Tag Archives: DoubleClick

Discover the true value of each click with data-driven attribution

From buying a TV to planning a holiday vacation, it takes consumers, on average, four clicks before completing a transaction online.¹ Some of these clicks matter more than the others, yet 40% of businesses still use first-touch or last-touch attribution when measuring ad performance.²

In order to understand the true value of each of those clicks, you need an attribution model that better reflects the new fragmented mobile-first consumer journey. Data-driven attribution (DDA) in DoubleClick Search solves this by helping you better understand the value of each ad click throughout your customer’s journey.

Create a model that fits your needs

Machine learning sets DDA in DoubleClick Search apart from rules-based attribution models. Unlike those models, DDA calculates the value of each ad click using your Floodlight conversion data, including conversions that happen across devices and browsers. By looking at all the clicks that happen across all those conversions, DDA can assign more value to the clicks that are driving conversions, and less value to those that don't.

Over time, your model will become more accurate as more data becomes available to inform your bids with. You can also customize your DDA model to fit your business goals.

DDA gets results

Here’s how DDA has already created value for advertisers around the world:



“Data-driven attribution has taken our campaign performance to the next level. By creating tailored attribution models for both new and existing customer journeys, we’re able to easily see which campaigns are contributing to our chosen business objective,” says Matt Darbon, Online Marketing at Waitrose. The British supermarket chain decreased its cost-per-order by nearly 40% while significantly increasing sales volume.




Walks of Italy provides immersive tour experiences around Italy's major cities and attractions. Using DDA and Smart Bidding, the brand saw a 31% increase in ticket sales, compared to 11% for other non-brand campaigns not running on DDA bid strategies. It also saw 25% growth in overall return on investment (ROI).




Volkswagen Group, one of the world’s leading vehicle manufacturers, saw sales leads increase by nearly 6% and cost-per-lead decrease by 17% in Brazil with DDA.






TalkTalk, the UK’s leading value-for-money telecoms provider, partnered with mSix to implement DDA for its campaigns. As a result, the brand saw its total volume of sales increase by 9% while maintaining its cost-per-acquisition.




Make DDA work for your business

Here are some best practices to help ensure your data-driven attribution models are customized to meet your business goals:

  • Apply your customer and market knowledge. Create and apply DDA specific labels to your campaigns based on the role that Search activity plays in the customer journey. Learn more
  • Check the accuracy of your model with Floodlight columns. Once you’ve created your custom DDA model, create Floodlight columns for DDA conversions to ensure your model is set up correctly. Learn more
  • Track your performance against other models. For easier monitoring, add your DDA model to your favorite reports. Create a custom column that shows the percentage difference in conversion value assigned to keywords, campaigns and labels between your attribution models. Learn more
  • Re-evaluate keywords, campaigns and labels for performance. Now that you’re measuring the value of every click, you may discover that some of your campaigns are performing better than before. Make sure your budget and bids are updated based on the insights provided by DDA. Learn more
  • Automate your bids based on your new model. To get the full benefits of DDA, use Smart Bidding with your DDA model to automatically set optimal bids across your campaigns. Learn more

Learn more about data-driven attribution in the DoubleClick Search Help Center.

¹ Google Analytics MCF data for single device measurement, Feb. 2017
² Google/Forrester, "Cross Channel Attribution is Needed to Drive Marketing Effectiveness," May 2014, U.S.
Posted by Michel van Luijtelaar
Measurement & Attribution Specialist, DoubleClick Search

Preventing unauthorized inventory

Advertising should be free of invalid activity – including unauthorized, misrepresented, and fake ad inventory – which diverts revenue from legitimate publishers and tricks marketers into wasting their money. Earlier this year we worked with the IAB Tech Lab to create the ads.txt standard, a simple solution to help stop bad actors from selling unauthorized inventory across the industry. Since then, we’ve shared our plans to integrate the standard into our advertiser and publisher advertising platforms.

As of November 8th, Google’s advertising platforms filter all unauthorized ad inventory identified by published ads.txt files:
  • Marketers and agencies using DoubleClick Bid Manager and AdWords will not buy unauthorized impressions as identified by publishers’ ads.txt files.
  • DoubleClick Ad Exchange and AdSense publishers that use ads.txt are protected against unauthorized inventory being sold in our auctions.

