Every industry is affected by click fraud. But when it comes to high-value keywords and competitive markets, such as real estate and property, the impact can be greatly amplified.

With a high-value product, real estate has some of the most expensive paid search terms, with an average CPC of $2.37 and a high of around $95. (source)

So, it stands to reason that click fraud in the property marketing sector would be quite high. 

Around 90% of all paid search and display campaigns on Google Ads are affected by high volumes of invalid clicks, collectively known as click fraud. 

These invalid clicks, or invalid traffic (IVT), can be caused by a number of factors, including competitors clicking on your ads, bots from organised botnets, web scrapers, and even malicious clicks from brand haters. 

Our 2020 report on the impact of click fraud of SMEs found that the average rate of click fraud across all industries is 14%. However, for some industries, such as property and real estate, that rate can be much higher.

Click fraud and realty

By looking at ClickCease clients in real estate we found that, on average, realtors see an average of 31.25% of fraudulent clicks on paid search and display ads.

This substantial difference between the average of 14% is no doubt due to the higher cost per click or impression. 

And as a highly competitive industry, property businesses often face intense local rivalry from a mixture of small local businesses and national and international franchises. In short, it’s the perfect environment for competitive click fraud. 

But that’s not all…. With those high CPCs and CPMs, it’s an industry ripe for exploitation by organised ad fraud.

Rates of fraud in other property-based industries

Of course, real estate is just one aspect of property, with a plethora of other industries, including finance (mortgages), maintenance (such as plumbing), and removals, all having similar high-priced keywords.

For all of these, the rate of click fraud sits well above the average:

  • Maintenance: 22.64%
  • Financial services: 20.29%
  • Homecare: 20.9%
  • Moving and Storage: 17.6%

As well as offering support to the real estate industry, all of these businesses share something in common: high cost per click. For example, homecare sees a high average around $13.35.

An interesting stat that highlights the competitive nature of real estate and the corresponding click fraud is the peak in fraud during the Coronavirus lockdowns in early 2020. In the US, clicks on real estate paid links jumped from 31% to 44%.

It’s thought this jump is due to the increased competition thanks to less property listings and businesses eager to target the decreased market.

How fraud prevention maximises your ROI

Using click fraud prevention means that you’ll stop bots, competitors, and other sneaky clicks in real time. This is done by using our own unique blacklists and algorithms based on our experience blocking click fraud in real estate businesses. We don’t use delayed bulk exception lists; in fact, our click fraud prevention is the fastest in the industry.

Why invest in blocking click fraud?

One lost click doesn’t just lose you money. You also miss out on a real, genuine customer and a potential sale. And, when it comes to real estate and property businesses, that sale can run into the thousands to the millions. 

By blocking fraudulent clicks, you ensure your ad is seen only by genuine customers, thereby enhancing your chances of getting a conversion.

In fact, with ClickCease, has been shown to increase conversions and Google Ads quality score, and even reduce cost per click. 

Property and real estate marketers looking to get ahead of their competitors can try out ClickCease for free.

Read more about click fraud in our in-depth guide (or, if you’re pressed for time, try the quick guide instead).