Key Points

  • Data Management Platform (DMP) can be an extremely sophisticated or relatively straightforward piece of technology depending on the features and functionality that you require.
  • DMP costs are largely based on what features are included within the platform.
  • Standard costs associated with almost all DMPs include a setup or implementation fee as well as a recurring monthly or annual payment.

Onboarding a DMP as part of your ad tech stack can be a difficult and time-consuming endeavor depending on your chosen DMP. This is even more so the case if you are unaware of what it may cost you to work with a DMP that includes most, if not all, of the features you are looking for. 

On average, a DMP can cost you anywhere from $1000 to $6000 per month, which is a relatively large range. Because the cost of a DMP is largely dependent on the features a DMP offers, the question of "how much does a DMP cost" is anything but a simple one.

Read on for help maneuvering this complicated question regarding the costs you may encounter when adding a Data Management Platform to your ad tech stack.

Contact us to speak directly with a Playwire team member about how our RAMP Platform, and the DMP that is built into it, can help save you and your business valuable time and money.

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The Publisher's Guide to Data Management PlatformsThe Publisher's Guide to Data Management Platforms


Influential Features

The more quality features that a DMP offers, the more expensive their starting rate will be. You also have to consider their onboarding fee for the initial setup and integration with your existing technology and the fact that most DMPs require a pretty lengthy initial contract. Still, the setup and monthly rate don't even begin to factor in the costs of the labor it will take to set up your DMP if you have to manually set tags and set up your own taxonomy.

As you begin your search for a DMP, there are a number of cost-influential features that you will want to look for. Some key features include ongoing technical support, automatic tagging, taxonomy, data usage and optimization, and audience segmentation, among others.

Each of these features contributes to the overall costs associated with a DMP, and as noted, the more that are included as part of working with that DMP, the higher their pricing will be:

  • Technical Support: Does the DMP you're considering offer technical support from the initial integration through every subsequent step that follows?
  • Customizable Scale: Will this DMP work with you to grow your data as your audience grows? If so, can it also utilize that collected data and help you turn it into more advertising dollars?
  • Access to Multiple Sources of Data:  While this is an extremely unique feature, you will want to find out if the DMP has access to a wide network of first-party partner data (e.g. first-party data from thousands of different websites). With third-party cookies on their way out to the door due to growing privacy concerns, first-party data is more precious than ever before.
  • Automatic Tagging: Does this DMP have the ability to automatically tag users on your site? If not, you're in for a ton of manual work.
  • Cross-site and cross-device tracking: If you're a publisher with multiple sites, you're in for a world of extra work without this feature. Even if you're a publisher with just one site, you need to be able to collect user data across a variety of devices. Without these features, you'll have a rather muddled and disjointed image of your users' overall online experience.
  • Transparency with your Data Analytics: Quite simply, if you don't have transparent insight into your analytics, how can you know that your audience data is being properly managed?
  • Standardized Taxonomy: Working with a data management tool that has built out a taxonomy regarding how your data is being collected and organized will help eliminate segmentation and comparability errors.

Dig into more detail about the 7 key features to look for in a DMP with this in-depth article.

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Data Management Platform Resource CenterThe Complete Data Management Platform Resource Center

Standard DMP Costs

Set Up and Implementation

Most DMPs require that you pay a set-up fee for the initial implementation of their technology with your existing platforms. This cost, like any other, can fluctuate based on the provider but is almost always equal to at least one month's payment.

Additionally, with the initial setup, you'll often find a lengthy, long-term contract waiting for your John Hancock. Many DMP providers will require that you sign a year-long contract.

Monthly vs. Yearly Rate

As with any subscription type of pricing, you'll typically find that paying on a monthly basis is more expensive than paying on a yearly basis. The same holds true for DMPs. 

While many DMPs require a year-long contract, you'll find that those that do not will offer a monthly rate that is significantly higher in cost compared to signing on for a full year.

Thus, not only do you have to weigh the financial costs but also the risk of signing a long-term contract with a platform that may not end up being the best fit for your company several months down the road.

Internal Costs

So far, we've only covered the costs that show up in a quote, but we haven't factored in the internal "technical" costs it will take to set up a DMP. Keep in mind that you'll need resources to get your DMP to a place where it is truly providing value.


The very first step, once you've made your DMP selection, is integrating the platform with your existing tech stack. Your data needs to be pulled from somewhere before it can be stored inside your DMP (see "tagging" below). 

You also need a way to serve your collected and segmented data to demand sources and advertisers. Not to mention, you need to assure that the way you are collecting data and who you are collecting data from meets all online privacy regulations. 

Data integration includes tools such as a Consent Management Platform (CMP), an Ad Server, or perhaps Google Ad Manager (GAM). It will all depend on your site's unique needs, but integration is never simple and hardly ever seamless, which is why DMP providers often charge a pretty penny to handle the monumental task.


Setting up tags may seem like a relatively simple task, but as with any type of internal site coding, if done incorrectly, the entire flow of data could hit an abrupt halt. 

It's important to understand that while Playwire's DMP has the built-in capability to automatically scan your website or app's content and meta-data to tag users based on their interests and/or behavior, most DMPs do not. Without this ability, you're in for a ton of manual labor defining, setting, and testing tags to assure they are scanning, collecting, and storing your data properly. 

Thus, you're left with few rather expensive options: spending a great deal more for a DMP that will take this process off your plate, doing all the technical work yourself, or paying someone to do it for you. Or, you could partner with Playwire and allow us to take all the technical lift off your shoulders without the added costs to do so.

RAMP: More Control, Less Management

Playwire's RAMP Platform includes all the features you want and need in your DMP without the financial burden that so many others come with. Built for publishers of all sizes, our DMP includes all the benefits of an enterprise-level DMP without actually having to pay for one

RAMP provides publishers with the perfect balance of working with a managed service provider while still maintaining control and having complete transparency into your data and audience insights.

Learn more about all the essential components of our RAMP Platform, including its built-in DMP, and contact us once you're ready to get started.

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