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E-Marketing Performance Blog

FUD fight?

Last week I was listening to Chris from SearchAnyway.com talk about Click Fraud. His theory is that click fraud is all hype. FUD as he called it. Based on Fear Uncertainty and Doubt.

Rather than being fraudulent clicks, he proposes that more clicks are invalid. He defined “invalid” clicks as when the visitor doesn’t stay on the page for more than a few moments, and he said it is your own fault.

I thought Chris made a good point. I wrote previously about the Landing Page Handbook by MarketingSherpa claiming your visitor takes 2 – 8 seconds to decide if you’ve got what he wants. Chris backs this concept up with visitors leaving for two different reasons: Either you’re writing the wrong ad copy or you’re bringing your visitors to the wrong landing page.

Before shouting FOOD FIGHT if you think you’re getting more clicks than you should be, you might check your stats to see how long visitors are staying on your page before leaving. See a lot of click and go? Then look over your ad copy and landing pages. Think in terms of what you might do to improve things with either your ad copy or your landing page. Or both.

Max Speed

If the Pole Position Marketing team had a muse—and it does—it would be Max Speed. We love Max’s occasionally off-color, usually amusing and always pointed “Maxisms.” (Maybe “Maxims” would be a better word.) Max gives voice to some of the things we think but, bound by professional decorum, aren’t permitted to say. At least, not out loud.

3 Responses to FUD fight?

  1. Diana Adams says:

    Hi Boris –

    Thanks for your .02¢, it’s always nice to hear other thoughts.

    Maybe because I’m ever the optimist, but I tend to lean more toward the belief that people don’t really do it. In the video, Chris stated that maybe it really only happens on highly competitive words who’s CPC is $15 – $30.

    I agree with you that nobody can really tell. Interesting to talk about it though.

    Thanks for the comment.

  2. Diana,

    It’s an interesting video, indeed.

    In general, if a legitimate visitor clicks on your ads and leaves within a few moments because he doesn’t find what he/she was looking for, that certainly doesn’t constitute click fraud. Rather, it’s a poor job done by the advertiser to attract the right type of visitor via ad text and/or a poor job of keeping the visitor on the site due to a bad landing page.

    However, on the other side of the coin, we also have clicks coming from people that click with the intent of either profiting themselves or hurting the advertiser.

    For example, back in the day, it was a pretty popular thing for AdSense publishers to say – “click on my ads to support the website”. The visitors could click because it doesn’t cost them anything and they wanted to support the site and the site owner encouraged it because it generated revenue for him. And who pays for this? The advertiser.

    This type of thing is not that common anymore because Google closes down those accounts when they see them. However, these days, it simply takes a different form.

    Or let’s take a look at other advertisers. You can have fraudulent clicks coming from your competition, you can have impressions generated to lower somebody else CTR ratio (and effectively raise their prices or lower their ads, etc.).

    The problem is that nobody can tell you exactly how rampant this issue is. Mainly because it’s different for every advertiser.

    But in my line of work, we have clients coming to us all the time that exhibit signs of click fraud… and upon further investigation, it is oftentimes there.

    Just my $0.02c.

    Boris Mordkovich