Is Ad Blocking a solution or is it a problem? The answer to this question will likely depend on what type of Internet user you are.
If you are a user, you probably love ad blockers. More than 50% of web and mobile users attempt to block ads or clear/block their cookies on a regular basis. Consumers love the hassle-free web experience provided by these ad blockers. They are able to access the information and entertainment they seek without being bombarded by advertisements. For these users, gone are the days of pop-up ads about diet pills and Caribbean cruises that they’ve “won.”
The use of ad blocking technology has doubled since 2013, with AdBlock alone claiming over 60 million users worldwide. This seems great, but what about the other side? Nobody is arguing that these annoying pop-up ads made the Internet a better place for end users, but AdBlock doesn’t differentiate between annoying ads and more sensible, relevant ads that make free content a reality for end users and publishers.
Ad blockers are, in many ways, a clear win for the user, but the publisher/developer obviously isn’t excited to see their revenues dry up because users want a cleaner experience. Advertisers, web developers, and publishers are very worried about this technology. Their worry is understandable; it’s the website publisher and app developer who suffer as a result of ad blocking. These talented creators may not even realize that their ads are being blocked until they notice decreased advertising revenue, or until they compare their page views to their overall ad impressions. These publishers are concerned about who will pay for their content, because creators deserve to be paid for their efforts. Along the same lines, advertisers are concerned because they need people to see their ads to remain visable.
Photo Credit: WSJ
Some websites have forced users to disable ad blocking technology in order to use their pages, but this isn’t feasible for every website. App developers are safe for now, because ads in apps aren’t blocked, but that doesn’t mean that users don’t wish intrusive ads weren’t there as well. Almost half of all clicks on mobile are attributed to accidental taps, so clearly users aren’t enjoying many of the in-app ads they come into contact with.
There doesn’t seem to be a suitable compromise between creators and users. Internet users have routinely rejected other options, like paying small monthly fees to enjoy ad-free versions of the sites they use. Some premium apps have success with this, but not most. And as far as websites go, maybe the New York Times is having success, but the crowdfunding efforts of journalists indicate that paying for content through subscription isn’t a model that’s working across the board.
For publishers and advertisers looking to advertise on web browsers, ad blocking seems to be a problem that’s here to stay. And there’s not an easy solution there, especially with iOS 9’s mobile browser ad blocking features.
But apps are a different story. At least they have options for monetization that don’t depend on in-app ads. In-app purchases are becoming more lucrative for some apps. And others have found success with innovative new monetization models. For instance, our technology, Mira, is an advertising solution for mobile apps that doesn’t impact the UX and offers publishers of apps a way to generate revenue without annoying their users.
We actually see ad blocking as a positive – popping up and ad in the middle of a compelling app is the wrong time and place to try to get user attention. Mira enables apps to connect with out-of-home media such as digital signage and Taxi TV, bringing the user relevant advertising in a medium that isn’t intrusive and with a timeliness that is actually helpful. By taking advertising off of a user’s mobile device and bringing it into the physical world, a much more useful experience is the result.
64% of App Developers make less than $100 per month from their creations. Mira provides another revenue stream for these developers by bringing users relevant targeted advertising without borking the app experience. It is simple to integrate, and does not slow down the performance of the phone. Mira also works simultaneously with other app monetization strategies, making it a perfect tool to increase your bottom line – so you can try it before you commit fully.
If your app is not bringing in the money it should, it’s time to connect with Mira. To see if your app would be a good fit for Mira, apply to be a part of the beta.
Ad blocking is here to stay – Mira is the solution.