If you are a business owner, website manager, or pay-per-click specialist, preventing click fraud attacks from occurring is extremely important to successfully marketing your product or service. If click fraud attacks are a concern of yours, this post will help you learn all about them and how it is possible to prevent them from happening to you.
Click-fraud usually occurs when a pre-programmed bot or paid person is set to click on one or more links several times. Typically done with the intention of bringing invalid traffic to that page or ad, click fraud perpetrators can mess up a page’s analytics and use up all of the pay-per-click advertising budget of a competing company. With that said, here are some tips for preventing click-fraud according to ClickCease:
- Be attentive as to where your ads are run. Having your ads run in a broad variety of places makes it easier for a click fraud bot to attack. Therefore, try running your ads in specific geolocations. Platforms such as Google Ads make it easy for you to target geographic locations and reach the audience you want to see your ads or content. In addition, make sure to check out what sites host your advertisements. Some sites that host your ad may be specifically designed for click fraud and contain spam information.
- Closely monitor your analytics and web traffic. If you notice that there are suspicious looking trends in your web traffic or click rate analytics, you may want to check for click fraud. While there are some peak seasons for click fraud attacks (such as the holiday shopping season), it is suggested that you check your analytics on a daily basis. Most click fraud attacks are hard to predict and can happen unexpectedly.
- Block suspicious IP addresses. If you identify suspicious activity in your analytics, it may be best to block that IP address. Click fraud attacks can usually be spotted given that they produce a high amount of traffic due to random clicks in a short interval of time. Note, be careful when going to block some IP addresses. It is possible that the IP address belongs to a real client or customer that may be doing research on your product or service.
- Be selective regarding when you run your ads. Timing is everything when it comes to making sure your ads do not fall victim to click fraudsters. While there may be some benefits to running your advertisements late at night, click fraud attacks are more likely to happen at later hours. Therefore, try to run your ads during the days or during the hours where your target audience is most active. This technique is known as “dayparting” and can be quite useful when it comes to managing your ad budget and schedule.
While the tips listed above are a great way to help you identify and prevent click fraud, one of the most efficient ways to prevent click fraud is by using a click fraud prevention software.
What is click fraud prevention software? Typically using machine learning techniques, click fraud prevention softwares are able to quickly spot and block IP addresses of potential click fraudsters. This automated process can be very useful and efficient, especially if you do not have the time to be closely monitoring your analytics for click fraud on a daily basis. While click fraud prevention softwares vary in pricing and available features, most of them are very successful at both preventing and handling click fraud attacks. Here are some click fraud prevention softwares that you may find useful:
- PPC Protect: Used by companies such as ebay, Nike, and McDonalds, PPC Protect is an extremely popular software that helps prevent ad and click fraud. It is available for both small businesses and enterprises alike, and uses machine learning to deliver “unparalleled accuracy”. PPC Protect is CCPA and GDPR compliant meaning your data will be encrypted and the software will not use 3rd party cookies. You can choose from one of 3 different plans listed (Pro, Elite, or Agency) and pricing can vary depending on your click fraud protection needs.
- CHEQ ClickCease: Compatible with both Google and Facebook Ads, ClickCease is another great software one can use to prevent click fraud attacks. Using a fraud detection algorithm, ClickCease aims to detect and protect your ads from competitor clicks, bot clicks, click farms, and more. You can choose between two main tiers: the standard plan (made to protect your ads on either Google Ads or Facebook Ads) or the Pro plan (protects your ads on both Google Ads and Facebook Ads). Pricing for each plan is $59 and $79 a month, respectively, and includes a 7-day free trial.
- AppsFlyer: Listed as another popular software that helps detect click fraud, AppsFlyer Cloud is an all in one product that can help your company with anything from analytics, engagement and protection. When it comes to click fraud detection, AppsFlyer uses mobile sensors in order to make sure that your ad budget is being used for real customers. In addition, AppsFlyers uses a technique called post-attribution fraud detection which identifies the fraudulent activity patterns after they have been installed. This is extremely valuable in preventing future attacks from happening and can be seen in your dashboard. Pricing varies depending on your selected plan (Zero, Growth or Enterprise), and you are able to request a demo or sign up for free without the need to put in your credit card information.
- Singular: A mobile marketing solution used by brands such as Lyft, airbnb, and Microsoft, Singular is another amazing platform that can help you with all your click-fraud protection needs and more. Singular is committed to helping you manage your marketing data and is GDPR, ePrivacy and CCPA compliant. Their fraud protection software was designed by experts in cybersecurity and comes included with their Analytics + Attribution plan. You can try the standard version of their Analytics platform for free or choose between their premium and enterprise plans for their Analytics and Analytics + Attribution plan options. To book a demo or learn more about the differences between plans, you may want to visit singular.net/pricing.
Make sure to check out all your options when considering investing in a click fraud prevention software! These are great tools that can help you in preventing click fraud, yet it is possible to do it yourself so long as you are conscious about where, when and how your ad budget is being spent!