Triple-Digit Growth in Ad Revenue for UK Digital Publishers Using SDK-Derived Location Data

Report finds nearly nine in 10 (87%) of UK publishers have increased mobile ad yield as a result of integrating SDKs from location marketing platforms, one fifth (20%) have seen triple-digit growth. 

London, UK: UK publishers selling mobile advertising impressions have expressed a preference for mobile location data derived from software development kits (SDKs) after seeing triple-digit growth in inventory yield, according to research by ExchangeWire, the leading global data and insights provider for data-driven and programmatic advertising.

Commissioned by Verve, the dynamic location mobile marketing platform, to better understand UK mobile ad trading practices, the study focuses exclusively on the opinions of UK mobile ad buyers and sellers.

Just one in 10 (11%) of publishers have used location data from ad exchanges, expressing significant concern over the level of accuracy and precision of the data they receive. Publishers selling mobile ads are much more positive about the accuracy and precision of data derived from SDK integrations. Almost three-quarters of respondents (72%) agree that location data gathered through exchanges is less accurate and less precise than location data gathered through SDKs.

Media buyers also lack faith in location data derived from ad exchanges and forward-thinking buyers are turning to SDKs to provide more accurate and precise data for use in mobile ad campaigns. Yet one in four (42%) of media buyers and one in three (31%) of sellers are not aware of SDK location data solutions. This combined with the fact that over a third (36%) of both groups cite accuracy as the most important thing when it comes to using location data, highlights a gap in the market for SDKs to potentially take advantage of.

Tim Jones, Head of Mobile Solutions at premium publisher Trinity Mirror comments: “We decided to partner with Verve through their location-smart SDK technology, as we understand the huge importance of the first party data, we as a publisher own. Last year, Jeff Devlin, chairman of WPP stated 80-90% of location data is incorrect, imprecise and wrong, which is becoming a concern due to the unknown, indirect nature of the exchange pool. For Trinity, we want to change this. We want to build more meaningful and insightful audience segment profiles for our advertisers, to help us generate uplift in yield and provide them with increased performance.”

Ian James, General Manager International, Verve, says: “With the pressure on publisher ad sales teams greater than ever, we see an increased demand for top-quality, granular location data. The main problem publishers are faced with is fickle media buyers who are quick to remove publishers from media plans when performance drops – even if they don’t understand why. Empowering publishers with data to explain to media buyers why they see performance peaks and troughs enables them to build closer relationships and long-term partnerships built on trust and honesty.”

Becca Muir, Head of Research and Analysis, ExchangeWire, says: “UK mobile ad buyers and sellers have been burnt in the past by bad data. Low quality, inaccurate data leads to poor campaign performance and low ad yields meaning that, today, there is a residual layer of scepticism about the effectiveness of location targeted mobile display ads. SDK-derived data has been shown to be more accurate and precise compared to data from mobile ad exchanges, and those who have been brave enough to try again have reaped rewards in the form of improved return on investment for brands and higher ad yields for publishers.”

To read the full report please visit


This report is based on a survey of 249 media professionals based in the UK. Data was collected during April and May 2017.

About Verve

Founded in 2005, Verve has always recognized the potential of mobile and its unique ability to reach people no matter where they choose to go. Since day one, Verve set out to create a dynamic location mobile marketing platform to help advertisers, large and small, utilize the power of connecting with consumers on their devices in real time. Verve’s mobile experts continue to invent and build solutions with consumer engagement as a guiding principle. Harnessing the power of location-context mobile data, Verve believes that mobile advertising is more than a message; it is an experience that connects consumers with the brands, publishers, and moments they value.

About ExchangeWire

ExchangeWire tracks global data-driven and programmatic advertising, media buying trends, and then ad tech and mar tech sectors. Delving deep into the business of automated media trading and the technology that underpins it across multi-channels (online display, video, mobile and social), the site aims to keep readers up to data on all the latest news and developments.

ExchangeWire provides opinion and analysis on the following sector companies: specialist media buyers, ad traders, ad networks, media agencies, publishers, data exchanges, ad exchanges and specialist ad tech providers in the video, mobile and online display markets.

Reflecting the growing prominence of programmatic advertising, in 2014 ExchangeWire launched a new company division — ExchangeWire Research — to help marketers better understand how it fits into the wider marketing mix.

Conceived by Ciaran O’Kane, CEO of ExchangeWire and Rachel Smith, COO of ExchangeWire, ExchangeWire Research is headed up by Becca Muir, Head of Research and Analysis. The unit uses its proprietary technology and unique industry data sets to offer global data and insight on the marketing technology, advertising technology and programmatic advertising sectors.