Google to Provide More Network Data

NEW YORK Google is adding a feature designed to help advertisers track clicks on the search giant’s far-flung ad network.

Through a “content placement report,” companies will see which sites their ads show up on, which generate the most clicks and whether those sites are so-called “parked domains” of Web pages carrying little more than ads.

The reports are the latest in a series of steps the Internet giant has taken to be more open to advertisers, who have in the past had little control over where their ads appear. On top of that, many advertisers have suspected traffic from Google’s ad network sites is the result of click fraud. While advertisers could use analytics products to track incoming traffic to its source, the performance reports will do the heavy work for them, said Brian Axe, a director of product management for Google.

“It’s hard to trust things you can’t see,” he said. “By exposing this it’ll be a benefit to advertisers.”

By seeing performance data easily, advertisers will be able to better shift their budgets to sites that are performing well and away from those that aren’t, Axe said. Google offers a site-targeting feature that lets advertisers choose the sites on which their ads appear.

Google has made a number of changes to its ad network of content sites.

Originally, advertisers could only bid one amount for ads appearing on search results pages and content, which the company subsequently changed. It then added the site-targeting and -exclusion options.