Adalytics Research Uncovers Hidden Ad Spending on 'Made for Advertising' Sites

Many brands and sites on the internet do not know that they have their ads served on Made for Advertising (MFA) websites. According to the research by Adalytics, the websites on the internet are getting these ads through systematic as well as non-systematic channels. MFAs are advertising websites that do advertising stuff on different websites but the overall user experience of these ads isn’t good and they make the overall digital advertising experience bad. Their quality of the ads content is the worst and they display a lot of ads on a site.

The Association of National Advertisers say that MFA pays to source traffic on the sites and there is no organic or real audience that sees the ads. The advertisements are mostly clickbaits that are available on social media sites and websites of well-known publishers. MFA business is often driven by buying paid traffic and to overcome these traffic costs, MFA publishers perform monetization practices that help them gain more profit.

Many big websites think that the ads that are running on their sites are free from MFA and their ad dollars are not being spent on covering MFA sites. But Adalytics, an advertising performance optimization platform, says that this is not true and an investigation on ad spends of the websites is required. Adalytics worked with a fortune 500 company to make sense of their ad spends. Their Global Head of Media thought that they had little to no exposure to MFA but it was revealed that the site spent $10 million on MFA unknowingly. Campaigns of hundreds of brands like Johnson & Johnson, Pfizer, Ford, US Army and Meta were reviewed and many of these websites had their ad spends on MFA sites in January 2024. Many US agencies, including the US Army, were also affected by it.

Many sites with ad exchanges and supply side platforms (SSPs) were also serving ads on MFA sites including Google, Criteo, OpenWeb, etc. Many demand side platforms (DSPs) also made ads on MFA like Roku OneView, Yahoo DSP and Google DV360.

Image: DIW-Aigen

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