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Lots of invalid traffic from the US
galapiat



 
Msg#: 4566243 posted 6:58 am on Apr 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

Hi,

On my site I have noticed that CTR increased dramatically and CPC went downhill for clicks coming from the US, and mainly from mobile devices. This started end of march.

Seems that a lot of webmasters are experiencing the same problem, looking at the AdSense Products Forums:

[url]https://productforums.google.com/forum/#!category-topic/adsense/reports-and-earnings/KiA-0thMOBQ[/url]
[url]https://productforums.google.com/forum/#!searchin/adsense/click/adsense/WW9RsKLajLQ/q9SmaXxK7BwJ[/url]

Google doesn't seem to be doing anything about the problem except closing accounts.

Anyone care to comment?

 

galapiat



 
Msg#: 4566243 posted 7:10 am on Apr 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

After some investigation, it seems that the home page is being targeted. Will remove ads from the home page for now :-/

alika

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4566243 posted 12:10 pm on Apr 19, 2013 (gmt 0)

We had a 210% increase in CTR yesterday so we had to remove the ads today. It was targeted towards our leaderboard ad so we remove that today

I just wish Adsense stats are updated well throughout the day. That way, we can immediately see when there's an abnormal thing going on.

benallos

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4566243 posted 6:16 am on Apr 27, 2013 (gmt 0)

Also affected by this invalid clicks, I go through the logs of my websites and found out 5 addresses that is attacking the Google Adsense in the homepage of the website.

Here are the list of the ip addresses that I've blocked.

168.63.255.185
109.169.84.122
168.62.223.11
137.117.131.105
137.117.72.105

lucy24

WebmasterWorld Senior Member lucy24 us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 4566243 posted 7:06 am on Apr 27, 2013 (gmt 0)

fwiw: 109.169.0.0/18 Iomart hosting (registered to US though in a RIPE range) so block-worthy in any case.

The others-- 137.116-117 and 168.61-63 --belong to Microsoft. Hm. Sulking because you're doing business with the competition?

I've met robots from both neighborhoods. Double hmm.

netmeg

WebmasterWorld Senior Member netmeg us a WebmasterWorld Top Contributor of All Time 5+ Year Member Top Contributors Of The Month



 
Msg#: 4566243 posted 12:47 pm on Apr 27, 2013 (gmt 0)

Google doesn't seem to be doing anything about the problem except closing accounts.


There's nothing they can do, there's nothing they will do, about regulating your traffic (I happen to believe there's nothing they should do)

Are you positive those IP numbers are actually clicking, or are they just visiting?

Yes, whenever you suspect there's some kind of a bot or other click attack, the best thing to do is take the ads off first. You could also put your own ad or image on the page, and see what your logs tell you from that.

benallos

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4566243 posted 3:54 pm on Apr 27, 2013 (gmt 0)

Yes those numbers are clicking. I'll add this ip address 137.116.139.151

rickumus

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4566243 posted 6:08 pm on Apr 27, 2013 (gmt 0)

@galapiat Did you ever hear back from Google? It does seem like something is targeting homepages.

galapiat



 
Msg#: 4566243 posted 4:17 am on Apr 28, 2013 (gmt 0)

@rickumus

Yes I did hear back from Google after the weekend. After some back and forth with them, they said I could add my site back to the list of authorized sites?. They would simply dismiss invalid clicks.

To be honest this doesn't really reassure me because I had instances in the past where one Adsense team member said one thing and another team member said the opposite.

So over the last few days I added then removed my site a few times from the authorized sites list, depending on when it looked like I had found a way to properly filter out invalid clicks then again not.

I tried different strategies to resolve the problem:
* remove ads from home page -> clicks then target other pages
* remove 300x250 from all pages (they were targeted at first) -> clicks target other ad sizes.
* replaced specific Adsense ads with Media.Net ads
* only activated AdSense ads at the bottom of the articles.

Up until now it seems that I haven't found a way to properly filter out invalid clicks. Statcounter doesn't really help because it can't properly monitor clicks. I'm told this is a limitation of Javascript. So only Google really knows who clicks our ads.

Google ultimately holds us responsible for the traffic on Adsense ads but withholds the most essential information for monitoring invalid clicks, which is the IP address. So we are essentially powerless and have to rely on Google to filter out invalid clicks and hope that they don't ban us from Adsense.

rickumus

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4566243 posted 6:33 am on Apr 28, 2013 (gmt 0)

@galapiat

Thanks for the reply back and the additional information! We are sort of taking the same measures. Just out of curiosity... Have you had any clicks from an "unknown region" during this time?

galapiat



 
Msg#: 4566243 posted 8:22 am on Apr 28, 2013 (gmt 0)

Er no, no "unknown region" :-)

internetheaven

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4566243 posted 3:47 pm on Apr 28, 2013 (gmt 0)

I'm getting clicks from "unknown region". Is that bad?

jpch



 
Msg#: 4566243 posted 4:59 pm on Apr 28, 2013 (gmt 0)

So we are essentially powerless and have to rely on Google to filter out invalid clicks and hope that they don't ban us from Adsense.


That's pretty much the conclusion I came to after lengthy communication with Google about invalid clicks. The bigger you are the greater the chance you have of surviving IMO.

rickumus

5+ Year Member



 
Msg#: 4566243 posted 8:28 pm on May 2, 2013 (gmt 0)

Well, our finalized earnings were down about 25%. How did it turn out for you galapiat?

galapiat



 
Msg#: 4566243 posted 6:20 am on May 3, 2013 (gmt 0)

I can't really compare April's earnings with March's earnings, because for some time periods I removed my site from the authorized sites list, then replaced some Adsense units with ones from Media.Net...

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