What is Ad Server?
An ad server is a computer server, (a web server) that stores advertisements used in online marketing and delivers them to websites. The content of the web server is constantly updated so that the website or webpage on which the ads are displayed contains new advertisements (banners, static images/animations or text) when the site or page is visited or refreshed by a user.
The ad server also performs other tasks like counting the number of impressions/clicks for an ad campaign and report generation, which helps in determining the ROI for an advertiser on a particular website.
There are two types of ad servers, local ad servers and third-party or remote ad servers.
Local ad servers are generally run by a single publisher and serve ads to that publisher's domains.
Remote ad servers can serve ads across domains owned by multiple publishers. They deliver the ads from one central source so that advertisers and publishers can track the distribution of their online advertisements, and have one location for controlling the rotation and distribution of their advertisements across the web.
What are the typical functions of an Ad Server? (Dependant on the Ad Server Company)
• Uploading of advertisements and rich media.
• Trafficking ads. (This process normally involves the creation and strategic placement of banner ads and similar tools on specific web sites. Generally the electronic ads are clickable, meaning that consumers who are interested can click on the banner or text ad, and be redirected to a website where it is possible to make a purchase or obtain more information. This type of ad trafficking can also involve the use of pop-up ads that appear when consumers visit specific websites in search of related information)
• Targeting ads. (This is a type of advertising where advertisements are placed so to reach consumers based on various traits such as demographics, purchase history, or observed behavior)
• Tuning and optimisation based on results.
• Reporting impressions, clicks, post-click & post-impression activities, and interaction metrics.
• Targeting specific IP-addresses i.e. targeting specific individuals or companies.
• Frequency capping so users only see messages a limited amount of time. (Advertisers can also limit ads by setting a frequency cap on money-spending)
• Sequencing ads so users see them in a specific order.
• Excluding competition so users do not see competitors' ads directly next to one another.
• Displaying ads so an advertiser can own 100% of the inventory on a page.
What are the benefits of an Ad Server?
Some of the many benefits are;
• Increase your company’s profits.
• Save time. No more fixed ads and no more manual changes to your webpages.
• Targeting ads. You can show the right ads to the right viewers.
Imagine also using this on your online Digital Publication, it is the future of online advertising, what are you waiting for?
Mandie can be found at www.emaginepublishing.com