It’s no secret that invalid traffic (IVT) is a hot topic in the publishing industry right now. But how exactly can you avoid it? In this blog post, we’ll break it all down for you. So sit tight and buckle up – it’s about to get informative!
Every year, publishers are losing millions of dollars due to invalid traffic and this will only get worse if they keep ignoring ad fraud. One out of three publishers around the world have experienced revenue clawbacks and diminishing ad revenue. As we move further into the future, we expect the figure to almost certainly increase.
The lack of understanding of the scope of the problem also allows for forward-thinking publishers who know what they are doing to gain an advantage compared to their competitors. To maintain a strong reputation in front of advertisers and prevent cybercriminals from taking advantage of them, publishers should do everything within their power to reduce invalid traffic.
3 ways Invalid Traffic is crushing Publisher’s RPMs
Invalid traffic can be obvious or sophisticated, it all depends on your site’s traffic risk rate. Here are three of the most prevalent IVT trends that are squeezing your business’ budgets.
Everybody gets tired of hitting the ‘Allow Cookies’ tab whenever they are visiting any website. Cookies online are small bits of code that websites attach to browsers in order to keep track of a user’s data, and preferences, and use it as marketing ad campaign data for retargeting later.
Cookies enable advertisers to tailor their user experience by serving up relevant ads, and publishers use them to encourage users to sign up for their newsletters, affiliate links, or subscriptions. It is becoming more and more common for cybercriminals to use cookie stuffing, a practice whereby cookies are inserted into a user’s browser in such a way that it is hard to attribute sales properly.
Some have even swindled millions from eCommerce giants like eBay and been incarcerated for that. By stuffing cookies into the end user’s browsers, it may seem as though fraudsters deserve the commission for sales even though they weren’t actively driving any conversions. This is why publishers need to make sure they are protected against cookie stuffing.
Bots are taking center stage as technology advances. Though bots can be put to good use – think chatbots for customer service – they are frequently abused by fraudsters looking for quick money. There are tons of ways cybercriminals can use bots for malicious gains.
A click bot primarily visits websites and continuously clicks on ads in order to pseudo-amplify campaign data and eat huge chunks out of ad budgets. This way, advertisers lose money for fake impressions and stop partnering with publishers whose ad inventory caused the drain in their ad campaign budgets.
Both advertisers and publishers are losing money here long term with these bots getting more sophisticated every day.
That being said, you need to start looking into solutions that can detect and bust these bots for good in real-time, so you can block their traffic & will never have to appeal for AdSense bans caused by these bots ever again.
Influencer Marketing Fraud
With the rise of social media came the emergence of influencers: people with a large social following who can influence their audiences to buy products or cast their votes for certain brands. This has helped brands get noticed and drive online sales for their products but at the same time, it has also opened the getaway to influencer marketing fraud.
Basically, influencer fraud occurs when a supposed influencer isn’t actually an influencer by artificially augmenting their online presence and making it appear as though they have more followers, likes, and engagement than they do in fact have. In some cases, this influencer may not even be a real person.
This proves that invalid traffic doesn’t only exist on publishers’ sites and apps, but is spreading like the plague on social media as well.
Tools to detect & block IVT for good
With IVT getting more advanced these days and cybercriminals getting away with ad fraud, it is critical for publishers to combat both general bot traffic and sophisticated invalid traffic. Otherwise, you’ll keep losing a third of your ad revenue to bot activity.
MonetizeMore’s Traffic Cop is an industry-standard solution when it comes to IVT detection and mitigation with over 400 satisfied publishers who are free from ad fraud now. This IVT solution tool is constantly updated to stay ahead of nefarious actors and protect publishers from losing money to bot activity.
Publishers can either invest in affordable Invalid Traffic solutions like Traffic Cop or look into WordPress plugins that can help detect bot activity. However, solely detecting invalid traffic won’t work since ad fraud is prevalent everywhere. It’s best to use tools that detect and block ad fraud at the same time.