While mobile video advertising growth outpaces desktop video, publishers lag in implementing key programmatic strategies, like header bidding, as implementation continues to be a challenge on mobile.

This was a finding from a recent study by Forrester Consulting, commissioned by PubMatic around global video ad monetization trends.

Header bidding is rapidly becoming a best practice for publishers that wish to monetize and effectively manage their video inventory. The most popular programmatic integration strategy varies by device, with client-side header bidding (57.4%) ranked at the top for desktop and open real-time bidding (58.5%) in the top spot for mobile.

Although a proven solution for many monetization challenges, 39% of publishers find video header bidding implementation challenging for mobile and 31% for desktop.

While the lack of internal knowledge or skill sets (44.3% mobile, 47% desktop), and development resources (37.3% mobile, 36.4% desktop) top the list for both, those faced with mobile implementations are more likely to cite a lack of vendor support (34.8%) as a reason for their challenges.

Despite challenges, plans for video header bidding growth are on the horizon. In 12 months, mobile app and mobile web implementations will likely outpace desktop due to planned growth in the space. Mobile app shows the most growth, with 31.5% expanding their usage and 23.2% implementing for the first time.

As desktop header bidding penetration is higher than mobile, investments will be more aggressive on mobile; nearly one-quarter of publishers report they are still planning their header bidding implementation on mobile vs only 11.7% that are at this stage with desktop.

Currently, the open market is the top-selling channel for mobile video ads. With the rise in opportunity across publishing platforms, media companies and publishers add both open market and private marketplaces to their video ad monetization initiatives — for both desktop and mobile video. Private marketplace usage is expected to grow faster than the open market across both devices.

While header bidding is nascent in CTV and OTT, a net-new number of publishers plan to adopt header bidding across these formats, at 20.6% and 24.9%, respectively. These new implementations will drive even faster header bidding growth overall as publishers refine their video ad strategies.

The study was completed in October 2019 and comprised an online survey with 622 sales, operations, and IT professionals at the director level and above at publishers and media companies in the US (16.9%), Europe (49.9%), and APAC (33.2%). 

Sourced from PubMatic; additional content by WARC staff