How to Troubleshoot a Low Win Rate

Below are some steps you can take if you believe your line item is not winning an appropriate percent of its bids:

1. If your line item is using a VAST wrapper creative, check whether there are any rendering issues / restrictions.

Try previewing your creative via the Beeswax creative preview, and/or other video previewing tools such as Google’s VAST inspector.

Video players only register an impression when the creative fully renders, so if the creative fails to load 100% of the time (either due to errors, or some sort of business logic set within the ad server), it will impact your win rate.

2. If you are using a VAST wrapper creative, ensure that any relevant video APIs are selected.

Additionally, if your creative requires the VPAID API to be present on the video player, and it has not been marked as such, it will bring down your win rate (as you’ll be bidding on inventory where VPAID is not present and thus your creative is not eligible to serve).

Check whether your tag is using VPAID, and if so, ensure that you’ve selected “VPAID” under the “Video API” section of “Creative Attributes.” You can check this by navigating to the tag’s URL in your browser—if apiFramework=”VPAID” is included as an attribute on the <MediaFile> element, it means that VPAID is required:

<MediaFile id=1 delivery=”progressive” type=”application/x-shockwaveflash” width=640 height=480 apiFramework=”VPAID”>

3. Try raising your CPM bid.

Oftentimes, there will simply be a high degree of competition for the particular traffic you are targeting--particularly when targeting very specific attributes or segments. Try playing around with your CPM bid to see if raising it impacts the percent of auctions you’re able to win.

4. Pull bid performance reporting by inventory source & creative ID to see if any have a particularly low win rate.

Sometimes, exchanges or publishers will block creatives for a variety of reasons—usually either because of content within the creative, or because of some undesirable behavior exhibited by the creative (e.g. making calls to vendors/servers deemed to be suspicious, rendering issues, etc.).

Try pulling a bid performance report by day, creative ID, and inventory source to see if:

  1. There are any particular exchanges where win rate is particularly low (or 0), and
  2. If there were any particular dates where a drop-off occurred.

Then, forward your findings to the Beeswax support team, who can connect you with our contacts at the exchanges who will be able to clarify and provide a path to resolution.

5. As a last step, reach out to the Exchanges / SSP

If the above steps do not help increase your win rate, as a last resort, you should reach out to the Exchanges / SSP as they will be able to provide additional insight such as 

  • Any advertiser blocks
  • CPM optimizations
  • Creative rejections / spec updates
  • General loss reasons

When reaching out, please include your Beeswax Creative ID (buzzkey-<Creative ID>), the Inventory Type you are targeting, your Advertiser Domain, and any other relevant information that will help narrow the investigation.

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