The digital marketing industry has been expanding manifold in the recent past. The trajectory that it has moved through and its significant potential in the near future is just amazing. However, the great growth has brought fraudulent practitioners into the frame who are becoming a consistent headache for all the digital marketers, especially the digital advertisers and the associated industry.
To be more precise, the PPC campaigns have endured the greatest brunt of malpractices that are intended against the advertising industry.
No matter what the investment is, ad frauds have been affecting the PPC campaigns in terms of their campaign data, ROAS, and marketing budget. It has been reported that more than 20% of clicks on PPC are a result of click fraud.
But the matter of concern is not just the click fraud. Besides click fraud, various other fraudulent activities affect the PPC campaigns run by the marketing teams of various industries.
Here are some of the prominent fraudulent activities being performed by major fraudsters that are severely affecting the advertising industry in general, and PPC advertisement campaigns in particular.
Fraudsters are rigorously and systematically using the data centers and various hosting providers to make their fraudulent activities prosper. Data centers are the medium through which fraudsters can run their fraud schemes and techniques. Like elastic hardware and anonymity.
These data centers are used as a proxy VPN that secures fraudsters’ activities, location, and identity. Moreover, the data centers are also mused to run various malware like the ransomware malware attack in the year 2018-19.
Many such operations have been identified and it was found that these fraudsters successfully run their activities on over a hundred different servers. These were then used to run browsers that resulted in massive traffic.
Advertisers spend on PPC campaigns while keeping their location in their mind. The location plays an important role in deciding the PPC campaign budget and platform. Taking advantage of this feature of PPC campaigns, fraudsters come up with the masking technique. Geomasking is a very interesting but dangerous technique used by fraudsters. Geomasking is used by these fraudulent people to generate clicks while hiding the actual location.
A little less than half of the internet traffic is accounted for through Bots. Having such significance makes Bots more susceptible to the attacks.
Therefore, Bad Boats come into the picture who appears to be like a real human on the web applications but are just running their click fraud.
Bad Bots are severely dangerous. They perform persistent tasks at regular intervals and they do everything at a significantly fast pace. This brings massive changes in the PPC campaigns as the fraudulent clicks are very large in number.
As a result of all this massive pace, PPC campaigns lose budget, and hence the cost of PPC campaigns also steep making it almost impossible to reach the PPC campaigns targets that were aimed at initially.
Click spamming is a very common method used by fraudsters by which they run spam clicks to flood ads. This enables these fraudsters to catch PPC budgets.
Click spamming is actually done when a general user gets onboard a mobile web page where a fraudulent person is already operating. These fraudulent, on behalf of that general person, perform fake clicks in the background on various invisible ads.
Click farms are very hugely performed in regions and countries where data protection and regulations are poor. A whole bunch of teams is created of large manpower. The people involved manually click on PPC ads that increase the clickthrough rates while draining the PPC ad campaign budgets. It is really difficult to detect such a type of fraud as the number of people involved is quite huge.
There are various methods, tools, and steps that you, as an advertiser, must know and adapt to prevent your ad campaigns from fraud.
You can google Ads which will ensure that you are protected from activities like bad bots. Google has an invalid click detection filter that helps Google block IP addresses that are anonymous or potentially fraudulent.
PPC platforms also ensure some steps that may protect you from fraudulent activities. You can, to some extent, rely on them. But there is never a 100% guarantee that you are safe from fraudulent activities.
PPC ad campaigns are a really important part of advertising campaigns for any company. Companies are investing a large bunch of their resources in PPC campaigns. Facing fraudulent activities severely damages the business and downgrades the business model as a whole.
It is really necessary to protect ad campaigns from fraudsters. Although there is a high chance of your campaign being attacked, you can always play safe to keep yourself from fraud. To optimize and for maximum ROAS; you should be vigilant and must be prepared to adopt a progressive approach that includes automated methods to prevent click frauds.
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