What is Programmatic Advertising?

Ad placement is the only way you’re going to get your advertisement seen by an audience, no matter how great your ad is. This is why programmatic advertising is critical in today’s digital world. If your business or brand is trying to look for new ways to expand the reach of your targeting audience, programmatic advertising is an advertising technique you should consider. Even if you’re a beginner to programmatic advertising, there is help available to get your business started. This article will explain everything you need to know about programmatic advertising, from what it is, different platforms you can use, and more.

programmatic advertising platforms

Programmatic Ads

Programmatic advertising is the process of automating the buying and selling of online advertising. This includes automating the buying and selling of ad inventory in real-time. Through programmatic advertising, transactions become more effective and efficient. For example, programmatic advertising consolidates your digital advertising processes into one technology platform. It also enables agencies to purchase ad impressions on websites or apps quickly. 

Today, programmatic platforms have increased their databases to enable an array of devices, from a mobile phone to a desktop computer to a TV, to be accessed programmatically.  

Programmatic Advertising Platforms

If you’re in search of programmatic platforms, there are many out there your brand or company can choose from. A programmatic advertising platform is a way from marketers and advertisers to automate the purchase and management to their digital ad campaigns, such as ad placement or campaign optimization. Some platforms even offer an editing tool to design campaign creatives. Publishers, on the other hand, can use these kinds of platforms as a way to manage their ad inventory, or the space the publisher has to sell on their digital outlet, such as their website or app.

The top five programmatic advertising platforms for 2020 include:


This programmatic advertising platform caters to brand, publisher, and app developers and their needs. SmartyAds includes Demand-Side Platform (DSP), Data Management Platform (DMP), Supply-Side Platform (SSP), and ad exchange. Your business can also run advertising campaigns through desktop and mobile devices. 


TubMogul enables brands and agencies to plan, run, and optimize their advertising techniques and plans. This includes real-time bidding (RTB) process access. Real-time bidding is one type of programmatic advertising that enables bidding for individual ad impressions, which helps create a more focused bidding than bulk ad buying. You can also import your programmatic inventory into the TubeMogul software.  


This programmatic marketing platform allows advertisers to buy ad inventory through several real-time bidding exchanges.


MediaMath allows advertisers to use end-to-end campaign management. This includes the MediaMath Audience feature, which gives advertisers the ability to connect with their most valuable audience. 

programmatic advertising explained


PubMatic is a programmatic advertising platform for both brands and publishers. The media buy console PubMatic offers can help advertisers plan and manage programmatic direct campaigns through different ad channels and ad formats. Publishers can get the highest yield from each impression by use of PubMatic’s RTB advertising technology. 

You might be wondering, which programmatic advertising platform should I use? That question can be answered differently depending on your needs and goals. A few things to take into consideration when finding the right one for you should include pricing, targeted audience, fraud prevention, and technological support.

Programmatic Advertising Explained

As mentioned earlier, programmatic advertising is the process of automating the buying and selling of online advertising. However, it’s more than that. The digital advertising space is operated by ad exchanges. These ad exchanges are made up of advertisers, those who want to buy ad space, and publishers, those who own websites with digital space they can sell.  

Programmatic advertising uses algorithms to oversee the sales and placement of digital ad impressions, which take place on ad exchange platforms. This process makes digital advertising both effective and efficient, as it happens within a matter of seconds. 

Now that you know what programmatic advertising is, you might be asking yourself, “How does the programmatic buying work?” There are several steps incorporated with the buying side of programmatic advertising, which process only takes an instant. First, a person clicks on a website. Next, the website owner puts the ad impression up for auction, which is the supply-side platform (SSP.) Third, advertisers bid for the impression, which is the demand-side platform (DSP.) Then whoever has the highest bid, they win the ad impression, and their ad is served on the website for the user to view. Finally, the user is able to click on the ad.

programmatic ads

What is SSP and DSP? 

SSP and DSP are a lot simpler to understand than they look. When it comes to online ad space, there are two sides: buyers (advertisers) and sellers (publishers). Advertisers are in charge of DSP, while publishers are in charge of SSP.

On the SSP side, there are several benefits you can have as a publisher. These perks include:

Ability to Set Prices

Through SSP, you’re able to set a price floor, preventing the sale of your inventory to drop below that set price. Your company is able to make a variety of deals through SSP.

Real-Time Adjustments

SSP allows you to make real-time changes to your campaign, even though it’s in the process of running. This includes filtering through ads, targeting the ads you want, and weeding out the responses you don’t want.  

Customer Reach

Through the target consumer base and price floor, SSP enables you to know and stay in tune with potential consumers and technology that will enable you to reach more customers.  

Fast Results

SSP allows you to not only reach customers fast, but you’ll also be able to see the results and company performance at a faster rate than before. SSP also makes your once tedious task a cinch as you access numerous sources and buyers simultaneously.    

There are numerous benefits to becoming an expert in programmatic advertising-SSP.

programmatic advertising


A DSP allows advertisers to purchase ad impressions on publisher websites through entering bids for ad space. It also allows advertisers to target a certain audience through specific data, such as age, geographical location, and past online behavior. 

If your business is looking into launching web campaigns through streaming services, programmatic advertising with a DSP something to look into. After deciding on whether or not you’re going to use a DSP, you’ll need to choose your DSP. A few things to keep into consideration are user data, targeting tools, inventory, analytics, platform fees, technical support, usability, and more. Do your research as an advertiser. 

If you’re still stuck on which DSP is right for you, SEO Design Chicago can help you with your search. Whether you’re on the advertiser side or the publisher side, SEO Design Chicago can help you get started with programmatic advertising.  

Benefits to Programmatic Advertising

There are many benefits to take advantage of when using programmatic advertising. These benefits include:

Reaching Capabilities

Because programmatic advertising supports an array of ad exchanges and networks, it gives advertisers access to a wide range of ad space through thousands of websites. Programmatic advertising is also a way to place ads with low costs and little work. 


Programmatic advertising also enables both advertisers and publishers real-time access to ad placement data. Through this access, programmatic advertising helps maximize transparency. 

Targeting Beyond CTR

CTR, or click-through rate, is beneficial in programmatic advertising because the clicks your business’s ad gets are through advanced targeting. In other words, if your clicks aren’t turning into conversations, how many clicks don’t count for much, but through advanced targeting, advertisers are able to reach a high-quality audience.

Data Insights and Reporting in Real-Time 

Advertisers and publishers can optimize campaigns quickly because programmatic exchanges allow access to real-time data and advanced ad placement and performance reporting.  


Through programmatic advertising, advertisers are able to maximize the relevance of their ads for their targeted audience. 


If you’re not one to spend a lot of money, programmatic advertising might be the way to go for you. That’s because it works on a CPM, also known as a cost per impression model. This type of model makes programmatic advertising relatively cheaper than other platforms (for example, as opposed to social media networks.) For more information about programmatic advertising costs, get in touch with an SEO Design Chicago representative.

what is programmatic advertising

How do I Integrate Programmatic Advertising into my Marketing Strategy?

If you’re new to programmatic advertising, how it works might sound daunting. Because of the number of targeted audience members your business or brand has the capacity to reach through programmatic advertising, it is a great way to boost your brand awareness. If brand awareness is one of your goals, you should definitely consider using this strategy.

Ready to Take Advantage of Programmatic Advertising?

Now that you know more about the basic ins and outs, you are ready to get started. If programmatic advertising is still new and confusing to you, SEO Design Chicago has a team of experts who are here to help answer any of your questions. We work with clients from all over the United States and Canada. Contact us today for all of your digital ad needs!

Contact Us Today!

Call Now