As Barry Schwartz informs us down at SEW, The San Francisco Chronicle reports on a click fraud study which claims that pay-per-click advertisers lost $800 million to click fraud last year. It is unclear whether advertisers’ campaigns were monitored or they were simply asked about the amount of fraudulent clicks in their campaigns, but the study claims that 14.6 percent of all clicks are fraudulent. The study also claims that 27% of all advertisers who received bogus clicks either reduced or even stopped their advertising campaigns.
It is unclear whether click fraud is as big an issue as most of these studies claim, but the perception of fraudulent clicks being a huge problem keeps haunting advertisers and search engines alike. One thing is clear – despite all the problems, search engine advertising campaigns convert a lot better than any other advertising medium out there.