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Study: Ad viewability trumps click-through rates for conversions

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San Francisco—A new study by targeting company Pretarget calls into question the value of digital ad click-through rates and total impressions in prompting conversions. According to the Pretarget study, hover time—hovering a pointer over an ad to see more details—is the metric most strongly related with such conversions as purchases and requests for information. Almost as valuable a contributor to conversions is viewable impressions, ads that actually are seen by users even if they have to scroll down to view them. Clicks had the lowest correlation with conversion than any metric studied according to the study, at virtually nil impact. The findings suggest that advertisers and media planners should "break their addiction" to clicks and instead look to more meaningful metrics for evaluating campaign performance, the study concluded. Pretarget's study, conducted with media research company comScore Inc., was based on an analysis of 263 million impressions over nine months in 2011 and this year.
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