Beginner networks like Google AdSense limit what you can achieve as a publisher. Moving on to more sophisticated advertising partners helps you increase your ad revenue, and organizing your ad stack is a great place to start.
If you’re unaware of how to balance multiple ad networks, there are ways to configure your ad stack to have the best impact on your revenue.
The way you should organize your stack is based on you – the publisher.
While some strategies may work for a ComScore 1000 publisher, a blogger with a smaller audience may require a different approach.
Organizing Your Ad Stack to Boost Your Revenue
Let’s take a look at four strategies to organize your ad stack to optimize your revenue no matter how big or small of a publisher you may be:
1. Build Up Your Bid Density
Bid density is the number of partners bidding on an ad placement you have available. The goal is to get your bid density as high as possible to increase the demand for your advertisement inventory.
Partnering with multiple ad networks will make your inventory available to more buyers. When you have more buyers in the pool, the competition for your inventory increases.
As a result, buyers place higher bids to beat out their competition, which will in turn increase your CPM.
If you are currently working with AdSense alone, taking on more ad partners will help you create the competition you’re hoping to stir up and increase your bid density for optimal revenue.
2. Sort Ad Networks by CPM
When organizing your ad stack, take a look at the CPMs from each ad network and place your highest CPMs first. While most higher CPMs carry lower fill rates, arrange your ad stack with your highest CPMs first to take advantage of the higher payback.
Monetizing all of your page views may be your top priority, but your revenue will suffer in the long-run. Organizing your ad stack with your CPMs in mind will allow you to optimize your revenue, and you won’t have to sacrifice any page views in the process.
While adding new ad networks to your roster, you should maintain a Google Adsense account. Adsense is a great resource to find $1 CPMs with a 100% fill rate, and using these options to fill in the gaps will provide the guarantee you need to monetize your remaining page views.
Let’s say you have a $3 CPM at a 30% fill rate, a $2 CPM at a 40% fill rate, and a $1 CPM at a 100% fill rate. If you place your higher CPMs first, your $1 CPM will act as your insurance policy and monetize the remaining page views you left unfulfilled.
3. Arrange Multiple Fill Rates
Multiple ad networks increase your bid density and CPMs, but they also bring in a higher revenue based on the way you set up your fill rates.
A great way to optimize your ad revenue is by filling up your page views with differing fill rates (and differing CPMs). While these offers may have lower rates, sorting them together will bring in more capital.
Including multiple ad networks with varying fill rates and CPMs will exceed the amount of revenue you would bring in with online one ad partner filling 100% of the inventory. This is because they aren’t competing with another ad partner for the inventory. Set these different ad partners up in a waterfall scenario where each partner has a minimum CPM rate they can bid. If they don’t buy the inventory at or above that rate then the next ad partner is shown the inventory to purchase at or above a lower CPM rate. You usually will use a partner like AdSense or Media.net as the bottom ad partner since they will fill 100% of the inventory.
Rather than fulfilling your fill rate with one CPM, strategically fitting multiple ad networks together increases your revenue no matter how low your fill rates may be.
4. Offer Different Types of Impressions
When it comes to purchasing advertising inventory, some networks value certain types of impressions over others. In this case, using that to your advantage when organizing your ad stack will bring in more capital than you would expect.
Some ad partners may be after a video ad, while others are looking for mobile placements. It’s up to you to partner with multiple ad networks to avoid all of your buyers going after the same inventory, and provide several advertisement options to a wide variety of buyers.
How Do You Choose the Right Ad Partner?
The tips we provided to help you organize your ad stack for optimal revenue all include multiple ad partners and networks, but how do you know if you’re choosing the right ad partner?
Here’s a list of things you should consider before choosing which networks to work with:
Do they have a solid list of advertisers?
While you’re trying to increase your revenue, it is important to always keep your audience as a top priority. When choosing ad partners/networks, be sure they have an impressive list of advertisers to buy your inventory.
It’s also imperative to choose advertisements that match your audience’s needs. Be sure to avoid placing invaluable or worthless information in front of them. That could lead them to find your site untrustworthy.
Do they offer high CPMs?
When trying to increase your ad revenue, taking on higher CPMs will be the first step in the right direction. But there are some things to consider when looking into prospective ad networks.
We’ve discussed how using higher CPMs first in your ad stack organization will benefit your income. However, when you are looking for the right ad partner, the highest CPMs won’t always be the North Star to follow.
There will be times when the quality of the ad surpasses the CPM the buyer has to offer. It is up to you to decide if the quality is worth the risk. The amount of impressions quality ad content brings in can increase your revenue even if the ad comes with a lower CPM.
Do they pay on time?
Choosing an ad partner that pays on time will save you tons of headaches – but since 2008’s economic crash, publishers have been dealing with a lot of late payments from advertisers.
When you’re trying to increase ad revenue, it is imperative to partner with an ad network that makes on-time payments. It would be beneficial for you to find out if your new ad networks are still managing their payments manually or if they’ve taken on new technology to handle their publisher payments.
Ad Stack Balancing Act
How you organize your ad stack is unique to who you are as a publisher. Whether you’re a small or large publisher, experimenting and playing around with different techniques will help you find out which strategies will best suit your advertising needs.
Using these tips that we’ve provided can get you started – and once you find where you fit, you’ll be able to organize your ad stack accordingly and watch your revenue come flying in.
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