This year, Google have renamed their annual “Bad Ads Report” to a more positive “Better Ads Report“. The new name highlights Google’s aim to improve online advertising, thus serving the user rather than their “…own internal goals or bottom line”. In reality, the two are one and the same. If Google, allowed “bad ads” then eventually people would grow tired of using their search engine and either stop clicking the ads or move to another search engine. Therefore, it really is in Google’s best interests to ensure that they show “good ads”!
The report focuses on the different types of “bad ads” along with providing some key stats on how many ads have been blocked. In total, there were over 780 million ads that didn’t fit their criteria. This has increased since last year , which Google state is due to new tech and a team of over 1,000 working to make sure that user never has to see “bad ads”.
The top “bad ads” that Google has blocked over 2015 include counterfeiters, pharmaceuticals, weight loss scams, phishing, unwanted software and trick to click ads. If you’re unfamiliar with any of these, then view the report to learn more.
More interestingly, the information Google provide on “creating a better experience”, goes into more detail on how more recent issues are being solved. For example, “accidental mobile clicks” (clicking an ad by accident on a mobile phone, most likely one that fills the page) is an issue that they’re working to overcome. The aim of this is to ensure that the user doesn’t get irritated by redirected to a new site, and the advertiser doesn’t have to pay for unwarranted clicks.
Although this report is focused on the user, the “better experience” section highlights the issue of click fraud for advertisers. This is a very current issue that most people reading the report (AdWords managers) would be more interested to see being addressed. Ad fraud is set cost $7.2 billion in 2016 , $1 billion higher than 2015. This equates to 1/3 of ad clicks coming from fraudulent means. This is the real issue for Google’s customers that seems to have been brushed under the carpet.