ad for a new product in Google Ads. You’ve got a well-written ad text, an eye-catching graphics, and an optimal daily budget. You bet 1,000 potential customers click on your ad daily. You might be already rubbing your hands with glee at the prospect of the revenue generated by your web shop. However, the ad has been running for a few days already but its effects are weaker than predicted. In statistics, you can see visits of your potential customers but it doesn’t translate into forecasted profit. What’s more, the majority of users who clicked your link doesn’t even go to the product page. “What is wrong,” you wonder. “Don’t they like my product? The ad? Wrong target group?” Nothing of the kind.

You’ve probably been a target of an unfair competitor who is currently “clicking out” your advertising budget. You’ve become a victim of click fraud.

Click fraud happens when people not interested in your product or service click on your ad link. To do this, frauds usually either hire people who manually click ads (so-called click farms) or use dedicated bots. In other words, click fraud is unfair clicking on PPC ads aimed at generating high costs for an advertiser.

What are effects of click fraud?

In PPC model, an advertiser pays for each click. Payments are made based on a daily advertising budget determined beforehand. Each click charges a given sum from the total amount. When a max. daily limit is exceeded, the ad stops running. False clicks lead to the budget “click out,” the effect of which is that your ad isn’t displayed anymore. That means, you waste money and your ads aren’t delivered to potential customers who don’t have chance to buy products you offer. Why? Because they didn’t see your ad. This is exactly what the frauds want.

Currently, click fraud damages even 20% of budgets in some industries. This is equal to one out of each five ad clicks originating from a fraud. According to a Juniper report (Future Digital Advertising – AI, Ad Fraud & Ad Blocking 2017-2022), the click fraud issue as such will grow, which will make advertisers’ struggles in combating frauds even harder.

Is defence against click fraud possible?

Google Ads and other advertising networks have implemented algorithms that limit click fraud. Unfortunately, they are not able to track all occurrences of that problem. Automated programs and bots used by frauds are so advanced that they can perfectly simulate a click from a real user and, at the same time, avoid being unveiled.

That’s why it’s worth defending yourself right now. Use a tool created specifically to fight deceptions, like Ads Defender. It’s an application that monitors your campaign 24 hours a day detecting all suspicious ad clicks. This way, you can feel secure while your budget is under control.