Advance Transparency For publishers and Buyers in Google Ads Manager

Wakas Javed

Google advertising partners often ask, “How can they better understand what their money is being spent on?” This question is not new. However, as the buying and selling of digital ads becomes more complex, it becomes more difficult to track where the money is going. According to some industry estimates, an average of 15% of advertising spend is not attributable.

One of the biggest concerns about this trend is its impact on marketers’ confidence in digital advertising. How can we all provide better insights into agency and advertiser investments to properly inform future media spending? Google tells, they cannot speak on behalf of many other companies in this field, also claims their platform does not charge any hidden fees. Working closely with others in the industry, Google committed to investing in solutions that give more confidence in programmatic buying and develop a more transparent ecosystem.

Google Introducing Gross Revenue Confirming Report

Google announced on 27th July 2022 Confirm Gross Revenue, a new solution that offers buyers and publishers a privacy-resistant way to verify hidden charges from digital ad transactions when using Google Ad Manager.

Publishers can use the new revenue verification report to see the combined gross revenue of a particular buyer. The buyer and publisher can then confirm that the media spend from the buyer’s report matches the publisher’s gross income. If the amounts match, buyers can confirm that all of their media spend goes to the publisher and no hidden fees are charged.

As Google developed this feature, Display & Video 360 was included as an early tester. And as a new solution, Google communicate and collaborate with other demand-side platforms, seller-side platforms, publishers, and agencies that are testing this feature and providing feedback to improve it. As Google get more partners, they start to collect some of that feedback.

Feedbacks from Industry Leaders

“OMG Australia is proud to be the industry’s principal partner for full supply chain visibility. OMG believe this feature will be a great first step to confirming that there are no hidden costs with programmatic purchases, and the seat at the table gives us the best opportunity to make positive change for advertisers.”

Philip Pollock, CEO, Omnicom Media Group Australia,

“Transparency and trust overlap, and providing added access and insight into media expenses is a step in the correct direction. We look forward to being early adopters of the solution and working with Google to provide feedback on improvement opportunities.”

Eric Hochberger, CEO, Mediavine

“Greater visibility in the digital advertising supply chain through solutions like Gross Revenue Confirmation is the need of hour. That’s why we prioritize investing in building industry standards like ads.txt, seller.json, DemandChain Object, and buyers.json to help everyone raise the bar for trust in programmatic buying. We look forward to working with Google on this privacy-focused solution and potentially adding this concept to the standard IAB Tech Lab portfolio.”

Anthony Katzur, CEO of IAB Tech Lab

Transparency Without Compromising Privacy

Google continue to invest in solutions to provide more transparency in media purchases, Google also protect people’s privacy and the confidentiality of our partners’ contracts. Transparency and confidentiality should never conflict, which is why Gross Income Confirmation only uses the data necessary to confirm that no hidden fees have been created. To reduce the risk of user identification, this feature relies on aggregated gross revenue rather than aggregating detailed log-level data.

Implementation Of Industry Standards

This decision is based on years of efforts to increase transparency around programmatic advertising, including steps Google taking to simplify the platform and clarify its fee structure. In recent years, Gogole have also participated in industry transparency standards in our buy-side and seller-side transactions, such as ads.txt / app-ads.txt, seller.json, and Supply Chain objects.

For example, Google recently brought data from a Supply Chain object to the Ads Data Hub so that marketers using Display & Video 360 can see the steps their impressions went through before arriving at the publisher’s site.

Together, these initiatives give partners greater visibility in digital advertising. This can help make informed purchasing decisions, increase offer transparency, and improve fraud detection. However, Google still recognize that much remains to be done.

Constant Commitment

The gross revenue confirmation is part of Google efforts to address concerns from publishers, agencies, advertisers and regulators about a lack of transparency. Over the coming months, Google will continue to work closely with industry to shape these new solutions and more general initiatives to build more trust in online advertising. Google’s ultimate approach is to provide greater transparency for advertisers, agencies and publishers. Google announces they’ll welcome the participation of others who wish to work together to develop an ad-supported web that works for everyone.

Source: Google Ads Manager

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