Key Points

  • Google Ad Manager (GAM) provides a high-quality ad server as part of its offerings to publishers.
  • Early-stage publishers could feasibly use GAM's ad server exclusively.
  • Getting full access to GAM requires being a very large publisher or working with a partner like Playwire.

Because Google has been at the top of the digital advertising game for a while now, it has created tools to make it all but essential to the vast majority of publishers and advertisers.

One of those tools is Google Ad Manager (GAM), which is the best ad server on the market. So, what is it like serving ads with GAM? It's simple, and that's why it works so well as a part of most publishers' ad tech stacks. Read on to get the full story about ad serving with Google Ad Manager.

Google products and tools try to make DIY doable for digital publishers, but despite their efforts, most publishers struggle to do advertising in a way that will actually get their ad revenue to where it needs to be. That's why you need a partner like Playwire. Contact us to learn more about how we can help you leverage Google demand for your ad inventory, boost your ad performance, and a whole lot more.

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The Complete Guide to Ad Servers

Read the Complete Guide to Ad Servers

GAM Dominates Ad Serving

If dominating the ad server sector was a stated goal of Google when they launched their ad server, then someone in Mountain View, California, can check a very big item off of their to-do list.

Biggest Name in the Business

the Google ad server is now the most commonly used ad server in the industry - hard numbers are hard to come by, but anecdotally, around 80% of publishers doing digital advertising are using GAM's ad server for at least part of it.

It's Google, after all. There's a level of trust and global buy-in there that makes it a go-to choice for publishers in the early stages of fleshing out their revenue strategies.

Google Tags for Server-Side Communication

The vast majority of advertisers and agencies are using Google tags (often referred to as DCM tags) - a good estimate is probably somewhere around 90%. Typically, the advertisers' servers will communicate with whatever server a publisher uses to serve an ad unit to confirm ad campaign performance and numbers.

Because most advertisers use google ad tags; if you're using GAM as a publisher - whether on your own or through a partner like Playwire - you get this nice server-to-server Google connection that cuts down on discrepancies in Google analytics (e.g. impressions and clicks) between the two ad servers. Because the majority of campaigns are paid per ad impression or click, minimizing those discrepancies saves a lot of revenue.

When the two servers are not both Google servers, you'll often see metric discrepancies up to 15% between the two sources. However, when the publisher is working through GAM and the advertiser has Google tags, those discrepancies drop to 0%, making it much easier to agree upon, and ultimately collect advertising revenue.

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Ad Server Resource Center

Visit the Ad Server Resource Center

It's an Ad Server and a Lot of Other Things

Most publishers who are using the Google ad server did not actively seek it out. They were seeking out something else - most often a comprehensive digital advertising solution, which is what GAM aims to be.

The ad server is just one part. It's also an ad exchange. In fact, it's an ad management platform. It covers all of the most basic standards so publishers can start bringing in ad revenue.

GAM Ad Serving with a Partner vs. Without

If you're a small publisher, there's an initial question of whether you can have access to GAM in the first place. Not every publisher is invited - only those with a certain amount of traffic are even allowed in. But even then, the cost of ad serving through GAM is a barrier to entry for many publishers.

If you're not a Google Certified Publishing Partner, you won't have full access to every tool available. You don't have, for example, the premium version of Google DoubleClick for Publishers (Google DFP Premium). That means you don't have access to programmatic advertising real-time bidding through Open Bidding and real-time support directly from Google.

We do. And that's the key difference between GAM ad serving with a partner and without one. If you partner with Playwire, you get all the perks, plus one more: fully and actively managed GAM operations.

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Google Ad Manager Training Library

Visit the Google Ad Manager Training Library

For the Best of GAM, Partner with Playwire

Most publishers use GAM to serve some of their ad inventory. Some publishers use GAM to serve every display and video ad. In either case, there are degrees of access to be aware of. Unless you're ESPN or some similarly large publisher, you probably aren't going to get access to all GAM's best features - that is, unless you work with a Google Certified Publishing Partner like Playwire.

When you work with us, you get unmitigated access to Google demand and tools, as well as demand from every other major source, and the benefit of the best of every part of the publisher ad tech stack. And here's the best part: We manage it all for you. You just keep developing ad creatives and building your audience - we build your website or mobile app into an ad revenue machine.

Does that sound like a plan? Let's get started. Reach out to the Playwire team to learn more about how we can help you grow your revenue.

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