Affiliates Guide to Success What to Look for in Your Next DSP 3

Athletes that are preparing for a major event follow a strict exercise regime and only consume things that will help their bodies succeed. Likewise, affiliate marketers need to implement a monitoring plan and find the traffic sources that give their campaigns the highest chance of success.

There are many different traffic sources you can choose for your campaign. Demand-side platforms (DSPs) give you access to high-quality, real traffic while still allowing a high degree of control. That said, there are dozens of DSPs to choose from, so finding a reliable partner isn’t always straightforward.

Below, we’ve put together a quick guide to help you choose your next DSP.

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What is a Demand-Side Platform?

Demand-side platforms give marketers the ability to run real-time bidding campaigns across a wide range of ad spaces. In other words, it allows affiliates to place bids to determine who gets the best placements every time a user sees an app. 

The bidding process is automated and occurs in a matter of seconds, plus it’s designed to help marketers maximize their budgets and improve ad performance.

Keep in mind that all DSPs are different, so you need to research the candidates you have in mind to figure out if they will be a good fit for you. 

How to Identify the Best DSP for Your Next Campaign

Judging a DSP based on the appearance of its website or dashboard will not get you the results you need. In order to find the ideal DSP, you’ll need to conduct thorough research and compare the features available on the different options until you find one that fits the bill perfectly.

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Security should also be a major factor when it comes to choosing your next traffic source. Not only should your DSP have a comprehensive application process for publishers on its network, it should also provide fraud prevention features that help detect invalid interactions that cost money but don’t produce results.

In addition to the above, some of the most important features you want to look for in your next DSP include:


Although most DSPs use reach as their main selling point, it’s important to look at this feature carefully. In theory, most respectable DSPs have access to a wide pool of inventory, but not all platforms offer specialized traffic. 

For instance, marketers who want to target senior consumers may have to find a specific demand-side platform as this demographic isn’t widely available everywhere. If you are running a specialty campaign that targets an unusual demographic, you’ll need to pay close attention to this point. If this is not the case, partnering with a reputable DSP should do the trick.

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No demand-side platforms are the same, so you may need help getting setup and understanding your new traffic source. Having a solid list of support resources can make the world of difference to affiliates in this position. You’ll want to ensure that your DSP offers support via live chat and other channels, plus having a blog or knowledge center is also a huge advantage.


As with any other part of your campaign, you need to evaluate the cost of each DSP before making your decision. Opting for the cheapest traffic source will likely compromise the quality of the traffic, so your best option is to research your options until you find a DSP that offers quality traffic that won’t deplete your budget quickly.

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Traffic Quality

Gauging the quality of the traffic you receive is always difficult before launching a campaign. Reviews can be a great tool in this situation as you can learn from other affiliates’ experiences and assess whether the DSP you’re considering will help you achieve your goals.

Besides review platforms, you can also look at the feature list, resource collection, and popularity to find the right demand-side platform.

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Ad Formats, Targeting Options, and Other Settings

It’s common for affiliates to have specific preferences in terms of ad formats. With this in mind, most DSPs only offer a handful of selections. So, you’ll want to verify that your favorite ad formats are available in your next traffic source. 

In case you’re looking to branch out and test out other formats, the main elements you should look at are the different targeting options as well as the other settings available.

Build a Campaign that Converts with ActiveRevenue

At ActiveRevenue, we understand what it takes to deliver quality traffic to affiliates. We’ve spent years building lasting relationships with the top ad exchanges, so we can guarantee the quality of our traffic.

If you’re looking to learn more about finding the best DSP or want to get started right away, contact us today and our team will be glad to help. 

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