Tag Archives: Google Ad Manager

Audience Explorer unlocks first-party data insights

If you’re hoping to attract new advertisers and earn the most value from your first-party data, it’s critical to explain what makes your audiences special. But it often takes technical skills or data expertise to develop insights that add order and meaning to your data. 

To help simplify this process and increase the value of publishers’ first-party data, in the coming weeks we’ll be launching Audience Explorer for partners using Google Ad Manager's Audience Solutions — a suite of premium features that enable publishers to ingest, build, activate and now analyze first-party audience segments within the platform. 

Audience Explorer was built to help publishers better understand and activate their first-party audience data. Without needing advanced tools or technical capabilities, publishers will be able to analyze their audience segments, develop enhanced narratives about their data and optimize their monetization strategies for both reservation and Programmatic Direct deals.

Easing access to audience insights

Audience Explorer delivers new dashboards and improved workflows that help publishers who are investing in first-party data strategies more easily understand their audiences. To ensure the new capabilities met the needs of publishers, we worked with over a dozen global partners to help develop and test the new solution. 

“Macy's Media Network uses a data-driven approach to connect our shoppers with brands through a wide range of digital advertising services. Ad Manager's Audience Explorer tool helps us manage and scale our first party audiences to effectively plan and deliver targeted media for our advertising partners.”

- Melanie Zimmermann, Vice President, Macy’s Media Network, Macy’s 

“Partnering with Ad Manager on the development of Audience Explorer has been important for our first-party data initiatives. With more than 100 million monthly active users across our 1,200+ communities, the new dashboard will help us better understand our audiences and package our inventory in new, compelling ways for our advertiser clients.”

- David Domitrovic, Director, Data Strategy & Analytics, VerticalScope

Integrating the feedback we received, Audience Explorer allows publishers to visualize and interpret their first-party data in a variety of different ways. Partners can now explore the composition and behavior of a single audience segment, compare two segments side by side, or even overlap segments to better understand the similarities or differences in membership. Here are a few different ways publishers can benefit from Audience Explorer.

Scorecard table

When an Ad Manager user navigates to Audience Solutions in the platform, they’ll now be able to click on the title of an audience segment to open the new Audience Explorer dashboard. At the top of the dashboard, users will see the segment’s Scorecard. The Scorecard provides a quick snapshot of an audience segment over a specified period of time. High-level metrics in the Scorecard, like total unique identifiers or total ad impressions, can help publishers quickly understand which segments offer enough scale for the deals they're working on.

Scorecard table at the top of the Audience Explorer dashboard

See top level insights on your first-party audience segments

Audience Explorer tab

The Audience Explorer tab in the dashboard features a collection of visual Insights Cards that provide new ways to think about, market and improve the performance of first-party audience segments. These interactive cards help publishers visualize things like what time of day different audiences are most active and which ad units are seen most often. For additional flexibility, the cards can also be toggled to visualize data by either the number of unique audience identifiers or the total number of ad impressions from users in a segment.

Audience Explorer dashboard that uses Insights cards to  visualize data from first-party audience segments

Use the Audience Explorer tab to learn more about a first-party segment

Segment comparison tool 

The comparison tool in the Audience Explorer dashboard enables publishers to compare two first-party segments side by side in a single Insight Card. This visualization helps publishers understand which audiences may fit an advertisers needs more closely, or how two different segments could be best used together in a single campaign.

Audience Explorer dashboard that features Insights Cards  visualizing the data from two first-party audience segments side by side

Compare and contrast two first-party audience segments side by side

Segment overlap tab 

The segment overlap tool helps publishers understand how distinct each audience segment is. With this tool, partners will be able to explore metrics like the number of unique cookies, cookie overlap, unique impressions and impression overlap. By understanding what percentage of members belong to multiple audience segments, publishers will have a clearer understanding of unique reach when packaging multiple segments together for their advertiser clients.

Audience segment table that evaluates two or more first-party audience segments by showing bar graphs indicating what percentage of the list’s data points are unique versus others

Overlap multiple first-party audience segments to explore compositions

Investing in first-party solutions

Audience Explorer builds on our first-party data announcements from earlier this year, and reinforces our commitment to develop new identity and data solutions for our partners. We strongly encourage publishers to invest or continue their investments in privacy-secure, first-party audience signals for their advertiser clients as well. 

