Digital Advertising Glossary

Published at Feb 28, 2023

Digital Advertising Glossary

Advertising glossary

Ad group: Definition

An ad group contains one or more ads that share similar targets.

  • Each of your campaigns is made up of one or more ad groups.
  • Use ad groups to organize your ads by a common theme. For example, try separating ad groups into the different product or service types you offer.

Average daily budget: Definition

The average amount that you set for each ad campaign on a per-day basis. It specifies how much you are roughly comfortable spending each day over the course of the month.

Broad match: Definition

Note: This definition applies to positive keyword targeting only. Negative broad match keywords behave differently than broad match keywords. Learn more about keyword matching options

A keyword match type allows your ad to show on searches that are related to the meaning of your keyword, which can include searches that don’t contain the keyword terms. This allows you to reach more searches than with exact and phrase matches.

Broad match is the default match type that all your keywords are assigned. This helps your ads reach a wider audience without requiring you to build an extensive keyword list. For example, let’s say you have the broad match keyword car window repair. This keyword can reach searches such as automobile glass replacement, even though it doesn’t include any of the words as your keyword because they relate to the query.

The syntax for broad match is to simply input the keyword. Below is an example of how broad match work:

To deliver relevant matches, this match type may also take into account the following:

  • The user’s recent search activities
  • The content of the landing page
  • Other keywords in an ad group to better understand keyword intent

Note: It’s critical to use Smart Bidding with broad match. This is because every search query is different, and bids for each query should reflect the unique contextual signals present at auction-time. Smart Bidding uses these signals to ensure that, for all of the relevant searches you could reach with broad match, you’re only competing in the right auctions, at the right bid, for the right user. Learn more about how to grow your Smart Bidding campaigns with broad match

Exact match: Definition

Note: This definition applies to positive keyword targeting only. Negative exact match keywords behave differently than exact match keywords. Learn more about keyword matching options

A keyword match type that allows you to show your ads on searches that have the same meaning or same intent as your keyword. Exact match gives you the most control over who sees your ad, but reaches fewer searches than both phrase and broad match. This allows you to reach only users who make searches with the same meaning as your keywords, including:

  • Misspellings
  • Singular or plural forms
  • Stemmings (for example, floor and flooring)
  • Abbreviations
  • Accents

Whether someone is searching for “running shoes” or “shoes for running”, what they want remains the same; they’re looking for running shoes. Exact match keywords help you connect with people who are looking for your business, despite slight variations in the way they search, and reduces the need to build exhaustive keyword lists to reach these customers.

The syntax for exact match is to use square brackets, such as [red shoe].

Phrase match: Definition

Note: This definition applies to positive keyword targeting only. Negative phrase match keywords behave differently than phrase match keywords. Learn more about keyword matching options

A keyword match type that allows you to show your ads on searches that include the meaning of your keyword. The meaning of the keyword can be implied, and user searches can be a more specific form of the meaning. This allows you to reach more searches than with exact match and fewer searches than with broad match.

To understand how phrase match works, consider the following scenario:

Let’s assume that you’ve added the phrase match “moving services NYC to Boston” to your keywords. With phrase match, your ads may show when a user searches for either “affordable moving services NYC to Boston” or “NYC corporate moving services to Boston.” The word order (and the additional emphasis on affordable or corporate moving) won’t affect the display of your ad because it’s clear that the meaning of the keyword is contained in the search: the user is in need of a service to move to and from the same cities.

However, if a user searches for “moving services Boston to New York City,” phrase match recognizes that the meaning of the keyword is no longer maintained, so your ads won’t show. With phrase match, a user’s word order matters only when it changes the intended meaning of your keyword.

When you use phrase match, your ads get to the right users without the creation of an extensive list of keywords and phrases. If you’re searching for help thinking like a user or reaching the right groups of potential customers, review our tips for building your keyword list.

Campaign: Definition

A set of ad groups (ads, keywords, and bids) that share a budget, location targeting, and other settings. Campaigns are often used to organize categories of products or services that you offer.

  • Your Google Ads account can have one or many ad campaigns running.
  • Each campaign consists of one or more ad groups.
  • Settings that you can set at the campaign level include budget, language, location, distribution for the Google Network, and more.
  • You can create separate ad campaigns to run ads in different locations or using different budgets.

Click: Definition

When someone clicks your ad, like on the blue headline or phone number of a text ad, Google Ads counts that as a click.

  • A click is counted even if the person doesn’t reach your website, maybe because it’s temporarily unavailable. As a result, you might see a difference between the number of clicks on your ad and the number of visits to your website. For YouTube on TV screens, clicks reported are for actions taken on the TV call-to-action button (CTA), not for actions taken on follow-up notifications.
  • Clicks can help you understand how well your ad is appealing to people who see it. Relevant, highly-targeted ads are more likely to receive clicks.
  • In your account statistics, you’ll find the clickthrough rate (CTR), which lets you know how many people who’ve seen your ad end up clicking on it. This metric can help you gauge how enticing your ad is and how closely it matches your keywords and other targeting settings.
  • Note that a good CTR is relative to what you’re advertising and on which networks. To help increase your clicks and CTR, start by creating great ad text and strong keywords to make ads that are highly relevant and very compelling to your customers.

Dashboard: Definition

A visual and customizable summary of your account’s performance data.

  • Dashboards are created by inserting scorecards, charts, tables, or notes on your performance data, into a customizable grid. You can place these cards on any square in the grid.
  • Scorecards, charts, tables, or notes can be rearranged and resized to help you customize your dashboard.
    Learn how to Create and edit dashboards.
  • You can change the date range for each individual scorecard, table, or chart to see performance over a particular timeframe. You can also change the overall date of your entire dashboard to see how it would have looked on a particular day.
  • Dashboards let you collaborate with anyone who has access to your Google Ads account.

Default values: Definition

Default values in ad customizers allow you to provide an alternative value for each piece of customized text in your ads. So even if you are not using a data feed, your ads will always show.

For example, let’s say you’re running a campaign to advertise your candy store and you have an ad group that promotes your chocolate candy products. The snippet of code that you’ll insert in your ad text might look like the following:

ProductFeed . CandyType : Chocolate Doing this means Chocolate will show when the candy type can’t be inserted in your ad.

Default values are optional. However, if an ad contains more than one ad customizer, default values must be provided for each customizer.

Destination URL: Definition

Final URLs are replacing destination URLs as part of the URL upgrade. You can no longer create or edit ads that use a destination URL. Learn more

The URL address of the page in your website that people reach when they click your ad.

  • The domain of the destination URL needs to match the domain of your display URL.
  • The destination URL isn’t displayed on your ads (the URL shown is your display URL).

Display URL: Definition

The webpage address that appears with your ad.

  • Display URLs give people an idea of where they’ll arrive after they click an ad. The landing page that you define with a final URL tends to be more specific. For example, if your display URL is, your final URL might be
  • For expanded text ads, your display URL consists of the domain of your final URL (and the subdomain, if you have one) and your two optional “Path” fields of up to 15 characters each.
  • Your display URL may appear in your ad with a “www.” prefix in lowercase letters (even if you enter it with capitalized letters). If your URL begins with a subdomain, your display URL may include it (for example, the support in
  • Your display URL may appear in your ad with an “http://” or “https://” prefix on, depending on the protocol scheme of the final URL.

Final URL: Definition

The URL address of the webpage in your website that people reach after they click your ad. Also known as the “landing page”

  • For each ad you create, you specify a final URL to determine the landing page where people are taken when they click your ad.
  • Google’s policy is that your landing page and display URL (the webpage shown in your ad) must share the same domain.
  • If you maintain separate landing pages for mobile users (like AMP pages), then enter them in the final URL for mobile field (under the “Ad URL options” section)
  • If you use tracking information, enter the tracking template field. You may not use cross-domain redirects in your final URL.
  • The final URL suffix field allows you to enter parameters that will be attached to the end of your landing page URL in order to track information.

Google Account: Definition

A Google-wide username and password that can be used to access various products, including Google Ads.

  • Your Google Account also contains information that applies across products, such as your preferred language and some privacy settings.
  • If you created a Google Ads account or have signed in to access any Google product, then you’ve created a Google Account.
  • A Google Account can be associated with up to 5 Google Ads accounts, including manager accounts.
  • You can view and change the information in your Google Account at any time by signing in at

Google Ads is Google’s online advertising program. Through Google Ads, you can create online ads to reach people exactly when they’re interested in the products and services that you offer.

  • Google Ads is a product that you can use to promote your business, help sell products or services, raise awareness, and increase traffic to your website.
  • Google Ads accounts are managed online, so you can create and change your ad campaign at any time, including your ad text, settings, and budget.
  • There’s no minimum spending commitment, and you set and control your own budget. You choose where your ad appears, set a budget that’s comfortable for you, and easily measure the impact of your ad.

Impressions: Definition

How often your ad is shown. An impression is counted each time your ad is shown on a search result page or other site on the Google Network. Note: If your ad or keywords aren’t receiving enough impressions, read Issues with fluctuating impressions.

  • Each time your ad appears on Google or the Google Network, it’s counted as one impression.
  • In some cases, only a section of your ad may be shown. For example, in Google Maps, we may show only your business name and location or only your business name and the first line of your ad text.
  • You’ll sometimes see the abbreviation “Impr” in your account showing the number of impressions for your ad.

Keyword close variants: Definition

Close variants allow keywords to match to searches that are similar, but not identical to the targeted keyword, and help you connect with people who are looking for your business—despite slight variations in the way they search—reducing the need to build out exhaustive keyword lists to reach these customers.

By default, all keyword match types are eligible to match to close variants. There is no way to opt out. Learn more about keyword matching options

Keywords: Definition

Words or phrases describing your product or service that you choose to help determine when and where your ad can appear.

  • The keywords you choose are used to show your ads to people. Select high-quality, relevant keywords for your ad campaign to help you reach only the most interested people, who are more likely to become your customers.
  • When someone searches on Google, your ad could be eligible to appear based on the similarity of your keywords to the person’s search terms, as well as your keyword match types. Keywords are also used to match your ad to sites in the Google Network that are related to your keywords and ads.
  • A great keyword list can help improve the performance of your ads and help you to avoid higher prices. Poor keywords can ultimately cause you to have higher prices and lower ad position.
  • You can add match types to your keywords to help control which searches your ad can be matched with.

