In previous posts I explained How bots traffic affects advertising
and How to detect bot traffic?
Now we are ready to discuss what to communicate about bots traffic to our advertisers.
Not charging our direct customers (advertisers) for useless bots traffic -- is a reasonable choice if we care about long-term relationships with our customers.
But what to do when things are getting a little bit outside of my direct control?"Aggregator" case
Let's consider a practical example.
One of our advertisers is a job aggregator.
Let's call that advertiser "Aggregator".
Aggregator gets (aggregates) jobs from other job boards. These job boards are Aggregator's clients that advertise jobs on that Aggregator.
Aggregator advertises these aggregated jobs on multiple publishers' websites.PostJobFree
is one of many publishers that Aggregator uses.
The aggregator may charge advertisers 0.24/click and then pay publishers 0.20/click (20% margin).
So if publisher's traffic is inflated with bot clicks, then in the short-term, Aggregator may financially benefit from that bots traffic.
In the long-term, that useless bots traffic is likely to destroy Aggregator's relationships with advertisers.
So we may expect that reasonable Aggregator would want to promptly identify and discount useless bots traffic.
In real life, business decisions turn out to be a little bit different.
Aggregator's team focuses on making money and tries to eliminate distractions that slow down money making.
So Aggregator's team ignores my subtle hints (I hint that it may be useful to discuss some techniques about how to identify bots traffic).
I think that Aggregator's team may even get a little bit annoyed by my attempt to talk about bots traffic, because the more Aggregator talks about bots traffic - the harder it is to claim that Aggregator knows nothing about that bots traffic.
On another hand, Aggregator may like charging advertisers for all traffic (real users + useless bots), but pay us only for real users traffic (because we do not count bots traffic in our invoices).
I try to not push too hard with my warnings about bots traffic.What to communicate?
I consider these 3 approaches of communicating bots traffic issue to Aggregator - reasonably practical:
Approach #1: "Keep it quiet"
Silently discount bots traffic and tell nothing about bots traffic to Aggregator [unless Aggregator team asks about bots traffic themselves].
Ignore differences between PostJobFree clicks counts vs [inflated] Aggregator's clicks counts.
Approach #2: "Balanced"
Discount bots traffic and briefly mention to Aggregator that we discounted bots traffic.
Do not try to explain further without explicit interest from Aggregator.
(I currently follow that "balanced" approach).
Approach #3: "Full disclosure"
Be very direct with Aggregator and clearly explain all the dangers of bots traffic and how charging for useless bots traffic may negatively impact long-term relationships between Aggregator and their advertisers.
Explain even if Aggregator does not ask about bots traffic.
What do you recommend to communicate to Aggregator about bots traffic issue?
Originally posted at: https://dennisgorelik.dreamwidth.org/210128.html