Looking to get started with first-party audience data in Ad Manager? Sign up to join our upcoming webinar, Using Publisher Provided Identifiers to activate first party audiences, on August 11, 2021. In this session you’ll learn how to build and ingest first-party audiences in Ad Manager, how you can use Audience Explorer to learn more about these audiences and how you can market inventory and execute campaigns using your first-party data.

Making it easier for publishers to manage privacy and messaging

The advertising ecosystem is constantly evolving with new privacy regulations, updates to advertising identifiers and ad blocker technologies — all of which give users more transparency and control. But they can be confusing and time-consuming for publishers to manage. To help our partners streamline how they manage global privacy regulations and their user messaging journey, we’re introducing enhancements to the privacy & messaging tab in Google Ad Manager and AdMob.

The privacy & messaging tab will act as a single place for our partners to stay informed about relevant regulations, understand what actions they can take, message their users and navigate the advertising landscape to mitigate impact to their businesses. It’s also the evolution of our Funding Choices solution as we begin to move all of its features into this tab alongside ad serving controls.

Google AdMob privacy and messaging tab user interface

Google AdMob privacy & messaging tab user interface

Let’s take a look at the features in the privacy & messaging tab that can help support your advertising business.


Stay informed about privacy regulations 

Privacy regulations, like the European General Data Protection Regulation (GDPR) and the California Consumer Privacy Act (CCPA), play an important role in respecting user privacy while advertising. To help you better understand how these privacy regulations may impact your business, the privacy & messaging tab includes privacy regulation educational cards. Simply click on a card and find information on how the regulation may affect you, how you can give users control and additional Google resources like website and developer documentation all in one place.

General Data Protection Regulation educational card in the Google Ad Manager user interface

General Data Protection Regulation educational card in the Google Ad Manager user interface

Configure your ad serving controls

The privacy & messaging tab makes it easy to configure your ad serving controls for privacy regulations. These controls, which were previously located in the Admin tab in Ad Manager and the Blocking Controls tab for AdMob, have now migrated to the privacy & messaging tab so that you can manage all of your privacy regulation settings in one place. Easily select the types of ads you want to show users in that region, select your advertising partners and where applicable, enable additional creative controls. If you’ve previously specified these settings in your account they’ll stay the same in this tab.

Message your users and offer them control 

You also have the option to create GDPR (web and app) and CCPA (web only) consent and opt out messages in the privacy & messaging tab, making it possible for you to gather, manage and communicate user choices for advertising purposes. These features were previously available in Funding Choices, and we’ve now integrated them directly into the privacy & messaging tab in Ad Manager and AdMob to help you streamline your workflows and increase efficiency. We’ve also added new features to the messaging workflow, such as multi-language support for apps and bulk messaging so that you can easily deploy a message across all of your properties.

These messages can help you gather consent so that you’re able to continue to monetize your content in a privacy-focused way. For example, Tellonym was able to create a compelling consent experience on their app using GDPR messages. “We’ve been able to give our users choice and transparency, and gain their trust and consent,” says Maximillian Rellin, CEO at Tellonym. “This has allowed us to continue to grow our business through advertising, which is an important revenue stream for us.”

Beyond privacy regulations, in the coming months you’ll also be able to set up IDFA messages from the privacy & messaging tab to give iOS 14.5+ users additional context before they see the App Tracking Transparency (ATT) prompt. You can use these messages to explain what their data may be used for before they decide to consent. Of course, all of these messaging features are optional and you can work with any consent management platform of your choice. 

One tab for all your privacy and messaging needs

By helping our partners stay informed of privacy regulations, manage ad control settings and implement optional messages, they’re able to more easily meet regulatory requirements and focus on growing their business. In the coming months, we’ll continue to add more features and message-types, like ad blocking recovery messages. And as the advertising ecosystem continues to evolve and new privacy regulations arise, we’ll continue to make it easy for you to find all the resources you need in the privacy & messaging tab. 

3 ways automation can help publishers succeed

For publishers, constantly adapting to change is just part of the job. In a relatively short timespan, we’ve seen the industry make huge strides in building efficiencies and transforming the way it drives revenue. But even in an environment where change is the norm, some years bring more challenges than others. The pandemic has brought fundamental disruptions to publishers’ businesses, not to mention new regulations and a move to remote collaboration. 

