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Google Offers Pay-Per-Action Ads

The search engine addresses a new AdSense program that pays for completed actions that a subscriber defines.

Thomas Claburn

March 20, 2007

1 Min Read

Concerned about click fraud? Google has an answer. The company on Tuesday launched a beta test of its new pay-per-action (PPA) advertising program.

"Pay-per-action advertising is a new pricing model that allows you to pay only for completed actions that you define, such as a lead, a sale, or a page view, after a user has clicked on your ad on a publisher's site," explained Rob Kniaz, a product manager for Pay-Per-Action, on Google's AdWords blog. "You'll define an action, set up conversion tracking, and create ads that publishers in the Google content network can then choose to place in new ad units on their site."

PPA advertisers set the price that they're willing to pay for specific actions, which could be a click, a purchase, or a sign-up, for example. Because advertisers are buying actions, which by definition conform to business goals, click fraud becomes far less of an issue.

PPA ads will appear only on AdSense sites, which is to say the sites of publishers in the Google content network.

Publishers have the option to run specific PPA ads or to let Google serve the ones that perform best in relation to a preset topic. Publishers can review available PPA ads by product name, description, logo, and designated actions to make sure selected ads suit the site.

The PPA beta test is available only to U.S. advertisers at the moment. In the coming weeks, Google intends to invite more advertisers and publishers into the program.

About the Author(s)

Thomas Claburn

Editor at Large, Enterprise Mobility

Thomas Claburn has been writing about business and technology since 1996, for publications such as New Architect, PC Computing, InformationWeek, Salon, Wired, and Ziff Davis Smart Business. Before that, he worked in film and television, having earned a not particularly useful master's degree in film production. He wrote the original treatment for 3DO's Killing Time, a short story that appeared in On Spec, and the screenplay for an independent film called The Hanged Man, which he would later direct. He's the author of a science fiction novel, Reflecting Fires, and a sadly neglected blog, Lot 49. His iPhone game, Blocfall, is available through the iTunes App Store. His wife is a talented jazz singer; he does not sing, which is for the best.

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