Does Google penalize for "bad" clicks?

Jump to Last Post 1-3 of 3 discussions (13 posts)
  1. wilderness profile image98
    wildernessposted 6 years ago

    Over the past few months I've averaged about a click per day, generally paying 50 cents or maybe a dollar.

    A few weeks ago I had a months worth of clicks in just a few days - none paid anything and I'm sure Google decided they were bad somehow.  No problem, though I've never had that many all at once.

    Since then, however, I'm back to around a click per day, but earn at most a couple of pennies and usually nothing.

    Does Google "sandbox" our clicks for fraud?  I know they will cancel an account, but I've never heard of or seen weeks worth of apparently normal clicks that all pay zero.

    1. Dale Hyde profile image85
      Dale Hydeposted 6 years agoin reply to this

      Google "reads" if you click on your own ads. They can tell by your IP address that it is you. If you do the "bad" clicks, you can be penalized and even loose your Adsense account if it is a repeat offense. Not saying you did this, however, that is the ONLY association that I know of about "bad" clicks on ads.

      An increase of ad clicks that are not "bad" as I referenced, only makes a person more money, HubPages more money as well as Google making more money, so there should certainly not be any penalty for an increase that is legit.

      1. wilderness profile image98
        wildernessposted 6 years agoin reply to this

        I have no idea where my spurt of bad clicks came from - certainly not me.  I am far too aware of the consequences to risk clicking my own ads - the one time I did I promptly notified Google.

        I did not notify them of the rash of clicks, however - they picked them up and devalued them before I even found them.  Maybe I should have.

        I just have to wonder if I'm getting nothing but trash ads now because of all those bad clicks.  Google needs somewhere to put them (to earn themselves that 1/2 cent or whatever) and my hubs need "punished" but not to the point of cancelling the account.  Do they do that sort of thing?

        1. Dale Hyde profile image85
          Dale Hydeposted 6 years agoin reply to this

          I am not sure of that, wilderness. I can only speak from what I have learned over time. I know that I have, a time or two, been in the process of publishing a hub and when the ebay selections come up in the capsule, I clicked without thinking to view the item...and I have a time or two with Google ads. I used to have Ad Block on my pages, but that defeats my purpose for see what is being displayed.

          I did not want you to think, however, that I suspected you would or did any bad clicking, that was just the only "bad" clicking that I know of or have heard of. smile

          Hopefully someone with more insight will be able to give you better answers and advice on this one.

          1. wilderness profile image98
            wildernessposted 6 years agoin reply to this

            Oh, it happens all right, and usually just the way you describe.  I've clicked my own ads before.  I have not, however, clicked them 11 times within an hour, or 20+ times in 3 days. 

            Bad clicks can be from outright fraud or from honest visitors that mistakenly click and immediately back out before they're even fully loaded. I suspect that a stay of only seconds would be considered "bad".   HP was visited a while back from some kind of bot from facebook that went through thousands of hubs - if it clicked ads as well, I would bet that google could tell it was not an actual, interested person. 

            Bad clicks are not necessarily fraudulent - they can happen for a variety of reasons.

            1. Dale Hyde profile image85
              Dale Hydeposted 6 years agoin reply to this

              Ahhh..thanks for the insight! I learn more and more viewing the forums. It is not always specific about what may be being discussed, but it is an area of learning for me.

    2. Will Apse profile image90
      Will Apseposted 6 years agoin reply to this

      There is something called adsense smart pricing you could look into. Some sites with poor value to advertisers give their owners very low returns on clicks,

      1. wilderness profile image98
        wildernessposted 6 years agoin reply to this

        I've never had really high paying clicks - three or four $$ was the most I've ever seen.  I don't write on the proper topics for the high $$ ads.

        That's OK, and I understand that.  It's just that the CPC has decreased, not by 50% or something (bad season, maybe) but to very near zero.  I would consider very low return to mean a nickel or dime, but I don't often even see a penny any more and never a nickel!

        Smart pricing - I can somehow "force" higher paying ads onto my hubs?  I thought smart pricing was for advertisers, not writers...

        1. Will Apse profile image90
          Will Apseposted 6 years agoin reply to this

          I have no idea if you have been smart priced. It has never happened to me so, being lazy, I have never dug into it.

          However, a lot of publishers do find that their accounts are smart priced and there are plenty of threads in the Google webmaster forums.

          There is a piece here:

 … 14657.html

          1. wilderness profile image98
            wildernessposted 6 years agoin reply to this

            Thanks, Will.  From the video there, I would strongly suspect that I've been smart priced to near zero.  All those bad clicks have convinced google that my site does not give good results to advertisers and thus no CPC to speak of. 

            Guess I've got some more learning and work to do.  Not to see what I can do to get to an end of this.  Knowing Google, probably just time, but I can try.

  2. Will Apse profile image90
    Will Apseposted 6 years ago

    From what you said in your opening post, smart pricing does sound possible but I don't think it has ever been reported for a hubpages account before.

    So, maybe you should hang on for a while and see if you start getting decent value clicks again. Waiting for a while is always my preferred option to getting gloomy.

    1. wilderness profile image98
      wildernessposted 6 years agoin reply to this

      That's exactly what I plan to do.  Maybe read up on this a little - more information never hurts - but just wait it out for a while and see if anything changes.  That's probably the only answer anyway - produce some decent visitor clicks and show G that I'm still worth something.

      Adsense is not a big earner for me anyway as I use HPads and adsense went downhill big time when I changed over.  If I go from $20 a month to $.50 it's not the end of the world. 

      It kind of sucks, though.  Traffic has fallen 70% since January, HPad ecpm is cut in half and now this.  Oh well, maybe tomorrow will be better.

      According to the video, smart pricing is routinely applied to all accounts; it's just that some go up and some go down.  It's a smart thing to do (if it works better than their SE algorithm) even if I got caught in the gears through no fault of my own.

  3. Will Apse profile image90
    Will Apseposted 6 years ago

    Smart pricing is not for ever. Google keeps testing to see how the ads are used and if they give benefit to advertisers you get your reward. In theory.


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)