Google AdWords Reporting Fraud or Invalid Clicks
Google plans on opening up their invalid clicks information to its Google AdWords advertisers in an attempt to address concerns about click fraud. Google Business Product Manager for Trust & Safety, Shuman Ghosemajumder, told Elinor Mills at CNet’s News.com that Google will report the number of fraudulent clicks to its advertisers in comparison to the total campaign clicks; perhaps establishing some type of click fraud ratio. Google, of course, does not charge its advertisers for such bogus clicks.
“Advertisers asked us for more transparency on this issue,” Ghosemajumder told CNet. “Until now advertisers haven’t had a great deal of data to compare from their own accounts in order to be able to understand what Google is doing for them.”
“Our goal is to provide that transparency so advertisers who previously may have been unnerved or concerned about these wildly exaggerated figures will be able to see now what Google is doing to protect them,” Ghosemajumder added.
More info on the Google Click Fraud Program:
* Reporting will begin from beginning of 2006, so advertisers can review the amount of fradulent clicks reported from past campaigns
* Reporting includes inadvertent double clicks on an ad
* Google says that third party click fraud tracking firms inflate click fraud numbers
* Google will keep overall statistics and reporting private
Some in the industry are questioning the difference between these invlid click stats and exactly ‘what is click fraud’, as true click fraud clicks would essentially not be tracked by Google… this is however a step in the right direction by Google AdWords.
More from the Inside AdWords Blog:
Today, we’re announcing the launch of a new AdWords feature enabling advertisers to have a much more detailed picture of invalid click activity in their account. The metrics of “invalid clicks” and “invalid clicks rate” will show virtually all the invalid clicks affecting an account.
These clicks are filtered in real-time by our systems before advertisers are charged for them. The resulting data will of course differ from one advertiser to the next. In addition, a much smaller number of invalid clicks may also be credited to advertisers’ accounts after-the-fact, as the result of a publisher being terminated from the AdSense program for invalid click activity. These will appear as account-level credits.
One of the most controversial issues related to the topic of click fraud has been estimating how big the problem is. Estimates from third-parties (usually from consultants who have a financial incentive to make the problem seem very large) have been both inconsistent and greatly exaggerated due to their methodologies. Advertisers have always been able to compare their log data with their AdWords charges to calculate an estimate of the number of invalid clicks in their own account. This new tool will make estimating invalid click activity much easier.
Remember, when we determine that clicks are invalid, you aren’t charged for them, and they don’t affect your other campaign statistics. You may include the invalid clicks and invalid click rate columns in yearly, quarterly, weekly, and daily reports. More information about the new reporting can be found here.