A Boston attorney, called Hal Levitte, has sued Google over ads that cost him $136.11 but allegedly didn't yield any useful results. According to him, Google is defrauding its advertising customers by charging them for clicks from “parked” websites that the search giant knows are worthless.
The complaint states that parked domain and error page ads accounted for approximately 16.2% of all clicks on the plaintiff's ads during his campaign, but did not result in any conversions – he doesn’t mention however how ads converted on other pages. Levitte alleges that Google’s actions were unfair, fraudulent and resulted in an unjust enrichment.
The lawyer advertised his services before Google allowed advertisers to opt-out of domain parking in March 2008. Even now, he says, the option is buried four clicks deep within Google’s interface, where many advertisers are unlikely to notice it.
Of course, there much more to online advertising than simply buying ads and waiting for conversions. Perhaps he was using the wrong keywords or maybe his landing page wasn’t designed to convert well. In any case, while $136 worth of ads on parked domains is hardly a fair sample size, Levitte now hopes to represent other aggrieved Google advertisers by seeking class-action status for the lawsuit.