Preventing the sale of unauthorized inventory depends on having complete and accurate ads.txt information. So, to make sure our systems are filtering traffic as accurately as possible, we built an ads.txt crawler based on concepts used in our search index technology. It scans all active sites across our network daily, over 30m domains, for ads.txt files, to prevent unauthorized inventory from entering our systems.



The adoption of ads.txt has been growing quickly and the standard is reaching scale across publishers:
  • Over 100,000 ads.txt files have been published
  • 750 of the comScore 2,000 have ads.txt files
  • Over 50% of inventory seen by DBM comes from domains with ads.txt files

We believe ads.txt is a significant step in cleaning up bad inventory and it's great to have the broad support of our partners like L’Oreal, Omnicom Media Group, and the Financial Times.
“Consumers place enormous value on the ability to trust brands, which is why transparency in advertising is a top priority at L’Oreal. We look forward to collaborating with Google on this initiative as we continue to encourage the industry to follow suit.”
- Marie Gulin-Merle, CMO L’Oreal USA
"Removing counterfeit inventory from the ecosystem is critical to maintaining trust in digital. The simple act of publishing an ads.txt file helps provide the transparency we need to quickly reduce counterfeit inventory from harming our clients."
- Steve Katelman, EVP Global Strategic Partnerships, Omnicom Media Group
“It's great to see adoption of ads.txt across the industry and we're happy to see Google put their support behind this initiative. By eliminating counterfeit inventory from the ecosystem, marketers' budgets will work that much harder and revenue will reach real working media to fund the independent, high-quality journalism which society depends upon."
- Anthony Hitchings, Digital Advertising Operations Director, Financial Times

It’s amazing to see how fast the industry is adopting ads.txt, but there is still more to be done. Supporting industry initiatives like ads.txt is critical to maintaining the health of the digital advertising ecosystem. That’s why we’ll continue to invest and innovate to make the ecosystem more valuable, transparent, and trusted for everyone.

Posted by Per Bjorke
Product Manager, Google Ad Traffic Quality

Preventing unauthorized inventory

Advertising should be free of invalid activity – including unauthorized, misrepresented, and fake ad inventory – which diverts revenue from legitimate publishers and tricks marketers into wasting their money. Earlier this year we worked with the IAB Tech Lab to create the ads.txt standard, a simple solution to help stop bad actors from selling unauthorized inventory across the industry. Since then, we’ve shared our plans to integrate the standard into our advertiser and publisher advertising platforms.

As of November 8th, Google’s advertising platforms filter all unauthorized ad inventory identified by published ads.txt files:
  • Marketers and agencies using DoubleClick Bid Manager and AdWords will not buy unauthorized impressions as identified by publishers’ ads.txt files.
  • DoubleClick Ad Exchange and AdSense publishers that use ads.txt are protected against unauthorized inventory being sold in our auctions.

Preventing the sale of unauthorized inventory depends on having complete and accurate ads.txt information. So, to make sure our systems are filtering traffic as accurately as possible, we built an ads.txt crawler based on concepts used in our search index technology. It scans all active sites across our network daily, over 30m domains, for ads.txt files, to prevent unauthorized inventory from entering our systems.



The adoption of ads.txt has been growing quickly and the standard is reaching scale across publishers:
  • Over 100,000 ads.txt files have been published
  • 750 of the comScore 2,000 have ads.txt files
  • Over 50% of inventory seen by DBM comes from domains with ads.txt files

We believe ads.txt is a significant step in cleaning up bad inventory and it's great to have the broad support of our partners like L’Oreal, Omnicom Media Group, and the Financial Times.
“Consumers place enormous value on the ability to trust brands, which is why transparency in advertising is a top priority at L’Oreal. We look forward to collaborating with Google on this initiative as we continue to encourage the industry to follow suit.”
- Marie Gulin-Merle, CMO L’Oreal USA
"Removing counterfeit inventory from the ecosystem is critical to maintaining trust in digital. The simple act of publishing an ads.txt file helps provide the transparency we need to quickly reduce counterfeit inventory from harming our clients."
- Steve Katelman, EVP Global Strategic Partnerships, Omnicom Media Group
“It's great to see adoption of ads.txt across the industry and we're happy to see Google put their support behind this initiative. By eliminating counterfeit inventory from the ecosystem, marketers' budgets will work that much harder and revenue will reach real working media to fund the independent, high-quality journalism which society depends upon."
- Anthony Hitchings, Digital Advertising Operations Director, Financial Times

It’s amazing to see how fast the industry is adopting ads.txt, but there is still more to be done. Supporting industry initiatives like ads.txt is critical to maintaining the health of the digital advertising ecosystem. That’s why we’ll continue to invest and innovate to make the ecosystem more valuable, transparent, and trusted for everyone.

