jdreyer wrote on May 7, 2020, 17:28:
Cutter wrote on May 7, 2020, 14:57:
If you can get static ad impressions that don't track and it makes you money I'd be happy to do it. I just categorically refuse to view tracking ads. If an advertiser wants to pitch his product online I have zero problem with that. Insisting that he's able to track and know all my habits is completely unacceptable.
Problem is, no one will pay for that.
The first issue is targeting. What's the point of an ad if it's only relevant to a small handful of people seeing it? Yes, arguably, people know Blues has a very similar demographic of cranky old PC gamers with comparable interests, but how do you let an advertiser know that? In the past, sites like this had a marketing department selling ad space. That's not really scalable for the site or the brand, so it died and exchanges rose. If that exchange knows what you've looked at in the past, it has a better sense of what you'll like to look at.
Then there's measurement. If I tell you that 1 in 10 people that see the ad will take an action engaging with the brand, is that worth something? Only as far as you trust me. What if I can prove it. Then, suddenly, it's worth a lot more. Even better, it gives data to optimize and make smarter decisions, which makes it even more valuable.
Put them together and you can go as far as to know who saw your ad, then went to your site, spent time looking at products, maybe added one to cart, and serve them ads to push them to finally convert. And that's worth a huge amount.
No one likes any of this, but it's how ads derive value. Take it away, and individual ads are worth less, meaning sites make less per ad, meaning we probably need significantly more ads served per page. Which I think is worse.
Outside of desperate "news" sites that put a ton of ads with autoplay videos that follow you and can't be closed until after the ad plays (thanks, empty shell of Forbes), I feel ads intrude upon the site experience less now than ever.