Blocking bad ads

Oxygen’s Digital Director, Malcolm, explains what ‘bad ads’ are and how businesses need to evaluate their own advertising to help eradicate the spread of them.

Earlier this year Google announced that it had removed more than 1.7billion bad ads across its sites in 2016 – more than double the amount it removed in the previous year. But what are ‘bad ads’ and how can we help to stop the spread of them?

 

Clamping down on misleading information

 

Bad ads are adverts that are classed as misleading, or a threat to cyber security. They can also be in the form of fake news or ‘trick-to-click’ ads that download malware once a user clicks on them.

 

Most of these ads are trying to take you through to websites that might sell ‘dodgy’ products, or something that Google wouldn’t want to come very high up on a search ranking. The more people they get onto their page the higher their Google ranking will get, so even just clicking through from an ad will benefit them.

 

It is, however, very much against Google’s rules – and many aspects of legislation for that matter – to promote content in ads that isn’t true. But most people wouldn’t click on an ad that promotes something undesirable, so the ads are disguised as something else, meaning they’re not actually advertising what is hidden behind it.

 

Accurate content is more important than ever

 

Although we can’t hunt them down personally, there are steps that we can take to help eradicate bad ads.

 

Bad ads thrive on misleading people, so the best way to combat the issue is to raise the quality of ads, ensuring that all content is accurate. Everything from the copy to the images should be quality checked to make sure that it isn’t promoting misleading or incorrect content.

 

The topic of bad ads has become high-profile news in the media recently, so Google will be cracking down on ads that flex the rules. If you want us to help with your advertising then give us a call – we’ll make sure it’s a good ad!