Does CPM scale with increased viewability?

Ad Optimization
November 7, 2019 | by Kean Graham
Does CPM scale with increased viewability

One of the most common things a publisher usually notices when they first start monetizing their site is that placements located in areas where users tend to spend time or are in highly viewable locations on a page, tend to generate more ad revenue.

These placements are coined as being “ATF” or “Above The Fold” and usually hold premium rates as they are the placements that are sought after by advertisers. After all, who wants to spend money on advertising when the audience won’t be able to even view their ads?

So, what impact does viewability have? Google shared, based on internal data, that ads viewable for at least one second have, on average, 70-93% higher click through rates and 70-88% greater chance at conversion.

That’s a single second of being viewable to the audience!

This is why it’s no surprise that advertisers usually pay higher eCPM rates for high viewability units. On average, it means an extra $0.10-0.15 eCPM for a single unit.

It doesn’t mean that you have to focus on ATF units only.  Viewability takes into account the user’s behavior and doesn’t factor in the placement location alone. If you have content that tends to draw a lot of attention and screen time, even “BTF” or “Below The Fold” units can bring in high rates as they will have high viewability due to the audience spending more time around them.

It is undeniable that there is a direct correlation with the time the audience spends on a page and around a specific location on that page. The longer they have the ad on the screen, the more it’s viewability % will increase, thus increasing its eCPM rate as an effect.

With advertisers slowly changing their strategy to bid more on “Viewable” placements, this is a metric that publishers should prioritize and learn it’s worth early on. According to research conducted by ComScore, 31% of all display impressions aren’t even viewed, which is effectively advertising budgets going to waste. A publisher that learns to focus his site content and ad unit placements around high viewability areas will undoubtedly earn more ad revenue rather than randomly placing multiple ad units around his site.

Of course, Viewability is but one of many metrics a publisher must consider to come up with a solid and effective monetization plan. The sooner a publisher can understand and learn this, the more effectively he/she will be able to make the most of his site’s traffic. This relationship between Viewability and ad revenue is apparent, so it is an aspect that publishers should start to prioritize to increase the value of their site inventory.


As mentioned, viewability is just one of the many metrics and areas a publisher should focus on in their ad optimization efforts. Not sure how to maximize viewability of your ads for your particular set up? Let our ad ops experts craft the perfect ad layout for you and implement ad optimization techniques to increase your ad revenue! Sign up to MonetizeMore now to get started!

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