Google’s new Ad Manager (currently in a limited beta) is a free ad serving platform directed toward small and medium-sized publishers that don’t need a complex, customizable solution such as DoubleClick’s DART platform (which Google just acquired). It’s a product for the broad, middle market intended to bring both greater simplicity but also more control to smaller publishers. It can also be used in combination with other ad serving platforms because Google isn’t asking for exclusivity.
Google says that in creating the new platform, it was responding to a market need and explicit feedback from publishers. Here’s how Google officially describes Ad Manager: Directed at addressing the ad management and serving needs of publishers with small to medium-sized sales teams, Google Ad Manager is a free, hosted ad and inventory management tool that can help publishers sell, schedule, deliver and measure their directly-sold and network-based ad inventory. Google Ad Manager provides an intuitive and simple user experience with an easy tagging process so publishers can spend more time working with their advertisers and less time on their ad management solution. And, Ad Manager helps publishers maximize their inventory sell-through rates by providing detailed inventory forecasts and tracking at a very granular level.
According to Google, the chief benefits for publishers are:
- A highly intuitive interface and simplified tools for publishers
- Improved ad inventory management and yield optimization
- Forecasting (how many impressions are available)
Forecasts are provided after the system has been in place for a period of time and is able to collect data on traffic and impressions
One of the benefits for Google is that Ad Manager makes it easier to integrate AdSense throughout a publisher’s website. It allows all the varieties of AdSense to be served into any of the ad units on a publisher website. And the system will compare, in real time, which ad network or bid will deliver the best CPM for the publisher. It potentially brings AdSense (as well as other ads) more directly into competition for each potential ad unit on a publisher’s site. However, Google doesn’t obligate any publisher using the system to show AdSense ads.
Google also says that Ad Manager will also improve page load times: Google Ad Manager is focused on improving serving efficiencies to make sure that the right ad appears quickly every time. Built on our infrastructure, Google Ad Manager ensures fast serving speed and reliability with fewer reporting discrepancies.