How to make sure your floor setup is flawless?
As Publishers’ ad stacks are growing both in terms of size and complexity, it becomes more and more challenging for them to deal with floor prices. As a publisher, you need to make sure that your rules are properly implemented, efficient and that they make sense For optimization purposes, having a single rule across your entire ad stack is not recommended. Floor prices require more granularity and a deep understanding of how your partners perform in order to bring real value. To make sure your floor setup is flawless, here is a quick reminder of the different ways you can implement them today.
How to set up your floor prices?
At SSP level
With the recent Prebid floor price module, as a publisher, you can setup floors for all your SSPs simultaneously within the Prebid framework. By doing so, you will be able to refine your rules specifically for each bidder, ad unit, or ad size. We recommended building your floor setup by taking full advantage of the Prebid module which can really be a game-changer for publishers. Indeed, to manage floors at the SSP level before the module, publishers needed to enter the rules and make all the changes manually for each SSP. For example, a publisher with 20 SSPs had to go through each of his partners’ dashboards or get in touch with his account managers to create or update any rule. This was an extensively time-consuming way to manage floor prices because publishers would often try out different rules to ensure they bring as much value as possible to their stack with floor prices. So they had to repeat the entire process frequently. As a publisher, you also needed to remember exactly what rules were in place. Tracking them is an integral part of the floor price optimization process in order to harmonize your entire setup.
That being said, nothing is that simple in ad tech. While the prebid module is a great improvement, it is not an infallible approach. Not all SSPs are compatible with the Prebid module. However, the main SSPs are. You can check out the module compatibility list, to check whether or not your bidders are compatible with the module.
We recommend a hybrid setup. You should use the prebid module for all your compatible bidders and manage individually all your non-compatible bidders.
Full list is available here
Implementing Floors in the Ad Server
To illustrate this part, we will be using the example of a publisher using Google’s Ad Server (GAM) as an example. A common way to implement floor prices is via Google Ad Manager. Through their Unified Pricing Rules (UPR), you can define floor pricing rules according to specific geo, device type, ad unit etc. Because GAM’s pricing rules are implemented at the ad server level, they are applied to all demand partners. All your partners will have the same floor prices. When setting up UPRs in Google Ad Manager, you can enable Target CPM, or choose to have hard floors. When you set up Target CPMs, Google will adjust the floor price to match more bids while keeping your inventory’s eCPM at least equal to 0,50$. Whereas hard floors will simply never allow a bid below the floor price to win. We recommend you implement hard floors. We’ve explained why in a previous article on floor pricing.
You can set up your rules at the SSP level or in the ad server lever (GAM) but you should use both, and harmonize the rules between your SSPs and GAM UPRs. If you use only SSP floors, AdX will not be floored. And if you use only UPRs, SSPs won’t have the floor info and won’t adapt their bids to it. In either case, you will likely leave money on the table.
Keep it clean and simple!
When it comes to floor pricing, you should definitely try to keep your overall setup as simple as possible. Make sure rules across your entire setup make sense. This could harm your monetization process. Ad stacks are built over time, so there is a high chance that some rules have already been created somewhere and that you are not aware of them. For that reason, you need to be able to track precisely the existing rules that are being applied to your bidders. It is critical that you ensure you have gotten rid of any legacy high floors in SSPs. These might have been implemented by a former colleague for example and they may be hindering the monetization process. In a nutshell, you should stick to this straightforward process:
- Use the prebid module for all compatible SSPs
- Complement it with floors in the SSP dashboards for the non-compatible SSPs
- Align your GAM UPRs with your SSP rules
Now that you know how you should navigate between your different options, you might be wondering how you can find the optimal floor price value based on your business objectives. You could be aiming for less advertising pressure or simply more revenue. The best way to proceed to find that optimal value is to simply A/B test different floor prices until you hit the spot. To help you with that, you can use our A/B testing template available here
The best way to track your floors
There are different places where you can implement your floor prices. This leads to many options when it comes to defining the rules. Keeping track of everything can be a challenge. For that reason, Pubstack has developed a template to help publishers better track and manage their floor pricing strategy. This report aims to spot issues in the implementation of Google Ad Manager Unified Price Rules and/or spot discrepancies between UPRs and SSP floors.