Google Ad Manager (ex DFP) is a state-of-the-art advertising technology run by Google. The platform allows delivering and managing ads on different websites, mobile apps, games, etc.

"I already use a similar platform. Why should I choose DFP?" Many of you may probably ask such a question now. In this article we will analyze the key advantages of the platform and try to understand why it will make your ad more efficient and the process of ad creation easier and more enjoyable.

The key advantages of Google Ad Manager:

  • Free of charge (surely there are some limits in Google Ad Manager after exceeding of which you will have to pay. But we can assure you from our own experience that it is really difficult to reach the limits, so in most cases you will not have to pay);
  • Reliable due to Google's infrastructure;
  • Handy and easy-to-use;
  • Allows previewing ads and giving clients an access to ad campaigns;
  • Forecasting and easy control of an ad campaign;
  • Operates correctly with counters of other platforms;
  • In case of mobile apps, Google Ad Manager employs the Google Mobile Ads SDK to ensure communication between the apps and ad servers.
  • Google Ad Manager Creatives;
  • Allows setting automatic ad delivery and searching for the best zone for placing an ad;
  • Detailed reports on active and completed campaigns.

Handiness and ease-of-use

The platform allows a centralized work with your ad, that is, from a single administrator account, which enables you to deliver different ads simultaneously on several websites. The platform interface is user-friendly, employs a clear terminology and a set of libraries, as well gives the possibility to fill them autonomously.

A Google Ad Manager user is usually a single person associated with a Google account and an email address. If users of your network are divided into teams, you can use additional access parameters.

The platform allows you to work with ad units. Ad units are places (containers) on a website where ads are actually showed. Ad tags (snippets of JavaScript and HTML code) are generated for each container. The code should be inserted into a website or mobile app on which an ad campaign is targeted. The tags connect the ad with the ad unit where it will be placed.

This technology is great, as in case you need to change an ad unit when the campaign is already launched, you should deal only with a specific code. You do not need to change the website source code.

Client Access

DFP also provides the possibility of "guest access". That is, you can give an advertiser the right to preview the finished product. Thus, you will be able to take into account all the wishes of your client and the finished product will satisfy all the parties.

Forecasting in Google Ad Manager

One of the key features of DFP is forecasting. That is, you will be able predict whether there is enough inventory to launch the campaign, before your ad will be even showed to a client. Taking into account the results of the forecast, you will choose such ad units, the time and the number of their delivery which allow achieving the best results.

Forecasting allows you to find out immediately whether your ad campaign achieve the aim by the number of impressions and whether it will affect other campaigns by analyzing ad units placed on your website.

In addition, other ad campaigns are also taken into consideration. For example, campaigns having the same goal and risks that your future campaign may lose some impressions.

The feature allows you to change the parameters of the forecast and predict the maximum efficiency of an ad.

You can review not only future campaigns, but also current ones - for example, assess their efficiency for several months ahead. You also have the possibility to predict the number of impressions according to necessary settings even for a year ahead.

Work with counters of other platforms 

Ad campaigns are often set up with counters of other platforms that count the number of impressions. For example, it might be counters of AdRiver, Gemius, InMind, etc. When we used OpenX, the difference between its meter readings and meter readings of counters of other platforms was striking. For example, Gemius showed 100,000 impressions and OpenX - 150,000 (that is, one-third higher) for the same ad campaign. Therefore it was virtually impossible to calculate the exact number of impressions.

There is no such problem in Google Ad Manager. The difference in the number of impressions is up to 10% and this is a permissible error in online advertising. Working with counters of other platforms and taking into account a calculating error, we are able to understand exactly whether we can deliver the required number of impressions.

Ad delivery on mobile version of a website

All similar platforms also offer delivering ads to mobile version of a website and mobile apps.

The decisive difference is that the Google Mobile Ads SDK is used in mobile apps to establish connection between apps and DFP ad server. That means you do not have to spend a lot of resources or apply lots of efforts on integration. In case of other platforms, you should spend a lot of time in order that ads showed correctly both in desktop and mobile versions of a website, as well as in a mobile app.

