Google announced a new policy update on Tuesday, allowing AdSense publishers to include 300×250 ad units above the fold on their mobile websites – meaning, the ads can appear on the visible part of the website without scrolling down the page.
The company says that it will now allow its 300×250 medium rectangle ads to be implemented above the fold on the mobile websites, without resulting in AdSense violations.
“After careful review, we’ve determined that when 300×250 ads are implemented above the fold in a user-friendly way, the ads do not annoy, distract, or result in ad performance issues.
If you are a publisher who is featuring the ad unit above the fold on mobile, you’ll be warned to still have site content clearly shown in view to avoid accidental ad click.”
There had been a ban on putting those kinds of ads above the fold because it was not user-friendly. They (medium-sized rectangle) take up a large portion of a device’s display and they push much of the page’s content below the fold. Existing mobile ads focused on a 320 x 80 ad unit. Since people are often now using larger smartphones that offer more screen space, however, the change has a somewhat smaller impact than it previously would have.
Google’s own research indicated that a 300×250 ad unit placed just below the fold could generate an approximate 50% viewability rate. Overall, this ad size had the lowest viewability rate at 41% of any standard ad size Google measured. Allowing this popular ad unit to appear above the fold on mobile obviously, has the effect of increasing viewability rates — to around roughly 70% as per the study. That means higher RPM potential for publishers, as well as Google itself.