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Real Adwords War, Need real experienced help

Discussion in 'BlackHat Lounge' started by Alex Edison, Jun 19, 2017.

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  1. Alex Edison

    Alex Edison Newbie

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    Sorry to make this long but I want to give you a complete picture,
    We recently opened a business to help our retiring parents since they do not have money saved, do not own a house or anything, so me and my sister thought of the business to support them as we get older, get married, have kids and our own bills to pay. A competitor threatened us quiet few times and tried to shutdown our website, and now is clicking our ads non stop using bots and VPN services.
    We took the following approaches to try to fight back and not use evil methods as we believe in karma,
    1- Took google adwords course, improved ad quality, keyword quality score, etc..
    2- narrowed down the search to only 16 miles radius.
    3- signed up for fraud clicks protection service and IP address blocking.
    4- blocked IP addresses, IP addresses ranges, area zipcodes where they IP addresses causing the clicks are located.
    5- added 3000 negative keywords
    6- started to advertise on other platforms such as facebook, instagram etc.. but yet google makes up 80% of our sales.
    7- Blocked IP addresses and zipcodes from repeated devices.
    8- Called google and tried to get them to help and/or credit us back, with no results.

    So at this point, we are still getting a lot of fraud clicks that are wasting our budget, we have a very high click through rate (9-10% on average). Most of the clicks (90%) stay 1-2 seconds on the page and leave. Most of them go back to VPN services when you trace the IP addresses.

    We are not experts on any of that and we are learning as we go, but obviously that competitor has someone who is very experienced or we guess it is a hacker who is doing all that work for him.

    If we do not receive some real experts help from here soon enough, we will have to shutdown and we will lose all the money, sleepless nights and efforts 4 people worked for the past 1 year. We have 5 starts on all platforms to prove how good our customer service is and our business model.

    We are not asking to take him out of business, but we are asking to find any effective way to get him to stop.

    Thank you in advance.
     
  2. AneaKr

    AneaKr Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    Hi Alex, thanks for the descriptive message! I think you've come to the right place.

    First, you didn't specify whether this is a local business or an online sales business. I assume it's a local business since you mentioned a 16 mile radius, but you also mentioned blocking entire zipcodes where the clicks came from...so that seems like it could possibly be canceling out your own work.

    Second, how does your competitor find your ads to click? I would assume it's 1) a niche thing like searching for "burger stands in Indianapolis" or 2) a brand name he can key in. Have you considered removing your brand name from the ads temporarily?

    Following up with that, have you considered changing your entire ad format so that he doesn't know who he is going after? Of course this only works if you aren't dependent upon brand recognition.
     
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  3. Alex Edison

    Alex Edison Newbie

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    Yes it is a local business in New York City, it is a group activity business, so most of the keywords have to do with that activity itself such as New York sports club gym, LA fitness Gym, gym in NYC etc.. we are not sure how after all these steps we have taken, he is still maintaining the same number of clicks. We thought that would eliminate at least 80 % of the fraud clicks since we know it is almost impossible to eliminate fraud clicks completely.
     
  4. AneaKr

    AneaKr Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    Wild card question, but have you tried Bing Ads? Depending upon niche, we've seen great ROI with Bing campaigns at a much lower cost per engagement, and chances are your competitor isn't on Bing.
     
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  5. Alex Edison

    Alex Edison Newbie

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    we just started to advertise on there yesterday and the competitor is there too. We are worried that his bot will target us there too
     
  6. LucidMarketing

    LucidMarketing Regular Member

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    Every time I hear of and investigate click fraud, 99% of the time it's NOT click fraud. So chances are that's not what your problem is.

    The biggest problem by far is using keywords that are irrelevant to the product or service. Typically, the keywords used are too generic and not specific enough. Often, there is no knowledge that there are different match types. If you are using only broad, that's bad. In fact, I recommend never using broad match. The newer BMM (broad match modified) is OK but even then you need to understand the relationship between keywords and search terms and they must be very specific. You mentioned using 3000 negatives. That shows me there is likely a problem with your keywords. At least, that's where I'd start.

