We’ve been working with hundreds of publishers for the better part of the decade and if there’s one thing we would advise publishers during the crisis is to change the floor prices. To be frank, it’s not entirely new. You have been optimizing floor prices based on the seasonality and deals in pipeline. For instance, your Q1 price floors will probably be 20 to 30 percent lower than that of last year’s Q4.
Now, you just have to understand the same process to this scenario. But there’s one major difference. This isn’t predicted by anyone let alone publishers and you have no reference to rely on. As you are clear what our goal is, let’s see how we can figure out the ideal price floor value.
#1 Some publishers have floor price on the bidder level, some have on the wrapper-level, some have on the inventory-level, etc. Based on your setup, pull out reports for the last three months and see the trend. And, adjust your eCPM for now. Don’t refer last year’s data to do it. Use the most recent data and repeat.
Pro tip: You can go granular as well. Segregate the data based on geographies, ad unit sizes, etc. to see if the eCPM values are improving for a particular dimension. For instance, when we studied over 2 billion ad impressions, we noticed eCPM values from certain geographies including Germany and UAE are increasing (MoM), while U.S. publishers experience ~9% drop.
#2 If you want to give dynamic price floors a try, do it for a couple of days (a week would be better) and measure the impact. For instance, tCPM (Target CPM) feature from Google Ad Manager can change the price floor to capture more bids. But the problem is, it won’t adjust the price floors substantially. The situation we are in, requires a considerable change. So, first do it manually and let algorithms take it from there.
#3 Define your goal. For some publishers, the goal is to maximize fill rate and for some, to maximize eCPM. We’ve seen publishers from completely cutting off a specific content category from programmatic ads and use it for subscription. While you can’t run paywalls out of the blue, you can categorize inventories based on the vertical and set different price floors. Because some content can perform better than the others.