The Display Ad council is part of IAB and one of its first objectives was to define the standard creative ad sizes for the industry. Common standards make trading and trafficking simpler. These standards are reviewed on a continual basis to ensure that they keep pace with the evolving industry.
The standard creative ad sizes are as follows:
The IAB Display Standards are a set of six ad sizes that are offered by the majority of online publishers. The IAB recommends that all publishers offer these formats as a minimum and that advertisers primarily use this set of standard sizes for their campaigns.
Why do we need standards?
We need standards because they help simplify internet advertising for all parties. TV, cinema and radio have one basic display format, while print and outdoor have a limited number of sizes. Online advertising has well over 40 ad formats, each with many variations and different names. Advertisers and planners want to maximise their time and spend, which means using the same ads across as many sites as possible to efficiently extend reach – standards achieve this. Standards also simplify the publisher operations process with standardised names and sizes. This creates less confusion, fewer revisions to ads and clearer reporting. In a medium that allows for unlimited options, standards are an essential part of a mature and consistent medium to continue driving growth.
Why were these sizes selected?
The six sizes were chosen because they met the four key criteria for being selected as a standard:
- Publisher adoption: the ad sizes had to be offered by the majority of the world’s top online publishers.
- Market use: the ad sizes had to already be in popular use by brands.
- Efficiency: the ad sizes had to be efficient at delivering results for a wide range of campaign types such as brand awareness and direct response.
- International standards: we carefully selected ad sizes that were already standard sizes in other markets.
Is this good for consumers?
Yes. This is absolutely a good move for consumers. The internet can be a cluttered place and consistency across websites is important for usability. Standardised advertising goes a long way to helping standardise website layouts too, improving the user browsing experience.