Yahoo's approach to suspected click fraud fails to inspire confidence. I have a client that has good organic rankings on Google and also spends large sums on Google Adwords - £10k ($20k) per month. The client recently suffered what appeared to be a click raid on the Yahoo search marketing pay per click service. The real time analytics showed searches from a non-UK based "partner" search engine repeatedly delivering clicks in a single evening for a highly obscure term. When I say obscure, the exact match data on Google shows 1 search per day for the term.
Now the chances of a tiny engine delivery 50 times more traffic than Google, are quite remote. But this is how Yahoo search marketing responded.
"We have completed our investigation of the unusual click activity you recently reported.
After carefully analysing the click trail for your account, our Loss Prevention Team has determined that there were no unqualified clicks.
You may be interested to know that we have a dedicated team of Loss Prevention specialists and a Click Protection System that vigilantly monitor click activity. We developed the Click Protection System to assist us in identifying click fraud and creating a better user experience for our advertisers. While the Advertiser Terms and Conditions agreement provides that you will be charged for all clicks on your listings, we realize that our customers are concerned about click fraud and maintaining customer satisfaction is a top priority. Therefore, even though we are not obligated to, we voluntarily designed the Click Protection System and enhance it.
Please do not hesitate to contact us if we can be of any further assistance."
Personally, I don't believe Yahoo have paid anything but lip service to my complaint. And at this stage I don't believe they have studied the analytics log that I sent them. Meanwhile the client, amongst many others, will be diverting even more of their spend to Google Adwords.