In other words, publishers are changing the way they work — and to do it, they’re increasingly looking for insights into their ads business. From May 2020 to May 2021, we've seen a 48% increase in reports created in Data Studio for Google Ad Manager. That’s why we’ve been working on new ways to help our partners solve complex problems with machine learning, and help them save precious time and resources. As you navigate your own process, here are three ways Ad Manager can help you create value with automation.

1. Earn more with less effort

To help you uncover more value from your existing inventory, Ad Manager puts machine learning to work and automatically surfaces new opportunities to maximize revenue. Then our solutions let you quickly implement or easily run an experiment to test before you commit to the change. 

For example, the Opportunities & Experiments feature estimates the opportunity created if you were to change a certain pricing rule or setting, then helps you run an experiment to validate the estimate, and finally activate the opportunity — all in one place. As a result, you’ll better understand the effect it has on your business, and can run a real-time experiment to verify it.

2. Identify issues and opportunities

Today, it’s harder than ever to monitor performance and identify issues and opportunities in your ad business operations. To help, Ad Manager both automatically surfaces opportunities for you as well as provides the tools to access the data to power your own insights and learning.

Google Ad Manager Home dashboard user interface

Ad Manager Home dashboard user interface

The Ad Manager Home dashboards show proactive insights into your network’s revenue, performance and delivery, highlighting  which of your strategies have been the most effective and recommending additional opportunities for you to maximize revenue. We’re also working on new features that will allow you to customize the homepage into a personalized dashboard with the data and insights that are most relevant for you and your role.

Ad Manager also provides access to your historical insights via APIs and Reporting, to help you build automation solutions or even create custom dashboards via Data Studio. Features such as Bids Insights Card and Bid Data in Reporting can help you get a stronger understanding of the bid distribution for your inventory, along with data about how unified floors are affecting your revenue. The benefit? You can confidently make informed decisions about your pricing strategy.

3. Streamline workflows

With employees working from home, a streamlined workflow can help you manage your business more efficiently. Ad Manager automation can help by providing access to different demand sources more effectively and offering troubleshooting tools that make it easy to solve ads-related issues in your account. 

Ad Manager API, for instance, helps you unlock the power of automation for your Live Events workflow. You can schedule, create or pause Live Streaming events all through the API — without ever having to navigate through the Ad Manager user interface — and integrate with your existing internal workflow processes. This also makes it easier to scale as you increase the number of Live Events and schedule them in the future.

This is just a preview of what we’re working on. To learn more, read our new automation guide and get the entire picture of where we are. For years to come, the efficiency gains made possible by machine learning will continue to offer some of the greatest engines for online advertising success. We’re devoted to helping you make the most of your inventory so you can keep adapting to our ever-changing world. Understanding what technology can do today is the best way to anticipate what it will be able to do tomorrow.

9 lessons from our 2021 commerce partner summit

What is the future of retail media? Earlier this month, Google hosted more than 100 leaders from nearly 50 global retailers to discuss how e-commerce platforms are transforming digital advertising. The two-day session featured inspiring talks from Google’s retail partners as well as industry experts from Forrester, Tinuiti, Merkle and eMarketer/Insider Intelligence. Here are nine of the most important lessons from the event:

1. Retail media has gone mainstream

Ad spend on e-commerce properties is expected to double over the next four years. Retail ad spend grew nearly 50% in 2020 and will reach more than $40 billion by 2024, per Nicole Perrin at eMarketer. It’s the fastest growing sector of the digital ad market, exceeding even connected TV.

2. Retail media benefits brands, merchants and consumers

Merchants can monetize their traffic and generate incremental income with minimal investment. Brands can sell more by reaching shoppers as they’re making purchase decisions. Consumers are exposed to relevant products without having to surrender more personal information. It’s a win-win-win, says Forrester’s Sucharita Kodali.

3. Post-pandemic e-commerce and ad spend will continue to grow

eMarketer projects that U.S. e-commerce sales in 2021 will grow 18% to $933 billion. By 2024, more than 20% of all retail sales will be transacted online. As retail sales increase, ad spending is expected to follow.

