With small businesses moving in droves to pay-per-click (PPC) online ads, the ability to gauge click quality just got a welcome shot in the arm. After years of planning and wrangling over standards, the Media Rating Council (MRC) — an online ad industry group — has awarded the first-ever click quality certifications to four leading sites, including Microsoft, Business.com (which publishes What Works for Business) and two others not yet publicly named.
In short, this provides — for the first time ever — an objective, audited means of assuring that the clicks you pay for are generated by real people with a real interest in the product or service you are advertising. MRC puts sites that apply for accreditation through a rigorous “stress test” to ensure that click quality meets strict industry standards. Sites with sub-standard traffic and shoot-from-the-hip measuring methods won’t pass the test — and there aren’t any government bailouts available. Read the full entry