The Exchange Lab - Powered By Proteus


DSP? CPM? DCO? CPA? Don’t Worry, Just Take a Look Below.

Above the Fold

Refers to positioning – part of the webpage that is visible without scrolling. See ‘Below the Fold’.

Ad Blocker

Software on a user‘s browser which prevents advertisements from being displayed.

Ad Exchange

A digital marketplace that enables advertisers and publishers to buy and sell advertising space, often through real-time auctions. They’re mostly used to sell display, video and mobile ad inventory.

Ad Insertion

When an ad is inserted in a document and recorded by the ad server.

Ad Network

An aggregator or broker of advertising inventory for many sites. Ad networks are the sales representatives for the websites within the network.

Ad Serving

The delivery of ads by a server to an end user’s computer on which the ads are then displayed by a browser and/or cached. Ad serving is normally performed either by a web publisher or by a third-party ad server. Ads can be embedded in the page or served separately.

Ad Transfers

The successful display of an advertiser’s website after the user clicked on an ad. When a user clicks on an advertisement, a click-through is recorded and re-directs or “transfers” the user’s browser to an advertiser’s website. If the user successfully displays the advertiser’s website, an ad transfer is recorded.

Ad Verification

A service that confirms if an ad ran where it was intended on behalf of the advertiser.

Ad View

When the ad is actually seen by the user. Note this is not measurable today. The best approximation today is provided by ad displays.


A graphic advertising image displayed on a web page. See for voluntary guidelines defining specifications of banner ads.

Behavioral Targeting

A technique used by online publishers and advertisers to increase the effectiveness of their campaigns. Behavioral targeting uses information collected on an individual‘s web browsing behavior such as the pages they have visited or the searches they have made to select which advertisements to be displayed to that individual.

Below the Fold

(NOT to be confused with below the belt.)

The part of a webpage that can’t be seen without scrolling down. See ‘Above the Fold’.

Bid Request

In order to sell inventory in real-time, online publishers need to submit bid request information, such as domain URL, banner types, floor price and position.

Bid Response

Participating in an auction requires the submission of an answer to the publisher’s bid request: the Bid Response. This may contain bid price, Seat ID (identifies the buyer) and target URL.


(The opposite of your little black book - these players you won't want to call.)

A list of websites that an advertiser will not permit their ads to be placed on. These sites often contain content that is not aligned with the brand image of the advertiser.

Bonus Impressions

Additional ad impressions above the commitments outlined in the approved insertion order.


(What is Bot short for? 'Cuz he's only got little legs...(actually short for Robot))

Software that runs automatically without human intervention. Typically, a bot is endowed with the capability to react to different situations it may encounter. Two common types of bots are agents and spiders. Bots are used by companies like search engines to discover websites for indexing.


An agency representing buyers that attempts to buy ad inventory on behalf of advertisers.


(Softly, softly cach-e monkey…)

Memory used to temporarily store the most frequently requested content/files/pages in order to speed its delivery to the user. Caches can be local (i.e. on a browser) or on a network. In the case of local cache, most computers have both memory (RAM) and disk (hard drive) cache.

Cached Ad Impressions

The delivery of an advertisement to a browser from local cache or a proxy server‘s cache. When a user requests a page that contains a cached ad, the ad is obtained from the cache and displayed.


1) A band of similar content; 2) a type of sales outlet (also known as channel of distribution), for example retail, catalog, or e-commerce.

Click Fraud

(The modern day equivalent to a Dickensian pickpocket...)

Click fraud is a type of internet crime that occurs in pay-per-click online advertising when a person, automated script, or computer program imitates a legitimate user of a web browser clicking on an ad, for the purpose of generating a charge-per-click without having actual interest in the target of the ad’s link.

Click Rate

(High click rate - All those years spent playing Hungry Hippos has finally paid off for Alvin the Ad.)

Ratio of ad clicks to ad impressions.

Click-Through Rate (CTR)

Used to measure the success of an online or mobile advertising campaign, CTR is the number of users who clicked on ad/number of times the ad was delivered.


(Surely we all want to know how 'this average mom lost 500 pounds in just ONE easy step' though, yes??)

Website content that is aimed at generating advertising revenue, especially at the expense of quality or accuracy. It mainly relies on sensationalist headlines to attract click-throughs.


1) Metric which measures the reaction of a user to an Internet ad. There are three types of clicks: click-throughs; in-unit clicks and mouseovers; 2) the opportunity for a user to download another file by clicking on an advertisement, as recorded by the server; 3) the result of a measurable interaction with an advertisement or key word that links to the advertiser‘s intended website or another page or frame within the website; 4) metric which measures the reaction of a user to linked editorial content.

Content Grazing

This refers to the common multi-device practice of using two or more screens at the same time to access unrelated content, e.g. watching a show on TV and writing an email on a smartphone or tablet.

Contextual Targeting

A form of targeted advertising that scans media for context and automatically serves ads based on the content displayed to the user.