Posted by Per Bjorke
Product Manager, Google Ad Traffic Quality

Three new tools to improve the performance of your holiday campaigns

With the all important holiday shopping season about to begin, you can’t afford to miss any revenue opportunity. But you also need to be careful about how much you push your already stretched team. This is why we recently introduced three new tools, available to all DoubleClick Bid Manager accounts, that will help you reach more consumers while reducing manual work.

Expand your reach

First, as part of the new planning workflow in DoubleClick Bid Manager, we recently launched a new campaign object that lets you group Insertion Orders (IOs), so you can more efficiently manage your ad buys. For example, this will help you improve the reach of your campaign by allowing you to set up frequency capping across Programmatic Direct deals and open auction IOs, so you can be sure that your open auction campaigns reach consumers who haven’t been already exposed to your ads. You can create a new campaign in just a few simple steps*.

Second, we have introduced a slider that lets you expand your similar audience lists* so you can choose if you want maximum reach, higher similarity or a balance of the two. For example if you’re a toy retailer, your sales during the holiday season are likely going to be critical in determining your success for the entire year. To capture the increased holiday demand, you can use the slider to choose to reach the most possible consumers who look like your frequent purchasers. Once the sales peak has passed, you can scale your similar audience campaigns back to focus on more similarity.

You can find the new expansion slider in the Audience lists targeting tab of your line item level settings.

Optimize campaigns faster

By following the steps above, you can improve the setup of your campaigns and give them the best chance of success, but once your campaigns are up and running, you need a fast way to spot if things are not going according to plan. To help you with this, we recently introduced a new optimization view that allows you to quickly focus on campaigns that are not on track to achieve their spend and performance goals.

Once you know where you should focus your attention, you’ll be able to quickly determine what is driving the poor performance. By segmenting the data along dimensions (site, time of day, day of week, environment and more), you can easily see what is impacting performance.

In addition to surfacing key insights, the optimization view also provides suggestions on how you could optimize Line Item budgets within an IO. This way you can spend time making strategic decisions and not calculating how you should re-allocate budget across different Line Items.


Since using the new optimization view, our partner OMD Australia has been getting more granular insights faster:

"The optimization view has been helping us get quick insights, such as top performing placements and times of day. With this information we can immediately change our strategies to boost campaign performance without having to manually pull reports."
- Jiff Kumar, Programmatic Trader at OMD Sydney

You can access the new optimization view* at the IO or Line Item level by selecting Optimization from the drop down menu next to the New Insertion Order or New Line Item buttons in the DoubleClick Bid Manager.

Posted by Deirdre Athaide and Rod Lopez
Product Managers, DoubleClick Bid Manager


*A DoubleClick Bid Manager account is required to visualize the article.

Google Analytics 360 + Salesforce: A Powerful Combination

Cross-posted from the Google Analytics blog

We often hear from marketers how challenging it is to piece together online and offline customer interactions in order to see a complete view of a customer’s journey. That’s why we’re excited to share that Google and Salesforce are working together to seamlessly connect sales, marketing and advertising data for the first time, giving you the full view of what’s working and what isn’t as customers engage with your ads, websites, apps, emails, call centers, field sales teams and more.

Today at Dreamforce, Google and Salesforce are announcing a strategic partnership to deliver four new, turnkey integrations between Google Analytics 360, Salesforce Sales Cloud and Salesforce Marketing Cloud:
  • Sales data from Sales Cloud will be available in Analytics 360 for use in attribution, bid optimization and audience creation
  • Data from Analytics 360 will be visible in the Marketing Cloud reporting UI for a more complete understanding of campaign performance
  • Audiences created in Analytics 360 will be available in Marketing Cloud for activation via direct marketing channels, including email and SMS
  • Customer interactions from Marketing Cloud will be available in Analytics 360 for use in creating audience lists

These new connections between our market-leading digital analytics solution and Salesforce’s market-leading customer relationship management (CRM) platform will change the game for how our clients understand and reach their customers — and how they measure the impact of their marketing. These integrations are fully consistent with our privacy policies and have settings that offer privacy controls and choice on how data is used.

