Confirmed Clicks

What is the Confirmed Click functionality? 

Google introduced Confirmed Clicks as an automated implementation that occurs on specific ad units that are subject to higher-than-average invalid clicks. According to Google, invalid clicks are clicks that are unintentional or fraudulent. Google’s Confirmed Click functionality is intended to ensure that users clicking on ads have the intent to click on those ads. When a user clicks on an ad, they are prompted to click a ‘Visit Site’ button to continue to the advertiser's site if the confirmed click functionality is in place. This ‘Visit Site’ button is overlaid on the ad by Google. The functionality impacts specific ad units, possibly on specific devices, for AdSense and Ad Exchange publishers.  

Confirmed Click can only be applied to impressions served by AdX or AdSense. If Google has determined that an ad unit has higher-than-average invalid clicks, the impression that serves in that ad unit by AdX or AdSense will contain the ‘Visit Site’ overlay. Other demand sources do not implement this overlay. 

How do I know if ad units are impacted by Confirmed Clicks?

Some publishers have seen a significant drop in their Click Through Rate for a specific ad unit, but no drop in impressions for that same ad unit. Upon investigation, they have seen the Confirmed Click functionality on the ad unit. 

Clicking on your own ads is considered invalid, so clicking on ads to determine if the functionality is affecting your ad units is not a good strategy.

What else is impacted?

AdSense advertisers pay on a Cost Per Click (CPC) basis, so revenue is only generated for publishers when the ad is clicked on and the user is brought to the landing page. This means that the user had to click on the ad as well as the ‘Visit Site’ button. It has been observed that the impression rate (impressions/requests) for Google bidders ex. Display & Video 360 (DV360) drops when the Confirmed Click functionality is in place. This may in turn cause Cost Per Mille (CPM) to drop. 

For publishers that have their own Google Ad Manager account, this may impact Partner Health Score. The Partner Health Score has a Quality component, which is partially based on percentage of invalid clicks. Since confirmed clicks occur on specific ad units subject to higher-than-average invalid clicks, this impacts the Partner Health Score more significantly.

What causes the Confirmed Click functionality?

Google Ad Placement Policies. To maintain a high quality user experience on your site, Google recommends you ensure that navigational elements do not overlay your ads and that ads do not reflow into areas of your site where users are likely to be engaging with your content.

What are some examples?

  • Ads close to navigation bars/buttons/links
    • Solution: Increase padding.
    • Test on many devices to ensure no navigation items/links come close to or over top of ads.
  • Reflow/content jumping/layout shifting
    • Solution: Set a fixed height for the ad units so they load without moving content up or down (specifically for long articles or single page applications).

How long does it take for the Confirmed Clicks to be removed?

Google rechecks the need for the Confirmed Click functionality on its own schedule. There is nothing you can or need to do to submit the changes to Google. The only thing you can do is wait and see if the changes have helped in removing the Confirmed Click functionality. 

If you continue to see your ad units affected, you may have invalid traffic on your website.