Troubleshoot Ad Manager line item delivery

Discover and resolve issues blocking line item delivery

For each line item, Google Ad Manager shows recent changes that might be affecting delivery and top reasons why the line item didn't deliver to eligible ad requests. Understanding why a line item hasn't been delivering can help you troubleshoot unexpected behavior.

Help me troubleshoot delivery

Get started

  1. Sign in to Google Ad Manager.
  2. Click Delivery and then Line items.
  3. Use filters to find and select the line item that isn't delivering.
  4. Select the line item's Troubleshoot tab.

See recent changes that might be affecting delivery (Beta) 

In the "Health history" section, a 45-day calendar view displays recent changes made to the line item's settings, historical forecasts run for the line item, and other significant spikes or dips in delivery. Each day in the calendar displays the line item's historical delivery progress toward its goal. The calendar also displays when the first impression served, which can be helpful if a line item started to deliver later than anticipated.

For each event in the calendar, click More info to see a visualization or click View Change History to see the specific changes made on that day.

See why your line item didn’t deliver​

In the "Non-delivery causes" section, a pie chart shows the most common reasons the line item didn't delivery to eligible ad requests. Above the pie chart is an estimate of the number of ad requests where this line item was eligible but not selected to serve, rounded to two significant digits. Learn about non-delivery causes

  • Click See delivered line items for details about winning line items (not available for every non-delivery cause).
  • Click Launch ad slot troubleshooting to open Ad Manager Delivery tools and learn why certain ads delivered and not others, which line items would deliver if you were to request the ad slot again, and more.
  • Use the Time period to display drop-down menu to see non-delivery causes over the last 7 days or the last 24-hour, 12-hour, 6-hour, or 3-hour period.

You can also see non-delivery causes when you export line items to a spreadsheet. Make sure to filter to a small number of line items, or the export may time out.

Why is my non-delivery causes chart empty?

  • Line item always delivers, so there aren't any non-deliveries to troubleshoot.
    The line item is delivering and on track to meet its goal, or it's a standard line item with very narrow targeting criteria.
  • Line item did not deliver at all in the last 7 days.
    The tool looks at the last 7 days of data. Check the line item status to ensure that it's delivering. A line item may have a pre-delivery status or be paused or complete.
  • There's not enough data.
    The "Non-delivery causes" tool samples queries and requires a sufficient number of queries over the past 7 days to show non-delivery causes.

Non-delivery causes

Some reasons for non-delivery are valid and don't require action, while others may require changes. For example, other line items with higher priority correctly took priority or your line item is on or ahead of schedule.

Click the links below for more detail about each cause, along with a possible action to take.

Most common causes

Backfill lost in dynamic allocation to an Ad Manager line item

Ad Manager can increase your revenue with dynamic allocation — by selectively giving buyers access to valuable inventory when it won’t impact the likelihood of a campaign completing. This non-delivery cause means that an Ad Exchange, AdSense, or AdMob ad lost to an Ad Manager line item. This could be because an ad was not returned, or because the Ad Manager line item had a higher CPM.

Action: Likely none; this is expected behavior.

Lost in dynamic allocation to backfill

Ad Manager can increase your revenue with dynamic allocation — by selectively giving buyers access to valuable inventory when it won’t impact the likelihood of a campaign completing. This non-delivery cause means that the line item was selected as the winner among reservation line item candidates, but ultimately lost to an Ad Exchange, AdSense, or AdMob ad with a higher CPM.

Action: Likely none; this is expected behavior.

Roadblocking prevented delivery

Roadblocks are a common reason for non-delivery but are difficult to diagnose. Your property calls two line items in an unintended order, causing a lower-priority line item to be selected before the roadblock can compete. Without access to both ad units, the roadblock line item can’t bid on one ad unit.

Action: Consider changing the order of requests on your page, or using Google Publisher Tags with a single-request architecture callout.

Ad selection

Delivery rate reduced to better match expected pacing

For networks with traffic shaping enabled, the line item may not have delivered as part of the process to deliver impressions smoothly relative to the natural traffic fluctuations on your site.

Action: Likely none; traffic shaping is working as expected.

Did not serve due to exclusion labels or same creative exclusion

Non-delivery can be a result of a few things:

  1. It’s often due to a correctly functioning competitive exclusion.
  2. It can also indicate an error in relative priority between two line items.
  3. It might mean that your webpage calls two line items on the same page in an unintended order, causing the delivery of a lower priority line item before the higher priority line item can compete.

Action: These actions align with the numbers above:

  1. If the competitive exclusion is too strict and you want the line item to deliver more, consider relaxing the competitive exclusion settings.
  2. Review the priority of the two line items.
  3. Change the order of requests on your webpage, or use Google Publisher Tags with a single-request architecture callout.
Due to optimization, lost in competition to another line item

Ad Manager optimizes delivery for several factors. For example, using click-through rate (CTR) optimization, Ad Manager may select a lower-priority line item over a higher-priority line item because of projected click performance. These optimizations are performed within the context of your campaign completion objectives.

Action: Likely none; optimization is working as intended.

Frequency cap reached, or user missing identifiers needed for frequency capping

User-level frequency caps are a common reason for a line item to be correctly excluded from competing for a request. This non-delivery cause means that a frequency cap on the number of times the creative can be used has been reached.

Action: Please check the frequency caps set for this line item and make sure that they’re not overly restrictive.

Limited by max number of ads allowed per page

Restrictions on the number of times a creative can serve to a page imposed by “Display creatives” settings will cause the same creative to not win subsequent requests.

Action: Relax restrictions as needed to improve line item delivery.

