Programmatic buying has burst onto the advertising world in the past couple of years but many marketers lack confidence and understanding of this fast-moving area, according to an analysis of popular articles on during 2014.

The most-read programmatic article was Warc's own Programmatic Primer , which offered an overview of the online advertising ecosystem to help the advertiser understand what's possible, and frame "what's needed".

In second place was a piece from Rocket Fuel, which laid out 11 best practices for programmatic advertising and gave tips such as integrating prospecting and retargeting, optimising towards business goals, testing multiple creatives and sharing results in real time.

The third most-read article, by Rob Norman of GroupM, predicted a future in which all media inventory is traded programmatically. Programmatic: The risks and rewards outlined the challenges marketers will face along the way.

In fourth-placedĀ Mobile first: Programmatic buying, Zac Pinkham of Millennial Media suggested that programmatic presents a huge opportunity for brands to just pay for the consumers they want to reach, allowing for budgets to be swiftly moved to achieve the best ad conversions.

The details of a survey by Forrester Research took fifth place. Preparing for the programmatic future reported a significant knowledge gap in the marketing community that needs to be addressed and said that media owners could play a valuable role in educating novice brands.

For more details about the most read papers on Warc in 2014 on other topics, visit our Most Read page.

Data sourced from Warc