This post was most recently updated on October 31st, 2022
Invalid traffic (IVT) has been a thorn in the side of online publishers for years. It not only costs publishers money but also skews analytics data and harms the user experience. Blocking bots and clicks farms from countries notorious for this type of activity can help reduce the amount of invalid traffic your site sees. In this blog post, we’ll take a look at some tips to help you do just that. Stay tuned!
Bad bots are estimated to cost publishers and programmatic industry players over $19 billion per year, and we’ve got the stats to prove it! Read more about our findings below.
In today’s digital advertising ecosystem, invalid traffic (IVT) is a growing problem that impacts both publishers and advertisers. Bot traffic and click farms have been increasing in sophistication with the advancement of artificial intelligence, allowing crooks to get more value from bots while maintaining their anonymity. The result? IVT accounts for roughly 40% of all ad impressions on desktop computers—and it’s only getting worse.
If you’re a publisher looking for ways to detect and block this kind of digital ad fraud from your ad inventory sources before it even hits your site, you have come to the right place! You need to look for botnet detection solutions that will help you identify and block malicious traffic from reaching your inventory sources before it ever reaches your users or advertiser partners.
Fraudulent traffic and captcha farms are getting more sophisticated by the day and are increasingly difficult to detect. What’s worse is that click fraud activities carried out by click farm workers in developing countries artificially inflate CTRs (click-through rates) or traffic totals for those pages.
Many anti bot systems are unable to detect and block click farms and pass it off as real human traffic. However, they are still counted as invalid traffic by Google. This is why IVT detection by country is crucial so that publishers can stop high IVT percentages coming from X countries and save time & money.
The only way for publishers to stay ahead of this game is to take advantage of affordable & reliable cutting-edge technologies, like MonetizeMore’s Traffic Cop.
Traffic Cop uses a combination of machine learning algorithms and statistical models that analyze millions of variables from every device accessing your website. It then uses this data in real-time to filter out bots—a process that would otherwise require hours or days for human intervention alone!
Bad bots can lead to a bad user experience and be detrimental to the reputation of your brand and this problem is growing steadily at an alarming rate. To combat this, you can use Traffic Cop, which detects invalid traffic by whole countries at once if they’re found to be suspicious.
You’ll also get reports on their percentage compared with organic visitors so that you know exactly how much invalid traffic has been affecting your site’s performance over time.
MonetizeMore’s Traffic Cop dashboard has a section called ‘Invalid Traffic by Country’ that depicts the total IVT risk percentage by country. It’s a Visualization depicting the total IVT risk coming from a specific country. In this case, for all the traffic the site receives from that particular country, the percentage depicts how much invalid traffic and click farm activity is coming from that country.
Traffic Cop’s dashboard also provides details about invalid traffic from each IP address, along with its location and device type (desktop or mobile). This information can help you identify which countries and regions are generating high levels of invalid traffic, as well as whether it’s coming from desktop or mobile devices. This helps publishers prioritize their efforts to reduce IVT by region or device type—or both!
You can now use CloudFlare in combination with Traffic Cop’s IVT detection by country to block all click farms, bad bots & spam traffic at the country level.
CloudFlare’s Bot Management is a cloud-based solution that can block bad bots or fraudulent traffic coming from countries. Their solution allows you to control which country you want to block or allow, making it easy for publishers to decide who uses their sites by country.
While Traffic Cop is designed for protecting ad inventories from invalid traffic. Cloudflare is designed to stop bot traffic from visiting the website. They sound similar but the functionalities are different. CloudFlare also prevents DDOS attacks. If the publisher wants to still be protected from those, they should keep Cloudflare.
You can use both Traffic Cop and Cloudflare together in your account if you want total protection against invalid traffic on your site’s ads inventory.
3. Scroll down to the section ‘Total Invalid Traffic (IVT) by country’
4. If this section shows a high IVT percentage from X country (For example Nigeria), block the whole country with CloudFlare bot management by filtering that country under ‘Firewall Events’
It is fairly easy to figure out which country a visitor is in when you use Cloudflare. It doesn’t matter how they access your site since their home IP address won’t change. As this is tied to a country, if you use a Firewall Rule to block visitors from X country, Cloudflare will block people whose IP addresses are in that country.
So, what are you waiting for? Get started with Traffic Cop today to eliminate invalid traffic generated by bots and other deceptive methods, which can be dangerous for your business due to all of the time spent on wasted impressions, clicks, conversions, and revenue generation.
You need to be subscribed to the Enterprise plan to block traffic from a whole country/countries. Blocking Countries option will be removed from non-enterprise plans.
Blocking traffic from specific countries will not affect your site speed at all.
To block or allow traffic, use .htaccess to watch the headers for Country code. Cloudflare passes you a parameter called ‘CF-IPCountry’ that holds the viewers country code in ISO 3166-1 Alpha 2 format (e.g. US, GB, etc.). They also include country codes to block Traffic (country code = T1). Use 'allow from' and 'deny from' together with that to block countries or use Rewrite Rules to send visitors to a generic blocked page.
Here’s the course that 300+ pubs used to scale their ad revenue.