Line item is on or ahead of schedule

To get as many of your campaigns as possible to complete, Ad Manager spreads impressions to other campaigns when the line item is on or ahead of the schedule to meet its target.

Action: Likely none; the ad server considers this campaign to be on track to reach its targets.

Lost in competition to line items of higher priority

A higher priority line item won in competition.

Action: Likely none; this is expected behavior.

Lost in competition to line items of similar priority

When two line items are of similar priority, selection is based on likelihood of completion. This non-delivery cause typically means that the line item is operating as expected. You may find that a line item loses more often to line items of the same priority than to line items of a higher priority. This does not necessarily indicate a problem. It likely means that you have many line items of the same priority competing for an ad unit and few line items of a higher priority.

Action: Use Ad Manager forecasting to check the available inventory and, depending on the numbers, consider updating the line item settings. You might want to expand the targeting, relax frequency caps, prolong the line item’s runtime, etc.

Lost in direct competition to remnant line item with higher CPM

Remnant line items competing based on CPM are expected to lose to line items of higher CPM. Behavior is as expected.

Action: If the result is unexpected, review the CPMs you have set for your remnant inventory.

Lost in dynamic allocation to a remnant line item

Ad Manager can increase your revenue with dynamic allocation — by selectively giving buyers access to valuable inventory when it won’t impact the likelihood of a campaign completing. This non-delivery cause means that the line item was selected as the winner among reservation line item candidates, but ultimately lost to a remnant line item with a higher CPM.

Action: Likely none; this is expected behavior.

Lost to First Look

Line item lost because First Look opened up inventory to selected buyers in Ad Exchange.

Action: Change First Look pricing rules as needed.

Next creative in rotation not available

Sequential rotation stops working correctly if any creative set to rotate can’t serve to the impression. When the next creative in the sequence is unable to fill an ad slot, the line item stops serving until the next time period begins.

Action: See some of the more common issues related to creative rotation.

No creative returned

Ad Manager called out to another ad server to fetch the creative and didn’t get a response. The ad server could be DoubleClick Campaign Manager (DCM) or a third-party network.

Action: Check that the creative information in Ad Manager and the ad server is correct and consistent.

Other

Includes all ad requests filled by demand sources that are not among the top five. This can include ad requests from other line items, Ad Exchange, etc.

Action: Likely none; a large "Other" section is expected when you have a big network with many competing line items. You can use the Ad request simulator (for desktop, mobile web, app, or video) to see all the line items competing for an ad request.

Video ads must be skippable after 5 seconds

Video ads must be skippable after 5 seconds, or the creative will be rejected. In this case, the creative was not skippable after the first 5 seconds of play. Learn more.

Action: contact your buyer to update their video creative to be skippable after 5 seconds.

Programmatic deals

Buyer did respond with a publisher-blocked creative (Creative review)

The creative was blocked by the publisher in Creative review.

Action: Please check Creative review if you believe the creative was blocked in error.

Content monetized with programmatic deals must be compliant with site content policies

The content must adhere to Google Ad Manager Partner Guidelines before it can serve.

Action: Please remove all content violating these guidelines from this deal.

Programmatic Direct requires video ad calls to use an SDK

Programmatic Direct does not currently support SDK-less video requests.

Action: Make sure all video requests are using the IMA SDK. Learn more.

External buyer did not respond

This non-delivery cause is typically associated with Programmatic Direct deals. Low response rate from the buyer can cause line items to underdeliver. Reasons for low or no responses include:

  • The buyer is not interested in this inventory.
  • The buyer has paused the creative.
  • The creative is currently pending approval.

Action: In most cases, no action is required. Contact the buyer to understand their low response rate. Google is often unable to obtain insight into low response rates, and the buyer is in a better position to provide details.

URL is not allowed to transact with Programmatic Direct

You haven’t classified the domains used in this line item in your Network Partner Management (NPM) settings, or Google’s content policies don’t allow the URLs this line item is sending.

Action:

Exchange Bidding

Bid request timed out

Exchanges need to return a bid within a specified amount of time to compete in the auction. Bids not returned quickly enough aren't included in the unified auction.

Action: Contact your exchange partner.

Bid lost in competition to line items

Other line items in Ad Manager had a higher rate than the best exchange bid.

Action: Likely none; this is expected behavior.

Bid lost in competition to other bids

Another exchange's bid won the unified auction.

Action: Likely none; this is expected behavior.

Bid not allowed in auction

An exchange's bid might not be allowed in an auction that includes a direct deal, First Look, or similar competitor.

Action: Likely none; this is expected behavior.

Bidding errors

An error in the bid response, such as the bidder host returning unknown status, can block delivery.

Action: Contact your exchange partner.

Buyer creative contained malware

If Ad Manager detects malware in a buyer's creative, the creative isn't allowed to serve.

Action: Contact your exchange partner.

Buyer creative issues

If Ad Manager detects an issue in a buyer's creative, such as the creative isn't allowed to serve. Common issues include:

  • Response sizes do not match request sizes
  • Response is missing mandatory fields
  • Response contains not yet reviewed creatives

Action: Contact your exchange partner.

Exchange partner did not bid

Exchange partners aren't required to bid for every request. This non-delivery cause reflects requests where the exchange partner explicitly declined a bid request.

Action: Contact your exchange partner.

Exchange partner deals not allowed in Exchange Bidding

The exchange has not been allowed to transact deals through Exchange Bidding. Learn more

Action: Contact your exchange partner and consider allowing third-party deal bids in Exchange Bidding.

Exchange's pretargeting conflicted with yield group targeting

The targeting defined in the exchange's system (known as "pretargeting") was not compatible with the publisher's yield group targeting.

Action: Contact your exchange partner.

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