Optimize Your Ad Yield; Let Header Bidding Compete with Direct Sales

When it comes to yield management in online advertising, most publishers have a good idea of when inventory will be in demand. However, it can be difficult to figure out who should have access to inventory and at what cost. Header bidding helps publishers see the true value of their inventory--especially when it's allowed to compete with direct sales.

How Header Bidding Helps with Yield Management
Yield management is the art of adjusting inventory price in response to factors like demand or competition. A part of effective management is being able to see how demand sources are bidding on inventory and what they're bidding on. When a publisher uses header bidding, inventory is open to everyone at the same time. Not only does this help identify your most valuable segments, it also helps you track participation rates between direct sales vendors and header bidding deals. In allowing the two to compete, publishers can make the most of their online advertising strategy.

Why You Should Let Header Bidding Compete with Direct Sales

1. You don't have to do it forever
With DFP, it's easy to change priority levels so that header deals compete with direct sales. Allow the two to compete for a month or so, and you can see who is bidding (and winning) on specific inventory. You can then use this information to dig deep into your existing pricing structure and update it.

2. It's an opportunity to know your worth. 
When you allow header bidding to compete with direct sales, you might find that header deals perform better. Tracking CPMs and other reporting data will help you get a more accurate floor price on your inventory. For future direct sales deals, you can provide a floor price that better matches the demand for that segment.

3. In the end, you'll make more money. 
Even if you allocate header bidding to a percentage of your inventory and maintain direct sales prioritization, you still have a better idea of the value of different inventory segments. Header bidding advertisers are often willing to pay more to access a niche audience but may bid less frequently. Diversifying your online advertising portfolio with a mix of direct sales and header bidding allows you to get the best of both worlds and increase revenue.

It all boils down to being informed about the value of your inventory and adjusting floor prices and bidding conditions. Putting this into practice regularly will improve your bottom line.

About the Author: Stephen Johnston Jr is the founder and CTO of publisher monetization platform PubWise.io.