Diana and I had a conversation about Facebook ad clicks the other day, and what came out of it was that further analysis is necessary in order to conclude whether or not Facebook is a worthy promotional platform for marketers. Advertising has always been tricky, and there are a lot of different factors that have to be looked at in order to thoroughly sketch up a path which might provide a satisfying return. Long term advertising has always been a better alternative when compared to short term advertising. However, plans can quickly get squashed by an ever growing negative force within advertising. What I am talking about are the bots. It so happens that Facebook’s ad clicks were recently analyzed by a digital distribution company, and the results were mind boggling.
The analysis showed that upwards of 80% of all the ad clicks tracked through Facebook ads were actually bots, or at least they were on this particular company’s research ads. These are bots whose only purpose is to pollute the statistics and earn money for whoever is behind those bots. Their scheme is as intricate as Internet itself, but it’s safe to say that with those ad click stats, it would be impossible to make any kind of return on your investment. I mean, it’s highly unlikely that any bot will ever buy, sign up or have a real look at what you are offering the Internet population.
A fresh infographic called The Bots Stops Here by Column Five Media and SOLVE media presents the analyzed data in a very straight forward way. It is apparent that something has to be done about it. Since 2011, the overall bot clicks have increased from just 5.7% to 26% in 2012. That is a huge increase, and one that should concern any Facebook advertiser.
The question is, what can be done about it? Well, there are several things pointed out here that can be done about the increasingly polluted bot ad clicks. One is complete transparency in favor of the advertiser. There are apparently many ad networks out there that don’t showcase all of their data collected, which of course is another big concern. Those ad networks are breeding grounds for bots and a playground for anyone who wants to sabotage they system.
It’s further interesting that although the majority of bots roaming the Internet are from the United States, the countries with the highest amount of non-consumer traffic are actually Taiwan, Singapore and the Philippines (typo in the infographic). Now, this doesn’t in any way imply that Facebook ads are worthless. However, what it does say is that bots are polluting ad clicks all around the Internet. Facebook is far from being the only ad network that the ad click bots are focusing on. Only time will tell what will be done to improve the quality of ad click traffic, and how innovators can stop ad bots from increasingly polluting the ad click statistics.
Analysis Of Ad Click Bot Traffic Infographic
(Click To Enlarge)
Via: [Love Infographics]