Click Fraud and Search Syndication Networks Three reasons why content advertising conversion rates are so bad:
- It’s not search. By definition the people clicking on the ads aren’t in the process of shopping for your products, they’re just reading a story online, so they’re less likely to pull the trigger.
- Content ads are poorly targeted. Language is really hard. As good as the engines are at making sense of the web, content ads for metal working still show up on “heavy metal” websites.
- Click fraud. Site owners have a huge incentive to develop creative ways to click on their own ads to increase their ad revenue.
- Google: split campaigns into Google.com only and Syndication only, and bid accordingly. At this point, Google doesn’t allow users to block specific offenders, you have to take the syndicates as a package. It would be great if, in the name of pursuing the greater good, Google allowed us to select partners.
- Yahoo: good news! Yahoo is planning to adjust the cpcs paid to syndicate partners based on conversion rates. Partners whose traffic converts at half the rate of traffic on Yahoo.com get paid half the normal cpc and the savings go to the retailer.
- MSN: MSN’s syndication partner is Live.com. Currently there’s no way to segment that traffic.
- Ask.com: There’s no way through the interface to block syndication or select Ask.com only, however, if you “ask” nicely, they can knock out specific syndication partners who seem to be sending unusually poor traffic.
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