How to choose the best SSP for publishers

Written by Raquel Ríos Dafonte - Marketing Specialist at Techsoulogy
Created Jun 21, 2023 - Updated Jul 28, 2023 | 4 min read
Featured posts

7 key factors to optimize your digital media buying campaigns

5 reasons to use rewarded video ads in user acquisition

How creative ads can boost your app revenues

A Supply Side Platform, more commonly known by its acronym SSP, is a piece of software used by digital media publishers to automate the management, sale, and commercial optimization of their advertising spaces.

Its goal is to maximize the revenue from digital media advertising (websites, apps, CTV…), issuing advertising demand requests to different sources of adverts, and filling the empty spaces in the inventory with the highest bidder, creating a real-time bidding system.

How the SSP is involved in programmatic advertising

SSPs are an essential part of the digital programmatic advertising ecosystem which also involves other technologies such as Demand Side Platforms (DSPs) in charge of automating demand, Ads Exchanges which bring together supply and demand, enabling the auctioning of ad spaces in real time, and analytical platforms like MMPs (Mobile Measurement Partners) in the case of mobile application advertising to measure and analyze the performance of advertising campaigns.

How the programmatic advertising ecosystem works

This is how the programmatic advertising ecosystem works

In this ecosystem, publishers set the minimum prices that they are willing to accept for their advertising impressions (CPMs) and the requirements that the adverts they are going to display in their inventory must meet (sizes, formats, etc.). For their part, demand partners bid for these spaces according to their campaign requirements and goals and, at this junction of supply and demand, there is a real-time auction which awards the ad impression to the highest bid.

In practice, each time someone loads a web page or goes onto an app, the SSP sends ad requests to different DSPs which are connected to media buyers that are willing to bid to display their advertisements to the user. The joint action of all of these technologies enables publishers to manage their advertising inventory securely and efficiently and it enables demand partners to guarantee quality traffic to fulfill the goals of their marketing strategies.

Although this entire process is automated without human intervention, behind all of this technology, a technical support team and expert advice for the publisher are vital. This is an added value that, here at Tappx, we attach utmost importance to.

Each time someone loads a web page or goes onto an app, the SSP sends ad requests to cover that inventory space.

10 requirements to be the best SSP

After looking at how the programmatic purchasing process works, even though there can be variations depending on the individual case and the needs of each client, the main characteristics that a good SSP should have are:

  1. Integration with multiple demand sources: in order for publishers to be able to increase the exposure to their inventory and maximize profits from selling their advertising spaces.
  2. Different auction mechanisms: from open, waterfall auctions (when the different sources of demand are consulted one by one, and the space is awarded to the first bid that meets the objectives) or parallel bidding (when various advertising networks are managed simultaneously from one platform and the space is awarded to the best offer); to a private market or direct offers which enable publishers’ inventories to be sold at the best price to premium advertisers.
  3. Self-management and customization: in order for publishers to adjust their price floors (minimum prices for their advertising spaces) and customize the offer according to their changing needs and goals.
  4. Good fill rate percentages: this KPI, which measures the frequency with which advertising spaces are filled or left empty, tells publishers to what extent the sale of their advertising spaces is being optimized.
  5. Quality and variety of advertising formats: the best SSP for publishers is one that has technology that is sufficiently advanced to offer both static and dynamic advertisements which fit in their advertising space.
  6. Reports of customized data: to provide publishers with a comprehensive and real-time overview of the performance of their inventory (how many ad impressions are served, what revenue is generated, etc.) while also researching growth opportunities at the same time. The more solid, personalized, and simple these data and reports are to consult, the better the decisions that the publisher can make in order to keep growing.
  7. An intuitive and easy-to-use dashboard: so publishers can manage their inventory easily and analyze the monetization performance readily at any time.
  8. High quality standards: a good SSP is one that guarantees the transparency and quality of advertisements through anti-fraud and inventory control systems, providing demand partners with enough trust and security for their advertisements. This is the way in which the publisher, as a result, is able to increase their fill rates and revenue. At Tappx, we apply the “Quality First Framework”, our own technology which enables us to detect and block bots, spoofing and insecure inventory for brands. We also have external providers of fraud measurement solutions accredited by the MRC.
  9. Technical support: in addition to the initial process of integrating technology between the SSP and the publisher, this technical support must be maintained over time to readily resolve any issues that may arise in relation to the type of integration, entry of traffic, reporting discrepancies, response times, etc. In general, there must be a considerable dialogue between the technical team and the publisher to resolve doubts and queries at any time.
  10. Customer service and transparency: most publishers don’t like to communicate with their SSP through a ticket system. They prefer to have a person they can talk to, an Account Manager that they can ask advice from and contact at any time. Moreover, it is preferable that this is always the same person, so they can be aware of the background and know how to approach the publisher’s changing needs, finding the best optimizations together.


How to effectively manage Publisher Accounts: Best practices

What do publishers value most about a good SSP?

In addition to the criteria outlined in the previous point, being competitive in terms of price and the global position in countries and regions beyond the United States, when it comes to criteria for a good SSP, Tappx’s customers highlight human service in particular.

In an internal study, our clients have rated the potential of both Tappx’s human team and its corporate culture above all other criteria. With particular attention paid to:

  • Proactivity, work flexibility, and the team taking on risk
  • The business know-how present in the company
  • The allocation of an Account Manager that is always on hand and personally involved in the personalized tracking of each client
  • The dedication and relationship of trust which is established between the team and the publishers
  • Active assistance in the event of incidents and technical adjustments
  • Simple dialogue through easy-to-use interfaces on a user experience and human communication level.

Here are some of the testimonials from our publishers:

  • “Tappx is my favorite client, they are extremely hard-working, friendly, and are always there!”
  • “Account managers are very friendly, helpful, and supportive”
  • “I spoke to three different people on Tappx end and all three were passioned about working there and were pushing me to make our connection great again”
  • “The service is extremely friendly and they try to resolve any queries in the best way possible, offering various options.  We always reach good agreements”
  • “Great team to work with they’ve always felt like a partner”

As we have seen, a good SSP for publishers is one that enables them to sell their advertising inventory with the minimum effort and highest performance, with personalized and human service at all times. In other words, the best SSP is one that provides a truly bespoke service, good reporting tools, and added value.


Related posts

Subscribe to our newsletter


    Lorem ipsum dolor sit amet, consectetur adipiscing elit.

    Etiam elit tortor, consequat sit amet ultricies ut, pellentesque a magna. Etiam mattis odio ut nibh pulvinar bibendum. Curabitur porta gravida urna sit amet tincidunt. Etiam sit amet nunc vulputate, blandit mauris sit amet, lacinia arcu. Morbi in orci tincidunt, tincidunt dolor vitae, hendrerit sem. Etiam in suscipit purus. Morbi dignissim vitae nibh ut condimentum.