Weekly Recap: Ad Spend Impact, Google’s Bad Ad Blocking and App Rating Importance


IAB Ad Spend Impact Report

In this second study of advertising buyers, IAB has compared changes to advertising spend for the March through June timeframe.

Month over month trends:

  • More buyers report pausing ad spend
  • Digital ad spend is experiencing a slight rebound, although is still off-plan
  • Premium Publishers are experiencing a slight rebound in ad spend projections
  • Those channels with greater flexibility and agility in creating, editing and optimizing creative will experience less of an impact
  • Both mission/cause-related messaging and performance messaging saw an increase

New insights:

Buyers are shifting messaging, modifying/creating new creative assets. Of those who are creating new assets, 60% say new creative will in some way reflect the crisis.

40% of Buyers typically run ads adjacent to News, and they are more likely to:

  • Cancel /pause ads due to inappropriate/irrelevant creative.
  • Increase their spend in both Display and Search
  • Look at new metrics/KPIs during this crisis.
  • Modify or develop new creative assets.

Image: IAB



Google’s Bad Ad Blocking 

Since the onset of the coronavirus, Google has blocked and removed tens of millions of coronavirus-related ads for policy violations including price-gouging, capitalizing on global medical supply shortages, making misleading claims about cures and promoting illegitimate unemployment benefits.

“For example, as the situation evolved, we saw a sharp spike in fraudulent ads for in-demand products like face masks” – Scott Spencer, Googles VP of Product Management, Ads Privacy and Safety.

“These ads promoted products listed significantly above market price, misrepresented the product quality to trick people into making a purchase or were placed by merchants who never fulfilled the orders.”

In 2019, Google blocked and removed 2.7 billion bad ads—that’s more than 5,000 bad ads per minute.

  • 1 million advertiser accounts were suspended for policy violations.
  • On the publisher side, over 1.2 million accounts and removed ads from over 21 million web pages. Terminating accounts—not just removing an individual ad or page—is an especially effective enforcement tool that we use if advertisers or publishers engage in continuous policy violations.

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 Star Ratings for iOS and Android Apps


Based on data from Apptentive’s 2020 Mobile App Engagement Benchmark Report, it’s evident that app ratings and reviews aren’t just vanity metrics, but hold real weight when it comes to conversion rates and brand reputation.

Essentially, stars function as social proof to vouch for your app’s quality.

Customer data revealed that the lower the star rating, the less likely they’d be to download the app. Proving that the cost of a single star is huge. Moving a three-star app to four stars, for example, can lead to an 89% increase in conversion.

According to Apptentitive, apps across both app stores saw changes to their total distribution of star ratings. From 2018 to 2019, iOS apps saw a 20% decrease in one-star ratings and a 7% increase in five-star ratings. During the same time period, Android apps saw a 14% increase in one-star ratings and a 3% increase in five-star ratings.


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Alisha is a Technology Writer and Marketing Manager at GeoEdge. Her writing focuses on current events in the AdTech ecosystem and cyberattacks served through the digital advertising supply chain. You can find Alisha on LinkedIn to discuss brand building and happenings in AdTech.

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