From bad bots to managed bots: the rise of bot management
Of all the internet traffic in the world, nearly 60% is currently generated by bots. Compared to a few years ago, bots today are a lot smarter than they once were. Whereas it started with bots from a limited IP range, it is now already about bots that can record user behavior or spoof (bots that can assume a false identity themselves). The more sophisticated bots get, the greater the challenge for marketers and brand managers in dealing with them.
In this article, you'll learn more about the impact of bots on your organization and how best to manage them.
The impact of bots
Bot traffic can have a lot of impact on an organization. Previously, we mainly looked at the impact of bots on IT performance and costs. How fast is my platform still with all those bots? Aren't my hosting costs getting unnecessarily high because of all that bot traffic?
What we're increasingly looking at these days is the impact of bots on an organization's business and business model. Consider topics such as:
- Competition (e.g., price scrapers)
- Marketing (e.g. bot traffic in analytics or bots clicking on ads, increasing costs)
- The digital experience of visitors (e.g. spam bots)
- Strong security of both data and the brand (due to cyber attacks by bots, among other things)
With this new perspective on bots, organizations also face new challenges. Typical questions for brand managers, marketers and sales managers will ask themselves are:
- How much of our traffic actually comes from bots and how does that affect the performance and costs of my platform?
- There are scrapers active that copy my content, and forward it to my competitor's websites or to a place where I don't want it to be. What to do next?
- Bots are coming along and clouding my analytics, which means that as a marketer I no longer have a good understanding of user data. How do I get more control over these bots?
- There are bots active that pretend to be from my brand and are committing fraud. This has an impact on the reliability of my brand. How can I prevent this?
These questions are particularly relevant if content exclusivity and trust in brand safety are at the core of a company's business model. Consider, for example, a website that brings together supply and demand in the real estate market.
Not keeping out bots, but managing them
Often when the term bot management is used, people think of avoiding or banning bots. However, excluding bots is too simplistic. Some bots, such as Google's, you do want to let pass to index your site. Bot management is actually about detecting all bots and filtering between desirable and undesirable bot activity. Non-desirable activity is limited as much as possible. Think about spam bots, price scrapers and credential stuffing bots.
TRIMM has extensive experience in managing bots. In the area of bot management we offer, among other things:
- Advanced bot detection: we take into account the fact that bots are getting smarter and it is becoming more difficult to differentiate between human traffic and bot traffic. Advanced detection systems allow us to address more sophisticated bots.
- Situational management: we adapt responses to bots to your company's IT and performance objectives.
- Real-time management: this way we manage bots before they reach your application
Want to know more about bot management and how TRIMM can help you?