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Adwords, Overture ... 100% Real Visits

Adwords, Overture, PFI, paid visits

11:14 am on Feb 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Can you trust 100% all the visits that came from PFI services like Adwords, Overture and others? Are you giving money for unreal visits (sometimes)?
Well I'm not completely sure, sometimes some of the campaigns we have made with this kind of services increase promptly the number of visits (clicks) without any logic, because we didn't make any changes before. We know that it depends not only of changes as increase in the budget or changes in keywords, banners and other stuff, but also world holidays, day of the week and a lot of other factors. But sometimes looks for me a little bit suspicious this “Changes”.
It’s possible that somebody manipulate this PFI services?
Please share your comments regarding this topic.
11:28 am on Feb 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

There are dodgy clicks delievered by PPC engines, and some are trying to counter the problem.

If you compare your logs with what you are actually being charged for you may notice that you're not getting billed for some clicks.

Overture do have some sort of system in place that seems to catch a lot of fradulent clicks.

6:31 pm on Feb 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

The major PPC's have anti-fraud protection measures, but 2nd tier PPC's are rife with fraudulent clicks.

Regardless of the PPC provider, I recommend you keep a close eye on your server logs & use tracking software that logs the referrer source & visitor IP addresses since you won't be able to get a refund if you're not looking out for fraudulent activity or have the proof to back up your claims.

10:59 pm on Feb 27, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

But when tracking this through logs, remember that a lot of Google and Overture (don't know about others) paid clicks won't have a Google or Overture referrer. The referrers will be their partner sites. Clicks you pay Google for may look like they are coming from Amazon, AOL Search, HotBot, iWon, etc.

Overture does a good thing - they allow you to identify their paid clicks, regardless of partner, as long as you tell Overture to auto-append the "ovraw=" parameter to your landing page URL. With Google, you can get the same thing but you have to do it manually. Add a similar parameter to the target URL you specify when you set up Google AdWords. The Edit Keywords box is the easiest place to do this on Google.

9:34 pm on Mar 2, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

How do I "tell Overture" that I want this in? I don't want to do this for my thousand plus kw's.
1:35 pm on Mar 5, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

It's Account Tab, Set-Up subtab, Overture Tracking URLS, set to "on".
9:22 am on Mar 8, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Thanks to everyone!
5:55 pm on Mar 25, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

Noone is totally fraud proof, and you should go in this knowing that at SOME point, you'll have "paid" for a fraudulant click, user. But that's why they are OV and Google: Their fraud detection are the two best around - thus, one of the reasons for your great ROI's with them.

I swear, if only these secondary guys get their act together and catch (not bill) for the publishers that generate bad clicks, they'd get more advertising $'s.

1:57 pm on Mar 26, 2004 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member

I just finished an ultra-careful comparison of Overture and Google's reports on clickthroughs over six weeks, using Overture's appending of an ovraw= parameter and manually implementing the same approach in the Google URLs we set up. There was a lot of disagreement from day to day, possibly due to the two methods having different definitions of day's end (midnight locally vs midnight GMT or something). Some days our numbers were higher than theirs, sometimes lower. But the sum of clickthroughs over 6 weeks matched very closely. Google and Overture were both about 2% high. Given the possibility of somebody clicking on our ads twice in one session, and that event being counted twice (maybe) by the SEs but only once by our log analysis, I'm satisfied. I'd love to hear other possible scenarios for these discrepancies, though.

I should add that hardly any of Overture's clickthroughs actually had Overture as referrer. And I learned a lot about the identity of search and content partners - quite a few minor players, but nobody I'd object to except maybe one or two (Amazon for example is not at all appropriate for us, no matter how you argue it).

8:13 pm on Mar 29, 2004 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member

This may be a tad off-topic, but one thing to watch for is affiliates for PPC's and how quickly they update bids. For example, let's say my bid for "widget fixers" was $0.18 and I decided to reduce it to $0.16 to save a few cents (assuming I don't drop in placement). The bid change can take time to be reflected across affiliate sites, and the shady ones may keep you at $0.18 for hours .. even days, as happened in one of my client's situations.

The only way I can see to watch for this is to micro manage you reports on the site for a short time after you change - then see if you are still getting visits at the old (and, of course) higher bid.


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