PopAds Review (2017 update)
Today, we’re gonna review PopAds. You’ve probably been able to figure out that this network deals with Pop traffic.
More specifically, it’s an ad network where you pay for each pop displayed to the final user, which can be understood as a pay per view or per impression model.
You know we always have some awesome ad network reviews for you to check! Stay tuned! 😉
Diving into PopAds
PopAds is one of the most well-known ad networks in today’s affiliate marketing world, and this isn’t just because their name perfectly matches affiliate keywords when they’re searching for pop ads + buy + traffic.
Let’s now point out some key facts we believe will definitely be worth your attention:
- PopAds is one of the oldest ad networks around. It was established in 2010. Since then, it aims to keep the status of a premium, specialized popunder network. PopAds also has a reasonably wide inventory list and a broad range of available payment methods.
- Another fact that speaks in favor of PopAds: its Global Ranking at Alexa.com, which reached the #61 position in a ranking including websites from all over the world!
- It offers ads for both Adult and Mainstream content websites
- Ad types: exclusively pops (Popunder, Popup, Tabunder, Tabup)
- Cost model(s): CPV (bid set for each pop)
For publishers – those who have their websites and wanna sell traffic: it’s one of the highest and fastest paying ad networks with a super quick and easy website approval process.
For advertisers – those who’re looking to buy a pop ad space: it features lots of inventory from over 100 countries which filters out all proxy, bot and mobile traffic to constantly work on traffic quality improvement. Moreover, it’s got a big variety of targeting options including category, keyword, for full control traffic speed and quality.
PopAds.net is established in Costa Rica and it has offices in Poland and the United States. The Tomksoft S.A company is the owner of PopAds.
Not bad for a general overview, right?
But now let’s start getting into this sweet PopAds review!
The registration PopAds takes 2 minutes. Whether you register your Account as a Publisher or Advertiser type, the platform will ask you to fill out 10 standard fields. That’s it!
After registration, all the features for both Publishers and Advertisers will be provided on one account only.
Once you’ve signed up for your account, you can enjoy the ad network’s simple, functional, and user-friendly interface.
It’s divided by three main sections available on any account: Advertiser’s Panel, Publisher’s Panel and Account Manager. Since you guys are only buying traffic, the Advertiser’s Panel will be our focus!
There, you can find a section with active campaigns; a separate section where you can create a new campaign (no worries: we’ll describe the whole process of campaign creation below); and a report section to track your campaign’s performance live.
Plus: you can also find an inventory section to get familiar with the inventory variety and estimated traffic volumes (see image below), as well as a current number of advertisers running their campaigns in certain countries; a token section with the tracking token details and, finally, a knowledge-base token with 17 questions currently available.
Estimated Traffic Volumes
PopAds offers traffic for over 100 different countries. The US is the country that’s got that sweet, hyper-unique traffic: around 2.5 million views and an average bid of $26 per 1000 impressions.
Other countries that are part of the top 10 volume list?
Turkey, Brazil, Vietnam, France, Italy, Germany, UK, Mexico, and Thailand.
Check the image below with data extracted on February 20th 2017.
According to PopAds, the stats presented are a daily average, taking the data of the last 48 hours into account and including only sold traffic.
There, you’ll see info displayed by country. For each country, you can see some relevant stats, such as Unique traffic, Average bid, and some others.
Setup and Campaign Creation
Setting up the technical part for launching campaigns on PopAds isn’t very complicated. Here, we’d like to point out a big deficiency we both see on the network: PopAds doesn’t support S2S conversion tracking.
On the one hand, you don’t have to worry about configuring it; on the other, you won’t see your conversions on their platform, which sucks.
PopAds also supports cost tracking for some tracking tools which means you’re able to see the exact costs on your tracker, which is useful.
Apart from that, the rest is just a matter of including the platform’s tracking tokens to be included in your campaign URL and that’s it. PopAds also has pre-built templates in most of the well-known tracking platforms, such as Voluum, which makes it even easier.
Here’s the overall view of the platform’s tracking tokens on Voluum:
Before creating a campaign on a traffic source, it’s always nice to have an idea of its inventories so as to be able to choose offers according to GEOs for which it’s got decent traffic. To do this, you can use the option “Inventory”, already mentioned in this article.
After selecting your offer and having your setup all ready to go, just go ahead and click on “New Campaign” on the left side menu on the Advertiser’s Panel as we’ve shown above.
PopAds has many options for campaign creation. Some are very straightforward while others are a bit confusing. Overall, though, they’re all well explained. Let’s go through them, shall we?
When you’re on the campaign creation interface, you’ll see a bunch of tabs. The first one is “General Information”. There, you’ll be able to set the most general aspects of your campaign.
After picking a name, you need to insert your URL, which is your campaign URL. Here, you can set a single URL or multiple ones, which should be included on each line.
Here, you have access to a pretty cool feature: landing page prefetching.
What the heck is that?
As you know full-well, timing is of the essence when you’re dealing with pop traffic. Since users usually close the pops quickly, the faster your landing page loads, the more chances you’ll have to lure the user!