Landing page: Definition

Landing page is the webpage where people end up after they click your ad. The URL of this page is usually the same as your ad’s final URL.

  • For each ad, you specify a final URL to determine the landing page where people are taken when they click your ad.
  • Google’s policy is that your landing page and display URL (the webpage shown in your ad) must share the same domain.
  • Your landing page experience is one of several factors that helps determine a keyword’s Quality Score. The experience of a landing page is represented by such things as the usefulness and relevance of information provided on the page, ease of navigation for the user, the number of links on the page, and the expectations users have based on the clicked ad creative.

Maximum CPC bid: Definition

A bid that you set to determine the highest amount that you’re willing to pay for a click on your ad.

  • If someone clicks your ad, that click won’t cost you more than the maximum cost-per-click bid (or “max. CPC”) that you set. For example, if you set a $2 max. CPC bid, you’ll never pay more than $2 for each click on your ad. The actual amount that you pay is called the actual CPC and is shown in your account’s “Avg. CPC” column.
  • A higher bid generally helps your ad show in a higher ad position on the page.
  • You’ll choose between manual bidding (you choose your bid amounts) and automatic bidding (you set a target average daily budget and the Google Ads system automatically adjusts your max. CPC bids on your behalf, with the goal of getting you the most clicks possible within that budget). With manual bidding, you’ll set one maximum CPC bid for an entire ad group, but can also set different bids for individual keywords.

When your Max. CPC may be exceeded:

If you use the following features, your actual bid may be higher than the Max. CPC bid you have set:

  • Enhanced CPC Learn more about eCPC bidding
  • Search Partners Learn more about Search Partners
  • Bid adjustments Learn more about bid adjustments

Optimization score: Definition

Optimization score is an estimate of how well your Google Ads account is set to perform. Optimization score runs from 0% to 100%, with 100% meaning that your account can perform at its full potential.

Along with the score, you’ll see a list of recommendations that can help you optimize each campaign. Each recommendation shows how much your optimization score will be impacted (in percentages) when you apply that recommendation. Applying or dismissing these recommendations changes the overall optimization score of your account. Optimization score is available at the Campaign, Account, and Manager Account levels.

Paying manager: Definition

A paying manager is a manager account that controls monthly invoicing billing setups used by the Ads accounts beneath it in a manager account hierarchy.

Important: If you unlink an Ads account from its paying manager (or break that link by changing the manager structure above) the Ads account will stop serving ads immediately.

Users with standard, admin and billing-only access that are signed in to the paying manager (or any manager account above it) can view invoices, edit budgets and perform billing transfers for Ads accounts under that manager. Although one Ads account can be linked to multiple manager accounts, the billing setup for that Google Ads account is managed by only one of those manager accounts. That’s because a single Google Ads account can only have one active billing setup at any given time.

You can find the paying manager name and ID for a Google Ads account by navigating to its “Billing settings” page.

You can also find the paying manager name and ID for all your linked Google Ads accounts by adding the Paying manager column to the “Budgets page” of your manager account. Learn how to customize tables and charts

Technical account manager [TAM]

Hotel Ads partners can have a technical account manager (TAM )who is responsible for various aspects of your account, including initial configuration, product change communication, and on-going support.

App campaigns for installs (ACi)

A type of advertising campaign which tries to drive new installs to your mobile app.

Automated bidding

A solution that helps advertisers automatically set bids based on performance goals.

Audience signals

A solution that allows you to add audience suggestions that help Google’s AI optimize for your selected goals. Although adding audience signals is optional, using audience signals can help you guide machine learning models on the ideal way to optimize your campaign.


An action that’s counted when someone interacts with your ad or free product listing and then takes an action that you’ve defined as valuable to your business.

Conversion value

The values you assign to certain actions that matter to your business, for example $5 for calls and $20 for sign-ups.


Cost-per-action, calculated as total cost divided by total conversions.

Data-driven attribution (DDA)

An attribution model which gives credit for conversions based on how people engage with your various ads and decide to become your customers. It uses data from your account to determine which keywords, ads, and campaigns have the greatest impact on your business goals.

Machine learning

A system that trains a predictive model from input data.

Marginal CPA

The cost of additional conversions, calculated as cost divided by increase in conversions.

Marginal ROAS

The additional return you get for additional spend, calculated as increase in conversion value divided by increase in spend.

New customer acquisition goal

A goal that allows you to value and then bid for new customers compared to existing customers or focus on new customers only, while maximizing conversions.

Performance Max campaign

A cross-channel, AI-powered campaign that features the greatest channel coverage of any Google Ads campaign type.

Portfolio bid strategy

An automated, goal-driven bid strategy that groups together multiple campaigns, ad groups, and keywords.

Privacy centric measurement

A set of product initiatives that aim to rethink Ads measurement in a cookieless world.


Return-on-ad-spend, represented as a percentage, calculated as total conversion value divided by total spend.


Return on investment, calculated as total profit divided by total spend.

Smart Bidding

Automated bid strategies that use machine learning to optimize for conversions or conversion value.

Value based bidding

Smart Bidding strategies that specifically optimize to your conversion values. Maximize conversion value is a value based bidding strategy.

Programmatic Advertising


is the advertising space you have available to sell. In Ad Manager, inventory takes the form of ad units, which can be grouped into placements. Learn more about inventory


Placement: National news
Ad unit: Local New York news
Key-value: Position is Leaderboard (pos=leaderboard)
Key-value: Position is Top Box (pos=atf-box)
Key-value: Position is Bottom Box (pos=btf-box)

Ad unit: Local Chicago news
Key-value: Position is Leaderboard (pos=leaderboard)
Key-value: Position is Top Box (pos=atf-box)
Key-value: Position is Bottom Box (pos=btf-box)

Ad unit: Local San Francisco news
Key-value: Position is Leaderboard (pos=leaderboard)
Key-value: Position is Top Box (pos=atf-box)
Key-value: Position is Bottom Box (pos=btf-box)


is the process of setting up and managing ad campaigns. In Ad Manager, you create orders, line items, and creatives, and you target them. You can target them to specific inventory and use other kinds of targeting as well, like showing your ads only in certain locations. Learn more about trafficking


is the process of checking to see how much available inventory you will have in the future. Unlike, say, retail inventory, which you can simply count, it’s hard to know exactly how many viewers you will have in the future — and even harder when you take different targeting scenarios into consideration. Ad Manager forecasting is designed to help you sell all of your inventory while avoiding overselling. Learn more about forecasting


is where you go to check on active campaigns to see how they’re delivering, and to get information about completed campaigns. Ad Manager reports are highly customizable, enabling you to discover insights about your inventory that can help you create and sell more effective ad campaigns. Learn more about reporting

Account administration

sometimes shortened to “admin,” is the set of tasks and tools that are used to administer your network: everything from setting up new users to enabling features. Admin tasks tend not to be everyday tasks, but they’re important.

Ad request

An ad request is sent by client-side code (such as GPT on a webpage) to an ad server. An ad request typically is transmitted to the server in the form of an HTTP or HTTPS request. The request is the first step of ad serving.

Ad serving

The process by which Ad Manager chooses the best ads to serve to an ad request, and then returns the corresponding creative code.

Ad slot

An ad slot is the HTML markup (usually between

tags) the defines where an ad appears. Ad slots can reference either unique ad units or, if on a single page, ad slots can also reference the same ad unit.

Ad source

The network or entity from which advertising content is consumed by a given ad unit. Multiple sources may compete for display in a single unit (for example, AdSense or AdX as backfill challengers).

Ad tag

HTML tags or JavaScript code generated and then included in the webpage or app source where the ads should be displayed.

Ad unit

Discrete spaces on your site for ads. You can define an ad unit on your site with a name, description, and dimensions. An ad unit may sometimes be referred to as “inventory unit.”


The mobile advertising ID for Android. Mobile advertising IDs allow developers and marketers to track activity for advertising purposes.


A Google service that can help you display relevant, unobtrusive Google ads on your website’s content pages and earn money. (Visit the Google AdSense Help Center to learn more.)

AdSense (line item type)

Line item type used to target AdSense ad units to specific inventory and audiences.


An open-source initiative that aims to make the web better for all. The project enables the creation of websites and ads that are consistently fast, beautiful, and high-performing across devices and distribution patterns.


AMPHTML Ads load faster than standard ads and can be delivered anywhere on the web, not just on AMP pages. This applies AMP’s core philosophy of reliable fast performance and great user experience to ads.

Anchor ad

An ad that stays fixed at the bottom of the user’s screen, even as the user scrolls up or down on the page. Swiping would let the user dismiss the ad in a mobile-friendly manner.

Aspect ratio

Ratio of width to height for a video or image.


The art work or file associated with a creative object.

Asynchronous code

Code that is split up into smaller pieces. Execution of the various pieces of code may “pause” or “wait” between each piece, allowing for other processing (such as rendering of other ads or page content) to be performed during the pauses.


The name of Facebook’s online advertising solution.

Audience Extension

Allows a publisher to buy ad impressions (targeted to the publisher’s own visitors) from other web or app properties.

Availability forecast

Predicts the availability of inventory. Availability forecast is used in two ways: during the sales process to estimate how much inventory is available for sale; and when an ad is booked to verify that enough inventory is available for the ad. Forecasts consider impressions that have been reserved for other line items.


AVOD - Advertising-Based Video On Demand, which refers to a library of content you can watch whenever you like


Inventory that has not been pre-sold or reserved. As a verb, “backfill” means to serve ads to this inventory. Backfill inventory is often monetized with ads sold by ad networks, via non-guaranteed campaigns, or in an auction. Also see Non-guaranteed.


A small (one pixel by one pixel) image displayed on a website or within other content. It forces the browser to make a request to another server so that server can read or write its own cookie (or otherwise track the web request). This allows you to record the basic actions of the user who is accessing the content.

