20 Tips to Prevent Click Fraud in Pay Per Click

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20 Tips to Prevent Click Fraud in Pay Per Click

Click fraud, as the name suggests, and as discussed in more detail over at runrex.com, is a black-hat technique where the number of clicks on a pay-per-click ad is falsely inflated. In most cases click fraud is done by a competitor who may maliciously click on your PPC ad massively hoping that you will panic when you see your extremely high advertising bill and stop running your PPC ads, leading to more clicks and sales for them. This article should, therefore, be a great resource as it will look to highlight 20 tips to prevent click fraud for pay-per-click.

Make sure you set different bid prices for content-targeted sites

According to the gurus over at runrex.com, one way to reduce your financial risk as far as click fraud is concerned is by limiting the amount you are willing to spend per click. You can do this by limiting your placement of ads on “just any” website relevant to your keywords, limiting your exposure to click fraud.

Ensure you always track your PPC campaigns

One way to prevent click fraud in PPC, as discussed over at runrex.com, is to make sure that you always track your advertising campaigns. This way, you will be able to see the number as well as the percentage of clicks that Google has categorized as invalid if you are running Google Ads campaigns.

Only target high-value sites for your ads

As the folks over at guttulus.com will tell you, most low-value sites are where most click fraud occurs. Therefore, to prevent the same, try and only target high-value sites for your ads, and avoiding those where click fraud is likely to occur.

Monitor your competitors

You should also keep an eye on who is competing with your keywords in the search engines, as they could be a potential source for click fraud; also known as competitor click fraud. You can use tools like ClickForensics to detail the number of clicks on your ads coming from competitors to see if they are culpable.

Don’t run ads in all countries

Another tip to prevent click fraud is making sure that you are not running your ads in countries with low labor rates, as these countries are known for employing people whose sole purpose is to click on ads. If you run ads in these countries, you are open to sabotage and click fraud.

Purchase software programs that will help you identify click fraud

As is covered over at runrex.com, another tip is to purchase software programs like ClickTracks, among others, which offer search reports that will help you identify any content-targeted websites sending suspicious amounts of visitors to your site. Through such software, you will also be able to prepare a fraud report that will help you prove your case to a search engine firm.

Only target industry-specific keywords

Targeting industry-specific keywords is another way to prevent click fraud, as per the gurus over at guttulus.com, as is ensures that you generate the highest volume of traffic while also ensuring that the majority of your user engagement is from authentic customers.

Set your budget

According to discussions on the same over at runrex.com, you should also set yourself a maximum cost-per-click allowance to reduce the chances of being a victim of click fraud, as this will ensure that your online advertisement will not go beyond your allocated budget ensuring that you won’t face unexpectedly high service charges.

Consider Facebook or Twitter ads

With Facebook and Twitter, your ads will only show up on these platforms, which means that there will be no third-party publishers involved in the process, cutting out a significant source of click fraud. Malicious competitor click fraud is also less prevalent on paid social networks due to their advanced targeting options.

Consider remarketing campaigns

Running remarketing campaigns will help prevent publisher-based click fraud because, with this, ads are only displayed to those who have visited and shown interest in your advertiser’s website. Publishers, therefore, can’t see your ads so they can’t click on them.

Tweak your ad targeting

If you suspect that click fraud is coming from a specific geographic region, as explained over at guttulus.com, then another tip to prevent the same is to exclude said location. You can also exclude a competitor’s zip code if you suspect them of committing click fraud. However, just make sure that you are not eliminating good traffic while at it.

Set up IP Exclusions on Google Ads

If you have identified the IP address causing fraudulent clicks, as explained over at runrex.com, another tip to prevent them from doing any more damager is by blocking your ad from being served to the IP in the future. To set up IP Exclusion, you should head over to the Settings tab and scroll down to the IP Exclusions setting, after which all you need to do is plug in the offending IP address.

Work only with trusted DSPs

As is discussed over at guttulus.com, a DSP, or demand-side platform, is a system that lets digital ad inventory buyers manage ad exchange accounts from a single interface. Working with a trusted DSP adds a layer of verification in your ad spend, helping you prevent click fraud.

Have a feel for abnormal trends

Your intuition to identify abnormal trends will also help you to prevent click fraud. Abnormal trends like an abnormal spike in website traffic or abnormally high CTRs for your Google Ads campaign is usually a sign of click fraud that should be investigated further.

Engage the services of an ad verification or ad management company

Another tip that will help to prevent click fraud is seeking the services of an ad verification or ad management company like DoubleVerify. Such a service will capture all your ad-spend data and provide you with an easy-to-use dashboard that will help you identify click fraud and take action against it.

Watch out for fake websites

As per the gurus over at runrex.com, fake websites are also a huge contributor to click fraud, which is why you should identify and eliminate fake websites if you are to prevent click fraud. Telltale signs of fake websites include thin content, too many ads per page, a very recently registered domain among others.

Uncheck the “Let AdWords automatically find new customers” option

Another tip that will help you prevent click fraud is by unchecking the “Let AdWords automatically find new customers” option, which as explained over at guttulus.com, will ensure that AdWords doesn’t place your ads automatically on websites that are not verified.

Create a custom audience

Other than targeting industry-specific keywords, you should also make sure that you are targeting the right audience, as per the folks over at runrex.com, to prevent click fraud. Making sure that your ads are seen by the most relevant users will drastically reduce the chances of click fraud as you will be custom picking your audience.

Not all suspicious IP addresses are engaging in click fraud

While it is important to identify and exclude IP addresses that are causing fraudulent clicks, it is important to note that not all suspicious IP addresses are engaging in click fraud. IP addresses pointing to cafes, universities, libraries, among others are usually not a place from which a person would launch a click fraud against you.

Work with advertisers who use machine learning

Machine learning is a great way to fight click fraud, and any other type of ad fraud, as it helps identify outliers and suspicious trends, hence ensuring that click fraud is nipped in the bud. Therefore, a tip the will help you prevent click fraud in pay-per-click is by working with advertisers and agencies that are pioneers in machine learning.

Hopefully, the above tips will help you to prevent click fraud, with the subject matter experts over at runrex.com and guttulus.com being available if you need any help, information, or advice on the same.