We’ve covered ad networks for Android apps as well as ad mediators, but what about both under one roof? MoPub is an interesting option because it offers not just server-managed ad mediation, but also their own integrated ad network.
This makes for a handy combination, and I have been migrating a number of my Android apps over to MoPub to help manage my ad networks, and the results have been great.
I reviewed MoPub (and the integrated MoPub Marketplace) in my latest book, the Android Ad Network Primer, but it hadn’t appeared here on the blog yet. So, without further ado, my review of MoPub.
How MoPub helps you manage your Android apps
As you may know, I’m a big fan of split testing to get actual data. I adjust my ad settings and ad networks from time to time to ensure that I’m getting the best results from my apps.
After a while, however, things can get complicated. As you put more apps and more ad networks in your Android toolbox, the maintenance can get tedious. Different ad networks require different permissions and different libraries, which might require more than a few quick steps to swap out.
Moreover, when there’s a problem with one ad network, you have to release a new version of the app and hope users update. Given how quickly ad networks fluctuate, it can be difficult to keep up.
That’s what mediators are built for – they help you get the best of a number of ad networks. The benefit of a server-managed ad mediator is that you can make updates through the web interface, rather than having to make changes in the app itself.
The most powerful feature is, of course, the ability to redirect ad requests to the appropriate network, even if you weren’t dealing with that network when you released your app.
I have been using this extensively to help manage the multiplication of IDs you get when you have a few different ad networks per app store per app. The management console lets me see the total number of ad impressions for an ad property over all ad networks, which helps me see at a glance what’s going on.
Next, the MoPub Marketplace offers a great fallback for when your other ad networks don’t offer ads. Even if you don’t want to use it extensively, just set the minimum eCPM fairly high. This will only direct traffic to the Marketplace for very high-paying ads.
Lastly, the house ad feature allows you to use it as backfill (below the ad networks, in case none of them have ads), or as a promotional spot (above the ad networks). This helps centrally manage your house ads, which can get tough when you use a number of ad networks with different – or no – house ad features.
Limitations with MoPub
Of course, MoPub isn’t the first network I recommend in the Android Ad Network Primer. It is very powerful, but to take advantage of that power you need to do a little more work. If you’re just starting out that might be intimidating.
For one thing, you need to download the source code yourself – there’s no provided library. Expect a little more time to get set up the first time than with most other networks.
Next, even though MoPub will mediate automatically, it requires manual entry of the eCPM you want each network to be evaluated with.
Lastly, MoPub requires code to set up the ad views. If you have an XML-based ad setup, this requires a bit of a transition. On the other hand, I took this opportunity to add some code to supply a different ad ID for each Android app market, which enhanced my ability to track everything.
Choosing Your Ad Network
Actually, the point of MoPub is that you don’t have to choose. You can evaluate and change the network you’re using at any time.
And as you can see from reading this my previous posts or the Android Ad Network Primer, there are a LOT of ad network choices. MoPub is a great way to help manage the ad networks in your Android apps.
Is MoPub not the ad network you were looking for? Take a look at the Android Ad Network Primer for a crash course in ad networks to use with your Android apps, with instructions to help you get started earning from your Android apps today.