Nothing is black and white. While it is true that 25% of users block online advertising, surveys conducted by Eyeo, the makers of Ad Block Plus, have revealed that there are some ads even users of ad blockers don’t mind. That led to Eyeo setting up a “white list” of companies that agreed to run only the acceptable formats. While this action was dismissed by the most vocal anti-advertising people as “pay to play,” time has passed, the industry has moved on, people are beginning to realize how much it would cost to subscribe to everything they wanted to consume, and an uneasy peace reigns as the number of new people installing ad blockers dwindles.
To make its peace with the industry, Eyeo also formed an Acceptable Ads Committee, consisting of representatives from the publishing, advertising, and ad tech communities. Eyeo then spun the committee out as an independent entity, and that group of representatives has now released a list of criteria for Mobile Acceptable Ads. ZEDO has been represented on this committee since its inception/
Mobile-specific Acceptable Ads Criteria
- Static ad types (e.g. 6×1 banner and 1×1 tile ad without animations) are allowed to be placed anywhere on the mobile page. For an example of a 6×1 ad, this time placed on top of the content, please see this; here is an example of a 1×1 ad unit.
- Small ads (6×1 banner or smaller) are allowed to be placed as a sticky ad on the bottom of the screen. Other formats are not allowed to stick. For an example of a 6×1 sticky ad unit, please see this.
- Large ad types (e.g. “native” tile ads) are only allowed to be placed under the primary content on any page. For an example of this type of ad unit please see this.
Ads shown on mobile screens are bound to the following size restrictions:
- Ads implemented on the scrollable portion of the webpage, before or inside the primary content of the page, may not occupy in total more than 50 percent of the visible portion of the webpage.
- Ads implemented as a “sticky ad” have a maximum height restriction of 75px or 15% of the screen height. All sticky ads must include a close button or some other easily-identifiable closing mechanism.
- Ads placed below the primary content may not exceed the height of 100% of the screen height (i.e. the ad may not be more than one “full scroll” height).
Animations are allowed for the 6×1 ad type when placed as a “sticky” ad on the bottom of the screen. Animations have to comply with the LEAN standard for animations.
Next year, the committee is going to work on standards for mobile video. This is not easy work, because we have to run everything by our audience. Feedback from this round was generated by conducting a survey in partnership with Hubspot. Our conclusion is that we need a larger sample so we can get even more feedback on the tolerance of users who run ad blockers to mobile ads.
In other news, people who haven’t been as willing to work with ad-blocking users have develped other ways to reach those users, and Eyeo has invested in AI technology to help its customers better spot “native” ads that aren’t easy to distinguish from actual content.