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investigating click fraud symbolism

Click Fraud on Bing: How to Respond3 min read

3 min read

Click Fraud on Bing… have you ever heard of it? Has it ever crossed your mind? Well, it should because it does happen and probably more often than you might think…

Following recent investigations into click fraud for some of our clients, we thought it might be useful to provide an update on the controls you have within Bing Ads to deal with click fraud and how you pinpoint and rectify these issues should you encounter them.

As part of routine optimization work across our accounts, we often look for anomalies in performance and lean on in-house tools within Croud Control to bring our attention to any which may need to be addressed. One recent review from just last week flagged up a keyword on Bing that seemed incongruous, highlighting a marked increase in impressions (to say the least). There was a WoW rise in impressions of over 700%!

Graph showing likely Click fraud on Bing

When drilling into this further we found that this could be attributed to a spike in traffic from Bing’s search partners:

To see this view in your own Bing account, head into ‘Dimensions’ and segment by ‘Publisher Website’. You can also download the data and pivot by Publisher website.

Once it’s been identified that there may be an issue with traffic, we can check the validity using traffic quality metrics such as conversion rates, or GA metrics such as bounce rate and time on site. This will give us a clear understanding of the quality of this traffic. In the example below, we can see that 80% of the traffic from Bing had a bounce rate of 97.74% and a total time on site of 00:00:00. Under these conditions, this is traffic that is likely to be fraudulent and is not traffic we are interested in. Once those search partners were excluded we saw immediate improvements in these metrics.

Bing Click Fraud key metrics

Finally, to take the appropriate steps to prevent displaying ads against these search partners you can exclude websites in the Bing Ads Editor, under the advanced options button at the top right-hand side of the interface, as below:

adressing click fraud drop down menu

So, in short, Bing Click Fraud does happen, it can have a significant impact on results and you need to ensure you monitor carefully as part of on-going optimization! Below is a breakdown of top tips to consider as part of this:

  • Check for anomalies: what’s happening YoY, WoW for the same terms? Do you have sufficient technology or resource set aside to monitor these changes?
  • Control your campaigns: are the correct settings applied? Make sure you review the publisher websites and follow the steps above to exclude if necessary.
  • Flag up to Bing: not only does this aid development of their platform if/when these issues are flagged up, you may even be entitled to some form of compensation if the advertising is completely irrelevant!

Croud prides itself on its optimization work, staying close to the data and interrogating down to the smallest of detail. If you’re looking for some support or advice on how to tackle these kinds of issues or simply to improve optimization work and performance of your advertising then please do get in touch – we’d love to hear from you!