Digital Marketing

Advertisers Wasted Over £600m on Non-Viewable Ads in 2016

2 March, 2017

UK advertisers spent around £606 million on online ads last year that failed to meet minimum viewability thresholds, according to the latest figures from ad verification company Meetrics - with UK viewability levels significantly behind other European countries.

In the final quarter of 2016, only 49% of banner ads served met the IAB and Media Ratings Council's recommendation that 50% of the ad was in view for at least one second - 5% lower than at the beginning of 2016.

By comparison, viewability levels in Austria are at a much higher 68%, while Germany reports 58% and France 57%.

"Despite the ongoing attention and initiatives focused on addressing viewability, things just aren't really improving,” said Anant Joshi, Meetrics' director of international business.

"Yes, you can argue viewability has stabilised over the last couple of quarters and is marginally up on 6 months ago but the reality is viewability levels are lower than a year ago and over half of ads served still aren't viewable."

Joshi said that while there is a lot of effort going into measuring viewability, there is "nowhere near enough" being done to optimise viewability - especially with programmatic campaigns.

"For example, it's very easy to extract a list of under-performing domains - be it viewability or view time - and exclude or de-list them from any automated buying platform," he said.

"This means buying from the higher performing domains can be increased. A greater focus on simple steps such as these would see viewability rise significantly in 2017."