Smaato and Liftoff Reveal the Most Engaging In-App Ad Formats

Digital Ad Pricing and Performance Data Shows Varied Performance Across Price Points

SAN FRANCISCO, May 21, 2019 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) -- Smaato, the global in-app advertising platform, in partnership with Liftoff, a performance-based mobile app marketing and retargeting platform, today published a new study on in-app ad pricing and performance. Buyers can use the data and insights to optimize their in-app ad campaigns by pinpointing the specific ad formats that will allow them to maximize engagement rates and drive conversions. The report analyzes activity across three trillion ad requests on the Smaato platform in Q1 2019, as well as from over 80 billion ad impressions across 33 million installs and 14 million first-time events on the Liftoff platform.

Some key insights from the report include:

  • Average click-through rates (CTR) of video ads are 7.5X higher than display ads
  • Rewarded video ads cost up to 86% less than video ads overall despite similar conversion rates across key performance indicators
  • Interstitial display ad eCPMs are 4.6X more than banner ads, yet interstitials received an average CTR 18X higher than banners
  • Despite wide average eCPM differences, interstitial, native, and banner display ads offer very similar cost per actions (install, registration, and purchase)
  • iOS devices have higher costs and conversion rates than Android devices across all ad formats

“Advertisers are following consumers’ attention to mobile apps, and rightly so, but there are specific strategies that can be used to optimize in-app ad campaigns,” said Arndt Groth, President at Smaato. “By utilizing both Smaato’s and Liftoff’s Q1 2019 data in combination, the report pinpoints the in-app ad formats that will give advertisers the highest return on investment.”

Q1 2019 saw a new record number of app downloads globally — 10% more than in the previous year. As the time consumers are spending in-app increases, a greater number of buyers are investing in in-app advertising than ever before. According to the IAB, digital ad spending exceeded $100 billion in the US for the first time last year, with mobile advertising growing 40% year-over-year to reach nearly $70 billion.

“Amidst the backdrop of in-app advertising’s massive growth, we want to educate advertisers and app marketers on the best ways to optimize their budgets and improve the performance of their campaigns,” said Dennis Mink, VP Marketing at Liftoff. “Although video ads tend to cost more than traditional display, the report proves that they also perform better throughout the funnel, making them well worth the investment to engage high-quality users.”

To download the In-App Engagement and Conversion 2019 report, click here.

About Smaato
Smaato, the global in-app advertising platform, drives the technology that keeps apps free. Smaato’s full-featured mobile ad server empowers apps of all sizes to reach their full monetization potential by connecting them with the world’s top advertisers. The Smaato SDK provides publishers with seamless integration and maximum control of their inventory. Founded in 2005 by mobile pioneers Ragnar Kruse and Petra Vorsteher, Smaato is headquartered in San Francisco, California, with additional offices in Berlin, Hamburg, New York, Shanghai, and Singapore. Learn more at

About Liftoff
Liftoff is a performance-based mobile app marketing and retargeting platform which uses post-install user data to run true cost-per-action user acquisition and re-engagement campaigns. Powered by advanced machine learning and lookalike targeting, Liftoff campaigns are optimized to drive actions beyond the install, like booking a hotel, making a reservation, or renewing a subscription. Liftoff’s cost-per-action model helps customers scale and grow by acquiring users that actively spend in revenue-producing events. Headquartered in Palo Alto, CA with offices in New York, London, Singapore, Seoul, Tokyo, and Paris, Liftoff works with leading app publishers and brands across the globe. Learn more at

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Emily Riley