Click Fraud: Yahoo wants audits!

UPDATE:  Why Click Fraud is NOT case closed!  Last month I asked Click Fraud: Yahoo pledges quality, what about audits?
Written by Donna Bogatin, Contributor

UPDATE:  Why Click Fraud is NOT case closed!


Last month I asked Click Fraud: Yahoo pledges quality, what about audits?


Reggie Davis, newly appointed Yahoo Vice President of Marketplace Quality, told me Tuesday that Yahoo supports the Internet Advertising Bureau’s push for “auditing against standards,” the click measurement standards currently being formulated under the auspices of the IAB’s industry-wide Click Measurement Working Group. 

Davis told me he is hopeful that the work of the IAB’s Working Group may be completed by the end of this year. 

Davis may be new on the job (I had the honor of receiving the first of his newly minted business cards when we met in New York City earlier this week), but he has already set in motion an executive agenda to “combat click fraud, enhance traffic quality and provide additional visibility and controls to advertisers.” 

Davis shared with me how Yahoo currently seeks to protect its advertisers from the potential impact of click fraud and what it intends to do going forward to further bolster the quality of advertising it delivers.

Yahoo today, according to Davis: 

Yahoo identifies, but does not bill for, on average, about 12-15% of the clicks on its network,

The Yahoo Click Through Protection (CTP) System comprises about 2000 filters with rules to determine click validity by assessing a multitude of attributes for each click on its network, including: 

Black lists/white lists
Behavioral pattern matching
Historical analysis
Bad IPs
Robotic browser IDs

Davis told me that he has recently seen “significant decrease in the number of click fraud/traffic quality investigation requests.” 

Davis is bringing together a dedicated staff of about 26 professionals to manage across all of Yahoo’s cross-functional quality teams.

The Marketplace Quality team will be rolling out an advertiser-focused Marketplace Quality Center with an automated advertiser inquiry submission process and educational resources for advertisers, such as “Tips to detect suspicious click activity.”

Yahoo is targeting a ten day turnaround time for responding to advertiser click inquiries and will be offering an 800 number for additional service.

Davis told me “protecting advertisers from unqualified clicks” is a top Yahoo priority, noting that it is a Yahoo “compelling” interest to run a “trusted marketplace.”

Davis is also evangelizing increased advertiser adoption of conversion tracking tools; Installation of the Yahoo tools will be available through the Marketplace Quality Center.

Additional Yahoo initiatives championed by Davis for 2007:

1) Quality-based pricing, designed to ensure that traffic is priced in a manner that is consistent with the quality it delivers to advertisers,

2) Domain-level blocking, allowing advertisers to identify individual domains from which they do not wish to receive traffic.

ALSO: Google to host Click Fraud day for advertisers and Why Click Fraud is NOT case closed!

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