What Are You Doing About The Rising Effects Of Mobile Ad Blocking?



Your Mobile marketing experience will not be that successful if you keep ignoring ad blocking. Mobile ad blocking impacts on conversion negatively and advertisers must realize that ad blocking is on the rise and a 2015 report by Page Fair confirmed that Ad block usage in the United States grew 48% during the past year, increasing to 45 million monthly active users (MAUs) during Q2 2015.

The impact of ad blocking is not limited to conversion, it also affects the cost incurred by publishers. In 2016, it is expected that ad blocking will cost publishers nearly $41 billion compared to roughly about $22 million it has cost publishers by June of 2015. This is going by the statistics presented in the  infographic  published by INVESP on ad blocking statistics and trends.

Since ad blocking is on the rise, it becomes necessary for mobile marketers to acknowledge it could have to make or mar business. Ignoring ad block can be disastrous for any business especially if its sole source of earning is advertising.

That said, with the rising impact and cost of ad blocking mobile advertisers can take actions to survive in the rising trend.  Luckily, there are steps that can be taken to prevent mobile users from blocking ads posted alongside content.

Before discussing the actions that mobile marketers employ to discourage ad blocking, it would be vital to refresh our minds on the basics of ad blocking.

 What Is Ad Blocking and How Does It Work?

 By its simple definition, ad blocking means stopping advertisements whenever a user is surfing the Internet. An ad blocker is a browser extension that acts like a firewall between the web browser and the server. These extensions are open-sourced programs that can be installed by the end user.

If a surfer wants to block advertisements from the web pages they are accessing, he will install an ad blocker extension on the browser to prevent any ad that may pop-up.

The popular software for blocking ads include AdBlock and AdBlock Plus. The latter has features that enable ad blocking experience in mobile browsers.

The reasons for installing ad blockers include:

> To speed up the browsing experience which might have been slowed down by the ads displayed on the browser.

> To reduce the amount of data plans eaten up as a result of the ads popping up on the browser.

> To protect the browser from invasive and intrusive ads that keep popping up as a result of behavioral targeting programs used by the advertisers to track browsing history of the marketer. 

What Can Mobile Marketers Do To Prevent Ad Blocking?

 Since ad blocking has forayed into the mobile experience, it becomes crucial to create contents and implement advertising strategies that would beat the trend. Here are four features you can implement to curtail ad blocking in your mobile marketing campaign.

 Timely – You should time your advert without interrupting content experience on the mobile app provided for the audience. An advert delivered timely will have better chance of being clicked than an advert presented untimely. The best timing for adverts should be after conclusion of a segment or when there is a break of activity levels. Timely ads will go a long way to prevent annoying blockage and also increasing respect for the users.

 Inventiveness – You can embed inventiveness into adverts to excite potential targets. Adding creativity that would clearly define benefits to the mobile user is sure an important strategy. When the benefit is clear an ad would be acceptable. So, if you are a mobile marketer, ensure that you create ads that would be beneficial, attractive and different from what is expected.

 Relevance – You should make the ad relevance to the app or site. For the ad to gain acceptance easily with the target audience, there must be relevance. An ad about how to service a car will not make sense for an app or a site that talks about good health. So, to avoid people blocking ad, demonstrate relevance with the ads you have created or shared.

 User-Friendly You should always provide ads that are user-friendly. There is no doubt that some ads, by their nature in features and numbers, will slow down the speed of a site. This would be user experience for the mobile user. So, advertisers and publishers must ensure that the mobile ads provide are user friendly for the host site and app.

 These are features of the mobile ads that marketers or advertisers can implement to improve content and user experience and also prevent ad blocking.

It is always important to optimize content and user experience that will enhance value to the users. More so, it is important to adopt best practices so that people won’t make investment or pay to block your ads with extensions.

So, if you have been experiencing ad blocking in your mobile marketing, what have been doing about it?


  1. Hello Sunday,

    Ad blocking is a real problem for publishers. You’re right, it seems worse with mobile.

    That it grew in the US up to 48% during the past year to 45 million monthly active users is even scarier.

