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Are bots taking over your Facebook spending?

In a rapidly changing digital world social media has become the most effective and influential instrument available to firms, large as well as small.

With over 3.6 billion active users of social media worldwide in the present, it’s not surprising that many businesses consider it to be an unbeatable method of promoting its products and services previously impossible audiences, as well being a chance to gain insight into consumer needs and behavior.

Facebook is frequently thought of as one of the top sites for social media marketing – not just because of the targeted advertising However, many businesses that utilize Facebook may not be aware of the amount of money they is being spent on fraud.

Numerous studies show that digital ad fraud is a factor that affects between 10% to 60 percent of the kinds of digital advertisements companies of all size falling victim to what are known as bots – computer software used by fraudsters to steal deals, deceive visitors or get clicks.

How do bots function in the first place? How could they affect the businesses’ Facebook budgets, data and analytics and what can we do to stop them?

What is the function of bots?

A report released by security company Imperva found that bots – both bad and good responsible for 52% of all internet traffic. A separate study conducted by White Ops concluded that as 20 percent of sites that offer advertisements are accessed exclusively by bots that are fraudulent.

In simple terms, a clickbot is designed specifically to perform click fraud that is it appears to be legitimate visitors to a website and then automatically clicks on pay-per-click ads, buttons , or other kinds of hyperlinks.

The purpose of these ads is to trick an application or platform (in this case, Facebook – into believing that users actually interact with the website, app or ad.

Most often, bots don’t just click a hyperlink once but will repeatedly click the link time to make it appear that the page receives a lot of traffic.

What’s the cause of this issue?

The existence in click-bots Facebook is particularly troublesome as they could take away a company’s budget for online marketing without a lot of the targeted ads reaching genuine users with an actual interest.

There are many reasons why click fraud can be employed – for instance competitors might utilize a “click farm” which is a group of unpaid employees or bots who are hired to click on advertisements – or even organised criminals might have discovered ways to earn money from clicking on business link.

In other cases, applications and software are developed to pay for advertisements for a business, usually by using bots.

When you consider that the price per click for the UK is PS0.78 according to Hubspot and some ads campaigns for key phrases that are popular being priced at PS10 per click or higher, it’s easy that it could get expensive when a business’s budget was to be swindled by fraudsters.

What are the effects of bots on the data as well as analytics?

Negative click bots are able to generate skewed statistics through Facebook advertisements.

As a lot of businesses do not know the difference between legitimate and fake ones, the data they collect could cause false conclusions and make decisions that can be detrimental to the company. For instance, businesses could decide to spend too much or not enough in a campaign based upon results that are largely incorrect.

It is essential for businesses to be sure that they’re making good decisions based on solid data and analytics and, fortunately, there’s an option to accomplish this.

The fight is now on the bots

There are many methods companies can employ to detect clicks from bots Certain methods are simpler than others.

Regularly looking over Facebook analytics for any irregularities in the flow of traffic which could be due to bots could make this job significantly simpler.

The most important things to watch for are how many pages viewed and the average time of a session as well as the origin of referral traffic. In the event of any obvious anomalies in these numbers, then bots may be the cause.

Large spikes in page visits due to a greater number of visits than usual could be a sign of bot activity. They can be particularly hazardous due to their potential to slow the site for real users.

Once the malicious activity is identified, measures are then taken in stopping it from the source However, this isn’t straightforward that requires technical know-how and experience.

After eliminating negative click bots, businesses are able to be confident that they’re optimizing their campaigns with accurate data which help increase efficiency, decrease the cost per visit and boost the return on investment.

Conclusion

Eliminating the bots hindering the performance of a company in Facebook isn’t simple, and takes time and effort to ensure that malicious traffic is constantly monitored.

The presence of experts with a solid understanding of the detection and elimination of instances of click fraud could aid in turning the tide against bots, and ultimately enable companies to realize huge savings on their advertising.

Businesses are not only responsible for themselves but their customers as well, to take these dangerous and disruptive programs down to make a difference.

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