TripAdvisor ushered in a big change to their display ad placement platform last week that could have repercussions well beyond the travel industry. In a proactive response to ad industry initiatives to move from a “served” to a “viewable” impression metric, the company announced last week that it launched “Delayed Ad Call”.
Advertisers will be charged for an impression only when a user scrolls to the area of the page where the ad is shown.
TripAdvisor’s VP Global Display Sales, Martin Verdon-Roe told Nick Vivion at Tnooz.com
It means that not only are our ads more trustworthy but the performance for the clients has also improved. CTR is up and we have also implemented a tracking technology for “viewability” and that is [now] showing that the ads below the fold are now just as valuable as those above. In fact the ones below are now producing a stronger viewability metric compared to the 728×90 which is at the top of the page.
This then leads us down new avenues and opportunities. E.g. can we find areas below the fold with high user dwell time. We can put advertising placements there in the confidence that we will get great user exposures but only when the users actually get there. This helps the advertisers performance and allows the sales team to find new impressions on TA that otherwise would have been unsellable.
The Move Toward Viewability
In its press release announcing Delayed Ad Call, TripAdvisor cited studies by AdSafe Media and ComScore that showed a high percentage of online display ads are never seen by users. The push toward the viewability standard is part of an effort larger effort to improve standards and trust in the display ad marketplace that is being led by a consortium of advertisers, publishers and trade groups called Making Measurement Make Sense. You can see a timeline of their efforts here. TripAdvisor is the first travel industry site to adopt the viewability standard.
We reported last month that Chartbeat is testing a new “engaged time metric” and has found that visitors spend more engaged time with content below the fold than above it. TripAdvisor’s findings feed right into what Chartbeat believes its own data is showing: below-the-fold placements have higher value than we previously thought and there will likely be new below-the-fold opportunities for publishers and advertisers because of these findings.