    I like the think 4 tips you have provided on dealing with this problem, but I am skeptical how much help they will do when more people keep using ad blocking.

    I think publishers just have to come up with better ways of monetization, such as capturing email leads and selling or promoting to the leads directly.

    What do you think?
    Barbara George recently posted…Lately On InstagramMy Profile

  2. I havent had issues with it recently. I’ve been focusing a lot of mobile ads within Facebook and Instagram. Highly targeted ads and really good engagement will only enhance it even more for me.

    I see your points though for those outside. Ad blocking does hinder the effectiveness of some of my campaigns but it’s not that big of a deal that I wont be able to get anything out of it. There are still a lot more people that dont know how to block ads vs those that know about it.
    Dennis Seymour recently posted…The 2 Sides of Guest Posting: I’m on the “It Works” Side, How About You?My Profile

  3. Hi Sunday,

    Ad blocking is a big problem, and is even worse for mobile sites, as you have explained here.

    Paid membership or Paywall type of sites don’t have to worry about ad blocking. Maybe more content sites should be thinking of going the Paywall model, having users pay to even get access to their content at all.

    Here’s Wikipedia’s explanation of Paywall:

    “A paywall is a system that prevents Internet users from accessing webpage content without a paid subscription. There are both “hard” and “soft” paywalls in use. “Hard” paywalls allow minimal to no access to content without subscription, while “soft” paywalls allow more flexibility in what users can view without subscribing, such as selective free content and/or a limited number of articles per month, or the sampling of several pages of a book or paragraphs of an article.

    Newspapers have been implementing paywalls on their websites to increase their revenue, which has been diminishing due to a decline in print subscriptions and advertising revenue.

    While paywalls are used to bring in extra revenue for companies by charging for online content, they have also been used to increase the number of print subscribers.

    Some newspapers offer access to online content, including delivery of a Sunday print edition at a lower price than online access alone. News sites such as BostonGlobe.com and NYTimes.com use this tactic because it increases both their online revenue and their print circulation (which in turn provides more ad revenue)”

    Here’s the link to the full Wikipedia post: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Paywall

    Maybe this is the future or solution to ad blocking? Since even big news sites like BostonGlobe.com and NYTimes.com now use this tactic. And they say it actually increase both their online revenue and their print circulation (which in turn provides more ad revenue).

    According to Wikipedia, The Wall Street Journal has retained its “hard” paywall since its inception. Despite the presence of the paywall, The Wall Street Journal has remained popular, acquiring over one million users by mid-2007, and 15 million visitors in March 2008.

    What do you think about this solution?

    • Hey Judith,

      That was quite revealing. The Paywall model should indeed be a solution to certain industries, especially those in the print business.

      I am just thinking if this model can work successfully on other industries like product-based internet marketing firms where the level of competing firms is quite high. For instance, can this model really work on ecommerce sites?

      I think the Paywall model would be difficult to implement in an industry where monetization online is solely the chief aim.

      The print industry has had success with this because they are solely subscription-based, and have been experiencing decline in ad revenue.

      If this model can work on ecommerce sites, then marketers will get more power to control ad blocking.

      However, I emphasize that the best form of advertisement that a company can get online or offline is the value it offers to the audience consistently.

      With increased value,a firm would not have to worry about serious promotion because the value would speak for them as one user would easily spread the message.

      Thanks for your insight about Paywall and for the links!
      Sunday William recently posted…How Soon Do You Deal With Bad Online Reputation?My Profile

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    • My knee jerk thought on this is… I can only see this paying for some type of subscription working for websites that have a “huge’ following already.

      For a the little guys, giving content out for Free is the better option, but again this is just an opinion based on No research except just know what Free content has done in the pass for other companies and writers out there.

      I Savvy Sexy Social has Free content and offers a membership part of her blog as well.

      Personally I buy a lot of solo ads and I like to see my mobile device hits below 50%. If it is higher then I no longer buy from that provider.

