Tools & Tech

How to Start Earning with Exchange Bidding

Sovrn Publisher Advocate // February 20, 2019

Adding Google Exchange Bidding to your advertising strategy can be a smart way to see an immediate boost to your revenue. We were early partners during Google’s Exchange Bidding (EB) beta tests, and we continue to be strong EB and EB video performers. Exchange Bidding is a powerful part of a holistic site monetization strategy, and it’s simple to get started. In order to get you on your way to higher revenue, we’ve put together a checklist to help you start earning with Exchange Bidding.

If you’re already using Exchange Bidding, adding Sovrn to your demand stack is a quick, easy way to drive up competition and increase revenue. There’s no risk to your site, and you’ll be connected to one of the cleanest exchanges on the web.

Before you begin:
  1. First, make sure you have an existing Google Ad Exchange account. You’ll need it to use Exchange Bidding.
  2. Make sure you’ve got all of your intended Yield Partners set up as Companies in your Google Ad Manager network. You’ll want to use ‘Ad Networks’ as the Company type.
  3. Check with your Google Account Manager to ensure that there is nothing on that end to prevent proper EB set up. Any recent or ongoing traffic- or site quality-related flags, or notification-related issues from Google may cause issues.
Setting up Exchange Bidding Yield Groups and Yield Partners:
  1. A Yield Group is only as effective as the Yield Partners that are competing for the inventory within that group. Make sure that you know which inventory parameters are most likely to get the highest performance from your different Yield Partners. These can include specific ad unit inventory, size, and/or geo targeting.
  2. Understand these parameters. They’ll help you better combine different Yield Partners in Yield Groups configured with those Yield Partners’ optimal, high-level targeting settings.
  3. If you get an error notification saying that “The exchange is not accepting requests for ads from your Ad Manager network. Contact them regarding their Pretargeting?” while adding a Yield Partner to a Yield Group, you’ll want to check your setup with that specific Yield Partner. Again, make sure that you don’t have any pending traffic or ad quality issues with your Google Seller, Ad Manager, or AdEx accounts.
Optimizing Exchange Bidding
  1. Exchange Bidding optimization consists largely of A/B testing different Yield Group settings and Yield Partner combinations within one or more Yield Groups. Experiment with different integrations and identify what works best with your strategy and your revenue goals.
    1. For example, if you have 8 available Yield Partners, try testing a few of them in a specific Yield Group targeted to only US or Mobile traffic. Another Yield Group might contain a different set of Yield Partners targeting international Desktop or your BTF Ad Unit inventory only. These settings can—and should—be monitored and adjusted regularly, so that you’re reacting quickly and maximizing your Exchange Bidding earnings.
  2. Note that you cannot set price floors for 3rd party Exchanges or Yield Partners in Google EB. Ad Manager will pass a dynamic price floor calculation for inventory included in your EB Yield Group. You’ll want to reach out to your Yield Partners directly for any additional floor price controls that they may offer for their EB bidding.

Finally, Exchange Bidding should be looked at as a part of an overall site inventory monetization strategy. Simply sending ad requests for the same inventory via multiple channels may not equate to long-term success if done in a vacuum. Rather, recognizing and managing what channels and what partner combinations within channels perform best is the ideal way to ensure ongoing success—and more revenue to put back into your business.

If you’re struggling, we can help.

We know that it can be hard to focus on your strengths while you’re running your business and optimizing your ad operations. That’s especially true while trying to harness new, powerful tools like Google Exchange Bidding. If you’re finding it hard to balance content creation with business, or if you need help improving your advertising strategy, Sovrn Services can help. We offer consulting, training, and full ad stack management. We’ll boost your revenue, the value of your inventory, and the time you have to do what you love.

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