How to stand out in the Programmatic Market [3 tips for more ad revenue included]

Last updated: January 18, 2023 | by Kean Graham

This post was most recently updated on January 18th, 2023

Over the years, MonetizeMore has seen more and more publishers leveraging the power of the programmatic market after seeing this as a massive opportunity to make more money. Furthermore, their top concerns always included the difficulty of overseeing budget optimizations and creations served through the direct sales channel, as well as the risk of the value of their ad inventory diminishing.

Programmatic comes as an all-in-one platform for publishers to reach out to thousands of brands and advertisers around the world. However, this doesn’t confirm that each brand will spend top dollar for ad space during real-time bidding. Publishers can expect a decent range of average-sized campaigns. Nevertheless, as a result of this scale, ad revenue is sure to increase by taking part in the programmatic market.

pgu cta

Leveraging the value of ad inventory

Occasionally, rumors of a Publisher earning a fortune without setting a floor price, i.e. a price below which advertisements will not be sold, resurfaces in the adtech ecosystem. In general, we advise against this course of action, even though each case needs to be considered on its own merits with all reports accessible.

In addition to floor prices, which are viewed by users right alongside the publisher’s content, floor prices are among the best tools for assessing the quality of an impression. We do advise against displaying clickbait ads and misleading messages that may be inappropriate for your audience. The truth may be somewhere in the middle, but there is also an economic component to keep in mind – the least attractive impressions result in the worst yield. It’s important to dispel the rumor that Programmatic offers low CPM bids only.

Once you sign up for a programmatic model, it is usually launched as a monetization platform for unsold ad impressions in another model at the end of that trail. Its priority is quite low on AdServers, so it will only reach the Programmatic market if it is unused by Direct Campaigns. While this is a good start, ultimately Publishers should be able to access all inventory through programmatic, which will result in high CPM rates for them. In the publishers’ programmatic marketplace, advertising impressions are sold in header bidding auctions, where the advertiser that pays the most wins.

If the ad space is bad in quality (for example, due to low viewability ads or low click-through rates), high CPM rates for that ad inventory will not be set – however, this should only influence Publishers to improve the quality of that ad inventory. Increasing the floor price or minimum price decreases the number of impressions, but improves the rates that are actually achieved. The ideal point for making money in the programmatic market stands somewhere in the middle. It may sometimes fall below the ad-quality pricing level and could be zero for a time.

As the market changes, the sweet spot changes as well, which we see throughout the quarters Q1, Q2, Q3, Q4, and the impact of events (holidays, politics, etc) on demand for filling up that ad space.


How can Publishers benefit from the Programmatic Market?

Here are 5 ways publishers can benefit from the programmatic market:

  • Programmatic Efficiency: Unlike an open auction, it’s not quite as simple as plugging it in, but it’s still fully automated within DSPs and SSPs, so it’s less work compared to direct sales.
  • Stronger relationships with brands: You will be able to find out who is buying your inventory and can give them better deals and added benefits.
  • Better CPMs: High-performing, premium inventory is in high demand among top advertisers, as brand safety and other quality issues such as viewability continue to rise, meaning more competition & higher prices for your impressions.
  • Transparency: Advertisers are better positioned to share first-party data than they would on the open market.
  • Direct sales are no longer necessary: The programmatic market can make up a pricey sales team with their cutting-edge automated ad technology.

Relying on external AdOps partners to monitor your competitor’s CPMs

As a Publisher, it is equally important to spy on what is happening with your competitors for constant improvement. Although this may take up a lot of time, the solution is to leverage external platforms like adtech companies to track your competitors’ CPMs and who offer premium header bidding services.

Programmatic agencies are always striving to signal to Publishers that they can buy impressions at a lower price compared to their competitors. However, is this plan worth investing in? Of course! Since the floor prices and the main tools offered by programmatic AdOps partners will always impact the value of ad space being sold directly. This is why it is mandatory to ensure that the price list rates are the latest and that they conform to programmatic market trends.

If on the Open Market Programmatic Market, brands can pay three times less for equally high-quality inventory (ads that generate a similar number of clicks or conversions on the advertiser’s landing page) then it is difficult to convince them to buy directly from the Publisher at an X CPM rate). The worst thing about this is that publishers don’t get a decent ROI in this case when they are also bearing the cost of header bidding technology and partnering with ad networks without experience.

Because of this, Direct Campaigns should have comparable prices and priorities to their Programmatic counterparts. The same applies to Open Market deals as well as all Programmatic deals (preferential contracts, private marketplace auctions), which are of higher priority.


How to optimize your ad inventory to boost programmatic ad sales?

Publishers can certainly benefit from tools that help with invalid traffic detection and mitigation, viewability, brand safety, etc. They may need to exert more control over their ad inventory in order to stand out in the programmatic market while maintaining transparency with the advertisers.

Here’s a closer look at how publishers can maximize their ad space and drive more programmatic ad sales in the publishers marketplace which is getting more competitive than ever.

Here’s how you can maximize your programmatic ad sales:

1. Remove the trivial few from the priority metrics so they:

  • Matter specifically to a certain timeline or goal.
  • Can be tested & automated with ad technology.
  • Identify bottlenecks while accomplishing strategic goals or milestones.

2. Double or triple ad revenue by optimizing ad inventory per session

  • Adding cool graphics, videos, surveys, or comments to increase content per story (for longer session times).
  • Develop alternative content layouts and be sure to prioritize large ad formats that can garner a higher cost per thousand impressions (CPMs).
  • Test out new user interface (UI) elements that can lead to a higher level of engagement; new UIs and interactions may encourage a visitor to stay longer

3. For more ad sales

  • Maximize ad revenue by using fill rates (% of ad inventory sold) and eCPMs (effective revenue per thousand ad impressions).
  • Using ad networks like PubMatic to promote remaining ad inventory.
  • Using industry-standard header bidding technology like Pubguru to make ad space available to buyers globally through multiple ad networks & get paid better for your inventory.


An important aspect of bid optimization is regular and proactive scrutiny as well as constant adjustments to the present situation or automating the whole process by leaving it to reliable AdOps partners that have helped thousands of publishers like you scale their ad revenue.

MonetizeMore’s PubGuru platform provides all of the tools you need to take your header bidding strategy to the next level and maximize your ad revenue. With our help, you can skyrocket your earnings and keep up with the latest trends in programmatic advertising.

Contact us today to learn more about how we can help you grow your business!


Ad Ops Tips & Guides, Industry News, Latest Tech and Success Stories - right in your inbox.

We are committed to protecting you Privacy Data

Here’s the course that 300+ pubs used to scale their ad revenue.

Enroll today

Book Banner

"Working with MonetizeMore has been a transformative experience as they helped to increase my overall revenues by over 180%"



Paid to Publishers


Ad Requests Monthly


Happy Publishers

Recommended Reading

September 21, 2023

Examining Apple’s Growing Ad Ecosystem: The Evolution to a Full-Scale Ad Tech Stack

Read More
Ad Optimization
September 19, 2023


Read More
September 18, 2023

Google MCM (Multiple Customer Management) Guide [2023]

Read More

Trusted by 1,500+ publishers worldwide

10X your ad revenue with our award-winning solutions.

Let's Talk


Ready to 10X your ad revenue with the #1 ad management partner?

Start Now