By integrating your customer data, you can see a customer’s path from awareness all the way through to conversion and retention. And with connections to Google’s ad platforms and Salesforce’s marketing platform, you can quickly take action, engaging them at the right moment. You'll see these new integrations begin to arrive in the first half of 2018.

Example of a complete customer journey funnel in Google Analytics 360 joining website data (pageviews, leads submitted) with pipeline data from Sales Cloud (lead and opportunity stages); example also shows a prompt to create a new audience segment to take action

New insights

Until now, businesses have not been able to connect offline interactions, such as an estimate provided by a call center rep or an order closed by a field sales rep, with insights on how customers use digital channels. With the connection between Sales Cloud and Analytics 360, soon you’ll be able to include offline conversions in your attribution modeling when using Google Attribution 360, so you’ll have a more complete view of ROI for each of your marketing channels and even more reason to move away from a last-click attribution method. This integration will also let you see how your most valuable customers engage with your digital properties, answering some important questions like, what are they looking for and are they actually finding what they need?

With the integration allowing data from Analytics 360 to be visible in Marketing Cloud, you’ll gain a more complete understanding of how your marketing campaigns perform. For example, if you send an email campaign to frequent shoppers to promote your fall fashion line, you’ll be able to see right in Marketing Cloud information such as how many pages people visited when they came to your site, the number of times people clicked on product details to learn more, and how many people added items to their shopping cart and converted.

Easy to take action

Today, Google Analytics allows you to create audience lists and goals that you can easily send to AdWords and DoubleClick for digital remarketing and to optimize bids. With the new connection from Sales Cloud to Analytics 360, in addition to unlocking new insights and more data for attribution modeling, you’ll be able to combine Salesforce data (such as sales milestones or conversions) with behavioral data from your digital properties to create richer audiences and for smarter bidding.

For example, if you’re a residential solar panel company and want to find new customers, you can create an audience in Analytics 360 of qualified leads from Sales Cloud and use AdWords or DoubleClick Bid Manager to reach people with similar characteristics. Or, create a goal in Analytics 360 based on leads marked as closed in Sales Cloud, and automatically send that goal to AdWords or DoubleClick Search to optimize your bidding and drive more conversions.

With the Analytics 360 connection to Marketing Cloud, you’ll be able to use customer insights to take action in marketing channels beyond Google’s ad platforms, such as email, SMS or push notification. For example, you can create an audience in Analytics 360 of customers who bought a TV on your site and came back later to browse for home theater accessories, and use that list in Salesforce to promote new speakers with a timely and relevant email.

Powerful combination

Every day, Google Analytics processes hundreds of billions of customer moments, Salesforce Marketing Cloud sends 1.4 billion emails, and there are over 5 million leads and opportunities created in Salesforce Sales Cloud. These new integrations represent a powerful combination, and we believe they will help marketers take a big step closer to the ultimate dream: providing every customer with a highly relevant experience at each step of their journey.

You’ll see these new joint capabilities become available beginning in 2018, and we'll be sure to keep you updated along the way. Contact us here if you would like to learn more about Analytics 360. We hope you’re as excited as we are!

Posted by Babak Pahlavan
Senior Director of Product Management, Measurement & Analytics

The Google Analytics 360 + Salesforce integrations are just one part of a broader strategic alliance announced today between Google and Salesforce. Read about new integrations between G Suite and Salesforce and a new partnership between Google Cloud and Salesforce here.

The importance of site-wide tagging for accurate conversion measurement in DoubleClick Search

Measurement is foundational to digital marketing. Heading into the holidays, it’s more important than ever to make sure all of your online sales, reservations and leads are measured accurately. To that end, we wanted to bring an important update to your attention: the recent introduction of Intelligent Tracking Prevention affects conversion measurement on Safari. It’s important to update your website tags as soon as possible to support measurement of conversions from Safari. This is in line with Apple's recommendations for ad attribution. Without updating your tags, it will be difficult to measure the efficacy of your marketing campaigns.

Site-wide tagging preserves your visibility

There are multiple ways to measure the performance of your online advertising. The best options rely on site-wide tagging—tagging that’s applied to every page on your site. Applying the tag to every page of your site keeps your measurement updated and helps to measure conversions more accurately, including in Safari's ITP environment.

