5 reasons your ad setup sucks

5 reasons your ad setup sucks

Publishers, it’s time for some tough love. Your ad setup sucks, and it’s because you’re guilty of one (or more) of the following.

1. You think your current ad setup is perfect

perfect ad setup

It’s not. Trust us on this one. Most digital publishers today are faced with a ton of different challenges from a lack of manpower to page latency and imperfect header bidders. Even the largest and most impressive publishers online are constantly working to improve their ad monetization.

If you’re totally satisfied with your current ad setup, you’re probably not even aware of how much revenue you’re missing out on. Or worse, you’ve become complacent. You’re falling behind. Time to get real, baby. Ignorance ain’t bliss when it’s costing you revenue.

2. You’re not testing out new products


How often do you try a new one?

We get it. You don’t have all the development, design, and QA resources to create and test out new ad formats. So you can’t know which ad products would work best on your different page layouts and user segments. You’re not able to maximize ad revenue. And you’re not earning enough to justify more resources. You’re trapped in a vicious cycle.

We speak to publishers every day who have experienced this. In fact, this is the problem that FirstImpression.io solves.

We’ve built a platform to create and monetize new ad products for publisher websites without any ad tags or tech work at all. If you don’t have the resources to test out new ad products in-house, speak to us or find another tech solution. No more excuses!

3. You do the same thing on every page layout, GEO, and device

ad formats

Okay, this relates to #2, but it deserves its own point. We’ve met huge publishers who have the in-house resources to do proper testing, and yet, they presume that if an ad format works once, it works every time, everywhere. Where’s the logic? Let’s say you test out a cool new video outstream ad product in the US on desktop and you get great CPMs. You can’t just leap to the conclusion that the same ad product will work on your German mobile site.

Every page layout, every GEO, every device, every user is different. If you really want to maximize ad revenue, you need to create the right mix of ad products for every scenario. Look on the bright side: if ad monetization was as simple as ABC, we’d all be out of jobs!

4. You’re not measuring user experience

measuring user experience

We spoke recently with a large publisher so terrified of hurting their user experience that they preferred to miss out on a huge amount of ad revenue rather than try a new, standard IAB ad product. They can’t measure the impact this new ad product will have on UX, so instead, they tie their own hands behind their back.

Other publishers, with great intentions to preserve UX, go the other way. They add too many ad products or the wrong type of ad products, because they are guided by incomplete metrics.

Measuring user experience isn’t easy. It’s vital. Tracking the impact that each individual ad product has on bounce rates and page views per session is the bare minimum. Ideally you’ll also consider the effect on the user’s time on page, how they scroll, how quickly they click the ‘x’ button on the ad etc. Technology partners like FirstImpression.io can help, but ultimately, you need to know what’s going on with your users.

5. You suck (or your team sucks)


Be honest: 10 years ago, had you even heard about ad ops or programmatic? What about 5 years ago? This is a whole new industry and the result is a severe shortage of skills and experience. Hiring the right digital talent is a big challenge for publishers.

Maybe you don’t have years of experience. Or your team are a bunch of super smart college grads. Or you’re a one-man-show trying to do everything on your website.

We’re not judging you. But your users are. If you suck, so will your ad setup. Take time to find partners you can trust, go along to industry events, invest in proper training for yourself and your team. It’ll pay off.


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