Header Bidding

How Does Server-Side Header Bidding Work?

sovrnmarketing // January 13, 2017

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In the space of two years, header bidding has gone from a virtual unknown to an industry standard. According to Business Insider, nearly 70% of digital publishers are using header bidding.

However, until now publishers have utilized browser-side header bidding solutions, which can potentially contribute to ad-load and page-load latency.

Why browser-side header bidding causes latency

With browser or “client-side” header bidding, auctions are run and ads are called to the web page directly via multiple javascript operations. So many processes occurring can increase page load time.

This means that the more advertisers you have competing in your on-page header auction, the slower the ads load which can lead to overall slow loading pages and a bad user experience.

Server-side header bidding – Header Bidding 2.0

But publishers now have another option: off-page or server-side header bidding. Server-side header bidding is faster than browser-side because it allows the auction process to occur outside of the publisher’s web page and consolidates the ad calls.

How does it work?

Advertisers bid on inventory ahead of the ad server within an externally hosted auction, that calls ad inventory via a consolidated call process to the page. Page latency is greatly reduced.

But who hosts the header bidding server solution?

With server-side header bidding, the publisher chooses a server-side bidding technology partner to implement and host the solution. A few SSPs and Exchanges are working on these solutions already like Sovrn, Index. Google’s Exchange Bidding for Dynamic Allocation solution will also provide the performance benefits of server-side bidding.

Sovrn is currently beta testing it’s own server-side header bidding solution with select publishers. If you’re interested in beta-testing our server-side header bidding solution, contact us here.

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