Viewability in Programmatic

Viewability & Measurement

Why advertisers need to value the importance of Viewability in Programmatic


An average person is exposed to around 4,000 to 10,000 ads per day. Needless to say, that is a lot! It also implies the difficulties for brands to capture consumer attention and influence consumers to take action. 


So, are my ads seen? This is an age-old question many advertisers ask their marketing teams, yet many take this for granted when investing in advertising dollars even today when there are tools and solutions that can help measure the impact and efficiency of your ads.


Nydia Goh, Business Director, Programmatic Sales, Asia at DoubleVerify, discusses with Dan Lee, Commercial Director at Delvify and IAB Hong Kong Programmatic Committee, why Viewability measurement should be considered and how it is a key driver of success for advertisers.


Nydia Goh, Business Director, Programmatic Sales, Asia, DoubleVerify
Nydia Goh, Business Director, Programmatic Sales, Asia, DoubleVerify


What and why does Viewability matter for advertisers?

Viewability is a metric used widely in the digital advertising industry to understand the effectiveness of their media buys. It is a measure of how much real estate (pixels) of an ad that is actually visible to a user. 


Viewability, as defined by the Interactive Advertising Bureau (IAB) and the Media Ratings Council (MRC), is that a minimum of 50% of the ad’s pixels must be in view for at least one continuous second for a display ad, and two seconds for a video ad.


Viewability is considered to be an important metric for marketers, whether they’re running awareness or performance campaigns. Many brands optimize their campaigns to industry-wide standards such as the IAB threshold, which recommends that at least 70% of impressions should be viewable as a measure of success. 


Think about this – if an ad is not viewable, the consumer will not be able to see the ad and naturally will not take action or be influenced to purchase. This is also why at DoubleVerify, viewability makes up one of the four components of our Authentic ImpressionⓇ – a proprietary, MRC-accredited metric that verifies ads are fully viewed, by a real person, in a brand-safe environment, within the intended geography — offering global brands a definitive measure of digital media quality.


As discussed in DoubleVerify’s 2020 Global Insights Report, viewability serves as a proxy for performance for many advertisers. Not tied to users, cookie data or specific conversions,  viewability provides a reasonable baseline to help understand which ads have the best opportunity to perform well for a campaign. 


How does Hong Kong stack up against other markets?

From an ad verification perspective, the markets in Asia are nascent compared with Europe and America. This region is focused on conversions as the main KPI. Hong Kong is no exception. But conversions happen at the very end of the funnel, and while they provide amazing data to model, using conversions alone to guide campaign strategy can limit scale. 


Viewability, on the other hand, provides important intelligence before a conversion to understand which ads may have a higher propensity to perform well.



How can we improve the adoption rate of measuring viewability in Hong Kong?

Education, discussion, and knowledge sharing are key. Advertisers should be cognisant of the waste that occurs when paying for impressions that are served but not viewable.


Understand that there are ads that may not be viewable due to not fully loading or  being located “below the fold.” 


One way to increase adoption could be to simplify the meaning of viewability for advertisers who are not familiar with ad verification, so as to reduce aversion to learning about new technologies.  


Additionally, resources and publications from various accredited industry bodies, such as the IAB, would help cement the importance of viewability as a key success measure for digital advertising campaigns.


In the recent publication of DoubleVerify’s 2020 Global Insights Report, we share insights, trends, and benchmarks around viewability to help shed light on what other advertisers are achieving in the region, and the role that viewability can play in driving success. This is a great starting point for all advertisers. At the end of the day, it’s our goal to promote transparency and help ensure clarity and confidence in digital advertising.



There are many solutions that are available today to not only target but measure how well your ads are seen by your target market. Having the right strategy is half the goal, being able to measure your campaign with the right metrics is equally if not more important and by improving the Viewability of your ads it can lead to increased attention and engagement. 


If you would like to find out more about Viewability get in touch with the IAB Hong Kong team to explore further.




About the IAB (Hong Kong)

The Interactive Advertising Bureau (Hong Kong) empowers the media and marketing industries in Hong Kong, to  thrive in the digital economy. It is comprised of more than 100 leading media and technology  companies that are responsible for selling, delivering, and optimizing digital campaigns.  Working with its member companies, the IAB (Hong Kong) evaluates and recommends standards and  practices and fields critical research on interactive advertising. 


The IAB (Hong Kong) Programmatic Advertising Committee

The Programmatic Advertising Committee is focused on evaluating the value and potential of Programmatic  Advertising. This includes evaluation of the programmatic advertising ecosystem and terminology,  disclosure principles, ad performance evaluation, opportunities/obstacles by platform, scalable/custom solutions, consumer perceptions, messaging and more.


Please address any questions or comments about this blog to 

Alvina Chan, Secretariat Office, IAB (Hong Kong) -