I work within a group of AdWords Specialists. For almost six months we have been following #AdWords on Twitter. If you are doing the same or have in the past you realize how massive the AdWords space is. It is not exclusively focused on Google either. Bing, Yahoo, Facebook, Twitter, all are pushing pay per click advertising.
As a small to medium business owner, you need your phone to ring. You need to be found by local searches; in short, you feel lost on the internet. Everyone has an opinion about what you MUST do – and all at a cost.
No free lunches in this world.
But you are a busy business owner. Do you really have time for AdWords? And will you even succeed?
Of course, you know you can turn to an AdWords professional – again at a cost. And they all claim the same thing – “generate new business, retain current business and grow your revenues.”
Everyday that you are not on an Ad Network, your competition is. You miss the days of telephone book advertising and the newspaper – it was so much easier.
AdWords allows you to “leapfrog” to the top of search. By now, you realize that Google is the main player in search, and of course, they allow you to advertise. The good news is, unlike the phone book, the newspaper, radio ads, Google does not charge you for the ad itself. You are only charged when someone clicks on your ad.
That’s great news! Imagine getting into the largest newspaper for free and only being charged per call from that ad.
As a business owner, you understand that you will need to invest some time into AdWords. You always ask yourself “is it worth it” and “will it even work”, meanwhile, your competition already is on the network and you are not.
You turn to the Internet for your research. You read on the Ad Network websites about AdWords. It seems easy, but in reality, you start to understand how difficult AdWords is. There is: keywords, bidding, setting a budget, negative keywords, AdWords extensions, geo-location settings, time of day settings, and so much more. You have made the decision to commit 40 hours to AdWords. That is one week. Or if you break it up, maybe a few hours every day for the equivalent of 1 working week.
With all the details, your head is swimming, but you put that aside and start your first AdWords Campaign.
Then, you start to experience what is known as Click Fraud. Click fraud refers to clicks generated with malicious or fraudulent intent.
Invalid traffic includes both clicks and impressions on AdWords ads that Google suspects to not be the result of genuine user interest. This covers intentionally fraudulent traffic as well as accidental clicks and other mechanically generated traffic. Although advertisers are not charged for these clicks or impressions, this traffic may still result in valuable site visits and conversions.
Our team manages advertising campaigns and we saw Click Fraud happening – to our company and to our clients. We decided to combat Click Fraud, and we developed a tool to do just that.