Guardian Digital

United Kingdom (National)

Ad Specifications

Delivery methods

For any queries please contact your Guardian account handler:

All final creative should be supplied to by the Thursday before your scheduled booking. All bookings begin and end on a weekly cycle starting on Monday. Exceptions to this must be agreed upon in advance between your account handler and the Guardian ad operations team.

This publication will accept: .gif, .jpg, 3rd party tags, HTML5. If you would like to deliver HTML5, please notify your account manager at the time of booking or as soon as you know this format is being delivered, as the Digital Ad Production team will need to process it ahead of being trafficked. If you provide 3rd party creative tags, they cannot accept them if the initial load of the creative is more than 200kb. Creatives must be supplied in a secure format or they will not be accepted.

Flash: Please note that Flash files (.swf) will not be accepted.

Further Notes

  • Backup creatives: In certain scenarios when a rich media creative has been delivered, we may require a backup creative to run on app or mobile web, to conform to the following guidelines:
    • Format: .gif or .jpg
    • File size: 40kb max
  • In-banner video (with an embedded video player with video controls): If the video is autoplay, it must start muted. Max autoplay length is 30 seconds for billboard or 15 seconds for all other formats.
  • There is no max length for click-to-initiate video.
  • VAST XML base format.
  • Additional VPAID elements can be accepted, but given its variability, testing must happen prior to going live.
  • Available for direct campaigns only.
  • In-banner video on iOS App: Video tags constructed in either HTML or JavaScript must specify the playsinline attribute:
  • For the videos to play without user action, the video tag needs to also specify the muted attribute:
  • Expandable creatives: We serve ads through an iFrame so require you to provide code to allow the ad to expand.
  • We fully support expandable creative from various third parties, subject to testing.
  • Expandable creatives must be click-to-expand (with the exception of 3-2-1 hover to initiate expansion creatives).
  • Close button should be located at the top right.
  • Expandable creatives to be served on The Guardian homepage may be subject to Ad Governance Group approval.
  • Ad Choices logo: The Guardian along with many other publishers has committed to comply with the IAB’s Self Regulatory Framework in relation to OBA Advertising. In order to comply we will require all 3rd party hosted adverts to include the Adchoices Ad Marker as per the IAB’s technical guidelines.
  • White creative: All white and light-coloured creative must have a dark one-pixel border.
  • Readability: Type should be at least 20px for black print against white background. Fine print should be at least 15px. For light print against a dark background, consider larger type or boldface.
  • Click into new window: All ads must click into a new browser window.
  • Browser compliance: We will target to all modern browsers unless otherwise instructed. More information on browsers can be found here.
  • Lead time: If supplying .gifs, .jpgs, or 3rd party tags, we must receive these at least 3 working days before campaign start date. If supplying HTML5, we must receive this 5 working days before campaign start date. If our Digital Ad Production (DAP) team are building creatives, assets must be received as specified on the DAP format guide.
  • Late creatives/assets may result in delays to the campaign live date.
  • Sound: All sound must be user click activated.
  • Misleading ads: We will not carry any form of advertising that is deemed to be of poor quality, inappropriate, misleading or confusing to our users. If unsure, please contact your Guardian Account Manager.
  • CPU: We may reject or remove ads that drive the CPU too high.
  • Third-party tracking: We accept thirdparty click tracking for all formats and third-party impression tracking for all formats except Interstitials. Please note that if you have supplied third-party tracking, there may be a discrepancy between our ad server stats and your data. IAB’s discrepancy tolerance is +/-10%.
  • Please note: We do not accept any Brand Safety Blocking Tags for page takeovers on The Guardian site. For CPM Brand Safety Blocking tags, we require the tags and the full list of blocks being applied within them 48 hours before go live date.

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