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Tips to maintain ad revenue for publishers during the pandemic

The global pandemic of 2020 brings many changes, both suddenly and dramatically. Things that you know pre-crisis may now be out of date so it is a good time to take a fresh look. Many publishers are experiencing a surge in online traffic because we are all under a global lockdown and people are actively surfing the Internet. For people involved in online advertising, we are trying to be careful with the pandemic's impact on our safety and health. At the same time, we have to worry about the consequences of the lockdown to our businesses. Ad revenue is not increasing as quickly because advertisers are watching their ad spending carefully and many advertisers with a big drop in revenue are forced to cut back on advertising. Therefore, it is important to measure its impact via your ad server and also know what you can do to protect ad revenue going forward.

The more advertisers and demand partners that you have, the better. The reason is that the pandemic affects different advertisers differently. Some sponsors might cut back their advertising budget while others increase their spending. At the same time, you create competition and a supporting floor rate for your ad inventory with multiple advertisers. Diversification and risk reduction also come from supporting and offering multiple ad dimensions and a wide variety of ad formats like display, video, mobile, native ads on your sites. With more ad types offered, your site can be more attractive to more advertisers and is better to adapt to the rapid changes of the online advertising environment.

Traffic quality
As ad budget tightens up, advertisers might be looking for quality over quantity. Advertisers will have more time to look over the ad metric reports and traffic reports to see if they get a good ROI on their ad spending. That is a good news for publishers who have a loyal audience and high quality content. Therefore, it is important to root out the bad traffic sources and present a clean ad report. That builds confidence with advertisers when the time to renew campaigns comes.

Ad refresh
If you have a site or app with highly engaged users, they often stay for a long time on individual pages. That is a good news if you need to increase your overall ad inventory and ultimately, ad revenue. You can enable automatic ad refresh functionality, which displays a new ad after a number of seconds. It is important to consider a reasonable auto-refresh rate and viewability. You do not want to explain unexpected numbers to advertisers or have ad contracts cancelled because you generate too many non-viewable impressions.

Ad viewability and ad placement
It is easy to overlook but everything eventually comes back to the basics, which include the ad placement. Advertisers will be more picky about ad placement and viewability as they want real results and not just some numbers. That is why it is useful to consider ad-placement level optimizations. Make sure you measure the effectiveness of your ad placements using all available ad metrics including impressions, clicks, viewability rates, and click-through ratios. Identify those placements that underperform or yield unexpected results. Make a plan to change and improve those issues. Implement and test new changes. Do not forget to allow some time for the new changes to work their way into the reports before re-evaluation.

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