When you look after a PPC account like Google Ads or Microsoft Advertising, you may often wonder where all of the different clicks on your keywords come from.
While the majority of clicks will come from interested customers, some clicks will come from organizations that have no interest in buying from your business at all.
In this article, we’ll take a look at what click fraud is, and the tools available to help you prevent it.
What is click fraud?
Click fraud is when people (or bots) click on PPC ads in an attempt to generate fraudulent charges. It is often referred to within Google Ads as ‘invalid activity’.
For example, let’s say Company A and Company B both use Google Ads to promote their services. Company A is outranking Company B, and Company B isn’t happy about it.
As a result, Company B repeatedly clicks on Company A’s ad. This depletes Company A’s daily budget and stops its ad from showing, meaning that Company B can take the top spot.
Click fraud can happen on a small scale, like the example above, or on a larger scale, with action from what is known as a ‘click farm’.
The frustrating thing is that you can’t tell if you’re a victim of click fraud as you can’t see where your clicks have come from. All you see is a high ad spend, and no conversions to show for it.
What can I do to prevent click fraud?
There are a few things you can do within Google Ads and Microsoft Advertising to prevent click fraud. For example, if you know the IP addresses of your competitors, you can block them so they can’t see your ads.
You can also amend your ad targeting. For example, if you think that click fraud is coming from a specific country, you can exclude that country from your campaign. The risk of this though is that you could potentially block genuine traffic.
If Google Ads and Microsoft Advertising are made aware of click fraud, they will remove any offending clicks and reimburse your account. However, this process can be very hit and miss as they will not be able to identify every suspicious click.
The best way to prevent click fraud is to use a system like ClickReport.
ClickReport and how it can help you identify click fraud
ClickReport will monitor all of your PPC advertising as well as where every click comes from. You can see what country each click has come from, alongside an IP address and referring website. This makes it easy to identify click fraud, even if a visitor’s IP address changes.
You get daily emails about who is clicking on your ads, and you can even serve warning messages to visitors who constantly click on your ads!
ClickReport will help your marketing team save valuable time and protect your PPC advertising budget – meaning that genuine customers are more likely to see your ads.Contact us today to find out more about how we can give your business peace of mind when it comes to your PPC budget.