    The likely problem in a nutshell is that you are being too generic in your targeting. Your ads, even if they are not relevant to the search term, many still click. They show so often and so many click, you are wasting your traffic on the majority of them. I've seen this often (and often blamed on click fraud).

    Your 6th point is easy to explain. Not a problem really. Google is used by 80% people as their search engine of choice so it makes sense that 80% of your business comes from them.
     
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  7. Alex Edison

    Alex Edison Newbie

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    We are working on modifying the broad keywords to be less generic, but when we trace the IP addresses, 95% of them are coming from VPN services and all from 10 different zipcodes.
     
  8. SERPTurbo

    SERPTurbo Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    How did the competitor threaten you? Do you have any direct proof of that?

    If you could present this as a clear case to Adwords, after a few emails and phone calls, it's very likely that Google could possibly ban his advertising account, but this is only if you provide good evidence to support your claim.
     
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  9. Alex Edison

    Alex Edison Newbie

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    He met us in person and make the threats in person. So we have no proof, but he was very specific, if we do not lower our bid on the keywords so he is first on the page, he will do what it takes to shut us down.
     
  10. SERPTurbo

    SERPTurbo Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    Have you tried taking this up with Adwords, without telling them anything specific? Just say you think that there is possible click fraud going on with your campaign lately and see if they manage to pick up anything unusual on their side?
     
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  11. MileUnderMedia

    MileUnderMedia Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    Sometimes you have to be worse then they are to beat them. I would not conceed by moving to a new AD Net. I would take this guy down by any means necessary.

    You have many options on the deepweb.

    You have been provoked, fight or flight time.
     
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  12. ancientaliens

    ancientaliens Regular Member

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    Based on what you described and speculate..

    Since he's trying to fuck with you and bully you, whatever actions you take now is defence on your part. You could fuck with him back by fighting his attacks with attacks, as being passive will only lead to you being fucked in the end..

    Technically he's already relentlessly trying to eliminate you, so whatever you do to try and escape him will most likely be a waste of time as he's determined to find you and take you out at all costs..

    Unless you get lucky and he stops..

    But in this scenario you either have to match his attacks or give up and try something else..

    But before you try retaliation if that's what you choose, weigh it carefully and study your enemy and strike him at his weakest points..

    So many ways to get him back subtly.. maybe try get some evidence of another threat by setting him up in a situation where he threatens you again and capture the evidence..

    This is unlicensed and unprofessional advice.. Listen to it at your own discretion ;)
     
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  13. Shandy

    Shandy Junior Member

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    I like you
     
  14. Shandy

    Shandy Junior Member

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    OP. If you want to go dark You could get his website spammed with a load of crappy links. It's not something I've done or have experience with but if his site ranks well this will hurt it.
     
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  15. Alex Edison

    Alex Edison Newbie

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    tried and they tried to convince me that they catch it all
     
  16. Alex Edison

    Alex Edison Newbie

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    Where can I find these options? Sorry, I am new to all this.
     
  17. Alex Edison

    Alex Edison Newbie

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    At this point, we want to attack back, but we do not know how and what our options are. We put every penny we had and spent months of research and hard work to bring our business to where it is now. We kill ourselves to make our customers happy. So shutting down and going home because of an asshole who he thinks he can just have the whole market for himself is not acceptable by any means. We need help to attack back and ASAP.
     
  18. Shandy

    Shandy Junior Member

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    try posting in the Market Place in here. Good luck and don't let the Bastards wear you down
     
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  19. darulez

    darulez Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    sounds like you didnt learn "your lesson with bullies" in kindergarden..
     
  20. Array Experts

    Array Experts Jr. VIP Jr. VIP

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    You have alternate option to do.
    Work on your branding & seo.
    When will your brand bigger than your competitor, He can't hurt you more
     
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