Alleged Click Fraud Prompts Panera To Pull Ads
Panera Bread pulled its advertising from SheKnows.com after two of the site's editors were found to be encouraging the site's writers to click repeatedly on sponsors' ads to drive up click-through rates. Panera said it is "strongly opposed to practices of this kind."
According to blogger Jim Romenesko, who first reported on the situation, SheKnows.com editors Joanie Segall and Alicia French were suspended for their emails.
Adweek subsequently reported that Kyle Cox, president of SheKnows, issued a letter confirming the two editors' suspension and warning other employees that similar behavior could result in immediate termination.
“This was an isolated incident carried out by well-meaning, yet overzealous [editors who have] been disciplined appropriately,” a SheKnows spokesperson told Adweek. “Requesting that people click on advertisements is not only against our stated company policy, but it is contrary to how we operate our site and work with our advertisers.”