Checking Geo-Targeted Campaigns: Clearing Cookies & Cache

There are two major factors that affect what ad will be presented on a publisher’s page. These are ‎Cookies and Cache.  Cookies apply to the user’s profile, segmentation, and frequency, while Cache ‎applies to the memory kept for this ad on the user’s computer.‎

Breaking down the cookie 

Cookies are small data codes generated by a website and saved by a web browser. Browser cookies ‎come in two different flavors: “session” and “persistent.” Session cookies are temporary and are ‎deleted when the browser is closed. Persistent cookies are what allow websites to “remember a user” ‎for two weeks, one month, or any other amount of time.‎

In online advertising, persistent cookies are used in order to increase the efficiency of the placing of ‎advertisements on websites. The intent is to target advertisements such as changing banner ‎ads to users whose profiles match those of likely consumers of the advertised products ‎‎(based on the user’s profile, geographical location etc.).‎

Checking geo-targeted campaigns

When we test and check Geo-Targeted campaigns, we need to see that we are getting the correct ad ‎in the Ad Slot.

For example, should we check the Ad Tag while clearing up Cookies?

Will we ‎continuously see the correct ad (for each different country)?

Most ads have a frequency cap that ‎applies to how many times that ad can be seen on a website (by a single user). This accounts for the ‎cookie that is set on the user’s browser. If the frequency capping is set at 2/24 (meaning that the ad ‎can be seen two times for every 24 hours – twice a day), the image will stop showing, and the page will ‎show either a blank (white) space or a Public Service Ad.‎

Also, the cookies that are set on the user’s computer to track the geo location, (and as such) show ads ‎that relate to this geographical location.‎

When we are re-testing various tags, and various ad sizes, on different Geo’s – this becomes a widely ‎known issue. The clearing of cookies affects the results, and as such must be cleared on every geo ‎check in online campaigns.‎

It is also important to clear the Cache in online campaigns. Each time you access a file through your ‎web browser, the browser caches (stores) it for future use. By doing this, the browser doesn’t have to ‎newly retrieve files (including any images – which may very well be ads) from the remote web site (Ad ‎Server) each time you click back or forward. This may result in the wrong ad when checked for the ‎campaign.‎

Clearing Cookies & Cache when checking Geo-Targeted campaigns is highly important ‎and may very well show different results for online campaigns if not done so. One should periodically ‎‎(and between tests) clear the Cache and Cookies to allow the browser to function more efficiently ‎with the accurate results we wish to see. This issue applies both to online and mobile campaigns.‎

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