Booked inventory

Includes “reserved” and “remnant” inventory that has been entered into the system.

Bulk line items

Line item type used to fill unsold inventory. Bulk line items have delivery goals and deliver evenly by default.

Bumper ad

Video bumper ads are short video ads that can play before or after a video ad or ad pod. They are often used to indicate that ads are either about to display, or to promote the next ad. Companion ads do not appear with bumper ads.


An order and all of its line items, or a proposal and all of its proposal line items. Can also refer to multiple orders or proposals.


Groupings of domains/URLs for reporting purposes.

Child publisher

In Multiple Customer Management, a third-party publisher that delegates the management of their inventory to a parent publisher.

Child publishers can grant parent publishers edit access to their account (Manage Account), or delegate inventory to the parent account (Manage Inventory).

Click macro

A small piece of code that allows you to track clicks for your third-party creatives.


The “program or script” supplied by the advertiser that is used to generate (i.e., rich media) an ad.


An advertiser, agency, or organization that buys ad space and supplies the creatives for line items. Each order is associated with a company, and you can invite company contacts to view reports about their campaigns. (Learn how to add a company profile.)

Content bundle

Targetable groups of videos that you can assemble based on filters or by selecting individual videos, or both. Bundles are automatically updated as new metadata that matches their criteria is ingested. For example, you could create a content bundle called “Kittens” based on a combination of metadata and manually-added videos, and then target ads for cat toys to that bundle.

A small text file containing a string of characters that is set on your computer when you visit a website. When you visit the website again, the cookie helps that site recognize your browser. Cookies may store user preferences and other information. DoubleClick cookies contain no personally identifiable information.


CTV is also commonly referred to as Connected TV. It is a television set that is connected to the Internet via standalone devices, Blu-ray players, streaming boxes, gaming consoles, or built-in internet capabilities (think Smart TV’s) and can access a variety of longform and short-form web-based content.

CTV is made up of a collection of different devices and can be segmented into three groups:

  • Attached devices (91% of ad views)
  • Gaming consoles (5% of ad views)
  • Smart TVs (4% of ad views)

CTV provides the advantages of digital advertising in a highly engaged, linear TV-like experience. It combines the best of both worlds. In fact, CTV’s average video ad completion rate is a whopping 97%.

Within the last 2 years, CTV viewing has accelerated and advertisers’ search for premium entertainment has rose significantly. FreeWheel focuses on giving advertisers the ability to target at scale while also maintaining high-quality inventory.

Correlator value

A value passed in ad requests, handled automatically by the GPT libraries and the GMA/IMA SDKs. The correlator is common to all ads on a page, but unique across page views. Ad requests with the same correlator value received close together in time are considered a single Page View for serving purposes.


A code snippet, file or link that generates an ad. (The terms creative and ad may be used interchangeably.) Ad Manager supports a variety of creative types, including Third party, Image, Campaign Manager 360 tag, and Studio.

Creative assignment

Type of assignment used to specify characteristics of how the creative is served, such as the click-through URL, the position of the creative in a sequential rotation, and so on.

Creative association

The assignment of one or more creatives to a line item.

Creative code

HTML or JavaScript code used for third-party or custom creatives which tells the browser how to render or generate the creative.

Creative rotation

The technique by which multiple creatives assigned to a line item are displayed, either evenly, weighted, sequential, or optimized.

Creative wrapper

Snippet of code that wraps around a creative when it is served. When Ad Manager serves a creative to an ad unit with (a) creative wrapper label(s) applied, it also inserts the creative wrappers into the code that is delivered to the webpage. You can use creative wrappers to implement third-party tracking software or for any other purpose.

Cross-Screen Addressable

In today’s world, consumers can view content across an array of devices and channels. Cross-screen addressable advertising is complementary to TV since it allows advertisers to share relevant video ads to consumers on the go. Through cross-screen addressable, marketers can deliver the right video ad to the right audience at the right time and place.

Custom rendering

Render your own native ads in app code. You can implement highly custom renderings that take full advantage of the functionality of Android and iOS.

Daisy chaining

Process whereby a creative is required to call to multiple third-party ad servers.


Configuring day and time targeting settings for line items. The process of dividing the day into different parts in order to run ads only during specific times.

Default ad impressions

A gray GIF system default ad (an “unfilled impression”) will serve to inventory where no line items are targeted and the user will see a blank ad slot.


The process of Ad Manager showing ads.

Delivery goal

The amount of impressions or clicks that a line item is contracted to deliver.

Delivery Inspector

Gives information on which ads were delivered. When unexpected ads deliver, use the Delivery Inspector to find out why.

Delivery priority

The priority level at which a line item is set to deliver. This can range from higher priorities (sponsorship and standard) to lower priorities (house).

Delivery progress bar

A graphic in the UI that indicates whether or not a line item is on target to achieve its goal.

Delivery rate

The rate at which a line item is being delivered to users.

Density-independent pixels (dp)

Screen size is usually expressed in density-independent pixels, or dp. Here’s a simple formula to convert screen pixels (px) to density pixels (dp):

dp = px * (160 / dpi)

Dots per inch (dpi) are pixels within an inch of the screen.


Designated Market Area. DMAs expose a specific regional market group to the same content or ads. They frequently cover one metropolitan area, in some cases grouping together multiple smaller cities. Many DMAs are available for targeting.

Dynamic allocation

A network-level mechanism designed to maximize your remnant and Ad Exchange revenue without compromising reservations.

Both remnant and Ad Exchange line items are given a chance to serve if Ad Exchange/AdSense is eligible for the request (using line item targeting for Ad Exchange/AdSense or ad unit monetization for AdSense).

Dynamic targeting

Targeting option that you can use if you don’t want to define values in advance, or if you need to define more than 50,000 key-value pairs.

With dynamic targeting, you can have thousands of possible targeting values, because there’s no need to define each value ahead of time. When you need to target a specific value, you can simply enter that targeting value into your line item.

Once you target a line item to a dynamic targeting value, the value will be saved and you’ll be able to select it from a list the next time you target a line item to that key.

Engaged view

In the context of skippable ads: you have the ability to traffic reserve, CPM-based video ads that can be skipped or exited after a certain duration has elapsed. The “Skip” button appears after 5 seconds. If viewed to completion or for 30 seconds, whichever comes first, an “Engaged view” is counted in reporting.

Even rotation

A type of rotation of creatives, where all creatives in a line item are delivered in an approximately even proportion.


With true even delivery, an ad is shown at a constant rate throughout the campaign duration. If an ad needs to appear on a website or app several thousand times over a week (for example, 7000 times over a week) with a true even delivery, it would serve 1000 impressions of the ad each day. In contrast, frontloading of the ad campaign serves more impressions during the start of the campaign, and the serving rate gradually decreases as the ad approaches its serving goals.

Exclusion label

A label that you can apply to a line item which prevents it from being delivered along with other line items that have the same label. For example, if you’re doing business with both Airline X and Airline Y, you can apply the exclusion label ‘airline’ to their line items, which will prevent Airline X’s line items from being shown on the same webpage at the same time as Airline Y’s.


Fast stands for Free ad-supported streaming TV. Free ad-supported streaming television (FAST) is a category of streaming television services which are available to consumers without a paid subscription, are funded solely by advertising, and stream traditional television programming and studio-produced movies, as distinguished from platforms that largely offer user-generated content such as YouTube and Twitch and from subscription-based ad-supported services like Hulu and Netflix.

A cookie that’s set by the domain the user is visiting instead of by a different, third-party domain.

Flight dates

The date range for an ad campaign to run.


A type of ad that floats on top of a page’s content. A floating ad can move with content as a user scrolls, or maintain a locked position on a page as a user scrolls.


A native ad size that allows more flexibility when styling your ad. Ad Manager automatically sizes the ad by filling the width of the enclosing column and adjusting the height as appropriate (just like a regular HTML div on your site).

Forecast adjustment

An adjustment made to the anticipated traffic to your website or app. With Forecast adjustments, you can make changes so traffic patterns are better reflected in forecasting numbers. This is helpful when you create new content or you have unusual traffic spikes during high-profile events.


The process of estimating how much ad inventory a website or app will have in the future.

Frequency capping

Helps to limit how often an ad from a line item is served to the same user in a specific period of time. Supported time ranges are minutes, hours, days, weeks, or months, and multiple capping rules may be applied. For example, you can set a frequency cap limiting the same user to one impression per day and three impressions per week.


If an ad needs to appear on a website or app several thousand times over a week (for example, 7000 times per week) and the “Frontloaded” delivery option is selected, the platform will try to serve 25% extra ad impressions at the start of the week (1250 impressions) and continue to serve more than necessary until later in the week when delivery will tail off until all 7000 impressions have been served.

Google Publisher Console

Provides troubleshooting tips and information about ad performance to publishers, overlaid directly onto their website or app. It’s another way for publishers to retrieve information and take action on their Google ads as they browse their site.

Google Publisher Tag (GPT)

A specific type of ad tag that uses a Google-provided JavaScript library to define and configure an ad request made to Ad Manager.

Grace period

An extension, in days, of a line item’s end date. The line item will continue delivering until it reaches its goal or the end of its grace period, whichever comes first.


Line items that are contractually obligated to deliver a requested number of impressions. Ad Manager ensures these items deliver in full through reserving inventory for the line item. Contrast this with Non-guaranteed line items, which are used to fill “leftover” or remnant impressions.

Guaranteed line items include: Sponsorship and Standard.

Header bidding

A system for bidding which requires custom configuration by publishers.

Learn more about the difference between Open Bidding and header bidding.

Hosted creative

Creative image files you can upload to Google for free. Google will then manage these files and serve them directly to your site visitors.

House ad

A line item type typically used for ads that promote products and services chosen by you.


A value assigned to a particular user or device and is used to assist in ad serving functionality. The identifier contains no personally identifiable Information, can be reset by the user at any time, and respects user options to limit or opt out of ad tracking. Identifiers are used for audience list targeting, frequency capping, and sequential creative rotation.