4. Retail media is grabbing a bigger slice of the marketing pie

Retail media started with search placements, such as Sponsored Products, but advertisers are starting to incorporate a full funnel experience, driving conversion, consideration and awareness through display ads. Marketing budgets initially earmarked for other purposes are shifting to paid media, bought programmatically, using data at scale to reach audiences and measure results.

5. Non-endemic budgets are becoming increasingly important 

Non-endemic ads — ads run by brands whose products are not sold in the online stores in which they’re advertising — have been purchased by more than half of all CPG brands, according to Merkle. These advertisers are finding retail sites an effective way to reach potential customers, especially as third-party cookies are phased out. Even then, some retailers still must be convinced that accepting non-endemic ads is the right move, says Merkle SVP Janine Flaccavento.

6. Display and video formats can help build brand loyalty

Retail media networks’ display and video ad formats are growing faster than Sponsored Products, per eMarketer’s Nicole Perrin. Brand advertisers prefer these display formats because they can highlight multiple products, getting customers interested in more options and building loyalty.

7. First-party data activation is critical

As cookies are deprecated, first-party data becomes crucial to a brand’s ability to make meaningful connections with customers and drive measurable outcomes, notes Best Buy’s Director of Ad Platforms Strategy, Mark Heitke. Using ads driven by first-party data, Best Buy boosted conversion rates up to 45% and delivered a ten-times return on ad spend for the consumer electronics retailer.

8. Agencies play a vital role

Dealing with multiple retail media networks adds complexity for brands. Agencies can help manage that complexity, but they could benefit from tools that make it easier to execute across multiple networks. 

9. Retailers need to take action

  • Stop: Watching and waiting. If you’re a retailer not yet involved in this space, it’s time to offer brands options for formats and personalization.
  • Start: Developing audience insights. Understand which insights might be interesting to particular brands, both endemic and non-endemic.
  • Continue: Focusing on ad experiences that are a win for advertisers and consumers. Consumer attitudes towards ads on retailer sites tend to be more positive, especially when they are helpful and relevant. Make sure your ads are appropriately targeted. 
The time for retailers to take action on retail media is now. To learn which considerations should be included in your strategy or to find out how Google can help power your retail media offering, download our Building a Retail Media Business with Google report.

Some changes to our ad technology

The tools used by digital publishers and advertisers —  often called ad tech — help websites and apps make money and fund high-quality content. Ad tech also helps our advertising partners big and small reach customers and grow their businesses. Our ad tech tools are built to work with our partners and competitors alike — it's why we share access to advertising data to support publisher monetization and why we provide access to more than 700 rival advertiser platforms and 80 publisher platforms across our products.

Over the past two years, we have been working with the French Competition Authority (FCA) to answer their questions about our advertising technology, and more specifically about Google Ad Manager, our publisher platform. 

While we believe we offer valuable services and compete on the merits, we are committed to working proactively with regulators everywhere to make improvements to our products. That’s why, as part of an overall resolution of the FCA’s investigation, we have agreed on a set of commitments to make it easier for publishers to make use of data and use our tools with other ad technologies. We will be testing and developing these changes over the coming months before rolling them out more broadly, including some globally. 

Increased access to data 

Today, when buyers use Google Ad Manager to participate in Google’s ad exchange, they receive equal access to data from our auctions to help them efficiently buy ad space from publishers.

As there are a lot of ad exchanges to choose from, publishers sometimes also use a technology called Header Bidding to run an auction among multiple ad exchanges. Because these Header Bidding auctions take place outside of our platform, it is usually not technically possible for Google to identify the participants, and therefore we cannot share data with those buyers. 

With these commitments, we will work to create a solution that ensures that all buyers that a publisher works with, including those who participate in Header Bidding, can receive equal access to data related to outcomes from the Ad Manager auction. In particular, we will be providing information around the “minimum bid to win” from previous auctions. 

Increased flexibility 

Publishers using Ad Manager have always had the ability to sell ads via many different advertising platforms and the ability to negotiate terms with other publisher platforms to implement business strategies targeted to specific buyers. This flexibility allows publishers and advertisers to mix and match technology partners to meet their different needs.