There are two options for complete measurement of conversions from Safari in DoubleClick Search:

Option 1: Install the global site tag (gtag.js) on your entire site

The global site tag (gtag.js) is a new web tagging library that works across Google's site and conversion measurement products–giving you better control while making implementation easier. The new tag will now serve as the single tag for both AdWords and Google Analytics, with support for DoubleClick Search coming mid-November. By setting it on every page of your site, and including event snippets on your active conversion pages, the global site tag will send conversion data whenever event calls are made.

Stay tuned to learn more about DoubleClick Search support for the new global site tag in November.

Option 2: Use Google Tag Manager

For customers who are already using Google Tag Manager, there's no need to make any changes to your page—simply add the Conversion Linker tag in the Tag Manager interface, and set it to fire on all pages.

If you're not using Google Tag Manager, you can get started today. Alternatively, you can start with the global site tag (option 1 above) and then easily upgrade to Tag Manager in the future.

If you’re using a non-Google tool for website measurement, check with your vendor to make sure your solution allows you to measure conversions in Safari's ITP environment.

Estimating untracked conversions in DoubleClick Search

To help you accurately measure and take action on your conversion data, DoubleClick Search uses statistical modeling. Statistical modeling gathers website conversions for traffic that can’t be measured from Safari and includes them in your DoubleClick Search reporting.

We’ll continue to use statistical modeling in Doubleclick Search where site-wide measurement isn’t applied. However, using site-wide tagging will let you better understand your marketing performance across all DoubleClick products.

Measurement in DoubleClick Campaign Manager and DoubleClick Bid Manager

The two options outlined above also provide more complete measurement of conversions in DoubleClick Campaign Manager and DoubleClick Bid Manager. You can use Google Tag Manager today and the new global site tag in mid-November. Campaign Manager and Bid Manager customers using these two measurement solutions will start to see improvements in measurement coverage over the next few months.

Posted by Sriram Parameswar
Product Manager, DoubleClick Search

TV made smarter with DoubleClick

I used to wait all week to watch 90210 on Thursday nights at 9:00. Today, I can binge watch Breaking Bad whenever I want, wherever I want. Whether it’s 1997 or 2017, there is one simple thing that keeps us coming back to TV — great content. But the issue today is that the experience and the content are often at odds — while the content is addictive, the experience is not.

I believe that the future of TV is one that’s smarter — that brings together the TV content you love with the seamless experience of digital — on every screen or surface. Building towards that future, at our Partner Leadership Summit in Chicago early this month, we announced several new products and features to DoubleClick for Publishers, made for our TV.

Video ad experiences get smarter, live and on-demand, with Dynamic Ad Insertion

Over the years, we’ve rebuilt our video platform from the ground up — we knew that TV was a very different experience from the web and we knew that broadcasters had different challenges, infrastructure, distribution partners and content from web publishers. With TV coming to digital, we put our stake in the future of building for a better user experience — one that was connected, always on, and on-demand.

Powering dynamic ad insertion has become a leading benefit of our platform. Over the last couple of years, we’ve successfully powered dynamic ad insertion for live streaming and on-demand content for many of the largest news, sports events and episodic premiers. In fact, over the past two years alone we’ve seen a 4X increase in ad impressions delivered via our Dynamic Ad Insertion product by TV partners like CBSi, AMC, Bloomberg, TF1 and many more.1

Smarter TV ad breaks optimize revenue within each pod, programmatically

We’re also bringing new updates to a key feature of our platform — smarter TV ad breaks. With this update, ad slots no longer need to be sold as fixed lengths in the break. Smarter TV ad breaks automatically optimize your ad break to the revenue-maximizing combination of ads, personalized and relevant for each viewer. For example, a ninety second ad break can now be filled by two 15-second and two 30-second ads or one 15-second, one 60-second and two 6-second bumper ads depending on what will bring you the most revenue. Importantly, we’re able to do this across your programmatic or reservation deals, while respecting your business rules, such as competitive exclusions and frequency capping within the break or stream.

Content gets smarter with TV Content Explorer

To effectively monetize TV content, you need a platform that can better understand the content you’re monetizing, the audiences engaging with it and serve the right ad in just the right moment no matter where users are consuming it. That’s why we’re launching TV Content Explorer in DoubleClick for Publishers, available in beta by the end of 2017.

