A lot can happen between fetching an ad and actually displaying it to the intended audience. Even after the ad impression is served, factors like ad size, browser window size or various other site elements can affect the visibility of the ad. The viewers may scroll through the ad without actually paying much attention. Add to it the increasing uncertainty over the impression quality i.e. verifying whether the impression was a fraudulent, invalid or fake ad impression. What if a user clicked away from the webpage page even before the ad was loaded? What about bots or proxy servers being used to open pages, instead of human beings? How can advertisers be sure that their ad was, in fact, viewed by a valid person?
Further, the KPIs for various branding activities is calculated on a CPM and on the number of valid impressions. This is directly linked to the viewability of the ad. If the ad was not “viewed” in spite of being loaded or served, then the branding objectives won’t be met.
That’s where ad viewability comes into the picture. Ad viewability has become an important metric. It is the measure of how viewable the ads are. As per IAB’s viewability standard, a banner ad is “viewed” if at least 50% of the banner or creative must display on screen for at least one second, whereas for a video ad, at least for two seconds. As per recent studies, 68% of video ads shown on any site or platform are viewable, while only half of all display ad impressions have a chance to be seen.
So here are three ways in which advertisers can create more viewable ads:
Optimize for mobile
One of the main factors that affects the viewability rates of ads is the type of device on which they are viewed. Viewability for video ads as well as for display ads is significantly higher on mobile and tablet than it is on desktop.
Ad size and ratio matter
The ad sizes matter. The bigger the unit, the better is the viewability. Large video players have significantly higher viewability, and vertical video units have above average viewability as well.
Above The Fold / Below The Fold
There’s no denying the fact that Above The Fold (ATF) ads are more likely to be seen. However, one cannot ignore the viewability numbers for Below The Fold (BTF) ads. In fact, 45% of video ads below the fold are viewable. That’s a good chunk of viewable inventory. What’s more? It is likely available for lower CPMs too.
With the performance of digital ads going down, it matters whether the ad was actually viewed by a valid person. Viewability certainly plays an important role in deciding how well the campaigns accomplish their KPIs like brand awareness and brand recall.