Friday, March 03, 2006

Google : Admiring their top priority

As of yet, I do not own Google stock, but I have admired their company for over 4 years since a colleague at my last company introduced me to their search engine. I admire their innovation in pushing web technologies forward and their philosophy on how they develop and deliver service to the consumer. There's been a lot of misplaced media 'fluff' about "click-fraud", so I wanted to give my opinion.

Here's why I don't think "click fraud" will threaten Google at all. It's a great free market system as it self-regulates. For as long as people show a return on investment they're comfortable with, they will keep buying ads. What many not in the business (and apparently many writers) do not know, Google provides the ability to imbed pre-formatted javascript into your 'buy confirmation' webpage, that enables you to track the exact percentage of users that clicked on your Google ad and then went on to buy. It is the best form of advertising on the planet that is: targeted and measureable.

Even if there is click fraud vs a particular company, one of the effects of this is causing that particular advertisers "click through rate" to go to astronomically high levels. "Click through rate" is the number of clicks divided by the number of page impressions, and is used as one factor in determining ad position. Ad position and frequency are not determined solely by cost -- it's relevance to the keywords, click-through rate, and cost. So, this person whose ad was being assaulted by clicks would have to pay less for the top spot than another whose ad wasn't clicked on as much. If done at extreme (E.g. automated) levels, it could perhaps cause those advertisers to drop out for bidding for those keywords at that price... however these drop outs cause less demand for those keywords, lowering the bidding price and letting others in (or the original company back in). In other words, the fradulent clicks are built into the price-per-click already. It has been and continues to be a brilliant system for the consumer, the advertiser, and Google. What's great is that their first priority, even in delivering advertising, is delivering links and information that are relevant to the consumer's search request.


Mark Holton said...

A follow up:

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