We will further increase the flexibility of Google Ad Manager to meet the evolving needs of our partners, including allowing them to set custom pricing rules for ads that are in sensitive categories and implementing product changes that improve interoperability between Ad Manager and third-party ad servers. Also, we are reaffirming that we will not limit Ad Manager publishers from negotiating specific terms or pricing directly with other sell-side platforms (SSPs). And we will continue to provide Ad Manager publishers with controls to include or exclude certain buyers at their discretion.

Affirming our commitment to transparency

We have worked for years to bring increased transparency to programmatic advertising, including taking steps to simplify our platforms. This includes combining our publisher ad server and ad exchange to become Google Ad Manager and shifting to a unified first price auction in Ad Manager to help reduce complexity and create a fair and transparent market for everyone.

As part of these commitments, we are reaffirming our promise not to use data from other SSPs to optimize bids in our exchange in a way that other SSPs can’t reproduce. We are also reaffirming our promise not to share any bid from any Ad Manager auction participants with any other auction participant prior to completion of the auction. Additionally, we’ll give publishers at least three months' notice for major changes requiring significant implementation effort that publishers must adopt, unless those are related to security or privacy protections, or are required by law. 

We are always working on improving our ad tech products to help publishers fund their content and businesses and help advertisers efficiently reach customers. We recognise the role that ad tech plays in supporting access to content and information and we’re committed to working collaboratively with regulators and investing in new products and technologies that give publishers more choice and better results when using our platforms. 

Earn more revenue with Manual Experiments

Maintaining a successful ad sales business takes constant attention to how your ads are performing and an understanding of your data in order to make informed decisions. But in today’s dynamic environment, the best way to grow revenue and improve results over time is to test and experiment. That’s why, based on feedback and requests from our partners, we developed a new tool called Manual Experiments to help you run your own tests in Google Ad Manager.

New controls to make testing easy 

In the past, running a test on your inventory was often a complex process requiring a custom setup and time-consuming analysis to measure performance. Manual Experiments simplifies this process by providing you flexibility and control to quickly create and run experiments directly in the platform, and analyze the results. And because the tests are built into Google’s existing experiment framework in Ad Manager, the process is easy to implement. All you have to do is choose from one of the available experiment types, configure the amount of traffic to experiment with and set the test duration. Then, after the experiment is complete, you can review its performance and decide if you want to implement the change with one click. 

Partners like The Atlantic, STRÖER and UOL have seen success using Manual Experiments to improve how they test pricing rules and earn more revenue.

“We’ve been able to seamlessly run experiments using Manual Experiments - giving us insight into the impact of different floor prices and helping us determine how to effectively price floors to earn the most revenue. We’re excited to see how this feature evolves.” - Ryan McConaghy, The Atlantic 

“Because of things like seasonality and world events, advertising supply and demand is always changing. There is no perfect, everlasting Pricing Rule. Manual Experiments makes testing more manageable, more transparent and more valid for our decision making process.” - Stefan Schatt, STRÖER MEDIA SOLUTIONS

“With manual experiments, we now have an important tool to speed up and simplify the testing and optimization process in our unified price rules decisions.” - Fabricio Gomes, UOL

During the beta period, Manual experiments that were implemented by publishers achieved a 6.5% lift in revenue on average. Today, Manual Experiments are available to all publishers using Ad Manager with three experiment types,

  • Category block experiments: Let publishers see the impact of allowing specific ad types to show on their sites which they are currently blocked. 

  • Unified pricing rule experiments:  Let publishers see the impact of lowering or raising the floor price on specific inventory. 

  • Native ad style experiments: Let publishers compare the results of two sets of native ad styles to determine which would perform better in their network.

We plan to roll out more experiment types in the future based on your feedback. 

Image of Manual Experiments in the Ad Manager user interface

Manual Experiments user interface

Making better decisions with data

Manual Experiments builds on our existing Opportunities and Experiments tool that uses machine learning and Google’s experiment framework to automatically surface suggestions for publishers to improve their revenue. In fact, in 2020 publishers using Opportunities and Experiments have accepted over 2000 opportunities, generating over 3.5% more revenue on average from this inventory. In addition to these features, Ad Manager’s reporting, forecasting and insights features can help you access all the account data you need to create actionable insights and easily create, schedule and share business results to improve the performance of your ads business. 

We’re constantly looking for new ways to help make it easier for publishers to earn more revenue from ads. Learn more about Manual Experiments here and read about all of Ad Manager’s features on our site.

