Ad Network Industry - How It Works? | Top Ad Network Platforms

Ad Network Industry - How It Works? | Top Ad Network Platforms

With the increasing digitization, the marketplace for publishers, advertisers, and ad space over the internet is growing rapidly. In order to support this marketplace, ad networks play a crucial role. An ad network is something that acts as a middleman between publishers and advertisers. Being in the role of middleman, it is known to offer ads in bulk to particular segments of the audience.

The global market size of the Advertising Networks industry is 619,469 companies, and there are about 160 companies producing Advertising Networks technologies. Google AdSense is the largest advertising network with a market share of nearly 61.24%. This article entails everything that you need to know about the ad network industry including its types, how it works, popular network platforms, and more.

What Are Ad Networks?
What Does An Ad Network Do?
Various Types of Ad Networks
How Do Ad Networks Work?
Top Ad Network Platforms

What Are Ad Networks?

Major technological platforms known as Ad Networks serve as a bridge between a community of publishers and an organization of advertisers. In the middle of the 1990s, when internet advertising was just getting started, ad networks were among the first pieces of advertising technology to appear. They were still in charge of helping businesses buy available ad space, often known as advertising inventory, from various publications. The word ad network, which we, the general public, may assume to relate to any sort of media (print, television, radio), is actually solely used to describe online advertising.

What Does An Ad Network Do?

Ad networks' primary purpose is to receive unsold ad inventory from online publishers and match it with advertisers looking for ad space. This makes it easier for both parties to interact and, eventually, reach an agreement. The advantage of using an ad network is dependent on which side you are on. It guides publishers to find buyers for unsold ad space, though the revenue is typically less than what they could earn through direct sales. It is beneficial for advertisers to find inventory that is appropriate for their target audience and budget. Both ad networks and advertisers use it to operate, manage, and handle advertising campaigns. An ad network is also a type of advertising technology, but, it is only used to facilitate buys among both advertisers and publishers.

Ad networks conventionally pool unsold ad inventory from multiple publishers and snap up it to advertisers at a much lower price than a publisher's direct selling. This type of stock is also known as non-premium or remnant. But nowadays, however again, several networks take a much more thoughtful approach, favoring more exclusive agreements at higher prices for their advertisers. They select and pre-purchase inventory from a variety of top-tier publishers, then turn around and sell it at inflated prices. Whereas this configuration may be more high-priced for advertisers, it ensures that their ads are placed in prime locations.

Various Types of Ad Networks

Should you need to find an ad network that caters to your specific audience or industry, you should have no trouble finding one. There are numerous ad networks for various topics, audiences, and formats.

Here are the four major types of the most widely used ad networks:

Vertical Network: Vertical networks are topic-specific ad networks, such as fashion, automotive, or business.

Premium Networks: Premium ad networks provide inventory from well-known publishers.

Inventory-Specific Networks: Inventory-specific Ad networks specialize in a particular type of advertising inventory, such as video or mobile.

Targeted Networks: Targeted Ad networks include specific targeting capabilities in the ad server.

How Do Ad Networks Work?

Publishers and Advertisers can both benefit from ad networks. But how precisely do they operate? Here is a conventional model of an ad network, but take into consideration that these phases are always changing as a result of technological advancements.

  1. To begin with, ad networks gather several publishers who have accessible inventory.
  2. In the meantime, the advertiser uses the campaign panel of the ad network to establish a campaign. The advertiser enters information about the campaign's target audience, budget, and other factors while designing it.
  3. The ad network tags are put in place on the publisher's website.
  4. The publisher receives the ad specifics when the advertiser's campaign and the publisher's supply match. By collecting a portion of the advertising revenue or by annotating inventory before selling it, the ad network makes money.
  5. The advertiser may monitor and control the performance of the ad in the campaign interface of the ad network once it has gone live.

Top Ad Network Platforms

Here are some most popular Ad Network platforms that are used across the globe.