Examples of identifiers are cookies (used on web and mobile web), mobile advertising IDs (used within mobile apps), and publisher provided identifiers (PPID, used for cross-screen serving). Users always have the option of opting out of any identifier used by Google.

Identity Resolution

Identity Resolution is the process of matching consumer identifiers to one individual profile as that person interacts with different devices and channels. It provides an omnichannel view of the consumer and allows marketers to gain more insight about the customer. This enhances campaign targeting and can help deliver a more seamless experience.

Examples of Personal Identifiers

Example of personal identifiers include but are not limited to:

  • Email addresses
  • Device IDs
  • Account usernames
  • Consumer IDs
  • Loyalty numbers
  • Mobile number

Identity resolution is constantly evolving in the premium video advertising space. To deliver an effective campaign, publishers must find a balance between connecting identify mechanisms across platforms while also giving consumers the transparency and control needed to understand how their data is processed. At the same time, advertisers are trying to navigate a fragmented environment which makes it harder to understand audiences across various channels and devices. It is imperative to better unify these identifiers.


The mobile advertising ID for Apple. Mobile advertising IDs allow developers and marketers to track activity for advertising purposes.

IM expanding

An In-Page asset and an Overlay creative that expands onto the user’s desktop. This creative type is used in instant messaging (IM) applications.


An ad format where an ad is displayed somewhere on the same page as a video that a user is watching.


Video ads that appear before, during, and after video content streams.

Inflated page views

Each webpage should only register one pageview but when Analytics tracking code is present within a framed page as well as the framing page, Analytics is likely to register two pageviews for that visit. This causes a pageview count that is higher than it should be.

Insertion order

An order form for the placement of an advertising request. For example, publishers who want to run a rich media publisher-paid campaign must sign an insertion order provided by a Google Marketing Platform representative.


Full-screen mobile app ads that display before or after an event (app launch, video pre-roll) or user action (game level load).

Inventory forecast

A feature that is used to estimate how much ad inventory will be available in the future.

Inventory hierarchy

The relationship between different types of inventory. Premium customers can have more than one level of inventory. They can have parent ad units which themselves have child ad units.

Inventory level

One level of an inventory hierarchy (top-level ad unit, lower-level ad unit, etc.).

Inventory structure

The structure in which an inventory hierarchy is organized.

Inventory type

Identifies kind of inventory or medium in which an ad serves. Values include (but are not limited to) the following:

  • Display
  • Mobile app
  • In-stream video and audio
  • Games


Process where the same creative serves to multiple ad units on the same page at the same time. The Google Ad Manager ad server tries to ensure that this does not happen.


In custom targeting, the first part of a key-value pair (key=value). For example, in the key-value pair car=X, car is the key and X is the value. Keys can have multiple values assigned to them.

Key-value pair

A set of two linked data items, known as the key and the value. The format of a key-value pair is key=value.


In the context of yield management, this is the percentage by which an ad was optimized. It is calculated by finding the percentage difference between the optimized group and the control group.

Line item

An advertiser’s commitment to purchase a specific number of ad impressions (CPM), user clicks (CPC), or time (CPD), on certain dates at a specified price. A line item specifies where an advertiser’s ads will appear, and may specify when an ad may be shown.

Line item discount

The percentage or dollar amount by which you can reduce a line item’s cost. In general, this field simply serves as a reminder that the advertiser received a discount. Discounting doesn’t affect a line item’s priority based on cost or value CPM. Also, discounts aren’t reflected in reporting.

Linear TV

Linear TV is the traditional broadcast television system where video content is delivered through cable or satellite. Linear TV has scheduled ads and every household that watches the show at the same time sees the same ad.

Lower-level ad unit

Any ad unit that is not at the highest level in a multi-level ad unit hierarchy. Can also be called “child” or “descendant” depending on context.

Manage Account

One of the delegation types available for Multiple Customer Management publishers. This relationship grants a parent publisher edit access to manage inventory directly in a child publisher’s account.

The other delegation type is Manage Inventory.

Manage Inventory

One of the delegation types available for Multiple Customer Management publishers.

This relationship lets a parent publisher manage ad requests that a child publisher delegates to the parent’s account. The parent manages the delegated inventory from their own account. Child publishers have no visibility into the parent’s account and vice versa.

The other delegation type is Manage Account.


The primary ad in a roadblock, which allows for the synchronization of ads on the same webpage or app.


Increases your mobile app revenue by calling a series of third-party ad networks to fill an ad request, ordered by expected yield. Each ad network has the opportunity to fill an ad request; however, if one ad network does not fill the request, the next ad network in the sequence gains an opportunity.


Targeting type that stands for Metropolitan area.

Multiple Customer Management (MCM)

Lets a “child” publisher delegate management of their Ad Manager inventory to a third-party “parent” publisher through an invitation process.

Depending on the chosen MCM delegation type (Manage Inventory or Manage Account), the parent publisher manages the child’s inventory in their own account or the child’s account.

Note: MCM replaces SPM in early 2022. The migration from SPM to MCM is in progress.

Native ad

A type of ad that mirrors the visual design of the user experience it lives within, and looks, feels, and behaves like natural content on the publisher property in which it’s displayed.

Native ad format

Defines the variables that make up a native ad. Variables comprise the content that will appear in the ad (such as Headline, Image, and Body Text). You can select Standard (system-defined) formats or create your own Custom (user-defined) formats.

Native styles

Manage the look and feel of your native ads within Ad Manager, for both web and apps. Ad Manager handles the rendering of your native ads based on native styles you specify within the product.


  1. The top-level business relationship, such as a network of websites or an ad network.
  2. A remnant line item type used to serve ads to a specific percentage of your remnant traffic.

Non-delivery cause

Explains why a line item that was eligible for an ad request didn’t deliver. This can help troubleshoot unexpected behavior and assure you that line items are behaving as intended.


Line items that are most commonly used to fill your site’s unsold inventory if not contractually obligated to deliver a requested number of impressions to other Guaranteed line items.

Non-guaranteed line items include: Network, Bulk, Price Priority, House, AdSense, and Ad Exchange. Under Programmatic Direct, Preferred Deal line items are also non-guaranteed.

Noscript block

A block of code used as an alternative when a user blocks JavaScript in their browser or when their browser can’t support client-side scripting. Same as noscript code.

Noscript code

A block of code used an alternative when a user blocks JavaScript in their browser or when their browser can’t support client-side scripting. Same as noscript block.

On-schedule indicator

The on-schedule indicator (OSI) is a metric that provides an indication of the pacing of an ad’s delivery. This is done by comparing the average number of ads delivered each day with the optimal daily delivery.

Open Auction

A Transaction type or “Deal type” where inventory which is available to all buyers is auctioned.

Open Bidding

Publishers and exchanges optimize yield management with server-to-server real-time bidding that uses a publisher’s existing tagging or SDK implementation. The unified Google Ad Manager technology stack also provides simplified trafficking, reporting and billing. Open Bidding was previously known as Exchange Bidding.

Optimized creative rotation

An option where Ad Manager gives roughly 75% of the impressions to the creative with the highest click-through rate, and the remaining 25% to the other creatives (to validate that the previously chosen “best” creative still has the highest click-through rate).


An agreement between an interactive advertising seller and a buyer that specifies the details of an advertising campaign. Orders contain one or more line items.


A creative that is displayed outside of a webpage or app (for example, pop-ups and pop-unders).


OTT (over-the-top) is video content that’s distributed to viewers over the internet. Advertisers have more opportunity to reach their audiences directly since they do not have to go through traditional TV providers.

OTT advertising takes place across multiple formats including smartphones, laptops, and tablets. There is also opportunity to reach a smaller but more segmented target group than traditional broadcast advertising.


To book an ad (or multiple ads) for a greater number of impressions or clicks than are forecasted to be available. In most cases, this leads to underdelivery of one or more ads.

Page awareness

The process where Ad Manager records which impressions occurred together when a page is viewed, when you run a forecast on roadblock ads.

Page view

A common concept across the web, representing a particular user loading and viewing a webpage one time. In Ad Manager ad serving, all ad requests corresponding to a page view are considered together because the behavior of any one of these ads affects what else might be eligible to serve. For example, an Exclusion Label prevents two ads with the same label from serving in the same Page View.


The upper level in a hierarchical system, such as the ad unit structure. The lower level is known as the child.

Parent inventory unit

The upper level of an inventory hierarchy. Every ad unit you define in your network has a parent inventory unit based on where you create the ad unit in the inventory hierarchy.

Parent publisher

In Multiple Customer Management, a third-party publisher that manages a child publisher’s inventory. Depending on the MCM relationship, parent publishers manage inventory in their own account (Manage Inventory) or in the child’s account (Manage Account).

Peel down

A creative that shows a glimpse of your ad in the corner of a webpage. When the user interacts, the rest of the ad peels down to reveal the full message.

Personally Identifiable Information (PII)

Any information that could be used to identify a specific user, such as an email address or a phone number. In the interests of protecting end-user privacy, Google ads product policies mandate that publishers must not pass any data to Google that Google could use or recognize as personally identifiable information.


A collection of one or more ad units that can be targeted as a group. You can add ad units to a placement to simplify the targeting of ads.


For video ads, this is a dynamic grouping of ads next to each other. Pods allow groups of video ads to be shown in sequence. Two types of pods exist:

  • Standard pods allow you to specify a maximum number of ads in the pod and each ad’s duration.
  • Optimized pods require you to specify the pod length (either a maximum or an exact duration). You can also optionally specify the maximum number of ads in the pod.


For video ads, this is the process of grouping ads dynamically.

Policy violation

Malware, misrepresentations, phishing, and other components of ads that prevent a safe and positive experience. Google scans creatives for policy violations, which you can then attempt to remove.

Poster image

For native video ads, image file to be shown while the video is loading, or until the user clicks to play the video. If this is not included, the first frame of the video is used. This image also displays after video completion.


Pretargeting is how Yield partners decide which bid requests they want to receive from publishers.

