The other day I posted about how Google Adsense suspended my account for “invalid click activity”. Today brings you some updates to that drama. Google has rejected my appeal.
Thank you for your appeal. We appreciate the additional information you’ve provided, as well as your continued interest in the AdSense program. However, after thoroughly re-reviewing your account data and taking your feedback into consideration, our specialists have confirmed that we’re unable to reinstate your AdSense account.
Please know that, once we’ve reached a decision on your appeal, further appeals may not be considered, and you might not receive any further communication from us. Note that AdSense publishers whose accounts are disabled for violations of our Terms and Conditions are not eligible for further participation in AdSense. For this reason, you may not open new accounts.
Also, accounts disabled for invalid click activity will receive no further payment nor any reissue of previous payment. Your outstanding balance and Google’s share of the revenue will both be fully refunded back to the affected advertisers. Thank you for your understanding in this matter.
We understand that you may want more information about your account activity. However, because we have a need to protect our proprietary detection systems, we’re unable to provide our publishers with any details about their account activity.
The Google AdSense Team
This is of course what I expected to hear after reading around the net about this same thing happening to other people. I poured over my Google Analytics account, installed a Apache log parser [something that I have been meaning to do for years] and started pouring over my logs. I of course cannot see exactly where the clicks occurred… but after looking at Analytics I have figured out about where but only because Google Anayltics has a nice little Content -> Adsense -> Overview section.
So armed with this additional information I emailed them again. Here is a snippet of my very long email to them:
The following days have a higher click activity then I would have expected:
Apr 23, 24, 25
Apr 29, 30
May 1, 2, 3
Narrowing the report down to Apr 21st through May 5th some 92.76% of Adsense revenue generated by my account was for the page “/” (which I take to mean the base URL). There were 39 clicks during this time, and that is VERY high for what I would have expected. In comparison I only received 10 clicks from Jan 1st through Apr 21st. Which appears to me to mean that I have been averaging about 2.5 clicks per month this year. Which isn’t a good comparison since my traffic has been steadily increasing.
Jan 2013 – 1994 pageviews
Feb 2013 – 3460 pageviews
Mar 2013 – 4772 pageviews
Apr 2013 – 7477 pageviews
May 2013 – HALF MONTH 4051 pageviews
So while I have figured out which page generates the most clicks, I cannot seem to narrow it down to determine where the click traffic came from. Clicking on Adsense Referrers shows me a nice break down but only tells me that there were 6 ads clicked between Apr 21, 2013 – May 5, 2013 and their referral source was plus.url.google.com. [This makes sense to me since I routinely cross post snippets of my sites posts to my Google+ account to attempt to drum up more traffic.] This only appears to make up for about a third of the adsense ads viewed.
So where at the other 2000ish adsense ad views?
Or for that matter how do I account for the other 33 clicks?
I went on to say that I would like my account to be re-instated, and asked if they would work with me to attempt to determine where the traffic came from. I also offered them a copy of Apache2 logs. Much to my surprise I received a reply the very next day reading:
While waiting I decided to look into Adsense alternatives. There are a number [LOTS] of blog posts across the interwebs about alternatives. After about two hours of skimming and reading I selected the following two alternatives:
Media.net serves contextual ads like adsense. You can easily create and customize ad units that display text ads consisting of sponsored linkes and ad topics from the Yahoo! Bing Network. My sites were not accepted into this program, I haven’t had a chance to try to figure out why. I’m guessing its because they do not generate enough traffic however.
I will of course be looking for more alternatives in the near future as time permits. But with Tournaments of Creathorne 20 (A LARP event) this up coming weekend it will not be until at least next week some time. I’ll keep you all posted on the Adsense Alternatives that I find and decide to try.