Leveraging Google’s machine learning expertise and smart heuristics, TV Content Explorer creates and automatically organizes an intuitive catalog of your shows and clips. We analyze millions of signals from video content feeds, automatically applying classifiers and making recommendations for how content should be organized across dimensions like show, genre, trending, dayparts, etc. With this inventory catalog, you’ll get a clearer view of the opportunities and packages available to sell.

But that’s not all. To ensure that you aren’t leaving any revenue on the table, the Explorer will also proactively surface deeper insights into audiences and monetization opportunities via insight cards. We’re just scratching the surface of what’s possible with this feature and are excited to bring even more innovation to this Explorer in the future.

Inventory decisions get smarter with updated forecasting and pacing models

Accurately predicting inventory volumes across a multitude of devices for TV content requires consideration for factors such as seasonality of content, unpredictable viewership spikes for live events and varying programming schedules.

That’s why our new forecasting and pacing models, currently in beta, were built to include a lookback window of 18 months, consideration for organic growth over time, audience seasonality and one-off anomaly corrections for unpredictable events like breaking news. Soon, it will also allow you to import offline traffic data and upload custom pacing curves to inform the algorithm for greater accuracy.


Audience strategies get smarter with insights from Google

We recently shared that we’re starting limited tests to help our partners better understand their audiences with new insight reports that expose demographic and interest data from Google. This presents an opportunity for broadcasters and programmers to personalize ad experiences more effectively and package digital inventory similarly to how TV is bought and sold. Additionally, we’re starting limited tests to help partners serve ads against demographic data from Google via Programmatic Guaranteed deals with DoubleClick Bid Manager.

TV is here to stay because there’s no such thing as too much good content — it’s hard for me to imagine a world without 90210, Breaking Bad or Designated Survivor. By bringing everything that’s good about digital to TV, we’re only making it unstoppable. Stay tuned to learn more about how we’re evolving our platforms for a future where TV will be smarter, just as it will continue to be everywhere.

Posted by Rany Ng
Director, Product Management, Google
1DoubleClick Internal Data, Jan-Sept 2015 and Jan-Aug 2017

Improving protections for publishers

There are many issues impacting the health of the advertising ecosystem today. Counterfeit, misrepresented, and fake ad inventory are diverting revenue from high quality publishers. And, publishers are looking for tools to help them stop unsuitable ads from appearing alongside their content and damaging their brand. Addressing these challenges is critical to creating a healthy ecosystem where publishers can thrive. That’s why we’ve been investing in multiple initiatives to help alleviate these problems for our partners.

Helping stop the sale of counterfeit ad inventory

When counterfeit inventory is allowed to be sold or an unauthorized reseller puts underpriced inventory into the market, it prevents publishers from receiving the full value of their inventory. That’s why we fully support the IAB Tech Lab’s ads.txt standard. Ads.txt gives publishers and distributors a simple, flexible and secure method to disclose the companies they authorize to sell their digital inventory. It increases transparency in the inventory supply chain making it more difficult to sell counterfeit inventory or resell inventory without a publisher’s approval.

We recently announced that DoubleClick Bid Manager will only buy a publisher’s inventory from sources identified as authorized sellers in its ads.txt file when a file is available. At our recent Partner Leadership Summit, we announced three updates to our publisher ad platforms to support the IAB Tech Lab’s ads.txt standard.

  • AdSense has begun to display ads.txt alerts in the user interface to let publishers know if we identify errors in their ads.txt file.
  • By the end of October, DoubleClick for Publishers will include an ads.txt generator and validator to help publishers create their initial ads.txt file and correct and modify their existing ads.txt files.
  • And most importantly by the end of this year, DoubleClick Ad Exchange and AdSense will filter unauthorized inventory, as identified by a publisher’s ads.txt file, from our auction.

The growth we’ve seen in ads.txt adoption has been strong. As of October 12, our ads.txt crawler has found files from over 11,000 urls. However, only 252 of the comScore 1000 publishers have published ads.txt files. The broader the adoption of ads.txt, the faster we’ll be able to help prevent the sale and purchase of counterfeit inventory and foster a fair and safe market for publishers to grow their businesses.

Number of urls that have posed an ads.txt file globally as found by our crawler

Keeping unsuitable ads off of publisher sites

We've heard from our publishers that they want more options and control to determine the types of ads that appear on their sites from our advertising partners. While we have strict policies on our own platforms to protect publishers and our users from harmful, misleading and inappropriate ads, we are introducing more controls and filters so publishers can make their decisions about what is and what isn't suitable for their brand.