Google AdSense

Google AdSense

Google Adsense is one of the biggest and oldest ad networks out there. And it won't disappear any time soon because of its excellent reputation and cutting-edge technology. Ads may be published in a variety of forms using Google Adsense, which also offers incredibly specific targeting options including behavioral targeting. But beware, Google AdSense expects a lot from its advertising, so be ready to adhere to the guidelines.

Amazon Affiliates

One of the top affiliate advertising networks on the internet is Amazon Affiliates. You may point readers to specific items by using link-building tools as an affiliate. This is how it goes: You are paid a commission if a visitor clicks on a native shopping ad and buys anything. Additionally, it's crucial to remember that Amazon Associates has more stringent standards and regulations than most other ad networks.

Propeller Ads

PropellerAds is yet another powerful player in the world of ad networks. Ad types available from PropellerAds include billboard, native, pop-under, and text alerts. Through its Self-Service platform, PropellerAds brings publishers and marketers together. The software makes it simple to track and manage campaigns since it allows you to establish campaigns and view real-time reporting for your advertising.

One of the most renowned ad networks online, is a well-liked substitute for Google Adsense. CNN, Forbes, and Esquire are a few of its most well-known publishers., which is powered by Bing and Yahoo, gives publishers access to a sizable pool of both local and national advertising. On the other hand, marketers may use the ad network to produce contextual advertising across various inventory types, such as mobile, displays, native, and searching.


Just look at its monetization approach to see why publishers should choose BidVertiser. A publisher makes money every time an ad is clicked and more when the click results in a conversion, such as a sale for the advertiser. To guarantee publishers receive the greatest payment for each ad impression, BidVertiser also offers a bidding mechanism.


One of the top ad networks with a focus on pop-under advertisements is PopAds. To review, pop-under adverts for desktop and mobile users show up beneath an open window. Instant approval and affordable CPM prices are provided by PopAds. Furthermore, there is no minimum traffic requirement compared to other ad networks.


The lifestyle sector, which includes travel, cuisine, and fashion, is the focus of AdThrive, an ad network. You could succeed on this platform if you fit into one of these niches (or not; you can still join). AdThrive has a "creator-first approach," and as part of that, they guarantee payments to publishers. In other words, even if an advertiser doesn't pay them, they'll still pay you.



Adcash provides a variety of ad types and solutions to assist publishers in better monetizing their visitors. Better still, their technology can get around those annoying ad blockers. It's among the most user-friendly ad networks available, with a simple interface and clear reporting features.

Propel Media

Push and display advertisements are Propel Media's areas of expertise. It's also among the top ad networks for attracting customers with high intent. It can evaluate user intent and instantly match it with highly relevant information using intent-based technologies. Advertisers may reach their target demographic more effectively and boost conversions by choosing the proper ad network. Additionally, it helps publishers find buyers and fill ad inventory. But with so many ad networks accessible, you need carefully consider your alternatives.


Supply-side platforms and ad networks compete for publishers and advertising income and are always fighting for market share. The distinction between the two is becoming much hazier at the same time as each attempt harder to offer some of the other's features. We are presently observing a "two become one" scenario—ad networks are progressively starting to provide multiple SSP functionalities—because marketers are looking for a comprehensive solution. Conversely, SSPs are developing specific ad network capabilities to draw premium publishers. In that they link the supply side with the demand side, they are comparable to ad networks since they let advertisers make direct purchases.


What are Ad Networks?

Major technological platforms known as Ad Networks serve as a bridge between a community of publishers and an organization of advertisers.

What do Ad Networks do?

Ad networks' primary purpose is to receive unsold ad inventory from online publishers and match it with advertisers looking for ad space. This makes it easier for both parties to interact and, eventually, reach an agreement.

How many types of Ad Networks are there?

There are the four major types of the most widely used ad networks:
Vertical Network
Premium Networks
Inventory-Specific Networks
Targeted Networks

What are some top Ad Network platforms?

Some top Ad Networks are Google AdSense, Amazon Affiliates, Propeller Ads,, etc.

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