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Google affiliate pre-placing a high-priced keyword in the search box

Why does Google allow this?

     
4:26 pm on Sep 7, 2004 (gmt 0)

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We’re all familiar with the tactic where a site uses a domain that is an easy misspelling of a popular domain to get traffic.

The site then tries to monetize their traffic with PPC or other ads.

Well, here’s an insidious twist. A popular company has a site at domain.com. Someone else registers wwwdomain.com, in an attempt to draw visitors who inadvertently leave out the dot.

This wwwdomain.com site has one page advising visitors to check their spelling, but also before continuing, please take a second to check out such-and-such. Then there is a Google search box with a high-priced PPC word in it. The user is encouraged to press the search button.

The high-priced PPC word has absolutely nothing to do with the original domain that the visitor mistyped.

I don’t know if this is generating significant revenue for the site owner, but it is a real slap in the face to those of us who advertise on the high-priced keyword.

4:43 pm on Sept 7, 2004 (gmt 0)

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That is against the TOS. If it really bothers you, report it to the adsense team and let them handle it.
10:37 pm on Sept 16, 2004 (gmt 0)

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Well, three of the sites I complained to Google about for doing this are gone. I assume they were kicked out of AdSense. Either way, there are only placeholders at the sites now.

There was one other site that was preloading search terms into the search box, and it was not kicked out. It's a blog, and they had a different search term in the box after each blog entry. Now they are still running AdSense ads, but the Google search box in each entry is blank.

I guess that's better than nothing.

3:10 pm on Sept 17, 2004 (gmt 0)

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I've found from my (so far) limited experience that Google takes complaints and tips seriously, and your case bears that out. It is probably impossible for them to police all of the abusers by themselves, and increasingly it will be up to the honest Adsense & Adwords users to sniff out the cheaters and report them. Kudos to you for taking action.