We have released two new controls in DoubleClick that allow publishers to block sensational, tabloid-style ads and racy, suggestive ads from their sites. And we recently made changes to significantly improve the accuracy and quality of our automated creative classification filters. We’ve always had comprehensive controls to help publishers automatically block the types of ads that appear on their sites, and these updates will help publishers fine tune the types of ads that appear alongside their content.

Mock-ups of a racy, suggestive ad and a sensationalist ad blocked by our sensitive category controls

Creating a fair and safe marketplace for publishers

Helping publishers create sustainable businesses and continue to grow is core to our mission. That cannot happen without a healthy advertising ecosystem. By helping to stop the sale and purchase of counterfeit inventory, and giving publishers the controls to prevent unsuitable and unsafe ads from appearing next to their content, we hope to make it easier for our partners to succeed.

Posted by Pooja Kapoor
Head of Global Strategy, Programmatic and Ecosystem Health

Building for beyond with the Insights Engine Project

At Google, we’ve always believed that our mission “to organize the world’s information and make it universally accessible” is closely aligned with that of the media industry. Without you, there’s no information. This partnership is what sets us apart, and what fuels our commitment to helping you build thriving and sustainable businesses.

Our commitment is particularly evident in how we’re evolving DoubleClick. There’s no doubt that the dual explosions of programmatic advertising and mobile devices have ushered in a new digital era fueled by data. Today, you can be better news publishers, entertainment programmers or app developers — and make smarter content and business decisions — with the immense amount of information available to you.

We believe there is a new opportunity emerging to turn raw data into powerful insights. So, we are announcing the Insights Engine Project, an ongoing initiative to bring Google’s cloud computing and machine learning expertise to DoubleClick’s reporting and forecasting systems. We want to make it easier for you to optimize your business for success with both consumers and advertisers. Our teams have been hard at work for some time now, and today we are announcing seven features in development, many of which are already in testing with select partners.

Custom data analysis and visualization with BigQuery and Data Studio

All the data in the world is not much use if you can’t analyze it and see the results. To make this easier, we are connecting DoubleClick to two powerful Google tools — BigQuery and Data Studio. BigQuery is Google’s fully managed, petabyte scale, low cost enterprise data warehouse for analytics. Data Studio turns your data into customizable informative dashboards and reports that are easy to read and share. Both connectors are in beta now, with broad availability in early 2018.

Smarter decisions with insight cards and a new forecasting experience

Late last year, we started using Google machine learning to offer opportunities and experiments in DoubleClick for Publishers and Ad Exchange. So far, our partners have implemented more than 6,700 recommendations worth millions of dollars in new revenue.1 Often, the most valuable insights are not simply into what has happened in your business, but also into what your peers are doing, and especially into what comes next.

In the months to come, a new set of insight cards in DoubleClick will give you information about how you are performing relative to your peers on key success metrics like ad viewability, site latency, and more. And to help you be more confident about the future, we will also be launching a new forecasting experience that includes automatic growth detection, seasonal adjustments, and easy viewing of historical data side by side with future predictions.


Audience insights for more relevant content and ads

The Insights Engine Project does not stop with business data. We also believe that helping you learn more about your audience can help you deliver more relevant and higher quality experiences. In the months to come, we will be conducting two limited tests of sharing demographic and interest insights with our partners, including using those insights to deliver more relevant ads in programmatic deals with DoubleClick Bid Manager advertisers. These tests will help us explore the best way to make ads and content more relevant for users, while ensuring their privacy and preferences are respected.

Supporting the news industry with subscription offers

Finally, subscriptions are becoming a more and more important part of the business of our partners in the news industry. So, we are also testing the application of machine learning and audience insights to the subscription business — helping you optimize the best moment to reach users when they have a higher likelihood of paying.

