In the digital advertising world, ‘impressions’ refer to individual ad transactions — e.g. when a digital publisher sells a space on their site to an advertiser. Digital advertisers and publishers have long relied on impression statistics (CPI, CPM, etc.) to manage campaigns and budgets.
Over the past 20 years, industry standards for recording impressions have gone through a series of changes. Pixalate walks you through the history of impression measurement in the digital advertising landscape, starting with the first online banner ad, sold in 1994.
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Disclaimer: The content of this blog reflects Pixalate’s opinions with respect to the factors that Pixalate believes can be useful to the digital media industry. Any proprietary data shared is grounded in Pixalate’s proprietary technology and analytics, which Pixalate is continuously evaluating and updating. Any references to outside sources should not be construed as endorsements. Pixalate’s opinions are just that - opinion, not facts or guarantees.
Per the MRC, “'Fraud' is not intended to represent fraud as defined in various laws, statutes and ordinances or as conventionally used in U.S. Court or other legal proceedings, but rather a custom definition strictly for advertising measurement purposes. Also per the MRC, “‘Invalid Traffic’ is defined generally as traffic that does not meet certain ad serving quality or completeness criteria, or otherwise does not represent legitimate ad traffic that should be included in measurement counts. Among the reasons why ad traffic may be deemed invalid is it is a result of non-human traffic (spiders, bots, etc.), or activity designed to produce fraudulent traffic.”