Key Points

  • DoubleClick for Publishers (DFP) was a platform absorbed by Google and ultimately rebranded as Google Ad Manager.
  • Google Ad Manager (GAM) is Google’s comprehensive ad-serving platform for publishers.
  • The transition from DFP to the Google Ad Manager we know today has seen the addition of many features, enhancements, and user experience improvements.

They say the one constant in life is change. Nowhere is that more true than in the world of ad tech, especially ad tech product names. Keeping track of which platform has been rebranded, renamed, or combined with another can feel like a full-time job.

No one is more guilty of this constant rebranding than our friends at Google. They make great products and solutions, of course. But boy, do they love changing product names while we try to keep up.

This leads to a common question we get here at Playwire: what’s the difference between DoubleClick and Google Ad Manager for Publishers?

We’ve got the answer to that and other related queries right here.

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What is DoubleClick for Publishers?

DoubleClick for Publishers (DFP) was a platform created by DoubleClick Inc., then acquired by Google in 2008. It quickly became the go-to ad server and ad-serving technology to manage multiple ad networks in one place. It was an all-in-one solution with features like advanced reporting, real-time bidding (RTB) support, video ad support, and more.

In 2018, Google officially rebranded DFP as Google Ad Manager. That’s why some ad tech industry veterans will sometimes refer to Google Ad Manager as DFP. In a nutshell, there’s no real difference between Google Ad Manager and DoubleClick for Publishers. They’re essentially the same product with a new name. 

The primary changes since DFP’s rebranding have been to add more functionality and scale to better meet industry demands. For example, these changes include improved reporting capabilities, access to additional ad networks, support for dynamic creative optimization (DCO), and programmatic advertising buying through Open Bidding.

Overall, Google Ad Manager has become an increasingly powerful tool for publishers to manage their digital advertising needs in one place — allowing them to maximize yield, control their ad inventory, and remain compliant with industry regulations.

How Does DoubleClick for Publishers/Google Ad Manager Work?

Google Ad Manager is Google’s comprehensive ad-serving platform for publishers. It combines the power of DoubleClick for Publishers (DFP) and an Ad Exchange, as well as several other Google products. This allows publishers to effectively manage their entire digital advertising business across multiple screens, formats, and channels in one place.

The main goal of Google Ad Manager is to simplify the complex process of running ads on a website or app by giving advertisers the flexibility to buy ad inventory through an auction or direct sale — all within the same platform.

Not only does this make it easier for publishers to sell their ad inventory, but also makes it simpler for them to track impressions, clicks, conversions, RPMs, and other key metrics.

Google Ad Manager also offers a range of tools and features to help publishers maximize their ad revenue, such as the ability to set up dynamic line items, target audiences based on user preferences or history, and configure rule-based optimizations.

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Google Ad Manager Pillar

The Publisher's Guide to Google Ad Manager and GAM 360

Should I Choose DFP/Google Ad Manager?

Whether or not you should use DFP/Google Ad Manager depends on your specific needs. 

GAM is a comprehensive, but potentially costly, ad platform that can take care of all your audience and ad management, Google analytics, and optimization needs. On the other hand, if you only need to track basic metrics like impressions, clicks, and conversions, there are more affordable solutions available within the ad space.

Meanwhile, managing GAM yourself with a DIY approach can be extremely time-consuming. It might also mean you miss out on some of GAM’s more advanced capabilities — not to mention other platforms that can bring their own data and demand sources to your ad revenue strategy.

If you’re looking for a more efficient way to run your digital ad business, Playwire can help. Our expert team of professionals can manage all aspects of your ad campaign in GAM and provide comprehensive reporting so that you can make informed decisions about optimizing your ad campaign performance.

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Google Ad Manager Resource Center

The Complete Google Ad Manager Resource Center

Is Google Ad Manager All I Need to Monetize My Website or App?

Google Ad Manager is a great platform for monetizing your website or app, but it shouldn't be the only tool in your arsenal. There are other tools and services out there that can help you further optimize your ad performance.

For example, data-driven attribution models such as multi-touch attribution allow you to gain a deeper understanding of how different marketing channels are contributing to user acquisition and conversions. You can also use A/B testing tools to experiment with different creative elements and maximize click-through rates (CTRs). 

Whatever You Call It, Playwire is the Key to Making It Work for You

Google Ad Manager, DoubleClick for Publishing, or “that Google one.” Whatever name you know it by, Playwire has over 15 years of experience making it work for publishers alongside a range of other tools you can only access by working with us. 

Contact us online today.

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