If you have a website that runs ads for advertisers you need Click Fraud Monitoring! But first, let’s begin with an explanation of click fraud. Basically it’s a kind of fraud that targets pay per click online advertising. A person, or click bot (an automated script or program) simulates a valid user clicking on an ad. The purpose is to generate a charge per click; however the person or bot has no interest in the ad.
Click Fraud is a problem for both advertisers and publishers alike. Most of the advertising companies have checks and balances in place for click fraud monitoring and prevention. However, I feel confident in saying that there is a decent percentage of clicks that slip through the cracks. Imagine that you’re an advertiser paying a good amount of money ($10 – $20) per click for your ads. If you are billed for just 10 fraudulent clicks per month, imagine how much money is being stolen from you over time. Publishers are also at risk for click fraud and require some form of click fraud monitoring. If the advertising company believes your site is generating fraudulent clicks, your account as a publisher is banned and any money in your account is lost.
Why is Click Fraud Monitoring Important?
Click fraud happens and it usually occurs through one of the following:
- Manual clicks – From the publisher themselves attempting to raise their income, friends or family trying to help, a malicious individual or possibly a competitor
- Click bots – An automated script or program that simulates clicks
- Botnets – A type of malware that hijacks computers and is used by click bots
- Click farms – Usually a publisher that hires individuals to click on ads
- Pay to click websites – A type of pyramid scheme used to produce clicks
I know of one publisher that made a good living from displaying Adsense ads on his websites, six figures yearly. He followed the publisher rules religiously and had no problems for several years. Then one day, out of the blue he received the dreaded “Your Account Has Been Banned” email. Why? He would never consider clicking on his own ads or try to beat the system. He made an appeal but it didn’t do any good, he was banned for life and lost a considerable monthly income. What went wrong? It’s hard to say, he could have been the focus of a jealous competitor or maybe a click bot targeted his site, there is no way to know for sure. Once this happened, he needed to find adsense alternatives. However, this may have been prevented if he would have used click fraud monitoring.
Earlier this year a botnet named Chameleon, was discovered that had the potential to generate over $6 million a month in fraudulent clicks from online advertisements and may have infected about 120,000 computers in the U.S. Previously, another botnet called ZeroAccess infected over nine million computers worldwide, about 1 million were in the U.S.
Click Fraud is a serious problem; it can cost an advertiser hundreds or thousand of dollars and for publishers can mean a significant loss of income and a banned account. If you host a website and hope to receive income from advertisers ads, you need click fraud monitoring to protect your site.
We feel click fraud monitoring is very important and use a plug-in with all of our Word press websites we create and sell to help detect and prevent click fraud. We think it works pretty well and have setup a demo site for you to test it. Access the demo site here and see for yourself.