Evolving Dynamic Ad Insertion for the future of streaming

This past year truly was the year of advanced TV video streaming. Viewers increasingly turned to over-the-top (OTT) streaming platforms for entertainment, like new direct-to-consumer apps and free ad-supported streaming TV services. To help TV programmers and distributors adapt with this growth, we’ve been working on a more flexible approach on how they manage their content workflow and place ads into their streaming solutions.

We built Google Ad Manager’s Dynamic Ad Insertion (DAI) to provide TV partners an end to end solution to deliver broadcast-quality and personalized ad experiences for ad-supported video content. Today we’re reimagining our ad insertion technology for the next generation of video streaming with DAI Pod Serving, which helps simplify OTT streaming complexity by integrating with your existing first or third-party streaming workflow. This evolution of our DAI technology helps the broader streaming ecosystem by giving you and your video platforms more flexibility to manage your streaming workflow and deliver a customized viewing experience so that you can grow your business.

How DAI Pod Serving works

Ad Manager’s DAI has always been an integral part of ad-supported video streaming, helping TV partners power their live and on-demand video (VOD) content across screens. Historically, partners sent their video content through Ad Manager’s DAI, allowing it to decision the ads into an ad pod (or commercial break), transcode and condition creatives into the right format and then stitch the content and ads into a single video stream (also known as manifest manipulation). 

With DAI Pod Serving, partners no longer need to send their content to Ad Manager — they own their entire streaming workflow — and Ad Manager provides them with “ready-to-stitch” ad pods they can stitch into their content. TV programmers and distributors have many streaming solution providers to choose from, and with DAI Pod Serving they can integrate Google's ad decisioning technology into their first or third party video streaming solutions.

An illustration of three screens, with the center screen showing three ads in different colors

DAI Pod Serving offers all the same great benefits of DAI, including live scale capacity with prefetching and Early Break Notification, creative transcoding and conditioning, access to all programmatic demand and verification and measurement. Now let’s take a look at how DAI Pod Serving works with partners’ existing video workflows. 

Integrating with first-party video streaming solutions

Some TV programmers build their own first-party video streaming solutions, where they own the content management, manifest manipulation and distribution workflow from start to finish. In this example, DAI Pod Serving will decision and condition each commercial break into a ready-to-stitch ad pod that’s in the appropriate format, and then partners can insert the ad pod into their TV content using their own in-house manifest manipulation solution. This provides partners with greater control over their entire video streaming workflow, while DAI Pod Serving delivers high-quality, seamless ads so that partners can grow their video revenue.

“DAI Pod Serving gives us flexibility to continue to use both our in-house video streaming and encoding solutions alongside streams encoded by our partners, while allowing Ad Manager to deliver broadcast-quality ads within MLB.TV live streamed baseball games and other longform content,” says Dan Newberry, Sr. Director, Ad Tech and Operations, Major League Baseball. 

Powering ads in third-party video platforms

To help partners increase flexibility and operational efficiencies across their streaming and monetization solutions, DAI Pod Serving can integrate with third-party video streaming platforms. Our first integration is with Verizon Media Platform, a leading provider of OTT video streaming solutions. This meets the needs of partners who use Verizon Media to manage their streaming workflow and use Ad Manager as their video ad server.

This integration provides an additional layer of flexibility for Verizon Media Platform customers using Ad Manager for programmatic demand. For those partners, Verizon Media Platform will stitch the ad pod provided from Ad Manager directly into a unified stream, allowing partners to continue taking advantage of Verizon Media's Smartplay session management technology, and deliver personalized, broadcast-quality streams at scale.

“Our integration with Ad Manager's DAI Pod Serving unlocks value across streaming ecosystems by enabling customers to take advantage of Google's monetization in concert with Verizon Media's personalization, digital rights management and content targeting,” says Scott Goldman, Director, Product Management, Verizon Media Platform.

With this integration, we’re able to further support joint partners like Hearst Television, who use both the Verizon Media Platform for streaming and Ad Manager for ad serving and monetization. Hearst Television can now use Ad Manager to decision their ads for both reservation and programmatic while Verizon Media Platform stitches the ads into their content to provide a high-quality streaming experience to viewers everywhere. 

