This post was most recently updated on May 30th, 2022
In its early days, ad refreshing was misused. Greedy publishers saw it as a “get-rich-quick” strategy, and it fell into a “graveyard” of disreputable practices.
All of that is changing now. Given newer technology and especially improved measurement of views, the industry is on the move again with a fresh face and great opportunities for both publishers and brands.
What’s more, in this era of ad blocking, third-party cookie blocking, and ever-increasing privacy regulations, advertisers cannot simply and easily intrude on the digital wanderings of a consumer.
All of these things create a great environment for ad refreshing if it is done right.
The question becomes this: Is ad refreshing important and beneficial to you as a publisher?
Let’s unpack the key points of this strategy, so you may decide for yourself.
If you are a publisher with an ad inventory, then you understand the basics. You are selling ad space to brands and tracking the clicks they receive so that you then receive payment. It’s a simple strategy, really.
What ad refresh adds to this is the ability of the publisher to switch out sets of ads based upon certain triggers – user behavior (e.g., clicking, scrolling, or searching) or on a set time frame (so many seconds, usually 30, 60, or 90 between refreshes).
But again, it must be done right, so that it benefits the publisher (with greater revenue), the brand (with enough viewability and click-throughs), and the user (with value-added offerings).
There’s a bit more than just getting that ad inventory and then using the triggers to change out those ads.
Publishers should consider using another metric for looking at the growth of revenue, such as the earnings per thousand visitors, rather than clicks per thousand.
Because each publishing site is different, and because the average time spent on a page may differ, the only method for finding the ideal time trigger is to test regularly and often.
Audiences change. And if you have multiple websites, ideal trigger rates will differ.
The bottom line is: test, test, and re-test
The answer is yes, provided you have two things in place:
Ad refresh can be an easy and effective revenue growth strategy if it keeps both your advertisers and viewers happy and coming back for more.
That will happen so long as you have stunning websites and the right partner to handle all of the details.
Here’s the course that 300+ pubs used to scale their ad revenue.