Yahoo Says 12 to 15 Percent Of Clicks Are Discounted

As Greg noted inYahoo Appoints New Click Quality Czar, Yahoo has come out to say that 12 to 15 percent of their search ad clicks are filtered out due to being fraud, invalid or for other reasons. Reggie Davis, Yahoo's new Vice President of Marketplace Quality, was clear on saying that these clicks were not 100 percent click fraud. In Danny's Revisiting Google's 2 Percent Or Less Click Fraud Rate, we see that Google puts the number of filtered clicks at under 10 percent. In today' SearchDay, Kevin Newcomb has a nice expanded write up on Yahoo Steps Up Click Fraud Efforts which is worth a re [...]

Yahoo Appoints New Click Quality Czar

I've always believed that click fraud was a bigger PR problem than actual problem for the search engines. Of course there have been raging debates about the percentage of "invalid clicks" that advertisers were receiving and what the click fraud numbers actually are. But the engines historically took the "black box" position that they were dealing with the problem and working diligently to address it. But they also tended to address it reactively via litigation rather than getting out "in front" of the issue – at least in public. Last August, the IAB and search engines came together to joint [...]

Google: Click Fraud Is 0.02% Of Clicks

Finally, we have a click fraud rate from Google itself: less than 0.02 percent of all clicks slip past its filters and are caught after advertisers request reviews. That low figure is sure to bring out the critics who will disagree. Below, more about how Google comes up with the figure plus some click fraud fighting initiatives it plans to implement later this year. Why release this figure now, when many have wanted it for literally years? "We've been working to be more transparent and informative on the issues related to click fraud. Recently, this metric has been something advertisers h [...]

Google’s Click Fraud Team Writes On Commonly Raised Concerns

The Google AdWords Blog wrote a blog entry introducing us to the Google click fraud team and describing some of the most common questions and concerns on click fraud. Here are some of the highlights from the post. They analyze IP address, duplicate clicks, and various other clicking patterns to detect click fraud. If you want to report click fraud, use this form. Typical click fraud "investigation can take 3-5 business days." Spikes in traffic can come from changes to daily budget, maximum CPCs, ad distribution preferences, the content network or bad tracking. Also see Google Pushes Back On [...]

Google Pushes Back On Click Fraud Estimates, Says Don’t Forget The Back Button

Last week when visiting Google, I had a long background discussion with Shuman Ghosemajumder about click fraud issues. Shuman is Google's business product manager for trust and safety. I'll follow up on some of our discussion as I'm able to get some material cleared. But one of the most fascinating things was his explanation on how some third party auditing firms don't appear to be matching up estimated fraud figures with refunds or even actual clicks registered by advertisers. Some of what he explained is now covered in two blog posts up on his personal blog: Why Third-Party Click Fraud Estim [...]

Click Fraud Reaches New High, Says Click Forensics

Click Forensics has updated its Click Fraud Index with data from the fourth quarter of 2006, reporting an overall industry average click fraud rate of 14.2 percent versus 13.8 percent for Q3, 14.1 percent for Q2 and 13.7 percent for Q1. The Click Fraud Network collects data from more than 3,000 online advertisers and their agencies running campaigns for both large and small companies. Other findings include: The average click fraud rate of Pay Per Click advertisements appearing on search engine content networks was 19.2 percent for Q4. The industry average click fraud rate for high-price [...]

Fraudwall, New Anti-ClickFraud Company Funded

Fraudwall, a new company formed by Ron Conway, a well-known Internet investor, and Jim Pitkow, formerly Moreover's CEO, has raised millions in venture capital according to this article in Venture Beat. The company is saying little about its approach, although a LinkedIn profile of Fraudwall's CTO Marc Brown says: "Fraudwall provides online advertisers with a solution that identifies click fraud by leveraging expertise in statistics, user modeling, machine learning, and IP forensics. The company was founded by a team of serial entreprenuers and distinguished researchers. Fraudwall is currently [...]

An Open Letter to Paid Search Networks

Search marketer and "recovering attorney" Jeff Rohrs has published The Sausage Manifesto, an open letter to paid search providers asking critical questions about billing practices, transparency, click fraud and other issues. He asks a number of pointed questions, then lists eleven requests that he says failure to respond to could damage the industry. His requests: 1. Talk, Don’t Lecture 2. Appreciate Our Unique Circumstances 3. Invest in Proportion to the Problem 4. Acknowledge that Tracking Alone Is Not the Answer 5. Improve Click Quality Customer Service 6. Build a Click Quality Educatio [...]

Revisiting Google’s 2 Percent Or Less Click Fraud Rate

Earlier this week, we covered how MarketingPilgrim reported news widely cited as Google confirming a clickfraud rate of 2 percent or less. Via Matt Cutts, Google's Shuman Ghosemajumder, business product manager for trust & safety, clarifies things on his own blog in Google, Click Fraud, and Invalid Clicks. Below, a look at that, along with some definitions of clicks I think will help and how the detected click fraud rate for Google might be as low as 0.2 percent of all clicks. From what Shuman wrote: What I said is that the quantity of invalid clicks which we detect as a result of re [...]

Google Puts Clickfraud Rate At Under 2 Percent

Andy Beal over at MarketingPilgrim has a nice article on how Google's click fraud rate is less than two percent, at least according to Google's own figures. This is based off the "invalid" click rate that Google gave him, which includes click fraud and clicks that aren't actually billed. I could have sworn that Google had given this type of invalid rate before but can't track that down -- so that definitely seems new. The idea that Google self-reports a click fraud rate far below that of some third party estimates is definitely not. Here's a dive into Andy's article, along with some [...]

Matt Cutts On Google Rumor Debunking Rampage

Matt Cutts has a fun weekend debunking Google rumors at his blog. He covered rumors that the toolbar leads Googlebot to index pages, a story about Google funding terrorism (a topic I avoided on purpose), Google working with the CIA as a conspiracy, and Google cheating on AdWords for their own ads. He also wrote a bit about new features that were launched. Toolbar doesn’t lead to page being indexed Watching a story, part I Watching a story, part II Debunking: "Google in bed with CIA [...]

Was Click Fraud Criminal Case Dropped Because Google Didn’t Cooperate?

Via Techmeme, The Vanishing Click-Fraud Case from BusinessWeek covers how alleged click fraud extortion case involving Google AdSense was been dropped apparently because of Google's unwillingness to share details on how its own systems work: Why did a seemingly strong criminal case simply vanish? A key culprit may have been Google's own unwillingness to cooperate with prosecutors, according to people familiar with the case.... By all appearances, Google faced a difficult dilemma. It could risk divulging information about its approach to click fraud and help make a case against Bradley, who f [...]

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