The State of Transparency is made up of three parts:
- Industry Highlights: ads.txt files, benchmarks, and highlights that are already live on the Sellers.guide site
- Seller Reports: launching today
- Errors for Publishers: list of domains with errors in implementing ads.txt - coming soon
The State of Transparency Seller Reports will be a recurring dive into several factors within ads.txt files that are contributing to the lack of transparency in ad tech. The reports will include an examination of the following:
- Most Common Direct Sellers: Sellers portraying themselves as direct sellers in the highest number of domains
- Intermediaries Listed as Direct: ad tech companies or vendors/resellers, that portray themselves as direct sellers in publishers' ads.txt files.
- Resellers Listed as Publishers: ad tech companies or vendors/resellers, that portray themselves as publishers in ad exchanges' sellers.json files.
The lack of transparency in ad tech is the single biggest issue facing the industry. While it is getting better, there is still a lot of work to be done and not enough has been done to address it thus far," said Lior Shvo, Managing Director at Selles.guide. "Our goal with the State of Transparency project is to measure and benchmark some of the key factors contributing to a muddled supply chain and track them over time. We picked up on these large-scale trends and decided there was a need to address them."
"Since we launched Sellers.guide 16 months ago, we've found that there is a huge lack of understanding about what's happening within a publisher's ads.txt files," continued Shvo. "In a way, this project is intended to expose the sellers at fault so that DSPs and exchanges will take measures to hold them accountable for their actions."
The State of Transparency will launch on September 19 and will feature a new analysis every two weeks. Every six weeks, Sellers.guide will also release a summary that will offer a full review of the data and provide insights into the progress that is being made. These lists will always be accessible, available, and free for users to easily download.
Sellers.guide was launched by Primis in May 2021 as an automated tool that compares ads.txt files with sellers.json files. The tool's goal is to provide simple and useful feedback to help publishers and buyers gain insights into who is really buying and selling inventory in any domain. Sellers.guide recently launched the Wizard which walks the publisher through the process of managing them, step-by-step. This tool allows publishers to clean up their ads.txt files in a matter of minutes instead of hours.