Web standards body updates viewability guidelines to bring ‘greater trust to digital advertising’

UK web industry body JICWEBS has bolstered efforts to curb viewability concerns across the industry with revised guidelines for online ad trading.

The updates expand on last year’s “Principles for Viewability Products” initiative in order to reflect the issue’s growing impact on advertisers’ buying decisions. Feedback from a UK-focused cross-industry group informs the measures as well as the learnings from the Media Rating Council (MRC) and the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) in the US.

Despite ongoing industry efforts to clarify, viewability remains a murky subject for advertisers, one that is threatening to become even more splintered as publishers and brands increasingly employ their own standards.

The updates include guidance on bringing greater transparency around trading methods to further reduce discrepancies between suppliers as well as changes to how viewable impressions are reported.

“It’s important the industry doesn’t stand still when it comes to tackling the big issues affecting online advertising,” said JICWEBS chairman Richard Foan. The move aims to give buyers and sellers of digital display better information and transparent about how to measure whether an ad has been seen.

The companies that have agreed to further auditing by ABC to prove they use the updated JICWEBS principles will be accredited in the second half of the year.

Foan said: “This update builds on the good work implemented last year around ad viewability and is a further step in the right direction around bringing greater transparency and trust to digital advertising.”

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JICWEBS is made up of industry ad bodies including the IAB, the IPA, ISBA and AOP.

The refreshed guidelines come a week after the web industry body launched a set to help media buyers combat ad fraud and budget wastage.

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