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fraudulent clicks/invalid clicks

a question for the thinkers on the baord

     
11:01 am on May 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



What is your definition of a fraudulent or invalid click (note I am not asking you to guess what G's definition is)

My definition (to start us off) would be ANY click made on an adsense ad which doesn't result in a purchase of some kind for the destination site.

Thinking - Someone is making money even although the intention is not to purchase and therefore are making money under false pretences. Therefore it is invalid and should be deducted from the adsense publishers earnings.

of course if this was the interpretation very few here would be making money at all, but it would certainly stop any "I got kicked out for invalid clicks" type of threads/discussions

12:22 pm on May 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



Well, blairsp, sorry to say but that's not a very useful definition.

It's certainly perfectly valid to click on an ad if you think you might purchase something. And what if the site doesn't sell anything at all? Does that mean that content advertisers get free ads?

12:48 pm on May 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



A fraudulant click, surely, should be a click which is actioned purely for the purpose of generating income for the publisher.

As diamondgirl says, it's perfectly permissable to click on an ad out of interest and then choose not to buy. Why on earth would you define a click as fraudulant purely because an advertiser fails to close a sale once the visitor arrives at their site.

IMHO as long as a visitor to mys site who clicks on an ad arrives at the advertisers site in an 'open to buy' frame of mind, the click is legitimate.

12:54 pm on May 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



ANY click made on an adsense ad which doesn't result in a purchase of some kind for the destination site.

Conversion is a result of many things, one of which is the type of qualified lead the publishers bring to the advertiser's site. But it also includes the quality of the advertiser's site and how good it is in convincing its visitors to do what it wants them to do (e.g. purchase a product, subscribe to the newsletter, etc.). It takes two to tango, and if the advertisers' site is crappy and their sales pitch so poor, then publishers can only do so much.

12:58 pm on May 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



>> a click which is actioned purely for the purpose of generating income for the publisher

What if it's actioned just to get your account terminated?

Sorry to state the blinding... but isn't a fraudulent click one that is done with fraudulent intent? And intent itself is a grey area.

1:28 pm on May 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



What is your definition of a fraudulent or invalid click (note I am not asking you to guess what G's definition is)

Seems to me fraudulent and invalid clicks would be 2 seperate issues. Fraudulent, as oddsod pointed out, is an action to commit fraud. Invalid clicks, to me, would mean any clicks made on a site that violates AdSense TOS.

3:05 pm on May 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I guess All click should be treated as valid and no clicks should be treated as fraudclicks.

Instead, google should just add a zero cent income to clicks which it defines presently as invalid or fraud.

If G has the technology to say that so and so clicks were invalid, then i guess they can simply add it to the automatic system and pay zero cents for such clicks.

This will simplify the system I guess.

3:14 pm on May 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



This will simplify the system I guess.

... except that we live in a society where thieves and fraudsters are given their due punishment. It's one thing to simply invalidate clicks, and another to punish the "perpetrators."

3:40 pm on May 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



You can rob $100 from a convenient store and get jail time, or rake up $100 from invalid clicks and get... just not paid.
3:55 pm on May 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

WebmasterWorld Senior Member 10+ Year Member



This almost sound like a question that doesn't really want an answer.

My definition (to start us off) would be ANY click made on an adsense ad which doesn't result in a purchase of some kind for the destination site.

You've just described CPA or an affiliate program.

That's a totally different advertising model than Google Adwords or Google Adsense and your quest doesn't seem to have anything to do with fraudulent clicks at all, but rather a request for Google to switch to the CPA (cost per action) or affiliate program model.

5:23 pm on May 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



blairsp
If you really want to kick off some massive campaign, which generates lot of responses, then pick another one and do some re-seacrh on it , before you post.

Displaying ads itself generates revenue for those advertisors. He maynot make money right away, but at a later time. Clicking (fraudulent or valid) is again an advertisement for that advertisor. It leaves some impression on the mind of clicker (both valid and fraudulent).

Every display need not generate a click, every click neednot generate a sale.

How many times and on how many websites did you see an add by "lower your bills". did anyone click on it?
I remember the name, because i saw it too many times.
Thats what the advertisor wants. He is ready to pay.

5:31 pm on May 27, 2005 (gmt 0)



A click can be invalid without being fraudulent. Examples of invalid clicks might include:

- Accidental clicks

- Clicks by users who can't tell the difference between an ad link and a search link (e.g., on a scraper site where ads are blended with scraped search results)

- Clicks by users who don't have the means to buy anything (there's no way to police this on a small scale, but if Google were to see a large number of clicks from a site that's visited mostly by 8-year-olds, it might deem those clicks "invalid").

Also, not all advertisers expect clicks to result in immediate transactions. Google's conversion tracking lets advertisers define conversions as "business actions" such as registrations, inquiries, reading a certain number of pages, etc. (After all, many advertisers are looking for leads that can be handled offline, not for online transactions. For such advertisers, a click is the equivalent of an inquiry to an 800 number or a circled number on a magazine's "bingo card.")

7:41 pm on May 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I'll add a wrinkle to this interesting thread...

How about the case, which I'm sure is fairly common, of a visitor to Site A clicking an ad, going to Site B (that also has AdSense ads running) and clicking on one of those? He didn't "buy" anything at Site B, but he certainly made Site B some money. It's an interesting conundrum, huh? :-)

9:32 pm on May 27, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



I believe that Google also considers a click an 'invalid click' if it is:

on a page with no content, or

on a page with a 'click the ads' line anywhere, or

on an ad block overlapping the navigation links, or...

You can see where this is going, can't you?

An invalid click is probably any cliick on a page in violation of any Adsense TOS that is designed to prevent useless clicks.

Further, fraudulent clicks are probably also considered 'invalid clicks', for the handy purpose of reusing the 'cancelled for invalid clicks' form letter and to prevent giving any usable feedback to webmasters (After all, a webmaster who appears to have just made a mistake might have done it deliberately).

This probably explains the widely-varying circumstances in which people receive the 'invalid clicks' email.

4:27 am on May 28, 2005 (gmt 0)

10+ Year Member



or rake up $100 from invalid clicks and get... just not paid

how can some one rake up in dollars if he does not get paid?

... except that we live in a society where thieves and fraudsters are given their due punishment. It's one thing to simply invalidate clicks, and another to punish the "perpetrators."

Punishment is secondary, Preventation comes first.

The theory is punishment exists only because the prevention theory has leaks. But punishment should never precede prevention.

 

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