Premium Programmatic

Programmatic can be defined as the use of automated software or managed services to execute an advertising deal. In turn, premium programmatic means a variety of things depending on who you are. For publishers, it means having premium inventory valued and available to trusted and reputable advertisers as a complementary revenue source. For advertisers, premium programmatic means having access to exceedingly viewable and brand-safe inventory in the right setting with a relevant audience – with simplified workflows. Premium programmatic video has become a building block to many marketing campaigns through its simplicity.


Automated, machine-based selections for purchasing display advertising.


A type of expanding ad that pushes down the content of a webpage when the creative expands, moving the site out of the way to display the ad. Sometimes written as “push down”.

Real-time bidder

A server-to-server integration option for network buyers that allows networks to evaluate and bid on each available impression.

Redirect creative

Creative you use to track image or Flash ads that aren’t hosted and served by Google. Redirect creatives are commonly used for ads from a third-party network or affiliate provider.


Releasing inventory is the opposite of reserving it. When inventory is released, the reservation is “canceled”, and the inventory is freed up for forecasting and future ad booking. Inventory cannot be released without first being reserved.


Refers collectively to the line item types most commonly used to fill your site’s unsold inventory. Remnant line item types include Network, Bulk, Price Priority and can be used for various non-guaranteed transactions. They can satisfy an ad request when there are no guaranteed campaigns eligible to serve. Also see Non-guaranteed.

Remnant inventory

A phrase sometimes used to describe ad space (inventory) that you were unable to sell via guaranteed line items and, thus, was sold via either non-guaranteed line items or via Ad Exchange or AdSense line items, which make inventory available to auctions. Guaranteed line items are considered more desirable channels to sell inventory as they generally generate more revenue.

Ad space (inventory) can be thought of a neither remnant nor non-remnant, however, as this designation depends on what was eligible to serve to that inventory for any given ad request. Any inventory may be available to guaranteed line items, non-guaranteed line items, or to Ad Exchange or AdSense line items, depending on how your Ad Manager network is set up.

Designating inventory as remnant (or premium) is subjective and dependent on perceived value. The perceived value of inventory can shift over time. Ad space on a sport page may be perceived more valuable during playoff season rather than off season, for instance.


To generate a creative on a user’s browser.


When guaranteed (non-remnant) line items are booked in Ad Manager, Ad Manager “reserves” the inventory for this line item. This inventory reservation means that the impressions are considered to be “blocked off” for other ads running at a lower priority. Ad Manager forecasting accounts for inventory reservations when calculating future impression availability.

Reserve price

The minimum price a buyer needs to bid in order to be eligible for the auction.

Rich media creative

An ad containing animation, sound, video, or interactive features. Rich media creatives can be used either on their own or in combination with technologies such as streaming media and sound.


Several creatives being served from a line item together on the same webpage. Roadblocking blocks off the ad slots on a page and fills them with creatives from one line item.


An ad scheduled to run across an entire network of sites, except explicitly excluded sites, according to available inventory.


The percentage of available traffic that has been reserved for standard or sponsorship line items.

Seller-Defined Audiences [SDA]

Seller-Defined Audiences or SDA is a technical specification that outlines a method for communicating first-party audience attributes in an OpenRTB bid request without revealing user identity.

Session ad rules

Unlike standard ad rules, session ad rules are frequency-based and apply across multiple video streams. They control how long a visitor can watch content across streams before an ad shows, and how many ads that visitor sees. Like standard ad rules, session ad rules control the type of ad formats that appear and what the source of the ads should be.

Single-request mode

A GPT mode where tags call all ads once in the header, instead of requesting each ad separately inline with the ad slot. This is also sometimes called “Single Request Architecture” or SRA.

Start index

A pagination mechanism used with the max-results parameter for situations when totalResults exceeds 1000 and you want to retrieve items indexed at 1001 and beyond.

Targeting criteria

Key values that specify data like content information and an audience for the video, for example, age: 16-65; geo: US UK FR.

Targeting key

Each targeting key represents a category to which a line item is targeted, where a “category” is represented by a value assigned to the key. Consider a targeting key of “color”, where allowable values are “red” and “blue”. In this case, “color = red” represents a key/value pair that can be passed in the ad request and used for targeting an ad.

Targeting picker

Also known as a targeting selector or widget, this is the area on the Line item details page where you can select various targeting criteria for the line item.

Targeting value

A value passed for a specific targeting key, which can be used in line item targeting. For example, the value in the key-value pair for “color = red” is “red”.

Tear sheet

One or more screenshots of webpages or apps showing specific ads, for the purpose of proving to the advertiser that they ran in the way that the advertiser wanted.

Top-level ad unit

The highest-level ad unit in a hierarchy that consists of multi-level ad units. Can also be called “parent” or “upper-level” ad unit depending on context.

Traffic forecast

View historical traffic alongside future impression opportunities to find better ways to segment and package inventory.


Someone who works at a publisher and configures the ads to run in the ad server.


The process of creating orders and ads, controlling ad delivery, and targeting ads and keywords.

TVE (TV Everywhere)

TV Everywhere are services that accompany a cable/satellite subscription, allowing the customer to watch the channels in their package anywhere, both inside and outside the home, without a set-top-box. The content can be viewed on most viewing devices including a computer, smart TV, smartphone, or digital hub. Viewers must log into an app to use their subscription.

Unfilled impression

An unfilled impression, or blank ad, is an ad request that didn’t return an ad because none were eligible to serve. Avoid this by populating your network with widely targeted (run of network) ads like House ads or Ad Exchange ads.

Uplift fee

A fee that is paid for the increased value of Rich Media over standard ad serving.

Value CPM

Determines the price at which the line item competes with other line items.


A video format designed to standardize communication between video players and servers, facilitating traffic across all kinds of publishing platforms. Acronym for Video Ad Serving Template.

Video ad tag

Contains all the information required for a video ad request, including information about the master video ad and, if applicable, its companion ads. A master video tag is a URL used by the video player to retrieve the video ad and a companion tag is JavaScript in the webpage that indicates where the companion ads should show.


VOD refers to on-demand video content that can be watched over the internet or through a viewer’s STB at any time or place. This content typically includes shows, sports clips, news, or movies that have already aired. VOD provides convenience for viewers, affordable promotions, content variety, and larger reach.


For video ads, a waterfall involves having a hierarchy of ads ready to serve. If the first one doesn’t serve, the second one will; if the second doesn’t serve, the third one will, etc. This is commonly referred to as a fallback.


For line items, the portion, as a percentage, that you want a sponsorship line item to serve. For creatives, the portion, as a percentage, that you want a particular creative to serve within a creative rotation.

Weighted rotation

A type of creative rotation. Each creative will rotate based on the frequency that you specify.

Yield group

Name of the group of ad networks or exchanges which allows you to specify what inventory you want to sell with Ad Exchange, Open Bidding, or Mediation.

Yield partner

The term for “ad network” companies in Ad Manager. These companies can be used for Mediation for mobile apps or Open Bidding, depending on the settings.


Revenue and impression data for both direct sales (standard and sponsorship) and house or remnant inventory.

DOOH [Digital out of home] Advertising

Ad recall

The estimated number or percentage associated with remembering an advertisement within a certain time period of being exposed.

Ad server

A web server dedicated to the automated delivery of advertisements. Specifically enables the serving, tracking and management of advertising related messages and metrics.

Ad spot length

Duration of time representing the unit/format containing advertising content.


A series of mathematical instructions that are combined to direct a specific outcome.

Aspect ratio

The size dimensions of a screen’s image expressed as the ratio of the horizontal width to the vertical height of the display container.

Audience composition

A series of demographic, socioeconomic, and often behavioral factors of a network’s viewers that are often combined and include the percentage(s) of the total audience residing in each segment. Also refers to attributes of the audience of a given campaign or set of campaigns. Very often based on demographic (e.g. 56% male/44% female) or geographic attributes.

Audience impression

A unit of measure that includes the total number of people with an opportunity to view (aka traffic), notice, and dwell, calibrated to a media’s unit’s spot length. Also defined as the total number of times people passing a digital out of home display are likely to notice a message. This is also frequently referred to as “Visibility Adjusted Contact”, or “VAC”.

Audience reach measurement

A count of the total number of people or machines that receive ad messages. In DOOH, it refers to a count of people. Audience reach measurement also refers to the guideline developed by industry bodies that standardizes the measurement of machine-based measures (unique cookies, unique devices, unique browsers) and people-based measures (unique users or visitors). It is a compliance requirement that the audience reach measurement does not misrepresent machine-based measurements as people-based measurements. The measure’s status as either a people-based or a machine-based measure is required to be clearly disclosed.

Audience reach percentage

Percentage of an addressable target audience reached by a given campaign.


Refers to capability that delivers consumers the ability to hear the sound of an advertisement.


Typically, a measure of consumer or audience familiarity with a brand or product.

Behavioural profiles

Profile based on past-observed behaviour, typically within 30-90 days of recency. Behavioural profiles may or may not refer to a profile about unique users.

Behavioural segments

Segmenting audiences that are defined by previous behaviours, frequently their recent online behaviour, or offline purchases and visitation. For example, an auto advertiser may seek to reach anyone who’s visited an auto review site in the last 30 days.

Bid rates

A bid rate is a programmatic auction metric that shows how many bids are occurring in an auction. This is usually determined by one’s bid price and the frequency cap. An advertiser will typically only pay for impressions that are won.

Bid request

A bid request is a function that is triggered when a user visits a digital space with available ad units on it. It then requests an ad so that it can be displayed in the ad units for users.

Bid response

The response that gets sent by the DSP inside RTB system to address the bid request that was sent by SSP, Ad Network or Ad Exchange. The bid request normally comprises information about the amount of bid, an ID of the creative (banner or video), and ID of the participant that made a bid on the auction.

Brand health/brand equity

The measure of a way a brand is viewed/perceived by an audience and the associations with a brand.

Brand lift

A specific measurement within an advertising campaign that established the effectiveness in driving a positive shift and/or increase in customer awareness and perception of a brand.

Companion ad

The ad message which typically runs adjacent to an ad unit and/or programmed content.

Companion ad unit orientation

Refers to the size orientation of a companion ad - typically landscape or portrait.

