Google to Offer Refunds to Advertisers over ‘Fake Traffic’
Mike Sanders / 5 years ago
Who is really clicking those links?
Google, quite obviously, makes an absolute fortune over advertising. Every click on a paid advert generates them money. That is quite an obvious statement. However, concerns are being raised at just how legitimate those clicks are, specifically, if the click is being made by a human or a bot. In response to these concerns, Google has promised to refund any advertisers over traffic which is determined to be fake.
In a report via Sky, concerns were initially raised when a trade paper release figures suggesting that although fraudulent advertising ‘clicks’ may have dropped in 2017, the amount of false charged advert revenue could still be $6.5bn. We, therefore, hope that Google has been using that money to at least continue their efforts to remove Malware from their Play Store. The place is full of it apparently!
The major issue in this regard is that it is exceptionally difficult to determine what is legitimate ‘human’ traffic. Bots are simply getting better at acting human.
How will Google advertisers look to apply for this refund?
You have to act quickly to qualify, that’s for sure. Google has said that in an effort to identify fake traffic their DoubleClick Bid Manager exchange manager can effectively identify non-human clicks, however, any one who has been affected only has a 30 day period, from their invoice, to apply for any refund. That doesn’t give you much time. In addition, it begs the question if it would ultimately be worth someones time to do so. Particularly at a smaller level company.
A recent report showed how Google had spent over $1b on self-driving technology. The company clearly isn’t suffering for funds at present. As such, legitimately charging for advertising would be a good sign of faith. I do question the time frames they are allowing customers though. 30 days seem a bit of a tight frame for you to effectively go through the process. That’s a lot of clicks to check and I daresay the claim form isn’t straightforward. Criticisms aside, at least Google is now offering it. Better than nothing as the expression goes.
Google should hopefully be able to at least implement this solution. I do suspect, however, that this is something that advertisers will eventually just have to accept as a reality. On the plus side, this might see a drop-off in the mail-order bride spam adverts or those telling me how I can earn £30,000 a week from home.