Click Fraud – Threatening the Internet EconomyWritten by Ross MacIver
One of most popular forms of Internet advertising is pay-per-click (PPC). Merchants place ads with search engines like Google or MSN and ad appears whenever someone enters a relevant search.
If ad is clicked merchant pays a fee – anywhere from 5 cents to $100. It’s a fabulous idea – ad campaigns targeted at your most likely customers.
It’s such a fabulous idea that Google, king of PPC, grossed $1.24 billion in first 3 months of this year – most of it from advertising revenue.
Watch out, though. There’s trouble in PPC land. The flip side to PPC is a phenomenon called “click fraud” or “click spam.”
There are two types of click fraud. The first type occurs when someone maliciously clicks on your PPC ad to drive up your advertising costs. It could be a competitor or a disgruntled former employee.
The second type of fraud involves clicking on affiliate ads to generate income. Affiliate ads are placed on third party web sites and each time someone clicks on an affiliate ad web site owner receives a commission.
Industry observers believe that affiliate click fraud is biggest problem of two. Either way, result is same – advertising budget depletion with little gain for merchant.
Either type of click fraud can be accomplished with use of automated “robots” or by hiring an army of workers. The India Times reported in 2004 that a “growing number of housewives, college graduates, and even working professionals across metropolitan cities are rushing to click paid Internet ads to make $100 to $200 per month.”
7 Great Ways to Advertise Your SiteWritten by Roger Boatwright, M.D.
1. Make your classified ads stand out in a crowd. Use all capital letters in headline, divide letters with extra spaces, add in text symbols, etc. For example, you could write, "WIN a VACATION to Las Vegas!" Another example would be, "Win A ($) Trip To Las Vegas!"
2. Buy advertising space on discussion board web sites. They are usually arranged by subject; that makes them highly targeted. For example, if you are selling gardening tools, you would want to advertise on gardening, farm, tool and lawn-related discussion boards.
3. Create your own web ring. You will gain highly targeted traffic to your web site and others will link to your site because they'll want to join ring. For example, if you were selling products to net marketers, you would want to start an online marketing web ring. You would then draw your target audience.
4. Use free advertising as much as possible. Test a wide variety of free advertising options like banner and link exchanges, classifieds, newsgroups, ad swaps, joint venturing, viral marketing, web rings, message boards, trading content, etc. Don't be afraid to try something new.