(Mmm, not the delicious little baked treat…)

A small piece of information (i.e. program code) that is stored on a browser for the purpose of identifying that browser during audience activity and between visits or sessions.

Cookie Buster

Software that blocks the placement of cookies on a user‘s browser.

Cookie Syncing

The process of mapping user IDs from one system to another.

CPA (Cost-Per-Action)

Cost of advertising based on a visitor taking some specifically defined action in response to an ad. “Actions” include such things as a sales transaction, a customer acquisition, or a click.

CPC (Cost-Per-Click)

Cost of advertising based on the number of times a customer clicks on an advert instead of the number of impressions.

CPL (Cost-Per-Lead)

Cost of advertising based on the number of database files (leads) received.

CPM (Cost-per-mille, more commonly referred to as Cost-per-thousand)

Media term describing the cost of 1,000 impressions (“mille” means thousand in Latin). For example, if a website publisher charges $1.50 CPM, that means an advertiser will pay $1.50 for every 1,000 impressions of its ad. To calculate the CPM for a campaign, divide the budget of the campaign by the number of impressions and multiply by a thousand. E.g. ($15,000 / 10,000,000) * 1000 = $1.50 CPM.

DCO (Dynamic Creative Optimization)

A dynamic creative ad is a personalized or unique ad built in real-time when an ad request is delivered to an ad server. The dynamic ad is created on the fly by using a unique ad template and different elements pulled from a merchant product feed.

Direct Response Advertising

(Do something now, people!)

A goal of soliciting an immediate, near-term action from a viewer.

DMP (Data Management Platform)

(Setting your data KPIs, quarterly targets, that kind of thing...)

A database of publisher and user data. The software manages and sorts multiple data points then segments for businesses to use.

DSP (Demand-Side-Platform)

Allows advertisers and ad agencies to more easily access and efficiently buy ad inventory across multiple ad exchanges through one interface because the DSP aggregates inventory from multiple ad exchanges, simplifying the process.

Dwell Rate

Measures the actual length of time a user’s cursor is stationary on one device, testing the engagement with ads and various other characteristics.

Dynamic IP Address

An IP address (assigned by an ISP to a client PC) that changes periodically.

Dynamic Pricing

The purchase price for an ad impression that is determined via a real-time auction rather than a predetermined fixed rate.


Term describing the effective cost of 1,000 impressions (“mille” means thousand in Latin).  In online advertising, eCPM translates to the advertising revenue generated per 1,000 impressions. To work this out, you must divide the total advertising earnings from a campaign by the total number of impressions and then multiply by 1,000. This leaves you with how much you’re earning on average from your CPM campaign.

Expandable Banners

A banner ad which can expand to as large as 468 x 240 after a user clicks on it or after a user moves his/her cursor over the banner. See for the IAB IMU guidelines.

First Look

Prioritized access to selected advertisers. Instead of a highest bidder winning the auction, the preferred advertiser gets the first refusal of an ad space; within an auction that has a pre-determined floor price.

First-Party Data

Is information collected and stored directly by website publishers, retailers and other types of companies about their site visitors or customers.

Floating Ads

An ad or ads that appear within the main browser window on top of the web page’s normal content, thereby appearing to “float” over the top of the page.

Floor Price

("How much for your lino?")

The minimum selling price set by a publisher on an ad exchange for selling an ad impression.


The number of times an ad is delivered to the same browser in a single session or time period. A site can use cookies in order to manage ad frequency.

Frequency Capping

The ability to set a limit on the number of times an advertiser exposes a user to their advertising within a fixed time period.


Displaying (or preventing the display of) content based on automated or assumed knowledge of an end user‘s position in the real world. Relevant to both PC and mobile data services.

High Impact Units

Large canvas advertising formats that take up much of the webpage and are well known for driving higher response rates (clicks, interaction, engagement). They can often have interactive elements to them.


((Did you leave a good one last night?))

A measurement of responses from a web server to a page request from the user browser, which is filtered from robotic activity and error codes, and is recorded at a point as close as possible to opportunity to see the page by the user.


The number of ads available for sale on a website.


Specific word or series of words entered into a search engine by the user that produce a list of websites related the keyword(s).

Keyword Targeting

The use of specific keywords to find related content.


(Key Performance Indicators)

Key Performance Indicators are objectives that help define and measure the progress of goals set by the organization.

Linear Video Ads

Refers to an ad that takes over the full view of the video and is presented before, between or after the video content has been consumed by the user.


(You're about 5 bites into your delicious sub and get that sad feeling that you don't want it to end.)

Form of online video advertisement that appears mid-way through an online video. See ‘Pre-roll’ and ‘Post-roll’.


Multiple demand side platforms (DSPs) incorporated into one advertising trading platform, such as The Exchange Lab’s proprietary management trading platform, Proteus. A multi-platform approach provides efficiency, scale and the ability to reach audiences across all devices and channels.


('Indigenous Ad' doesn't quite have the same ring, does it?)

