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What is IVT (Invalid Traffic)? How to Detect and Mitigate It

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What is Invalid Traffic (IVT)?

Invalid traffic (IVT) is a major problem in digital marketing. IVT encompasses all non-human traffic, including bots and other automated processes that can interact with online advertisements. This traffic does not offer any value to advertisers as it doesn’t originate from legitimate human visitors. Consequently, IVT can inflate ad impressions and clicks, which can lead to wasted ad spend, skewed analytical data, damaged brand reputation, and delivers no return on investment.
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General Invalid Traffic (GIVT) vs. Sophisticated Invalid Traffic (SIVT)

There are two main types of IVT: general invalid traffic (GIVT) and sophisticated invalid traffic (SIVT).

GIVT is the most common type of IVT. General Invalid Traffic is typically generated by simple bots that are designed to mimic human behavior and easier to detect. It includes traffic from known data centers, search engine bots, or any traffic that can be filtered through lists or simple rules. While GIVT may not necessarily be malicious, it remains inconsequential to marketing efforts.

SIVT is more complex and is often generated by sophisticated botnets that are designed to evade detection. Sophisticated Invalid Traffic, on the other hand, is far more deceptive and difficult to identify. It employs advanced techniques such as botnets, mimicking human behavior, or using proxy servers to hide its origin. SIVT is often malicious, as it is intended to defraud advertisers by mimicking legitimate traffic.

How Does IVT Impact Digital Marketing Campaigns?

IVT poses a significant threat to digital marketing campaigns. By inflating traffic numbers with non-human traffic, it can lead to wasted ad spend, inaccurate analytics, and compromised campaign performance. SIVT, in particular, can also tarnish brand reputation as ads may inadvertently be placed on illegitimate or harmful sites through fraudulent practices.

Here are some of the ways that IVT can impact your campaigns:

Wasted ad spend: 

IVT can inflate ad impressions and clicks, which can lead to wasted ad spend. For example, if you have a $100 budget and 25% of your traffic is IVT, then you are essentially spending $25 on non-human traffic.

Inaccurate reporting

IVT can also distort your reporting data, making it difficult to track the performance of your campaigns. For example, if you have a 25% IVT rate, then your click-through rate (CTR) will be artificially inflated.

Damaged brand reputation

IVT can also damage your brand reputation. If your ads are being served to bots or other non-human traffic, then your brand may be associated with spam, malware, or other malicious activity.

The Challenge of Detecting IVT

Detecting IVT, especially SIVT, is a daunting task. SIVT’s ability to mimic human behavior and disguise itself makes it difficult for traditional ad fraud solutions to detect. Conventional methods such as blacklisting IPs or simple pattern recognition are ineffective against the evolving strategies of SIVT.

Anura: Your Shield Against IVT

Anura is an ad fraud solution designed to counter both GIVT and SIVT effectively. Here’s how Anura protects your campaigns:

Advanced Detection

Anura's real-time analysis and sophisticated algorithms can detect even the most deceptive forms of SIVT, including botnets and traffic through proxies.

Accurate Analytics

By filtering out non-human traffic, Anura ensures that your campaign analytics represent genuine user engagement, allowing for more informed decision-making.

Budget Protection

With reduced IVT, your ad spend targets genuine audiences, optimizing your return on investment and ensuring that budgets are not wasted on fraudulent traffic.

Reputation Safeguarding

Anura prevents ads from appearing on malicious or unsavory sites by detecting and blocking SIVT, safeguarding your brand’s reputation.

IVT is a major problem in digital marketing, but there are a number of things that you can do to detect and mitigate it. By understanding the distinctions between GIVT and SIVT, and employing Anura as an ad fraud solution, you can shield your campaigns from the detrimental effects of IVT. With Anura, ensure that your campaigns are driven by genuine engagement, protecting not just your budget but also your brand.

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