Choosing the right ad server for your company’s needs is not an easy process. The main problem is navigating in the blooming mass of propositions, available on the market. Time is one of the most valuable resources available, and you need the perfect tool that will help you save it, establishing your brand name in the process. Finding the right partner is extremely important, as switching between them brings a lot of inconvenience into the whole work process. Therefore, we wrote some tips that will help you to choose the Ad Server best suited for your business.
Identify your needs
To begin, you need to establish a clear understanding of what exactly you strive to achieve with ad serving. The ideal ad server should complement your business strategy, being a valuable asset in reaching your goals. It should enforce your efficiency and open new revenue opportunities. Thus, switch on your analytical volumes and make a list of the main priorities of your organization and its advertising needs. Consider your audience, your budget, as well as the quality and the quantity of your human resources. How much of experience do they have with managing ad campaigns and trafficking? Among other things, your list should include your selling strategy, your support and ad serving requirements. Also, think about your future perspectives, how your company should develop, and what needed to be done in order to get to that point.
Get the best fit
When you’re done with the self-evaluation, it’s time to turn again to the ad servers’ offers on the market. The ultimate goal is to get the best fitting one, with broad functionality and services for the lowest price available. Therefore, carefully examine the main features of different ad servers and evaluate the options. The most common functions are uploading ads and rich media, trafficking ads, targeting, optimizing campaigns, and reporting statistics. Compare the ad servers carefully to choose the best combination that will help you achieve your goals.
First, you should decide which ad formats you will be using. Ad servers offer a wide range of them, from traditional banners to rich media. The ideal ad server should support as many as possible. Also, you could benefit from one of the cross-platform solutions, available on the market.
One of the first things to consider are the payment options. There are purely CPA or CPM ad servers, as well as those delivering combinations of CPM, CPC, and CPA campaigns simultaneously. Ask about any hidden fees or expenses. Look at the cost of ad servers compared to your budget, consider it’s quality and the options they offer.
Then you have to decide how precise your targeting should be. To get the best ROI from your advertising you need to show your ads to people that may be potentially interested in your brand. In order to do this answer some basic questions:
- Do you need street-level geotargeting, or will country-targeting be enough?
- Do you require any specific devises for your ads?
- Do you need your ads to be displayed at a specific time?
- Can you set the maximum number of clicks/impressions for an hour?
Then, look at the gender, geographical, and behavioral targeting options to determine which ad server will be the best at delivering your ads to your target audience.
The interface is another thing to consider. It should be intuitive and user-friendly with logically organized and clearly presented features. An ideal ad server should provide you with a single system where you can track, manage and optimize your ads. Check if there are any API’s that would enable integration with other tools you use.
Optimization and analytics
When it comes to optimization, being able to do it real-time may be crucial to you. It will help you to display ads that generate more clicks more often. Also, your ads should be easy to track. All metrics should be provided in a report that is easy to understand.
Analytics are another essential part of ad server functions. Seeing the whole picture of your activities will help you understand your campaign performance. Note which reports are provided, and if they are provided in real time. Also, some ad servers would be eager to provide you with custom reports on your campaign.
The extent of support varies between different ad servers. Some of them will not answer your emails for weeks, while the others provide you with a personal account manager, 24 hours 7 days a week. The latter will cost you a lot though. Also, there are servers that provide you with native speaking consultants. Ad server staff should be knowledgeable enough to help you if any problems occur. Weigh your options and decide how much of support you will actually need.
Customize your campaign
Additionally, you should consider customization options. Some servers will provide you with custom solutions per your request, so you can get the exact features your company needs. Among other useful things are white-labeling options and extension tools.