It is worth noting that today the share of mobile traffic constantly increases, therefore to ignore it means to lose profit. Google Ad Manager also allows analyzing users' behavior in the mobile version of a website and determine the most attractive zones for placing your ad.

Google Ad Manager Creatives

Creatives are an image, video, audio or other content visible for a user. The aim of creatives is to make your ad interactive and attractive to a user. And, of course, creatives are also one of the advantages of Google Ad Manager. 

There are a certain number of creative templates. But you can surely create your own template and get a unique creative needed to achieve your goal. Such unconventional solutions can significantly increase the effectiveness of your ad campaign.

Automatic ad delivery settings

Have you ever cooperated with clients who do not fully understand what their ad should look like? For example, you offer several ad campaigns with several types of creatives, but a client can not make a decision. Then you can choose a creative which is more attractive to the end user. This metric is measured by CTR. The higher the CTR of a certain creative, the more users will respond to it.

Google Ad Manager allows you to automatically set up your ad campaign to show creatives with better CTR which certainly ensure you the best results.

Google Ad Manager reporting

Reports allow you to view information about active and completed ad campaigns. The main goal of Google Ad Manager reports is to measure effectiveness and adjust future ad campaigns to make them even more effective. Reports are generated in real time, so you will always have the latest information.

Reports can be generated according to different parameters, for example, by days, creatives, formats, etc. You can also set up generation of automatic reports that will be delivered to your email at a specified time.

Managing ads with Google Ad Manager

The platform is flexible in terms of traffic management and targeting settings. You only select the types of targeting, for example, location. Thus, ads informing about opening a store in your city will only be seen by people who live in the city.

You can set up not only where to show your ad, but also the number of times it has to be shown. Google Ad Manager will count every time a user sees the ad. If a user clicks on your ad, DFP registers the click. You can stretch out the demonstration of your ad, for example, to show the ad to a user three times a day during the month or ten times a week. The decision on these parameters is only up to you.

Alternatives to Google Ad Manager

Online ads untie hands and allows to experiment! This is a great way to visually stimulate the audience and avoid becoming a victim of ad "blindness". In addition, online ads can significantly save your money due to narrow targeting on a separate platform.

Of course there are many alternatives to Google Ad Manager. You can choose any platform depending on your requirements. Each of the platforms has its own usage peculiarities and is inferior to Google Ad Manager in some cases, first of all, in forecasting and user-friendly interface. Not all platforms are so intelligible and logical that can affect the speed of the work.

Let’s take a look at OpenX and AdRiver and compare their advantages and disadvantages.

OpenX - the basic free version of a platform implements all main features for managing ads delivery on the Internet. Due to its modular architecture, OpenX provides virtually unlimited capabilities for widening and modification taking into account different requirements. In fact, the platform allows you to evaluate the effectiveness of your ad campaign in real time.

Before Google Ad Manager we used AdRiver. Of course, changing one platform to another was not an easy thing. It takes time to adapt and write an own library. However, the interface and terminology of Google Ad Manager were worth the effort, as the platform significantly simplified the process of managing ads and increased theirs effectiveness.

OpenX and AdRiver do not support integration with mobile devices therefore you will have to buy extra modules. Google Ad Manager does not have such problems. Talking about integration, it is worth noting that the Google platform is compatible virtually with all video players. This makes the work with video ads easier.

Another advantage of Google Ad Manager over other platforms is the possibility of checking a link for suspicious activity. That is, if a website on which an ad directs a user groundlessly asks user data, for example, a credit card number, the platform will block such an ad. This significantly increases the level of trust both in Google Ad Manager and your website.

We can confidently conclude from our own experience that platforms we used before choosing Google Ad Manager did not give an opportunity to control the entire ad campaign. No one felt calm – neither our managers nor clients.

Should you choose Google Ad Manager?

Maybe Google Ad Manager is not fit you ... as yet and you use a similar platform. But you should consider using Google Ad Manager in the future. Online advertising becomes more and more important tool for business development therefore you should be able to deal with it today.