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‘A blatant waste of investment for brands’: IAB warns against Made For Advertising sites

IAB Australia has struck out against Made for Advertising sites, urging the Australian advertising industry to work collaboratively to minimise ad spends on these sites, as well as with any associated participants.

Made-for-Advertising websites are those sites “built on catchy headlines, clickbait, and controversial content to drive traffic and ad revenue”, according to IAB. They use clickbait headlines, slide shows, interlinked websites, intrusive ads, and pop-ups to just drain ad revenue.

The IAB Executive Tech Council has issued a Made for Advertising guidance paper, which blasts these MFAs as “a blatant waste of investment for brands that expose their ad campaigns to such sites”, and notes MFAs “result in poor consumer experiences which erodes trust in the industry”.

Jonas Jaanimagi, IAB Australia tech lead, said the goal of the paper is “to support each part of the ecosystem with guidance that will not only reduce exposure to MFA sites – but as a direct consequence, reduce wastage, benefit genuine publishers, ameliorate consumer experiences online and ultimately improve both campaign performance & advertising ROI.

“Our guidance is not exhaustive, but we highly recommend that buyers, sellers and vendors review and consider these recommendations. We welcome feedback from all on our guidance.”

IAB has indicated that it will be providing additional information later this year and has invited industry participants to provide case studies, analytics-based insights or further recommendations for consideration.

Last year, a report showed that 21% of impressions and 15% of spending via programmatic buying was wasted on MFA sites.

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