Roadblocking in GOOGLE AD MANAGER

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Last updated: August 10, 2023 | by aleesha

This post was most recently updated on August 10th, 2023

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In this particular lesson, we’re going to show you how to roadblock. The objective of this lesson is to help you manage creatives in a well-balanced way through roadblocking.

Roadblocking allows you to block all the ad slots on a webpage and to grant priority to all of those slots to a particular advertiser.  An advertiser may want to do this so that if his creative wins an impression on a web page he also wins control over the remaining ad slots and effectively blocks out other advertisers.  This is set up from inside the line item settings.

Are you ready to learn this new technique?  Allow us to teach you now.

Before you start, decide if you want to serve guaranteed or non-guaranteed roadblocks. In most cases, you’ll want guaranteed, which means that Google Ad Manager guarantees that all creatives in the line item will be served together (if one is not eligible to serve, none will show). Non-guaranteed will show creatives as many as possible from the line item and will give the priority of the other, but does not guarantee they will all be served. 

If you want to serve guaranteed roadblocks, make sure that single-request mode is enabled in the tag. We recommend using asynchronous rendering with single-request mode enabled. This combination offers the best page load experience as well as guaranteed roadblocks. 

You must activate guaranteed roadblocks in the Features section of the Admin tab before they will work. To do this: 

1) Click Admin in Ad Manager.

2) Select ‘Global settings’, and ‘Features’, as shown below.

3) And finally, turn on the switch for Guaranteed roadblocks.



Get more information on Ad Manager here:

How to set up a roadblock line item

1) Create a new line item or edit an existing line item and go to the ‘Adjust delivery’ section in the Settings tab.



2) Choose ‘As many as possible or ‘All’. If you choose ‘All’, this will give you a guaranteed roadblock (but only if you’ve used single-request mode and enabled guaranteed roadblocks, as shown above).

If you use ‘As many as possible’, Ad Manager will prioritize delivery of as many creatives in the line item as possible (to the exclusion of remnant ad networks), but it will still serve other creatives if none from the roadblocking line item is eligible.

How to set up a line item with master/companion roadblocks

1) Create a new line item inside an order in Ad Manager.

2) Select the sizes you would like to run as roadblocks in the Sizes section.

3) Enter master and companion sizes for creative sets. You’ll add the actual creatives to your creative sets in Step 6. Keep in mind that you can add more than one set of creatives for each group of sizes.

4) Choose how to display companions:

  • Optional: Master creatives can be served even if no companion creatives are served alongside them. Where it’s possible to serve companion creatives, Ad Manager will give priority to companion creatives over creatives from other creative sets or line items.
  • At least one: A master creative will only be served if at least one companion creative can be served alongside it.
  • All: Only complete master/companion creative sets will be served.

5) Optional: Master creatives can be served even if no companion creatives are served alongside them. Where it’s possible to serve companion creatives, Ad Manager will give priority to companion creatives over creatives from other creative sets or line items.

6) Click Save and Upload creative set. If you have multiple creative set size groups, choose one. Upload master and companion creatives, then click Save. You can add existing creatives or upload new ones as you normally would.


  • If you choose All and you have 2 sizes identified above in the sizes field, then you have to upload the creatives for both sizes.
  • For example, if your master size is 468×60 and your companion sizes are 300×250 and 728×90, you can upload just a 468×60 creative. The creative set can still be delivered, even if you’ve set delivery to All. If you’ve set delivery to At least one, you need at least one companion creative.

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