This article covers popular targeting types. After you understand targeting types, learn how to target ads with the targeting picker in line items (including how to save time by copying and pasting values).
You may not pass any user-identifiable data (including names, addresses, or user IDs) in targeting. Mask this information using the encoding method of your choice, and ensure traffickers know how to decode values when setting up a line item.
Google Ad Manager doesn't share information with other publishers, so there is no built-in pool of demographic data to target.
Some key concepts you might want to familiarize yourself with:
You may see items appear in the targeting picker marked as "Inactive", "Unknown", or "Deprecated". These mean the following:
- Inactive: An item is no longer active, such as a publisher-defined ad unit.
- Unknown: The user did not have permissions to view the item.
- Deprecated: An item is no longer supported or available to target, but still served.
Inventory defines the structure of your inventory, app, or other digital property. You target specific inventory (ad units and placements) to direct ads to serve to that inventory.
A "run of network" means all inventory in your network is targeted. Ads in a run-of-network campaign can potentially serve anywhere on your website or app. By default, line items (and other items that can target values) are run-of-network. Run-of-network targeting is useful for serving house ads and dynamic allocation line items.
Target more precisely by including and excluding specific inventory.
Including and excluding inventory
- At least one placement or ad unit must be included in targeting.
- You can include or exclude ad units even if they're not included as part of a placement.
- You can't exclude placements.
To include inventory:
Expand Inventory in the targeting picker.
Select either Ad units or Placements and either browse or type to filter items.
For ad units: Click the check mark next to each ad unit you want to include.
For placements: Select each placement you want to include.
The line item can be delivered to the inventory units you include.
Whether your line item is targeted to run-of-network or to specific inventory you've included, you can exclude ad units. This is especially useful for targeting a placement but excluding some of its ad units.
Expand Inventory in the targeting picker.
Select Ad units and either browse or type to filter items.
Click next to the ad unit you want to exclude.
The line item can't be delivered to the ad units you exclude.
Key-values in particular can be used for purposes not captured by the built-in targeting in Ad Manager. For instance, you define key-values that identify specific ad inventory on web pages or apps, or they can be used to target ads based on that information you might gather from visitors to your website or app. Key-values, like other targeting, help your advertisers and buyers reach their intended audience or demographic.
Learn more about custom targeting:
You can target line items to geographical locations such as countries, regions (provinces, prefectures, states, and so on), U.S. Nielsen DMAs (designated market areas), and cities. Either search for a specific place or browse through the list of countries until you find the places you want to target.
You can target
country=france AND city=paris to include both the country France and the city Paris.
You can also exclude places. Target
country=france AND city!=paris to target France but exclude Paris.
- Connected TV
- Feature phone
- Smart display
- Smart phone
- Smart speaker
The "Browser" targeting type is useful for advertisers who are trying to reach an audience using a specific browser. Here's a list of selected browsers available to target:
- Google Chrome
- Microsoft Internet Explorer
- In-app browser
"In-app browser" is a browser embedded within an app.
Other browsers are also included as possible values. Search the targeting selector to find them. Here are some pointers on targeting browsers:
- To target all versions of a browser: Select browser name followed by "(x.x)". For example, select Google Chrome (x.x) to target all versions of the Google Chrome browser.
- To target to a range of a browser's versions: Select browser name followed by the version number and ".x". For example, Firefox (40.x) targets all releases of the browser between version 40 and up to, but not including version 41.
- To target a browser of an unknown version: Select browser name followed by "Unknown.Unknown". In some cases, there might be browser version that don't fall into any known version. For instance, targeting Safari Unknown.Unknown would target any browser that is deemed Safari but whose version isn't any of the known versions.
- To target to unknown browsers not listed: select Unknown.
The "Browser language" targeting type does not apply to WebViews within mobile apps—that is, a browser view embedded or otherwise integrated inside of a mobile application. For ads targeting mobile apps and their associated WebViews, the language used is based on the language specified by the user in their mobile device settings.
If a browser has more than one language assigned to it, each language generates an impression. In reports, this results in a higher number of impressions attributed to "browser language" than what's shown for total impressions for the line item.
Reach users using mobile apps, ad requests resulting from apps built on the MRAID standard, or users on devices that are able to make phone calls—versus devices that aren't able to make phone calls, such as tablets. To reach users on different types of devices, use the device category targeting type instead.
- Mobile apps
Targets only ad requests coming from mobile apps, not requests coming from WebViews within mobile apps—that is, a browser view embedded or otherwise integrated inside of a mobile application.
- MRAID v1
- MRAID v2
- Phone calls
Reach users on devices made by specific brands or companies, such as Acer, Apple, Amazon, BlackBerry, Cricket, Google, Samsung, Xiaomi, and others. Ad Manager supports device manufacturer targeting for mobile apps only.
Reach users on different gaming, desktop, and mobile operating systems, such as Android, Apple iOS, Linux, Mac OS, and varieties of Xbox and Wii gaming systems.
Reach users accessing the internet via various means of connection, such as cable, DSL, or dial-up. Can be useful to target campaigns using low-resolution creatives or text ads for users with low bandwidth.
Target a variety of mobile carriers, such AT&T, Verizon, or T-Mobile.
Include or exclude users who visit from an IP address associated with domains you indicate. Add multiple values as a comma-separated list.
User domain targeting works because of standards around how users access the internet via an Internet Service Provider (ISP). ISPs assign IP addresses to devices that access the internet. These IP addresses are then associated with domain names. As a result of these standards, Ad Manager allows you to target domain names so that you can include or exclude users who access the internet from the domains specified.
For example, if you target
berkeley.edu, users who access the internet with an IP address from that domain can either be included or excluded from targeting.
User domain targeting also allows you to specify top-level domains, such as
gov (don't include the dot), or second-level + top-level domains, such as
Domain names should not include "
www" or the protocol (namely, "
https://" or "
http://"). Top-level domains should not include the dot.
Target ads to:
- App open
- Banner: Includes requests from native styles, which are native ads created from using the Guided design editor or HTML & CSS editor.
- In-stream Audio
- In-stream Video
- Native custom rendering: Only includes requests from custom rendering, which are native ads created from using the Android & iOS app code option.
- Rewarded interstitial
Select mobile applications you've claimed from the Google Play Store and Apple App Store.
Learn how to claim apps for targeting.
Some targeting options apply specifically to video and audio, and might not be activated for your network. Contact your account manager for information.
Video content or content bundle
Content owners can target ads to specific video positions (pre-rolls, mid-rolls, post-rolls, or bumpers). If you don't target a line item to specific video positions, the ad server considers that line item eligible to serve in any video positions that your ad rules specify.
- Display: Ads that display in a web browser. Display also includes ads served in webview within a mobile app
- Mobile app: Banner ads, rewarded ads, and interstitials, that display in a mobile app
- In-stream video and audio: Video and audio ads that serve in a player