Improved Support For Header Bidding In Google Ad Manager

Wakas Javed

Publishers have a variety of ways to monetize their content online. That’s why Google built flexibility and features into Google Ads Manager, allowing publishers to choose how they want to sell ads on their properties.

One way that many people use to sell their inventory is in-title bidding, where the auction is conducted between multiple ad exchanges on the user’s device before going to the publisher’s ad server.

Currently, about 90% of major publishers are using title bids.

Many use a combination of header bidding and server-side solutions like Open Bidding to maximize revenue. While Ad Manager has always allowed publishers to use header bidding, today Google introducing a new feature to improve support for header bidding. This update makes it easier for publishers to manage processes and provides new insights into ad performance.

Easy Setup Process

The process of setting up bids in today’s headlines can consume a lot of resources and time, as publishers must prepare and manage hundreds to thousands of line items and creatives. To make this easier, Google created a new way for publishers to set up bids in titles via yield groups.

In just a few steps, publishers can make their ad space available to title bidders – similar to how they determine which ad space they want to sell with Ad Exchange or Open Bidding. The bid request in the title is then entered in the combined auction.

Over the past few months, we’ve been working with publishers to test this optional feature and incorporate their feedback into the development process. We’ll be opening this beta to more publishers over the next few weeks and moving to an open beta this summer.

Market Leaders View on Header Bidding

“The new workflow has greatly simplified our bidding setup process, freeing up our team to focus on more strategic work.”

Evan Pfeffer, vice president of programmatic solutions, Bustle Digital Group

“Using Ad Manager Yield groups to bid in titles solves the complex setup and maintenance issues of using independent auctions like Prebid. This is a powerful feature and should be considered by any publisher who is afraid of the technicalities of in-title offerings.”

Steve Mummy, senior vice president of digital ad revenue and technology, AccuWeather

“It’s been a pleasure working with Google to test improved support for header bids in Ads Manager. Google Ads Manager and Prebid are important to our business. Improved communication between them is an exciting development and we look forward to it.” The feature simplifies the workload for our ad operations team.”

Patrick McCann, SVP Research, CafeMedia

“We are pleased that Google is taking steps to simplify the title bidding workflow. This is an important step for our industry and one that gives publisher’s choice. We look forward to working closely with the team to ensure our publishing partners can benefit from this solution, save time and resources, and ultimately generate greater profits.”

Mike McNeely, senior vice president of products, index exchange

Improved Reporting For All Search Sources

Google working on additional reporting capabilities to provide publishers with better insight into how in-title bids are performing. A few months ago Google introduced a new data transfer file type that shows publishers how many buyers need to bid to win an auction.

This allows publishers to share Ad Manager Auction results data with all buyers they work with, including their header bid partners.

Google also developing new reporting features to provide publishers with better performance information who continue to use line purchases to prepare bids in titles. In the next few weeks, we will be rolling out reporting for the search sub channel. With this new feature, Ad Manager automatically detects which line item to use for header bidding. This makes it easier for publishers to compare header bid performance with their other search sources.

Greater Choice and Control for Publishers

Google strive to give our partners flexibility and choice to best support their business goals. That’s why Ads Manager has always provided publishers with the ability to integrate their preferred ad technology, and we remain focused on developing our platform to meet the needs of our partners.

As part of the overall solution to the French Competition Authority (FCA) investigation, we worked closely with regulators and publishers to develop this feature to facilitate data use and the use of our tools with other advertising technologies. While we still believe that in-title offerings have drawbacks such as slowness and poor user experience, among other things, we remain committed to providing publishers with choice through product interoperability.

We look forward to testing and developing these features further with publishers over the coming months and sharing progress over time.



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