“The integration between Ad Manager and Verizon Media Platform benefits our business by allowing our streaming and monetization solutions to work together so that we can deliver a high-quality streaming experience while maximizing revenue,” says Michael Rosellini, Vice President, Digital Operations, Hearst Television. 

This integration allows the video ecosystem to work more closely together for the betterment of video streaming and we look forward to integrating with more partners and video platforms in the future. 

More integrations for the future of video streaming

We’ll continue to build more functionalities into DAI Pod Serving, so that we can meet the varying use cases of the evolving video industry. This includes extending DAI Pod Serving to support ad insertion for addressable TV use cases, as well as new iterations of HLS and DASH standards in the future. No matter how you plug into DAI Pod Serving, you’ll have the ability to customize your own video streaming workflow while leveraging Ad Manager for monetization. With added flexibility to integrate with partners’ video streaming solutions, we’ll continue to support more partners and the broader ecosystem. 

Privacy-first web advertising: a measurement update

In January, we shared how Google’s advertising teams have been evaluating the proposals in Chrome’s Privacy Sandbox, an open-source initiative to replace third-party cookies with viable privacy-first alternatives that can support the publishers and advertisers who help keep the web open and accessible.

Today, we’re going to explain how the latest proposals in the Privacy Sandbox can solve for key conversion measurement use cases on the web while preserving privacy – and we’ll also share a new resource to help you learn more about the overall initiative.

Conversion measurement

Chrome’s conversion measurement proposals center around an API that would have the capability to report both event-level and aggregated information. Event-level information is helpful when businesses need data to be more granular, such as deciding how much to bid on impressions or modeling conversions. Aggregated information is important for summarizing campaign performance, like reporting total conversion value or return on investment.

To make sure that the API preserves privacy, and that any data reported can’t be used to track individual people as they move across the web, the API uses one or more of the following techniques:

  • Aggregate the data that is reported so that each person’s browsing activity and identity remain anonymous among a large group of conversions.
  • Limit the amount of information reported about each conversion, so it’s not possible to expose the identity of the person behind the conversion.
  • Add "noise" to the data reported, which protects an individual’s privacy by including some random data along with the actual conversion results.

The Chrome team recently shared new proposals for how the API could apply these privacy considerations while reporting view-through conversions and cross-device conversions:

For view-through conversion measurement, Chrome proposes that advertisers use the event-level capability of the API to get a report on the conversions that happen on their website and are attributed to ad views across the web. The browser would enable this by registering the ad impressions that take place across websites and then matching any conversions that happen on an advertiser’s website back to the initial views. To prevent any conversion data from being used to track people individually, the Chrome API would limit the amount of information shared about each conversion and add noise to the data. 

Then, when advertisers are interested in reporting on the total number of view-through conversions, for a video ad campaign as an example, Chrome proposes that they can use the API’s aggregate reporting capability. This would allow advertisers to get more precise information on key metrics for the overall campaign without compromising people’s privacy. That’s because aggregate reporting keeps people’s identities and their browsing histories anonymous as it only shares data across a large group of conversions.

For cross-device conversion measurement, Chrome proposes that advertisers use the API’s event-level capability to report on the conversions that happen on their website and are attributed to ad views or clicks that happen on another device. This would only be possible if the people converting are signed into their browser across their devices. Access to this capability would enable cross-device measurement for all participating ad providers and networks.

The proposals in the Privacy Sandbox will change how measurement works for digital ads, but are designed to support key measurement use cases while protecting people’s privacy. We’re beginning to run simulations to understand how different use cases might be impacted by the privacy considerations made in Chrome’s various proposals and we look forward to sharing our findings in the near future.


We know that there are many questions about the Privacy Sandbox and that there is broad interest in learning more about each of the proposals. The Chrome team recently built a new website, privacysandbox.com, with an overview of this effort, FAQs, and links to additional resources. We’ll also continue to share regular updates about our work across Google’s ads teams to adopt the Privacy Sandbox technologies for our web advertising and measurement products.

Advancing mobile app inventory quality with app reviews

To help create a clean and safe ads ecosystem for both developers and advertisers, we’re introducing a new app review process across AdMob and Ad Manager. The process will help enhance the mobile app inventory quality for developers who choose to monetize with either platform. Together with initiatives such as support for app-ads.txt and sellers.json, we continue to increase inventory quality and strengthen advertiser trust to create more value for publishers. 

