Ad fraud can have a serious impact on any business. Not only can ad fraud eat your budget and water down ROI, it can also suck up a lot of time, causing your business to incur hefty opportunity costs along the way.
Despite this toll on businesses, ad fraud remains a massive problem. By some estimates, 25 percent of all ad clicks are fraudulent. In other words, businesses end up paying fraudsters one out of every four times an ad is clicked. Suffice it to say that’s not the most effective way to spend money.
The good news is that businesses are increasingly becoming savvy to ad fraud—as well as the solutions on the market designed to defeat it. But not every organization has unlimited resources, which means that marketers and advertisers need to consider ROI before deciding to invest in an ad fraud detection tool.
With that in mind, let’s weigh the costs and benefits you can expect to see from an ad fraud detection solution, as well as some additional considerations to keep in mind as you figure out how to solve your ad fraud problem.
Consider the Costs
When it comes to investing in an advertising fraud solution for your business, you should weigh several different costs, starting with these four.
1. Searching for a Solution
You can’t pick a solution out of a hat and expect great results. You’re going to have to spend time researching your options and doing your due diligence to find out which solution is best for the job and a good fit for your organization. However, this up-front effort will save time that you might otherwise have to spend digging into inaccurate campaign metrics down the road.
2. Purchasing the Software Licensing
If you’re in the market for an enterprise-grade ad fraud detection solution, it will be an investment. That’s why it’s so important to take the time to understand the cost of ad fraud in your organization and pick the solution that works best for your situation.
Look for a solution that delivers real-time data, enables you to flag potential fraud in volatile environments, and allows you to drill deep into your data to make increasingly better decisions with robust analytics. For the best results, pick a solution that integrates with your existing web assets and online platforms, and make sure it comes with optimal levels of customer support. That way, if you can’t figure something out on your own, you can turn to experts who will help you resolve issues quickly.
As you begin narrowing down your options, check out customer reviews and case studies to see what real people are saying about specific solutions and get a better idea of how they might help your organization.
3. Deploying, Managing, and Maintaining the Software
Once you’ve zeroed in on a solution, you’ll need to get it up and running. While some solutions require you to devote resources to ensuring the tool is managed properly and working as designed, other tools exist in the background and only require you to inject a little bit of code on your site to start detecting ad fraud.
For example, Anura is incredibly easy to integrate and is updated continuously to ensure that it’s always able to detect the newest forms of ad fraud. Unlike other choices on the market, you won’t have to install updates to take advantage of the newest detection methods.
4. Training Your Team
In addition to making sure the solution is operational, you’ll also need your marketing and advertising teams to know how to use the features that come with it. Leading ad fraud detection tools are intuitive by design, but it’s still worth running through a short training session to make sure that everyone on the team—even those who are less tech-savvy—knows how to unlock its full value.
Consider the Benefits
Once you’ve wrapped your head around the costs that come along with an advertising fraud solution, it’s time to start thinking about the myriad benefits you can expect after deployment.
1. Optimizing Your Spend
A report from Juniper Research predicted that advertisers stood to collectively lose $42 billion on ad spend during 2019 due to fraudulent activities, a 21 percent increase from the previous year. What’s more, that same study predicts that by 2023, the total amount lost to ad fraud will reach a staggering $100 billion.
The last thing you want to do is to spend money on online advertising only to have a hefty 25 percent of those funds flow into an unscrupulous actor’s pockets.
With an ad fraud detection solution in place, you can reclaim the spend that is rightfully yours, ensuring you get a bigger bang for your buck and better, more accurate, and more lucrative results from your campaigns.
2. Increasing Your Budget
If 25 percent of your marketing efforts are for naught, your campaigns won’t produce the best possible results which can make decision-makers hesitant to pour more resources into online advertising campaigns. In this light, by optimizing your spend and protecting against “bad clicks,” ad fraud detection solutions can help your campaigns generate more favorable results. Over time, this positive data can then be used to make the case that you need to start spending more money on online advertising.
3. Improving Your Metrics
In the digital age, data matters more than ever before. More and more companies are using big data and analytics to remove guesswork from the equation and figure out the best way forward.
With an ad fraud solution in place, you are taking a proactive approach to reducing fraud—which means you’ll end up with cleaner data down the road. And that data will help you determine your next moves, pointing you in a more precise direction.
The cleaner your data is, the easier it will be to continuously optimize your campaigns and drill down into the numbers to see what’s working and what isn’t. You’ll end up in a much better business position, where you can make more intelligent decisions about how you buy traffic online.
When it becomes apparent that your online ad campaigns are translating into a serious uptick in sales, chances are the C-suite will not only be happy with your campaigns, they’ll want to double down on them.
4. Accelerating Growth and Revenue
Add it all up, and an ad fraud solution can drive rapid ROI in your ad campaigns while increasing client demand and accelerating company growth. With the right tools in place, you’ll see expansion in the metrics that matter, like revenue and conversions. And again, you’re keeping money out of bad actors’ hands. It’s a win-win scenario for your business.
Consider the Short Cuts
At this point, you have a better understanding of the costs and benefits of using an advertising fraud solution. But is that the only answer to the ad fraud problem? Here are some alternatives you might consider in this scenario—and why you should resist those temptations.
If you’re like most businesses, you might be wondering how to simply take care of ad fraud detection internally. Some companies explore the option of hiring fraud analysts and paying them a hefty amount of money, including benefits.
But attacks are getting more sophisticated. If you hire a person to do the job, they will have to be familiar enough with bots and human fraud to identify which clicks are suspect. They will also have to do this in a fast-paced environment while making sure there aren’t any false negatives to further corrupt data. Of course, they’ll have to stay on top of all of the developments pertaining to ad fraud so that they can detect newer methods as they emerge.
Other businesses might end up thinking that a low-cost solution could help with their ad fraud detection efforts. Truth be told, this isn’t an area where you can afford to save money. Low-cost options might not perform at the levels you need to make a difference. If you’re committed to solving your ad fraud problems, you can’t compromise on the right solution for the job.
Consider a Real Solution
Ad fraud is a serious problem that’s only expected to get worse over time. The sooner you start trying to resolve it by selecting the right ad fraud solution, the better off your organization will be long-term.
Ready to learn more about how ad fraud may be affecting your business and how to attack it head-on? Request a trial to see how Anura can help your company detect ad fraud in real time and spend your ad budget more effectively.