Sites Slow to Comply With IAB

Not surprisingly, adoption of the Internet Advertising Bureau’s (IAB) new online ad units across the Internet hasn’t happened en masse yet. A Jupiter Media Metrix report released today found that while 25 percent of ad-supported Web sites have experimented with larger online banner sizes, less than 5 percent of these sites run ads that exactly comply with the new IAB standards.

The study showed an increase in the number of ads matching the IAB standards, which were announced on Feb. 26, but those numbers weren’t enough to make a dent in the overall market, according to Charlie Buchwalter, vp of media research at AdRelevance, a Jupiter Media Metrix company.

These findings do not undermine the work the IAB has been doing, Buchwalter noted. “The industry is moving in the right direction,” he said. “The ad standards will inevitably make it easier for advertisers to approach the Internet in a cost-effective way.”

Buchwalter acknowledged that it will take some time for many sites to re-code to accommodate the larger ad formats.

Although it hasn’t yet been proven that bigger is necessarily better, the new ad sizes represent innovation and change that’s important, Buchwalter said. Whether the new sizes currently being used on sites perfectly adhere to the IAB’s standards, the fact remains that almost any implementation of different units can be seen as positive.

According to AdRelevance data, gaming site Flipside.com led all Web sites in complying with the new standards, hosting more than 30 million impressions for ads matching the IAB specifications. This accounts for 10 percent of their total advertising revenue. The Street.com placed second with 6 million impressions.

Corbis purchased the most IAB-specified large ad formats, with almost 5 million impressions during February, and three online casino sites were among the top five IAB ad format advertisers.