The worst thing that can happen?
When a user quickly closes your pop, you’ve already paid for it, but you’re still losing that traffic.
This is where prefetching comes into play. It allows you to speed up the loading speed of your landing pages. It does that by telling the user’s browser to start loading your URL while the platform’s system is still counting the impression. This means that – once the pop is redirected to your landing page – it’ll probably be already fully loaded.
This great feature can bring discrepancies to your tracking system, though. Due to fact that the prefetch requests are treated separately, your tracker will be counting more traffic than PopAds, as it’ll interpret the feature as two separated hits: one for your tracker URL, and one for the landing page URL.
However, there’s no problem. When you click the option to enable prefetching, just below the field where you enter your URL, PopAds will give you another field to enter the Prefetch URL.
In case you’re using a tracker, you can put your tracker URL in the first field and your actual landing page URL in the Prefetch URL field. Problem solved!
Regarding the quality option: you can select the “quality” of the websites you’re targeting. This means you can target all or select percentage levels, such as only the top 10% or 20%, for example. This quality score is algorithmically calculated and it’s based on the feedback PopAds receives from the advertisers that work there, regarding each website.
Then, you have very standard stuff, such as the Frequency Cap, choosing if your campaign is starting right after approval, and also whether or not you’re targeting visitors with Adblock.
The last thing you need to choose? Your advertising type, the most popular being the Popunder.
Budgets and Bid
Here’s that important place where you’ll choose your bid and budget. The first thing you should select is whether or not you’re using the smart bid or the legacy bid option.
On the first one, the platform will manage the bid in order to maximize your traffic, obviously respecting the limit of the maximum bid you introduce – this is your usual smart bidding system.
The legacy bid option focuses on minimizing your traffic costs. It’s simple to gather that this will limit the traffic you’ll receive.
An important thing to bear in mind?
The bid you’ll set is for each pop. Don’t go around setting a bid of 1, or else you’ll be saying you’re willing to pay $1000 for 1000 Popunders, for example. The rest is pretty standard – the daily budget and the total campaign budget.
This tool is used to limit the speed of impressions you’ll receive. You can either disable it, using manual throttling, where you set the limit percentage manually, or the automatic one, where the platform will limit the speed of impressions received based on a goal introduced by you.
Pretty straightforward: just pick the categories you wanna target on your campaign.
If you’re launching an adult offer, you should go for “Adult”. In this case, it’ll add all the categories, or choose specific ones if you already have a specific targeting you wanna go for.
On the other hand, if you’re launching a mainstream offer, you should choose “General” or just select the specific categories you’d prefer.
That’s exactly what the name suggests. Just select the country you’re targeting on the campaign.
Select the languages and the size of the populations you’re targeting.
No, it’s not like you’re targeting rainforests or the Greenpeace headquarters. By environment, the ad network means the operating systems, browsers, and screen resolutions you can include on your campaigns.
Here you can also add the general or some specifics such as in “Categories.” For “Operating Systems”, for example, if you want to add all Android versions, you just have to select Android.
If, however, you already have a good targeting regarding the versions of this OS, you can select just the ones which interest you.
Nothing more, nothing less. Pick the devices you’re targeting.
The first option is called “Form Factors”.
Strange name, right?
Well, these are just the types of devices, such as Smartphone, Tablet, Smart TV, etc. For Mobile campaigns, we suggest you target just Smartphone and Tablet.
Following that, you’ll effectively select your device, with the option of picking the general ones or even selecting just specific versions.
Since you’ve got thousands of devices, if you don’t already have a target from other campaigns, we advise you to just hit “add all” and get on with it.
The first thing you need to decide here is whether you’re targeting by ISP/Carrier or by IP.
If you pick ISP/Carrier, the first options you’re gonna have to choose will be the connection types. Honestly, you’ve got some funny things there, such as “Military” and “Internet Cafe.” In our expert opinion, you should go for “Cellular.”
Regarding connection speeds, it all depends. If you’re targeting Wi-Fi, we recommend you select all of the ones you see there. If, however, you’re launching an offer just for Carrier traffic, pick Cellular/Carrier.
After that, you can search for the ISPs you wanna target, which may not be an easy task.
Because PopAds has got several ISPs for most GEOs. Plus: sometimes, you won’t know which are the correct ones to target. If this happens, you can try contacting the support.
If you choose IP targeting, you can either create a whitelist – choosing the mode include – or a blacklist – choosing the mode exclude – of IPs. After you select this, just start writing your IPs, one per line.
This feature is super cool on PopAds, because the ad network supports all types of IP notations, meaning that you can include, in each line, individual IPs, IP ranges, or subnets.
More straightforward would be impossible. Just select the days and hours when you want your campaign to be active. Plus: select your timezone.
Very simple as well. If you leave it disabled, you pretty much launch a RON campaign targeting all the network’s websites.
For the “Exclude Websites” option, you’ll be blacklisting some specific websites and receiving traffic from all others, while for “Include Websites” it’s exactly the opposite – you’ll just whitelist some specific placements.
