Understanding  Viewability

If you're in the world of digital advertising, you've probably heard the term "viewability" thrown around a lot. But what exactly does it mean? And why is it so important? In this post, we'll answer all your burning questions about viewability and help you understand why it's essential for your ad campaigns.

What is Viewability?

Viewability refers to the percentage of ad impressions that are actually seen by users. In other words, it measures whether an ad has a chance to be seen by someone. The Media Rating Council (MRC) defines viewability as follows: "A display ad is considered viewable when 50% of its pixels are in view for at least one second." For video ads, the MRC defines viewability as when 50% of the video's pixels are in view for at least two consecutive seconds.

Why is Viewability Important?

Viewability is important because it directly impacts your ad revenue. If your ads aren't being seen by users, you're essentially throwing money down the drain. By improving your viewability rates, you can increase your chances of generating more revenue from your ad campaigns. Additionally, viewability helps prevent ad fraud by ensuring that bots and fraudulent websites aren't generating false impressions.

How is Viewability Measured?

Viewability is measured using metrics like MRC-accredited vendors such as IAS or MOAT. These vendors use sophisticated technology to track whether an ad was actually seen by users. They measure things like the percentage of pixels in view and the length of time that an ad was visible on the screen.

What Factors Affect Viewability?

There are several factors that can affect viewability, including ad placement, page load times, and ad format. Ad placement is crucial because if an ad is placed below the fold or in an area where users aren't scrolling, it's less likely to be seen. Slow page load times can also impact viewability because users may leave the page before the ad has a chance to load. Finally, certain ad formats, like pop-ups or interstitials, can be more intrusive and lead to higher bounce rates, which can negatively affect viewability.

How Can You Improve Viewability?

There are several steps you can take to improve your viewability rates. First, make sure your ad placement is optimized for maximum visibility. Consider using a sticky ad or a fixed position ad that stays in view as the user scrolls. You should also optimize your page load times by minimizing the number of ads on a page and using lightweight ad formats. Finally, consider using viewability measurement tools to monitor your campaigns and make adjustments as needed.

What is a Good Viewability Rate?

A good viewability rate varies depending on the industry and type of ad. However, generally speaking, anything above 70% is considered a good benchmark for display ads. For video ads, the MRC recommends a viewability rate of 50% or higher.


Viewability is an essential metric for digital advertisers because it directly impacts your revenue and helps prevent fraud. By understanding how viewability is measured and what factors affect it, you can take steps to improve your rates and generate more revenue from your campaigns. Remember to always monitor your campaigns using viewability measurement tools and make adjustments as needed to optimize your results.


  1. "Digital Advertising: Past, Present, and Future" by Marla Kaplowitz
  2. "Ad Fraud: Why Your Ad Strategy Needs Fraud Detection" by Rishi Khanna
  3. "Metrics for Digital Advertising" by Ryan Deiss
  4. "Advertising Campaign Strategy: A Guide to Marketing Communication Plans" by Donald Parente
  5. "The Complete Guide to Digital Advertising" by Rob Stokes
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