The first step

As we enter the next phase of digital growth, in a world that’s AI-first and where data is king, we’re excited to partner with you in new ways to drive sustainable growth beyond tomorrow into the further future. We are confident that when you have the right pieces of information in the right places, the possibilities are endless. The Insights Engine Project starts with the initiatives I have described here, but will continue into 2018 and beyond, so stay tuned to learn more about how you can start taking advantage of these new capabilities.
Posted by Jonathan Bellack
Director of Product Management, Publisher Platforms
1 DoubleClick Internal Data, Oct 2016 - Sept 2017

Working with the industry towards a fraud-free media supply chain

Advertising fraud is a complex challenge, but one that we are working to simplify for our partners. That’s why we’ve developed sophisticated systems, including over 180 automated filters and detection algorithms, to prevent invalid traffic from impacting our clients. For years, we’ve used these technologies to protect Google-owned media properties from invalid traffic and now we’re working to expand them to help the rest of the ecosystem.

Today we’d like to highlight three areas we are investing in, for DoubleClick Bid Manager, to help our partners build trust in the advertising supply chain.

Automating refunds for invalid traffic

In the coming months, we’ll be implementing new infrastructure to further automate the refund process for invalid traffic. Supply partners like AppNexus, Index Exchange, OpenX, Teads, Telaria and DoubleClick Ad Exchange have been very supportive of these changes and have committed to provide advertisers with refunds for invalid traffic detected up to 30-days after monthly billing.

“At OpenX, we believe it is the responsibility of every participant in the market to commit to providing a high quality, transparent and fraud free advertising marketplace. The industry must work together to advance a clean, well-lit ecosystem to be successful in eliminating the scourge of fraud from the market. We are pleased to partner with DoubleClick on this important effort to cut off funding for criminal actors and advance trust for our entire industry.”
-- Ian Davidson, OpenX

These commitments, along with others, cover over 90% of the available inventory in DoubleClick Bid Manager. Soon, we’ll identify in Bid Manager which supply partners provide refunds for invalid traffic and offer advertisers the option to buy only from those sources. This will make it easier for our customers to collect refunds for invalid activity.

Increasing transparency on invalid traffic we’ve filtered

It’s hard to prevent invalid activity if you don’t know how you’re being impacted. That’s why we’re investing in reporting features to give advertisers and supply partners greater visibility into what our invalid traffic defenses detect.

With these new features, advertisers will be able to see and understand the amount of invalid traffic detected in their campaigns both pre-bid and post-serve, including breakdowns by categories like data center traffic, automated browsers, and falsely represented inventory. Supply partners will receive reporting on the sources and amounts of invalid traffic that our systems are post-serve filtering from their platforms. By providing our customers and supply partners with access to this data we hope to provide more transparency into the sources of invalid traffic, facilitate conversations with third parties, and make sure our clients’ media spend does not enrich bad actors.
Example of an upcoming change to our user interface showing the sources of invalid traffic.

Support for ads.txt

Beyond our own platforms, we are fully supportive of industry initiatives to improve the health of the advertising ecosystem and combat ad fraud. Recently, the IAB Tech Lab released the ads.txt standard to increase supply chain transparency and make it more difficult to sell counterfeit inventory. It defines a simple method for publishers to publicly declare who is authorized to sell or resell their digital advertising inventory.

We believe the ads.txt standard is a significant step forward in the fight against ad fraud, and by the end of October, DoubleClick Bid Manager will only buy a publisher’s inventory from sources identified as authorized sellers in its ads.txt file when a file is available.

The success of ads.txt will be defined by the extent of its adoption, and it’s great to see healthy adoption by publishers since the standard was finalized.
These changes are just some of the things we’re doing to help combat ad fraud and increase transparency in the advertising supply chain, and it’s been great partnering with Nissan Motor Corporation and GroupM as we developed these solutions.
“Google has been a proactive partner helping us fight ad fraud. At Nissan, we look to Google, all publishers, as well as media agencies, to take their responsibility to clean up the inventory supply chain. It is therefore good to see that we’re gaining momentum to address this issue. We all need to embrace and demand new solutions to further accelerate this clean-up. That’s why we strongly urge all publishers we work with to adopt ads.txt to help keep the supply chain accountable and ensure marketer dollars are driving real results.” -- Roel de Vries, Nissan Motor Corporation
"We're extremely supportive of the steps Google is taking to bring transparency and accountability to the digital supply chain. It's critical that we have partners who are as dedicated as we are to protecting brands from ad fraud and we look forward to working together solve this issue for our clients." -- Rob Norman, GroupM

There’s no doubt that this is a complex problem, but if we continue to work together, we’re confident that we can address this challenge.

Posted by Payam Shodjai
Director, Product Management