Help Center Manage Your Account Ad Tag

How do I setup a passback ad tag?

When you serve multiple ads from different ad servers and ad networks, some vendors might not have any available or suitable ads to display. It could be that they do not have any premium ads or have any ads that meet your ad targeting criteria. In this case, there are several choices:
  1. Display a public service ad (i.e. a PSA ad)
  2. Display a vendor's default ad or a place-holder ad
  3. Display a passback ad tag, or a fallback or backup ad tag, of your choice
Most likely, you want the third option because it gives you more control and the best chance of capturing any residual ad revenue.

In our ad server, you can create an additional zone and link appropriate ads to this new zone. You then send this zone's ad tag to the ad network to be used as the passback, or backup, ad tag. This ad tag will be called when there is no available ad to serve from this vendor or when an impression cannot be filled. It is a very flexible setup. You can have a chain of many vendors with different priorities. This allows you to utilize multiple ad networks together and capture the highest revenue from each one.

Example: One Ad Partner

You have an ad partner that can only fill 80% of the impressions you sent to them. 20% of the time, you want to display ads from other ad networks and from your own advertisers. Here is how to create the backup zone and get its ad tag:
  • Create a zone (eg: Backup-20)
  • Create one or more ads
  • Link the ad(s) to the zone above
  • Give the zone's ad tag to the ad partner so they can put it as a backup ad tag in their adserver
  • This zone's ad tag will be called when your ad partner cannot fill the impression
  • You can manage, change, switch ads from within your account in our ad server without the need to update the ad tag

Example: Multiple Ad Partners

You have 3 ad tags from ad networks: A, B, and C. Ad network A is a premium network but it has limited impressions and also certain country restrictions. You have a zone ABC that rotates A, B and C with ad A having the highest serving priority. When ad network A does not have any premium ads to display, it gives you an option to enter an ad tag for default/fallback/passback.

In this case, you can setup a new zone BC and link ad B and ad C to this new zone. You then generate BC zone's serving code and paste this ad tag into ad network A as the passback ad tag. If A does not have an available ad, it will call the passback tag and display an ad from ad network B or C.

Fill Rate Tracking

You can track filled and unfilled/passback impressions to calculate the fill rate. To do this, you would generate the event tracking pixel URL for the ad/zone and place it into the suitable location within the third-party ad server or ad tag.

Depending on the ad exchange, ad network or ad server, its ad tag might support filled impression tracking by allowing you to enter a pixel URL into the third-party ad tag. This pixel URL will be called when an impression is filled and not passed back to another tier.

On the other hand, some other ad servers/exchanges provide a section where you can enter your a passback/default ad tag and here you can paste the passback/unfilled tracking pixel URL together with the secondary/passback zone's serving code in this area

Flexible Passback via a Redirect Zone

If you have multiple tiers of ad network tags and do not want to manually update the passback ad tag with all of your ad network accounts, you can use a redirect zone. Instructions to setup a redirect zone:
  • Create a new zone (eg: "Ad Network ABC Passback")
  • Set its secondary zone to be a Tier 2 zone
  • Do not link any ad to this zone (i.e. leave it empty)
  • Get the serving code for this zone and paste it into "Ad Network ABC" as the passback tag
  • When you need to change the tier order from "Tier 1 to Tier 2" to "Tier 1 to Tier 3", you would only need to update the secondary zone setting within AdSpeed for the zone "Ad Network ABC Passback" from "Tier 2" to "Tier 3". You do not have to update the passback tag within "Ad Network ABC".
How it works:
  • When "Ad Network ABC" does not have any available ad, it will call the passback tag
  • The passback tag calls this zone "Ad Network ABC Passback", which is empty
  • Therefore, it will look into the secondary zone for an ad there. This secondary zone could be a "Tier 2" or "Tier 3" zone, depending on your setting for this zone in AdSpeed.

Other Articles in Ad Tag

This section describes the ad tag (serving code) with basic and advanced settings. It includes common ad serving setup instructions and answers frequently asked questions when integrating the ad tag into your site, blog or app.

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