IAB Updates Mobile Metrics, Aims For Uniform Standards

The Interactive Advertising Bureau on Monday released updated guidelines for measuring mobile Web advertising in conjunction with the Mobile Marketing Association and the Media Rating Council.

The new guidelines require client-side counting for mobile Web ad impressions to increase consistency with computer-based ad measurement and help to reduce discrepancies in mobile impression counts.

The proposed rules, which the IAB’s Mobile Marketing Center of Excellence also worked on, highlight the importance of “viewable impressions,” although not yet requiring them for the mobile Web. The Making Measurement Make Sense (3MS) initiative is moving toward a standard for counting exposures online in which a viewable impression is defined as at least 50% visible to the user for at least 1 second.

The IAB today separately released SafeFrame 1.0, a set of technical specifications that allow advertisers to measure whether an impression is viewable. The trade group said the SafeFrame specifications would be critical for phasing in the 3MS standards. 

Among other topics covered in the mobile measurement guidelines are measurement definitions, click measurement considerations, general reporting parameters and auditing recommendations. Public comment on the revised guidelines runs from today until Dec. 21. Feedback can be provided by emailing mobile@iab.net. Input on SafeFrame should be sent to Chris Mejia at chris.mejia@iab.net

Michael Becker, managing director, MMA North America, said the guidelines would make impression counts more robust and reliable. “Our objective is to ensure that mobile remains a valued component of the marketing mix with clear, actionable guidelines in place,” said Becker. The MMA issued a study in August recommending that mobile should make up 7% of ad budgets, up from 1% now.

In other recent steps toward standardizing mobile advertising, the MMA in September issued mobile rich media metrics definitions, and the IAB finalized its API standards for rich media ads, dubbed MRAID 2.0, the same month.

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