After you click on “Summary”, the platform will calculate your position based on the bid you’ve introduced, as well as give you some info regarding the highest bid for your campaign setup and other relevant info.
After you have this info, we advise you to go back to “Budgets” and adjust your bid according to what you see there. If you’d like to start in the first position, for instance, you can just set a bid which is a bit higher than the one PopAds shows you as the maximum bid offered.
After you finish all of this, just hit “Create Campaign”.
Stats and Optimization
PopAds offers you reports on the platform. Now, don’t expect them to be very granular and detailed reports, as you may see on DSPs, or even in some other ad networks.
In fact, here you can basically see your overall stats, such as impressions and costs. You can also check data by Website IDs.
All you have to do is click on reports on your “Advertiser’s Panel.” Then, choose your date and time range. In the next tab, “Additional Filtering”, you can choose to see all the campaigns for specific countries, for example.
Want our professional tip?
The best thing you can do here is select the campaign for which you wanna see the stats.
Just add the campaign you want and move on!
On “Grouping and Ordering” you’ll basically select how the data is gonna be presented. The most relevant thing here is including the Website ID to your stats.
After that, you can just click on “Generate Report” and you’ll have your very basic report ready.
It’ll look more or less like this:
A nice feature here is that you can just click on that last column to quickly include or exclude a website from your campaign. This means you’ll be creating either a whitelist or a blacklist.
Another cool feature is the “Token Details” option you also have on your “Advertiser’s Panel.” You can insert a website ID or ISP ID there and check detailed stats for them.
You can insert a website ID that looks interesting on your campaign, for example, and you can choose to want to know more about it.
It’ll look something like this:
As you see, you can explore a whole lotta interesting stats: a) the traffic the website has; b) the bids.
Wondering where PopAds stands on that “quality” division?
This one’s on the top 10%, for example.
Some more interesting stuff?
You can know how many campaigns are targeting this placement, which gives you an idea of the amount of competition, and the restrictions the website has in terms of traffic.
Scrolling down, you’ll be able to see a map, where you can check the locations where the placement has more traffic in a scale of green.
Further down, some doughnut charts with percentages of the many countries, languages, browsers, operating systems… well, of all the parameters you can target in your campaigns.
This is a pretty cool and impressive tool!
PopAds Review: Traffic is Key
PopAds is certainly one of the biggest and most well-known pop traffic networks out there.
It has a lot of traffic and options for campaign setup.
Just be aware! As the saying goes: “quantity is not always quality!”
This is often true when it comes to PopAds!
In case you’re not used to all these options, you can end up receiving a whole lotta poor traffic!
Unlike most of the top ad networks, PopAds has very liberal terms and isn’t really hunting for those hyper high-traffic websites from publishers. Indeed, it accepts all kind of websites and supports all niches, including adult, dating, and warez, without any minimum traffic requirements.
PopAds can even approve a blog page with free domains. Consequently, it’s likely that the number of good content websites can be quite low when compared to the total numbers in its inventories.
Nevertheless, it’s worth highlighting that PopAds has assigned quality rating. The better content the website has, the higher the rate is.
If you limit your campaign to higher-classified websites only, you’ll get better quality traffic – even though it’s more expensive!
Additionally, if you’re focused on mobile and hear PopAds has awesome traffic and you’re unable to actually see what you want, you should be aware that a great part of the platform’s traffic is desktop.
Is there money to be made on PopAds?
Of course, like in most places. You’ve just gotta choose well and really find what can work for you!
Offers & Verticals
- Ad Types: Exclusively pops (Popunder, Popup, Tabunder, Tabup)
- Cost Model(s): CPV (bid set for each pop)
- Verticals: Adult and Mainstream
Payment & Investment
- Minimum Deposit: $10 for PayPal and AlertPay. No minimum deposit for Wire Transfers
- Payment Methods: PayPal, AlertPay and Wire Transfer
It’s worth mentioning that PopAds allows you to easily withdraw unspent funds, depending on the payment solution you use:
- $5 for PayPal
- $20 for Payoneer
- $2,000 for Wire Transfer
- $5 for Payza
- Personal Account Manager: No way!
- Support Response Speed: Normal. Usually within 24 hours
- Support Rating: Average to bad. Mechanical and not personal at all
- Contact Methods: Email
- Contact: firstname.lastname@example.org
PopAds Review – The End is Near
That’s the end of this review, folks. We both hope you’ve been able to drink all this amazing knowledge!
Our last words?
PopAds is a platform with a lot of traffic and features. It may not be the best in some aspects, but, as pretty much anywhere, if you play your cards right, there’s money to be made!
Signup on PopAds here!
- Many options for campaign setup
- Possibility of knowing precise info about your bidding, including how much the first position will cost
- Good volumes for both Adult and Mainstream
- Interesting detailed stats for Website IDs and ISPs (token details feature)
- Easy to get refunds
- It often has low-quality traffic
- It’s got a weak support team
- No S2S conversion tracking supported
- A messy and sometimes not very precise ISP targeting