Cone of vision

The immediate field of view for an individual. Also referred to as the area of sight. It extends from the subject as a 120° cone.


A metric that indicted the statistical significance of the lift observed. Results that are statistically significant at the 95% confidence level or higher are considered a suitable norm for making business decisions. Results that are statistically significant at the 80% confidence level or higher are often considered directional.


The extent to which a consumer considers a brand or product for purchase.

Consumer experience

The way the primary ad unit is experienced by a person watching the screen.

Content distribution server

A server or computer used to store content for distribution to digital signage.

Content management system (CMS)

An application used to create, schedule, manage and modify digital content. Digital signage software used to manage and schedule is an example of a content management system.

Conversion window

The number of days post exposure that a vendor attributes visits to a campaign. This typically varies by business and category.

Cost per lift store visit

The advertising price per exposed user visiting a store that can be attributed to the associated advertising campaign. This is typically determined by taking ad spend divided by lift store visits.

Cost per ratings point (CPP)

The cost of one rating point in any geographically defined market.

Cost per thousand (CPM)

The cost (price) to deliver 1,000 ad impressions on displays in a given market.

Cover (coverage)

The proportion of a target group who see one or more frames in an outdoor campaign (creating an IMPACT), in a defined period. Expressed as a percentage.


The geographic area covered by network installations.


Refers to a currency for each advertising medium. By creating a common currency measure of all formats equally, and giving a specific value to each, media space is able to be planned, traded, evaluated and reported based on the currency.


A partial segment of a medium’s overall operating hours, during which programming and/or advertising is customised to appeal to a particular demographic or target audience.

Deal ID

Also known as a deal identifier, is the unique number assigned to an automated ad buy.

Delivered play

The number of times a creative message (with a defined spot length) completes its full duration.

Demand Side Platform (DSP)

A technology platform that provides centralized and aggregated media buying from multiple sources including ad exchanges, ad networks and sell side platforms, often leveraging real time bidding capabilities of these sources. DSPs allow advertisers to buy impressions across a range of publisher sites, but targeted to specific users based on information including location and previous browsing behavior. Publishers make ad impressions available through marketplaces called ad exchanges and DSPs automatically decide which impressions make the most sense for an advertiser to buy. Price is often determined by a real-time auction through a process known as Real Time Bidding (See RTB).

Demo targeting

Targeting audiences that are defined by demographic attributes i.e. age, gender, household income, presence of children.


Refers to advertising or content presented on a digital screen, displaying moving or rotating messages.

Dwell time

The length of time an individual is in a Screen Exposure Zone which is a location from which the screen is visible and, if appropriate, audible. (Source: MRC Digital Place-Based Audience Measurement Standards Version 1)

Dynamic content

The process of creating and enabling responsive and editable creative messaging to deliver contextually relevant messages driven by the smart use of data across DOOH.

Effective frequency

Refers to the number of exposures necessary to make an impact and achieve memorable communication goals.


Shorthand for the specific type of location where advertising frames are placed. For example, RAIL indicates displays in rail stations and on trains, and RETAIL includes frames inside retail centres and pedestrian areas, among others.

Exposed–store conversion rate

The Rate at which an exposed audience has visited a store per impression served.


Message presence in the defined Screen Exposure Zone when content is deemed to be viewable, though does not require that the content be viewed or listened to. Exposure is also often referred to as Opportunity-to-See. (Source: MRC Digital Place-Based Audience Measurement Standards Version 1)


Refers to an individual advertising image. One face may typically make up part of a scrolling billboard, or series of images within a digital frame.


A measurement of an advertising campaign’s positive or favorable effectiveness in driving consumer perception of the associated brand.


The part of research work which is the on-the-ground data capture: eg: interviews with participants, and the time spent carrying a GPS device.

Foot traffic attribution

The measurement of an advertising campaign’s influence on physical visitation to a specified location. Enables advertisers to understand the drivers of in-store visitation.


Refers to the physical housing of an advertising display. A frame may show a single static image, a series of images with a scrolling mechanism, or a digital screen capable of displaying and exhibiting many individual adverts. Each separate advertising image is referred to as a FACE.


The number of times or instances in which the audience is exposed to content, advertising, or a specific ad, in the defined time frame. Frequency represents the average exposure when used in conjunction with cumulative reach estimates, though it can also be reported on the basis of specific exposure levels when evaluated in the context of discrete reach estimates through frequency distribution analyses.

Frequency capping

A limit/cap on how many times a specific user is shown a particular advertisement within a given time period.

Full screen

An ad unit which is displayed across all pixels - the only visible asset running on a display screen.

Geographic targeting

Targeting audiences defined by their location in the real-world. Location attributes can vary from granular attributes such as mobile/GPS-enabled latitude/longitude data tobroader attributes such as DMA or state/province. In technical specifications, targets may simply be referred to as “geo”, “user”, “audience” without spelling out the full term.

Global positioning system (GPS)

A satellite navigation system that provides precise location information for electronic devices.

Gross rating point (GRP)

A term used to measure the size of an audience reached by a specific media vehicle or schedule. In DOOH, a GRP is defined as the total number of impressions delivered, expressed as a percentage of a market population. One rating point represents impressions equal to 1% of the market population. In calculating GRPs, total impressions are first reduced to the in-market impressions of individuals who live in the defined market and are part of that market’s population base. A frequently referenced term along with GRPs is Target Rating Points (TRPs), which is calculated by the sum of the ratings generated by a segment - often referred to as Target Audience GRPs or more simply TRPs.


Refers to one individual, seeing one advert, one time. This is a mathematical rule applied in audience calculations. The definition of a Route IMPACT uses LIKELIHOOD TO SEE (LTS), not OPPORTUNITY TO SEE (OTS). Each is adjusted for VISIBILITY.


In DOOH, a measurement of response from an ad server to a media unit request from a user browser, recorded at a point as close as possible to the opportunity to see the media unit by the user - also referred to as a view.

Impression multiplier

The multiplier is a DOOH specific metric which informs the buyer exactly how many impressions are delivered in a single ad play. Each impression equates to one viewer. One bid request accounts for one ad play, thereby the multiplier highlights how many impressions are included per bid request.


The Percent difference in visitation rates between exposed audience and unexposed audience. Also known as “incremental lift”. Also refers to the portion of store visits by exposed audience attributed to lift (incremental visits above baseline visits).

Lift store visits

Our measure of audiences is a net estimation, incorporating eye-tracking studies to give a more realistic likelihood-to-see factor, rather than the opportunity to see (OTS) used by other media. Likelihood to see (LTS)

Look-alike targeting

Targeting audiences that have some number of attributes in common with an audience of interest. For example, an advertiser may target “look-alikes” of past purchasers, i.e.folks who share demographic or behavioural characteristics of past purchasers, but have not themselves made a purchase.

Maximum visibility distance

Derived from eye-tracking experiments, a defined distance from which posters can be seen. This varies, and often is dependent on the dimension of the frame.

Media unit

A unit defined by a DOOH network that describes the physical space on which a DOOH ad unit will play. Most often for digital place-based networks, a media unit is a single screen, however in locations where multiple screens are combined to portray content that is larger than one screen, the entirety of that group of screens may be referred to as a single media unit.

Message duration

The interval of time when a DOOH message is viewable.

Motorway service area (MSA)

Frames that are situated in the car parks or slip roads of motorway services.


The percentage of respondents who report to have noticed a screen.


A technique used in market research. The behaviour of people in interior spaces such as airports. A chosen group of people is observed as they move in the space, and a FACTOR for their likelihood to visit a specific location is produced.


The angle away from the path at which the poster is located. The offset is an important factor in calculating the visibility of the frame.

Open exchange

A way to buy/sell programmatic advertising. It is the least restrictive type of ad auction, with a media owner/publisher generally allowing any and all buyers to participate in accessing the ad inventory through this method. Usually, there is no direct relationship with the buyer. Media owners may choose to use blocklists and floor pricing to prevent certain advertisers from gaining access. On the advertiser side, they are often unaware of what media owner network they are buying on. DSPs usually present a list of exchanges/SSPs to the buyer that they automatically opt into. Buyers may not know or care that they are buying a specific network’s inventory. As a result of this, publishers can participate in the open auction on a blind basis.

Open RTB

The IAB standard for RTB supported by Hivestack and now used by most DSPs.

Opportunity to see (OTS)

A basic measure of media exposure. OTS estimates are measures of media content exposure (e.g. readership or TV viewing exposures) - not advertising. In OOH advertising. likelihood to see is used, and often incorporates eye tracking data for a more realistic assessment of media exposure.

Partial screen

A portioned or partitioned display screen wherein a primary ad unit is accompanied by content and/or a companion ad unit, content or some other visual enhancement (such as ticker, clock, or logo). Companion ads may be text, static display ads or rich media.


Describes research fieldwork that requires minimal to no input from a participant. Passive data is simple to process and subject to fewer input errors than inactive or survey-based methods.


Refers to a DOOH message which has a defined length, start and end time.

Playback format

The final format that a DOOH Network requires for an ad unit to be played across the network. Networks are always required to disclose the playback format.

Primary ad unit

Refers to the dominant area of advertising displayed on the screen. The primary ad unit is typically described as either full screen or partial screen.

Primary ad unit orientation

The scale of a DOOH ad unit, typically referred to as either “landscape” or “portrait”.

Private marketplace (PMP)

A way to buy/sell programmatic advertising. This auction type is very similar to an open exchange auction, except a publisher restricts participation to select buyers/advertisers. A publisher may choose to not participate in an open auction and only run an invitation-only auction. It is important to note that an invitation-only auction is still an auction and buyers will be expected to bid on inventory. A publisher may choose to expose different information such as transparency or data, through the use of deal IDs or line items to add value to this select group of buyers while using this method.

Proof of play

The logging of playout data on specific media owner players/networks, each time a piece of content is played. A player logs an occurrence, stores it and is later provided to advertisers for analysis and audit verification.

Psychographic targeting

Targeting audiences defined by personality, interests, attitudes or mindsets (e.g. financial optimists, environmentally-conscious consumers). Often driven from offline surveys and stated preferences.