What’s the new app review process?

App review is a new process that evaluates a mobile app’s inventory quality before allowing unrestricted ad serving. In going through the process, publishers will get a unified view of all their apps' approval status with actionable feedback. The feedback will help them resolve issues upfront and lessen the likelihood of future policy violations. App reviews will be rolled out gradually in 2021 with two features: app readiness and app claiming.

AdMob App Review Status

AdMob publishers will see the review status of their apps in one view.

Ad Manager App Review Status

Ad Manager publishers will see the review status of their apps in one view.

App readiness  

With app readiness, publishers will need to link new mobile apps they want to monetize with AdMob or Ad Manager to at least one supported app store. Linking an app will kick off a review process which checks things like the app source, the publisher’s ownership of the app, and compliance with AdMob or Ad Manager policies. These checks help ensure that the apps entering our networks have high inventory quality, and bring value to the users and advertisers. 

We will gradually roll out app readiness to all publisher accounts for AdMob and Ad Manager starting in April 2021.

App claiming

With app claiming, publishers can declare a comprehensive list of their apps’ inventory with the ability to manage and track all apps' review status directly in their AdMob or Ad Manager account. With this feature, publishers will receive suggestions of mobile apps that are being monetized using their publisher ad code, but haven’t been added to their AdMob or Ad Manager account. Publishers can act on suggestions starting in mid-2021, and eventually will be required to add all apps to their account to allow unrestricted ad serving. 

How to prepare for the changes

We recommend publishers complete the app review process by linking mobile apps to supported app stores and claiming their mobile apps to prevent potential interruptions in monetization. If next steps are required from a publisher to complete the process, we'll send timely updates in the publisher’s account, the policy center or via email. 

We're excited about the benefits app review can bring to publishers and advertisers. And we’ll continue to share our efforts in creating a healthy and sustainable ads ecosystem. 

New advanced TV insights from Google Ad Manager

Advanced TV viewership, or the usage of digital technology to watch TV content, continues to accelerate with new direct-to-consumer apps and free ad-supported TV services. To help our partners gain insight into how 2020 impacted advanced TV monetization trends, we're publishing our second annual Google Ad Manager advanced TV inventory report. This data can help you understand how viewers are watching your advanced TV content, what opportunities exist to monetize this content, and where to focus your strategies to grow revenue.

To uncover these insights, we analyzed 35 global advanced TV partners who use Google Ad Manager. This year’s report focuses on 2020 and is a bit different from our 2019 report. We specifically focused on advanced TV partners who have long-form and episodic commercial break inventory to ensure we only analyzed TV-like content. The report analyzes both live and on-demand video (VOD) content, and covers date ranges from Q3 2019 to Q4 2020. 

The report’s four sections tell a story of how last year’s conditions drove transitions that point toward the industry’s future:

COVID-19 recovery

As we all saw, in Q2 at the height of the downturn, advertisers pulled back from most channels including advanced TV. However, we found that one device type’s ad impressions grew even during the depths of Q2 — Connected TV (CTV) remained resilient as viewers streamed more content during this time. Similarly, programmatic was also paramount during this time, declining much less than traditional reservations as it offered both publishers and advertisers increased flexibility.

Viewership insights

In 2020, more ads continued to be viewed on CTVs than any other device globally, but the environments where people are watching are changing. For example, in-app impressions showed significant gains in 2020 as more people moved towards over-the-top (OTT) streaming apps and adopted CTV devices. 

Transaction trends

Traditional reservations still led in 2020, but programmatic transactions grew faster, as advanced TV partners leaped at the opportunity to grow demand, improve efficiency and diversify their demand sources.

Livestreaming performance

When the pandemic first hit, all live events froze. But as live sports started returning around midyear, advanced TV was there to serve fans who couldn’t attend in person, and live impressions grew much faster than VOD — mostly on (yes, you guessed it) those big CTV screens.  

Advanced TV viewership, CTV devices, in-app impressions, programmatic deal types and live events were the lead stories for advanced TV monetization trends this past year. If you’re interested in a deeper dive, our 2020 Advanced TV Inventory Report takes a closer look at these insights, and what they suggest for the future.