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Should You Use An Ad Server On Your Website?

By Expert Author: Michael David Wilson

A recent article in the Huffington Post stating that more and more recent college graduates are forgoing the traditional “brick-and-mortar” employment positions, opting instead to head immediately into freelancing. As both new and experienced webmasters, bloggers, and commercial online publishers begin to depend on the profitability of their online properties as their main source of income, selecting the most efficient ad server is a very critical decision and can often be very confusing.


A recent article in the Huffington Post stating that more and more recent college graduates are forgoing the traditional “brick-and-mortar” employment positions, opting instead to head immediately into freelancing. As both new and experienced webmasters, bloggers, and commercial online publishers begin to depend on the profitability of their online properties as their main source of income, selecting the most efficient ad server is a very critical decision and can often be very confusing.


Evaluate your Advertising Needs

An important first step before selecting your ad server provider will be to first determine your specific and unique short-term and long-term advertising goals. Every website is different. Every website has a different targeted demographic. Switching between providers in the future can be a challenging and time consuming process. Therefore, it is important to sit down and take the extra time to determine the precise features, preferences, requirements that you will need in order to properly and efficiently manage and display your ads on your web pages. Consider your own individual strengths and weaknesses, including your growth projections for the business, your own level of technical expertise, and of course your financial budget.


Advertising Management

Each type of ad serving network will operate differently. Some are very intuitive and simple while others can be very technically challenging. Depending on your level of experience, you will want to choose the best option that is user-friendly and will provide you with the abilities to operate quickly. Although speed and efficiency is a primary concern, you also want to look for an ad server that supports multiple different types of formats, ad types, and templates while providing you with already built-in management capabilities. One thing about the Internet is that online market is always changing. For example, the rise of video marketing has increased significantly in recent years. Plan ahead and choose the system that is going to offer the most versatility in the long haul.


Keep the Advertisers and Readers in Mind

The companies that will be advertising on your webpages will want their ads to reach the right people at just the right time. Therefore, you not only need to take into account your own individual preferences but also those of your future advertisers and visitors to your site. Readers will want to read relevant ads, and advertisers want their ads to be read. It is a two-way street. You need to make both parties happy. Consider if your ad serving solution provides you with the ability to serve ads from third-party ad networks. Is there a limit to the number or types of third-party ads? Are there any delays involved with these types of ads?


Free vs. Paid

Cost is always a valid consideration, especially for the novice online entrepreneur. Be aware of some of the pitfalls of using a free ad server rather than an affordable paid alternative. In the long term, the free varieties may not prove to be the best option. Very often, these free solutions do not provide customer service or technical support. Instead, you are offered user-participation forums where you can post questions and get advice. However, it can be difficult to determine whether or not the guidance that you receive is actually accurate. The free ad serving networks will typically come with far fewer features, as well.

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