Purchase intent

Purchase intent is a measure of the probability that a consumer will purchase a service or product.


The net (unduplicated) count or percent of the defined universe of the target audience exposed to content, advertising, or a specific ad, in a screen within a defined timeframe. This time frame can be a day, week, or month, or even less-frequent time periods although more frequent reports are generally desirable to users. (Source:MRC Digital Place-Based Audience Measurement Standards Version 1)

Reach and frequency

The estimated number of people that see an advertising campaign, and the average number of times they see it, in a defined period.


Consumer response to advertising - brand or promotional.

Real-time bidding (RTB)

A way of transacting media that allows an individual ad impression to be put up for bid in real time. This is done through a programmatic on-the-spot auction, which is similar to how financial markets operate. RTB allows for addressable advertising; the ability to serve ads to consumers directly based on their demographic, psychographic, or behavioral attributes.


In market research, refers to the recollection of the advertising they have seen. This is known as recall.


The degree to which advertising messaging influences the consumer’s perspective and/or drives purchase decisions or the desired brand impact.


A participant in a research study. For route, respondents are selected based on their location, and fulfil a specific demographic requirement.


Targeting audiences that are defined by having recently shown interest in said advertiser, interest most often being defined as visiting the advertiser’s website.


A display device or medium designed to deliver digital place-based, digital out of home, and/or advertising content whether it be video, audio, or both.

Seat ID

A unique identifier used to offer inventory to specific buyers on a DSP platform.


Dividing a broad group of consumers or businesses into subgroups (known as segments) based on shared demographic/psychographic/behavioral attributes. Segmentation is often used to create target audiences (comprised of one or more segments) or to customize an offer or message for specific segments.

Served impression

An ad that was reported to have begun to render at the screen. Note that in the vast majority of DOOH experiences, all ads (when served) are fully viewable for the entirety of the play. In the digital media world, this term is commonly known as a “play”.

Served plays

The number of times a creative (with a defined spot length) has started playing (may not play fully).

Share of impacts

Average % share of viewed impacts across the dimensions reported on for the campaign (e.g. play, hour, panel, geography).

Share of time

Average % share of total time across the dimensions reported on for the campaign (e.g. play, hour, panel, geography).

Shopping centre exterior

Open-air shopping spaces, such as town centre pedestrianised streets or walkways around malls.

Shopping centre interior

Malls, or other types of interior shopping spaces, inside buildings.

Spot length

The duration of time the advertiser has to run their creative message in.

Store conversion rate

Rate at which exposed consumers visited the store per impression served.

Store visits

Total number of store visits attributed to the campaign, based on store visitation behaviour observed and the total number of impressions for the campaign.

Street furniture

Advertising displays, that typically provide a public amenity, positioned at close proximity to pedestrians for eye-level viewing or at a curb-side within view of vehicular traffic.


Any audience reflecting the most desired consumer prospects for a product or service, defined by age, sex, race, ethnicity or income; or their combinations for any geographic definition. Expanded targets include purchasing, behavioural and audience segmentations.

Target audience

A specific group that an advertiser seeks to reach with its campaign. Target audience is defined by a certain attribute or set of attributes (e.g. women aged 18-24, sports car lovers, shoppers in-market for a new car).


Volumes of people moving, whether on foot or in vehicles.

Traffic intensity model

A complex mathematical model that incorporates all of our findings about traffic, vehicular and pedestrian. We have created a map for the entire country that records every road, pathway and corridor along which people travel. The model ascribes volumes of people-flows to each segment of this map. Known affectionately as TIM.


Refers to displays that affixed to moving public transportation vehicles or in the common areas of transit terminals and stations.

Trip stage

A trip stage is not a full journey, but a segment of route GPS data; or, in other words, a ‘mode of transport travel segment’. One journey can be formed by two or more trip stages by different modes.

Unexposed – store conversion rate

The rate at which unexposed members of the audience visited the store.

Unique traffic

The unduplicated audience that has an opportunity to see any message during a reporting period.


A geographic universe or coverage definition stated on the basis of populationamounts is required for digital place-based / out of home networks subject to measurement. These may be customized (or limited) based on the specific attributes of the network and the associated venue traffic. In some cases a customized universe can be stated or a general population estimate (e.g., USCensus estimates) for media comparability purposes. (Source: MRC DigitalPlace-Based Audience Measurement Standards Version 1, w/o the “Out-of-Home” reference in the first section).


The place and location of the advertising network and screens. Examples include supermarkets, office buildings, gas stations, and other places where consumers can be found. (Source: MRC Digital Place-Based Audience MeasurementStandards Version 1)

Viewable impression

In online/digital media, a served ad impression can be only be classified as a “viewable impression” if the ad meets all of the following criteria: it was contained in the viewable space of the browser window, it is in an in-focus browser tab, and it meets pre-established minimum percent of ad pixels within the viewable space and the length of time the ad is in the viewable space of the browser. It is recognized that an “opportunity to see” the ad exists with a viewable ad impression, which may or may not be the case with a served ad impression. (Source: MRC Viewable Ad Impression Measurement Guidelines Ver. 2.0).


The area of research that, using eye-tracking methods, produces data on the probability that an advert is visible to the viewer.

Visibility area

The area around a frame in which it can be seen. It incorporates the maximum visibility distance of the frame, and the angle that route has defined to mark its catchment area (120°).

Visual units

A collection of frames that are in sync; one ad typically plays on all the connected frames at the same time.


Advanced TV

An umbrella term referring to any TV content that has evolved beyond traditional, linear TV delivery methods.

OTT (Over-the-top)

Over-the-top media services that allow access to TV-like content delivered over the internet, bypassing traditional terrestrial TV formats. OTT services can be accessed via CTV, as well as through apps on other devices with an internet connection, such as smartphones and tablets.

IPTV (Internet Protocol television)

Internet Protocol television is the delivery of TV content over Internet Protocol (IP) networks. This is in contrast to delivery through traditional terrestrial, satellite and cable TV formats.

HbbTV (Hybrid broadcast broadband TV)

HbbTV is a global initiative aimed at combining the broadcast and broadband delivery of entertainment services to consumers. What it means in practical terms is that you can get both standard broadcast FTA (free-to-air) TV and IPTV (internet delivered) TV services all in one place.

On Demand

VOD (Video-on-demand)

A service that allows viewers to watch video content wherever and whenever they choose, rather than at the scheduled broadcast time.

SVOD (Subscription VOD)

A video content service for which the user pays a subscription for e.g. Netflix, Amazon Prime etc.

BVOD (Broadcaster VOD)

A video content service delivered by a broadcaster, typically funded by advertising and therefore free to the user.

AVOD (Ad-supported VOD)

A video content service that is funded by advertising. This includes video services that are free to the user and also those that offer a subscription fee as well as showing ads. Broadcaster VOD services that are funded by advertising are included in this, but also YouTube etc.

TVOD (Transactional VOD)

A video content service where customers pay for each piece of video-on-demand content. For example, a customer would pay a fee for each movie or TV show that they watch.

Buying and Selling

Programmatic TV

An automated approach to buying and delivering TV ads.

Addressable TV

The ability to serve different ads to different audience segments watching the same TV content.


DAI (Dynamic ad insertion)

Campaign optimisation technology that allows advertisers to dynamically change ads within VOD content, i.e. swap the ad creative shown, making it possible to target specific viewers rather than serving the same ad to each viewer.

ACR (Automatic content recognition)

Identification technology that allows content to be recognised by video, audio or watermark cues that are matched back to a database for reference and verification.

Generic Ad terms


A programmatically generated display of sequential images, creating the illusion that objects in the image are moving. Not digital video, as it relates to this document (see the definition for “Video”).


The audible file that may accompany ads. Advertising audio should never play without user-initiation.

Also known as “display ads”, banner advertisements are a form of graphical ads embedded into a webpage, typically including a combination of static/animated images, text and/or video designed to convey a marketing message and/or cause the user to take an action. Banner dimensions are typically defined by width and height, represented in pixels.


Also known as “interstitial” ads, between-the-page ad units display as a user navigates from one webpage to the next webpage. The ad appears after the user leaves the initial page, but before the target page displays on the user’s screen. Typically, the ad is self-contained within its own browser window, but may also appear briefly as an overlay on the target page rather than in its own browser window.


An IAB Universal Brand Package ad unit template designed with options for rich interactivity to display prominently inline with Publishers’ webpage content. A distinct feature of the Billboard is a close button that a user may click to collapse the ad completely if the user doesn’t want to see the ad.


A small rectangular standard ad unit with the size 120×60 pixels.


A unit of digital information in computing and telecommunications that most commonly consists of eight bits. Historically, a byte was the number of bits used to encode a single character of text in a computer and for this reason it is the basic addressable element in many computer architectures.


The advertising period in which an ad delivery strategy is executed.

CLEAR Ad Notice

CLEAR is an acronym for “Control Links for Education and Advertising Responsibly,” a set of technical guidelines developed by the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) and the Network Advertising Initiative (NAI) to empower members of the online advertising community to communicate their presence and behavioral advertising targeting practices (if any) to consumers in a simple and direct manner. Derived from:


An interaction between a website visitor and the browser in which the website visitor uses a device, such as a mouse, to move the cursor (or pointer) to an active area of the screen and then deliberately interacts with that area by clicking a button on their device, triggering an event. In the case of touch-screen devices, the user “clicks” by touching the active area with their finger or a stylus.

Close X

A creative control that enables a user to close an ad (remove it from view) or to reduce an expanded panel back to its original size.


An event where the expanded panel of an expandable ad reduces to its original size, or disappears completely.


Active elements of an ad that enable a user to control the advertising experience. Examples of common controls include the “Close X” button in an expandable ad or the Play/Pause/Mute buttons in a video player.


CPU is an acronym for Central Processing Unit, the key component of a computer system, which contains the circuitry necessary to interpret and execute program instructions.

CPU Usage %

A guideline for the amount of central processing power used to display advertising content compared to what’s available on an individual’s computer. CPU usage percentage can be measured directly, during the execution of an online ad. In addition to file size, the complexity of drawings, gradients, slow moving animations and detailed moving elements can affect the number of calculations the CPU must make for each frame.

