What an App Developer Should Look for in an SSP Partner

Post on January 3, 2019 by Joe Lige

Joe Lige VP, Mobile

For many app developers, in-app monetization is more of an afterthought, and not usually considered until after the app has been created. It’s often not even determined until after a strategy for increasing monthly active users (MAUs) has been put into place.

But the reality is the sooner you start to monetize the faster you can realize a profit from all the hard work you put into developing your app. That is why is it highly advised to make a decision on how you plan to monetize as early as possible in the development process.

Here are a few of the most important things for an app developer to consider when looking for the right SSP to partner with to help you monetize your app.

Lightweight and Stable

As an app developer, the first thing to consider when evaluating new integrations into your core app code is understanding how this new integration will affect your overall app performance. This is the primary reason you should look for an SSP partner who has a lightweight, stable integration which will not detract from user experience and lead to poor app performance.

The lighter the code added to your app, the less strain the integration puts on the stability and resources available on the device itself. Therefore, you need an SSP partner whose integration doesn’t negatively impact your files or code.  This will lead to minimal use of both memory and network bandwidth plus result in happy users.


If you are in the later stages of development and looking to increase your current in-app revenue stream, you should find a partner that will bring incremental revenue.  This means that the SSP partner you choose to work with should add to your current mediation stack.

This is where an SSP partner who offers in-app header bidding through a unified auction can help get you this lift. The result of using a unified auction is greater bid density and competition between demand partners who are interested in your inventory. Increased inventory competition drives up the CPM prices that buyers are willing to pay, making you more revenue. This increase would be incremental to any amount you were previously receiving. Look for an SSP who can provide the most incremental revenue and remove duplicative partners who are hogging valuable app resources.

Buyer Preference

Although all SSPs can seem similar, they vary by way of DSP connections and buying options.   Therefore, when you are looking for an SSP to partner with, choose one who will allow the most buyers access to your inventory and limit the number of integrations you will need for them to do so.

DSPs also have preferred SSP partnerships allowing for supply path optimization (SPO). These SPO arrangements are also where they choose to spend their budgets, so selecting one who is favored by most DSPs would also be suggested.  Private marketplaces (PMPs), offered by SSP partners, are another great way to gain incremental revenue. SSPs typically pool together selected inventory and offer it to buyers at a premium via PMPs. Thus, an SSP with a simple way to take advantage of PMP ad spend should be considered in your selection process as a top candidate.

Ad Quality

If advertisement is going to be a big part of your monetization strategy, the quality of ads you choose to show your users is going to impact their experience while using your app. Therefore, your chosen SSP solution should have brand safety and inventory quality tools to tailor the ads for your audience and security tools to prevent unwanted ads with malware, redirects, etc. from ever surfacing. A great SSP partner will take advantage of multiple different ad verification platforms to drive security as they all have unique advantages and abilities to block bad creatives.

It is the job of the SSP not only to block bad creatives from your app but also inform you where they originated from. This will allow you to be proactive in addressing the root of the problem.  They also have insight into which DSPs have negative track records for quality and should be limiting their access to your inventory along with informing you of who the offenders are so you can block them from other demand sources. A proactive SSP partner who filters out fraudulent ads will be an invaluable resource to achieve greater user engagement and increased app store reviews that ultimately can lead to more downloads and DAUs.

What’s Next for an App Developer?

PubMatic provides several solutions for developers at all stages of the development cycle who are considering an ad monetization strategy.  Please contact us for more information about the mobile solutions we offer and how we can help you increase revenue.