Preview a creative

Review how an advertiser's creative will appear on your page

Preview a creative in Ad Manager, on your site, or on your mobile device, to verify that it works correctly before it begins serving. You can preview a creative before its start date.

  1. Sign in to Google Ad Manager.
  2. Navigate to the details page of line item that has the creative you want to preview.

    Click Delivery and then Line items and use filters or browse.

  3. From the details page of a line item, click the Creatives tab.  
  4. Find the creative you want preview among the list of creatives and click its name.
  5. Scroll down the creative details page and click the Preview tab.

Onsite Creative Preview is available only when you access the creative from the line item. If you don't access the creative through the line item, correct targeting information is unclear as a creative can be associated with multiple line items.

Ad Manager can display a preview of the creative directly under the "Preview" tab in many cases. In some cases, Ad Manager can't show the creative here. JavaScript or other code within a creative doesn't render directly under the "Preview" tab for instance. 

Preview via other options

Other options to preview under the "Preview" tab include:

The options provide a more accurate experience of how the ad creative renders. Opening the creative in a new window can be particularly useful if you're working with custom creatives and need to test macros or other custom code.

Click-through URLs in preview mode

  • Click-through override settings are not reflected in creative previews. The standard click-through URL is used in the preview, but your override will be used when the creative is served to your content.
  • If a click-tracking macro is included in a custom or third-party creative, characters after # in a click-through URL is excluded in the preview. This issue does not affect actual creative delivery.

Unsupported creative preview

Not able to preview your creative?

It can take up to 5 minute to preview a new creative. If you don't see your creative, wait a few minutes, then try again.

Preview creative in a new window

Click New window in the creative's "Preview" tab. This will open a new browser tab or window with only your creative displayed.

Preview creative on your site

Click On site in the creative's "Preview" tab and enter the Site URL of the page where you'd like to preview the creative.

  • Click Open preview to immediately open a new browser tab containing the site URL with your creative displayed.
  • Click Show preview URL to see an automatically-generated URL you can share with your advertiser and others. This creative preview URL expires after 180 days. When you click the link, the preview lasts for 15 minutes. After that, if you reload your browser, the preview is no longer displayed, and you'll need to click the link to view it again.

The site URL you enter must contain an ad request that matches the line item's ad unit and size targeting criteria. Other line item targeting definitions, such as key-values or geography, are ignored. If the page contains multiple eligible ad units, the creative will deliver to any ad unit that matches.

If you're previewing a creative on a page requiring authentication, sign into your site first, then preview the creative.

Related article

Preview creative on your mobile device

Click Mobile in the creative's "Preview" tab to generate a QR code in Ad Manager that opens a browser window to display the creative on your mobile device. Preview the creative alone or, for ads targeting mobile websites, in a page that the ad is targeting.

  • Use a barcode scanning mobile app to scan the QR code and load the preview.
  • Enter the webpage URL and click Generate preview to generate a QR code that opens a browser window displaying the creative in your site's content on your mobile device. Learn more about how to preview a creative on your site.

You can also preview a creative in your mobile app.

Additional considerations

  • Creative preview is not currently supported for DV360 native display with Programmatic Direct.
  • Roadblock previews are not supported. You can only generate a site preview for one creative at a time.
  • No ad selection processes are involved, including server calls from third-party tracking pixels.
  • Geography targeting might affect your preview if your creative contains a redirect.
  • Line items and creatives served when you generate a site preview are not included in reporting or forecasting results.
  • You cannot preview a creative rendered with SafeFrame.
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