ClickFacts, Click Forensics and AdWatcher are all feeling the heat this
afternoon as Google fights back against these firms reports regarding the degree
of click fraud.
Google is essentially claiming that the studies are either based
on guesswork or they are tracking too many "fictitious clicks". The PDF of the
report is available on the
Official Google Blog (PDF
here) and another post about these "troubling findings is available at the
Inside Adwords Blog.
Both are interesting reads to get 1) some background on
third-party click fraud estimates and methodology problems, 2) valuable findings
from Google's internal click fraud auditing team and 3) recommendations for
addressing the issues. There are also demonstrations of how fictitious clicks
occur in third-party systems and some very detailed case studies. A must read
for any one concerned with invalid clicks from pay-per-click advertising.