Header bidding, an advanced programmatic technique, changed the way publishers monetized their ad inventory. Since its launch in 2015, publishers have consistently adopted this technique to optimize their ad revenue.
With header Bidding, publishers can offer their inventory to multiple demand partners at once. The main benefit of implementing header bidding for publishers is that it ensures the highest possible auction bids are returned for their unsold inventory, resulting in higher CPMs and ultimately higher ad revenue.
Today, most publishers use this technique for their ad setup, which can be considered a holy grail for publishers, but it also comes with its own complexities and challenges. To begin with, implementing header bidding is technically complicated. On top of that, it requires constant monitoring and innovation for the setup to continue to deliver better results.
To get the most revenue from inventory, publishers need to optimize their header bid settings. But, before we understand ways to improve the performance of header bids, we need to understand the challenges associated with header bids, let’s review these recurring challenges:
1. Complicated setup
Header offers come with a complicated implementation process. Choosing the right container, integrating demand partner codes, regular maintenance, and constant header code changes are all tricky jobs.
Without the support of a dedicated developer, publishers can undoubtedly find it a daunting task.
One of the main challenges of header bids, latency slows down the web page load, resulting in slow ad loading. In addition, it delays obtaining offers from demand sources.
3. Cost and Resources
Since header bids require constant support from developers, publishers may need to spend all of their time and resources to improve the performance of header bids. However, publishers may not manage the header offer service in the absence of abundant resources.
Now that we’ve laid out the common challenges, let’s explore the best ways to optimize performance.
With these challenges in mind, publishers can be encouraged to use managed header bidding services to improve their header bidding performance:
Managed Header Bidding Services:
These services facilitate the initial implementation and maintenance of header bidding. Additionally, working with managed header bidding services allows publishers to use new versions of Prebid.
Use of Prebid as a container
Header bidding auctions using the Prebid container run faster. Ensures fast response time from demand partners and improves user experience. The technology is strong for desktop and mobile channels and works best with all ad formats.
What is Prebid, you ask? Prebid is popularly known as the prebid wrapper, which is open source and makes header offers free and customizable. Prebid includes over 150 demand partners, 15 adapters that support currency conversion, multiple ad servers, and common identification systems.
However, Prebid Wrapper is also not easy to set up, maintain and run. Requires technical expertise and ongoing support from the developer to make changes and fix bugs.
Server-side header deals:
Managed Header Bidding Service helps publishers analyze and understand Header Bidding performance with its analytics features. Plus, with options between client-side header bidding and server-side header bidding, publishers can overcome challenges with their header bidding.
With server-side header offers, publishers can solve the latency issue and improve the user experience. In server-side header bidding, bid requests are sent to multiple demand sources from ad servers. The auction is then held on the server provided by the technology partner.
It has a less complex implementation as only one script is added for all partners from the ad server side. The ad servers then send the bid request to SSPs, ad exchanges, etc., and receive the bid.
Let’s understand why page latency occurs in the first place. In the client-side header bidding setup, multiple demand partners are called directly from the browser. In server-side header bidding, all bidders are pinged with one call, ensuring fast page loading and better user experience metrics.
Innovative ad format and optimized ad design:
Header offers typically use banner ads, which are often overlooked by users. To avoid banner blindness, publishers can create innovative ad formats. These formats can include native ads, outstream video ads, etc.
These ads hold users’ attention and improve visibility, thus delivering higher eCPMs. Additionally, with better ad inventory, the performance of header bids improves because potential demand partners have a variety of ad formats to choose from.
Ad layouts need optimization through A/B testing, high-performing ad unit, page latency, and ad placement. Additionally, publishers may need to test page load time, ad placement, and which ad formats generate the best CTRs.
Publishers have been switching to header offers for quite some time and will continue to do so in the future. However, adopting header bidding is not the only solution to maximize ad revenue. Header bidding requires time, resources, and technical expertise.
Publishers are in a constant rush to work on the adjustments provided by header bid analysis. Optimized ad formats go a long way in improving headline bid performance and increased visibility.
DISCLAIMER: The views expressed are solely those of the author and ETBrandEquity.com does not necessarily endorse them. ETBrandEquity.com shall not be liable for any damage caused to any person/organization directly or indirectly.