Managing a paid search campaign can feel like an uphill battle. There are so many moving parts, from your bids themselves to the timing of the ads, but you cannot over look the possible threats to your investments such as click fraud. This tricky juggling act can be even more difficult to master if you get lost in the techy mumbo jumbo. Here is a list of commonly used technical terms in paid search advertising and how they relate to click fraud. Now you’ll have the necessary toolset needed to be a paid search master in order to improve your ROI.
1. VPN (Virtual Private Network)
Encrypts the Internet connection so that it appears you are in another location, which makes it more secure and private. VPNs make the person’s personal IP address appear remote enabling a new level of privacy. In terms of click fraud, VPNs can be used to disguise fraudsters’ IPs so that even if they have been blocked they can still commit click fraud by rotating their IPs around so that they remain undetected.
2. IP Address (Internet Protocol)
Essentially, an online version of a return address that is assigned to every internet capable device whether it be a mobile device, tablet, or computer, that is used to locate and identify communications within a network. IP addresses are what gets flagged and excluded with monitoring and protecting click fraud. Once it has been identified that the clicks from the said IP are fraudulent they are then excluded in your Adwords account.
3. Proxy Server
Proxy servers, similar to VPNs, also show the IP address in another location, however, they are browser based. This makes the connection more safe and secure but it is not encrypted. Since click fraud is committed with ‘https’ is another popular tactic in fooling the system and masking your IP for fraudulent activity.
4. Invalid Clicks
According to Google ….
Here we go folks, invalid clicks are Google’s way of identifying click fraud. These invalid clicks are draining your ad budget; hurt your reporting and interactions. Although Google takes preventative measures to stop click fraud in its tracks many fraudulent clicks still fall through the cracks. At ClickCease, not only are the fraudsters automatically blocked from clicking on your ads when deemed fraudulent but with the use of our Automatic Refund Claims Agent that files a report on your behalf for “invalid activity adjustments”.
5. Invalid Traffic
According to Google…
Invalid traffic may be the source of your lower conversion rates and depleting ad budget and may cause quite the headache for paid search marketers. Google themselves say that if they detect this sort of activity, then they “may” take actions into their own hands. The social media giant stresses that valid traffic is ultimately the responsibility of the publisher. In terms of click fraud, invalid traffic is an umbrella term for invalid clicks.
These are a collection of internet bots, which are designed to perform automated tasks. This may include anything from customer service support to committing malicious activity, such as click fraud. These bots can click on your ads repeatedly and wreak serious havoc on your PPC campaigns. Remember, bots don’t need sleep and are a constant threat to the prosperity of your paid search campaigns.
7. Click Farms
Click farms are a large group of workers, usually in a country with low socio-economic status, who’s sole purpose is to click on pay per click ads, liking or following certain websites, creating fake profiles and social media accounts. Click farms are commissioned by anyone who may want to influence a site or social media. Not only are click farms used for generating an online presence and influence; they can be hired by your competitor to click on your ads and hurt your business.
Now that you know all the tech savvy click fraud lingo you are good to go and ready to run a successful PPC campaign. But don’t forget, click fraud is happening all the time and is extremely cumbersome to manage on your own so you may want to consider seeking third party assistance like ClickCease. Let us protect your PPC campaigns from botnets, click farms and fraudsters disguising their IP addresses with proxy servers and VPNs.