CPU Spike

A brief increase in central processing power, sustained for no more than a few seconds, experienced while “heavy” content is loaded/executed.


An advertising unit created by an ad designer, in accordance with publisher specifications and guidelines, for the purpose of communicating a marketing message to that publisher’s audience. One creative may consist of multiple files in various formats, such as standard images, animation, video, execution files (.html, .js, etc.) and other files that work together for an interactive experience.

Creative Dimensions

Measured in pixels, the width and height of an ad unit (WxH). The width is always the first dimension listed, followed by the height dimension (i.e. an ad that is 300×250 is 300 pixels wide by 250 pixels high).


The graphical representation of a “pointer” on a user screen, controlled by the user’s interaction with controlling devices such as a mouse, mouse pad, stylus or other input hardware.

Expandable Ads

Rich media ads that can be enlarged to dimensions beyond the initial dimensions of the placement they fill on the webpage. The user initiates expanding events, sometimes after the ad initially expands briefly on its own to catch the user’s attention.

Expanded Dimensions

The secondary dimensions of an expanding ad unit (after the ad is expanded). Initial dimensions are fit to the dimensions of the placement. Then, either by auto-play or by user interaction, the ad unit expands to its secondary dimension.


An IAB Universal Brand Package ad unit template that is 350×3000 pixels, divided into five 350×600 pixel segments that scroll by user interaction though a 350×600 pixel placement “window.”


Software developed by Adobe used to build, generate, and play animated files. Also used to define the creative files generated by the program.


FPS is an acronym for Frames Per Second, the metric used to indicate the frame rate of animated or video creative content.

Frame Rate

The rate at which video frames or animated images display as the video or animated file executes, measured as the number of frames per second (fps).


GPU is an acronym for Graphics Processing Unit. In modern computers, the GPU handles graphical processing, decreasing the processing burden handled by the CPU.

Hot Spot

A “hot spot” is an area of an ad unit, which when rolled-over/rolled-on by the user’s cursor, such rollover triggers an event (i.e. expand ad). The hotspot should never be larger than 1/4th the size of the original (collapsed) ad unit. The trigger event should not occur unless the user’s cursor rests in the hotspot zone for at least 1-second. Hotspots should never initiate audio (audio should only be initiated by a click). When hotspots are used, the trigger event should stop immediately upon the user’s cursor leaving the hotspot zone (i.e. ad collapses), and the ad unit should return to its original state.

In-Banner Video

A video delivered as part of (inside of) the display ad creative for a given placement rather than initiating the use of a video player.

Initial Dimension

The original width and height (in pixels) of an expanding ad. Expanding ads are designed to expand to dimensions larger than the initial dimensions.

Initial File Load

The size of the creative file(s) for an ad, measured in KB or MB, that load along with (inline with) the webpage files that load when a user first initiates a page load. The initial file load size of an ad is limited in order to preserve the page load performance and thus the user’s web browsing experience.


See ‘Between-the-Page’

Kilobyte (KB)

A multiple of the unit ‘byte’ for digital information, used to quantify computer memory or storage capacity equal to a 1,000 bytes (or technically, 2^10 = 1,024 bytes). For the purposes of this document, this measure relates to creative file size. (See definition for Byte)

Labeling Requirements

The minimal requirements for distinguishing an online advertisement from regular webpage content.

Megabyte (MB)

A multiple of the unit ‘byte’ for digital information, used to quantify computer memory or storage capacity equal to 1,000 kilobytes (or technically, 2^20 = 1,048,576 bytes). For the purposes of this document, this measure relates to creative file size. (See definition for Byte)


The act of a user moving the cursor away (off) from the hot spot of an ad. Mouse-off by a user may trigger an event, such as collapsing an expanding panel or stopping any animation in progress.


The act of a user moving the cursor and resting it on the hot spot of an ad for at least one second. Mouse-over may trigger an event such as expanding the ad or initiating an animated sequence within the ad. Mouse-over may NOT initiate audio play


Acronym for Online Behavioral Advertising. The collection of data from a particular computer or device regarding Web viewing behaviors over time and across non- Affiliate Web sites for the purpose of using such data to predict user preferences or interests in order to deliver advertising to that computer or device based on the preferences or interests inferred from such Web viewing behaviors. Online Behavioral Advertising does not include the activities of First Parties, Ad Delivery or Ad Reporting, or contextual advertising (i.e. advertising based on the content of the Web page being visited, a consumer’s current visit to a Web page, or a search query).

Definition from page 10 of the Self-Regulatory Principles for Online Behavioral Advertising:

OBA Self-Regulation

Developed by leading industry associations to apply consumer-friendly standards
to online behavioral advertising across the Internet, the Self-Regulatory Program consists of seven Principles that correspond with the “Self-Regulatory Principles for Online Behavioral Advertising” proposed by the Federal Trade Commission in February 2009 that also address public education and industry accountability issues raised by the Commission.

Definition derived from page 1 of the Self-Regulatory Principles for Online Behavioral Advertising:


An ad unit that displays over the webpage content briefly when initiated.


A video, animation or audio control that enables users to stop the video, animation, or audio from playing until the user is ready to resume play.

Pixel (as a unit of measurement)

The smallest unit of measure for graphical elements in digital imagery, used as the standard unit of measure for ad creative (i.e. 300×250 pixels). Pixels may also represent x/y coordinates relevant to a given space, such as the browser window, an application workspace or the user’s computer screen. (See also “Tracking Pixel”)


A video, animation or audio control that enables the user to initiate (or avoid initiating) the video, animation or audio of an ad.

Polite file load

Withholding a portion of the total ad creative file size (besides any initial file load size) from loading on a page until publisher content has loaded.

Pop-up Ad

Any advertising experience where visiting a website in an initial browser window initiates a secondary browser window to deliver an ad impression directly above the initial browser window.


An IAB Universal Brand Package ad unit template that uses up to three interactive modules chosen (by the ad designer) from a variety of modular application options in a 350×1050 pixel space.

Progress Bar

A video or animation control that shows users the progression of the video or animation in relation to its total duration.

Progressive Load Video

A distribution method for serving video files in which the video file downloads progressively into the cache of a user’s computer, much the same way images and other content elements are downloaded.


An IAB Universal Brand Package ad unit template designed for rich interaction in a space similar to, but larger than, an expanding leaderboard, with initial dimensions of 970×90 pixels and expanded dimensions of 970×415 pixels. When the ad is expanded, it “pushes” page content down rather than displaying over the top of page content as most expandable ads do.


An event programmed into an expandable ad the causes the ad to be reduced to its original dimensions (i.e. the expanded portion of the ad retracts).

Rising Stars

See ‘Universal Brand Package’


The willful pause of the user’s cursor on the target portion of the creative (the “hot spot”), such pause lasting at least one second in duration, before an action may be initiated by the ad (i.e. trigger an expand event, etc.). This one-second pause/delay requirement prevents unwanted, user-initiated actions and false reporting of user engagement. Rollover may NOT initiate audio.


An IAB Universal Brand Package ad unit template initially displayed as one of three standard ad unit dimensions, but upon user initiation, “pushes” publisher content to the left to display a canvas of up to 970×550 pixels full of rich interaction.


A standard ad unit with dimensions of 160×600 pixels.


An IAB Universal Brand Package Ad Unit template designed with an overlay “slider” (90 pixels high) that rests at the bottom of a publisher’s page and when prompted by user interaction, slides page content to the left for a canvas of 970×550 pixels full of rich interaction possibilities for user engagement.

Standard Ad Units

A set of ad specifications for standard image or animated in-page ad units that establish a framework for advertising inventory and webpage design.

Streaming Video

A distribution method for serving video files such that the video is played over a persistent connection between the browser and the ad server. Versions of the file at different levels of compression (quality) can be served based on detection of the user’s Internet bandwidth.

Submission Lead Time

The number of business days (non-weekend/non-holiday days) prior to a campaign going live in which a publisher needs to validate advertiser submitted creative(s) for a campaign.


Acronym for Shockwave Flash™. “.swf” is the file naming extension used for animated files complied using Adobe Flash™ software.

Tracking Pixel

A 1×1 pixel-sized transparent image that provides information about an ad’s placement. In many cases, a tracking pixel is used to notify an ad tracking system that either an ad has been served (or not served, in some cases) or that a specific webpage has been accessed. Also known as: beacon, web beacon, action tag, redirect, etc.

Universal Ad Package (UAP)

A set of four ad units (728×90, 300×250, 160×600 and 180×150 pixels) offered by UAP-compliant publishers as a ‘package’ where ads in in these four formats are used collectively across the publisher’s site, enabling advertisers to reach more of the publisher’s audience.

Universal Brand Package (UBP) Display Ad Units

IAB invited companies and individuals to submit ad templates designed to drive brand equity. Six templates were chosen to be validated by the market. Universal Brand Package Display Ad Units are designed to be the only ad on a page. Their file load limits are larger than for other ads, so not only would a Universal Brand Package Ad Unit overshadow any other ads on the page but they would also compromise the performance of the page should other rich media ads be allowed to load simultaneously.


An anonymous person who uses a web browser to access Internet web content.

User Initiation

The willful act of a user to engage with an ad. Users may interact by clicking on the ad, and/or rolling over an ad (or a portion of an ad). When a user engages the ad using a rollover action, the user’s cursor must rest on the hotspot for at least one second before any action may be initiated in the ad. See the definition for rollover for more information.

Video (aka “Digital Video”)

In online advertising, the digital recording of a physical event or animated files that have been transcribed into a digital video format.


A control that enables users to adjust the audio output of ad creative. Volume controls should always allow adjustment down to zero (0) output.


Enumerated layers of elements and content on a publisher’s webpage. Consideration of the z-element in page content design such as navigation, imagery, and ads is important for providing a seamless experience when page content overlaps (i.e. an expanding ad with a z-index that is lower [on the z-index scale] than navigational elements may give the appearance that page navigational elements are showing through the expanded portions of the ad).

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