Describes a type of paid media where the ad experience follows the state structure of the environment in which it is placed, to mimic the user environment. It copies the site’s format to make it blend in, basically.


A combining form meaning “all”.


All platforms in one.

OPA (Online Privacy Alliance)

(For Greeks it's like - WOOHOO! Or…)

These are a group of corporations and associations who have come together to introduce and promote business-wide actions that create an environment of trust and foster the protection of individuals’ privacy online.

Open Auction/Ad Exchange

An open ad exchange is where advertisers and agencies can buy ad impressions without prior clearance from marketers or publishers.


([*Dons a cockney accent*] I just opt-in me car n' off I went.)

Refers to an individual giving a company permission to use data collected from or about the individual for a particular reason, such as to market the company’s products and services.


Small code placed on a website, unnoticeable to visitors and doesn’t affect performance. When new visitors arrive the pixel drops an anonymous browser cookie. Later, when cookied visitors browse the internet, the cookies inform your retargeting provider when to serve ads, ensuring your ads are served to a relevant audience.

PMP (Private Marketplace)

A closed environment for publishers to sample programmatic – setting a minimum price, access, advertisers, and inventory. This inventory is not otherwise available through an open auction.

Pop-Under Ad

Ad that appears in a separate window beneath an open window. Pop-under ads are concealed until the top window is closed, moved, re-sized or minimized.

Pop-Up Ad

Ad that appears in a separate window on top of content already on-screen. Similar to a daughter window, but without an associated banner.


(Post-roll blues - when you've finished your sandwich and are sad that there's no more left.)

An online video ad placement that appears at the end of an online video. See ‘Pre-roll’ and ‘Mid-roll’.

PPC (Pay-Per-Click)

An advert mail message. See ‘CPC’.


(It's 11 am, you're starving, and lunch time can't come quick enough.)

Form of online video ad placement where the advertisement is played before the content video plays. See ‘Post-roll’ and ‘Mid-roll’.

Programmatic Buying

Programmatic ad buying is the elimination of paper-based manual media buying to an automated process.

Programmatic Direct

Data-driven media buying through a web-based interface. This is the automation of processes involved in buying and selling media, which used to be quite an admin heavy process of order forms and RFPs (requests for proposals).


An individual or organization that prepares, issues and disseminates content for public distribution or sale via one or more media.


(...for the skies...)

1) Unique users that visited the site over the course of the reporting period, expressed as a percent of the universe for the demographic category – also called unduplicated audience; 2) the total number of unique users who will be served a given ad.

Remnant Inventory

Inventory that a publisher is unable to sell directly that is then typically turned over to a third-party to sell.

Responsive Design

A web design process enabling content to re-size, reformat, reshape, and re-position itself in real-time to fit the browsing screen of a user.


Allows online advertisers to target consumers based on their previous interactions with a website. It acts as a ‘reminder’ to site visitors who have not yet purchased. Also referred to as remarketing or behavioral targeting.

RTB (Real-Time Bidding)

Real-time bidding refers to the buying and selling of online ad impressions through real-time auctions that occur in the time it takes a webpage to load. Also known as RTA or Real-Time Advertising.


When consumers compare prices on mobile whilst out in a traditional bricks and mortar shop.


Customized sets of graphics used in display advertising as a highly visible wallpaper.

SSL (Secure Sockets Layer)

Provides a secure connection between websites and internet browsers, enabling private data transition online. An SSL secured site displays a padlock in the browser URL. Some ad exchanges place restrictions on the types of ads that run on these sites and require secure creative placements.

SSP (Supply-Side Platform)

Enables publishers to plug into the ad exchanges to make their inventory available. Through SSPs, publishers hope to gain the highest eCPM for their inventory, as opposed to selling it at low-cost remnant prices.

Third Party Ad Server

(The newest form of bar tending)

Independent outsourced companies that specialize in managing, maintaining, serving, tracking, and analyzing the results of online ad campaigns. They deliver targeted advertising that can be tailored to consumers’ declared or predicted characteristics or preferences.

Third-Party Data

Data obtained through a multitude of internet interactions from outside sources. It is used to help create consumer segments for targeted ads.

Trading Desk

(Trading desks; the latest office past-time.)

A third-party company that licenses and supports DSP technology, managing programmatic, bid-based media and audience buying on behalf of advertisers/agencies.

TV Syncing

Using geolocation, behavioral data and device signals, TV syncing triggers online ad campaigns in real-time to coincide with brand adverts being shown on TV.

Weather Targeting

Uses location-based data automatically to serve a targeted ad to a user, based on real-time weather conditions, current temperature, wind speeds, and humidity.


A list of trustworthy websites an advertiser allows their adverts to be placed on.

Win Rate

(IT'S THE TAKING PART THAT COUNTS (so my mother told me...:-())

Is the ratio of submitted bids and won impressions (comes as a percentage).

Yield Optimization

Technique employed by publishers to determine the value of their ad impressions in order to manage the flow of inventory and improve performance.