      I hope this was helpful. This definitely has the wheels in my mind spinning 🙂

      Enjoy you weekend,


  4. Hi Sunday,

    Thanks for talking about this important issue affecting all of us publishers. Even if we don’t want to admit it, it’s a very big problem.

    I like one of your suggestion of adding creativity that would clearly define benefits to the mobile user. You are right, it is an important strategy.

    When the benefit is clear an ad would be acceptable for sure.
    Yan Yan Chan recently posted…IN MY JEANSMy Profile

  5. Hello Sunday,

    You are correct about the negative aspects of ad blocking.

    But some sites are horrible when viewing on mobile, they have all kinds of ads flashing all over the place and preventing normal viewing.

    Some even dangerous malwares affecting your mobile.

    Ad blocking helps against such.

    Monetizing a site is good but not to detriment of visitors. Won’t you agree?

  6. Hi Sunday,

    Thanks for starting this discussion.

    I like how you explained it all for those who aren’t used to ad blocking.

    I also like how you provided solutions which can help publishers despite their readers’ use of ad blocking.

    I have read about how publishers are mad with ad blocking but it’s only getting more popular, unfortunately.

    I can understand publishers who don’t let ad block users get access to their content at all. It costs money to run and operate a good quality site, why should publishers be prevented from earning from their efforts.

    One solution I can think of is to provide very good quality content on your site, which can’t be easily found elsewhere. When you are certain your site provides good quality content, then prevent ad block users from accessing your site. If they value your content enough, they will deactivate ad block, to get access to it.

    What do you think?

  7. Hey Sunday,
    Ad blocking is a concept which every publisher must not take lightly. Ignoring it may crash the marketing and sales plan of the organization.

    You made some very revealing tips on what ad blocking is and how to improve ads to avoid the phenomenon.

    I guess, every advertiser must gear up to produce better content and ads so that readers/audiences would not have reason to block the ads?

  8. Hi Sunday,

    Ad blocking doesn’t sound well for advertisers and publishers. They will do all things possible to eliminate it. However, the reality is that, in these days of consumer choice and protection, ad blocking has come to stay.

    Advertisers should not be discouraged about this trend. What they must do now is to increase value in the type of content they share and also in the nature of the advertisement they publish.

    Increase value will bring about decreased ad rejection and ad blocking!

  9. Hello Sunday,

    Sometimes it’s publishers that are to blame for the rise of ad blocking.

    Those publishers who have just too many ads on their sites make it frustrating for visitors.

    It’s even worse with mobile sites. When the little space available on mobile is full of ads, what choice do readers have but to block the ads?

  10. Hi Sunday,
    Ad blocking, for me, should be a cause of alarm for mobile digital marketers. There must be a way to take control of it.

    However, I am of the opinion that understanding the reason(s) why ads are blocked by viewers in the first place should make the difference.

    I agree with you that increasing value for the readers/users/viewers will go a long way to reducing the tendency of blocking the ads!

  11. The rising effect of ad blocking is something that must not be taken lightly. For me, I have not really witnessed a lot because I hardly do online mobile publishing.
    However, for the sake of general knowledge, I will tackle it by ensuring that user experience for mobile users is not impeded by the nature of ads published.

    Therefore, mobile marketers must observe what bothers users and make necessary adjustments!

  12. This is a good discussion because ad blocking isn’t going away anytime soon.

    I have to say publishers should be creative and come up with more ways to make money with their websites than just using third party ads.

    It’s the third party ads that are easily blocked by ad blocking.

    For example, writing and selling a book on one’s blog might give more money than using third party ad like Adsense. How about doing that once a month or couple times per year?

    These might make a blogger or site owner more money than third party ads.

  13. This is one of the most interesting topics I have come across in recent times. The trend of mobile ad blocking should be a concern to publishers. It is not surprising that marketers are doing all that is needed to take hold of this.

    The discussions around this post are informative and instructive. I have learned a lot from the ideas shared by various commentators here in.

    In summary, I understand that improving ads to meet with the needs of the prospects will help to decrease mobile ad blocking!

    • Hey steven,

      Thanks for reading and sharing your thoughts on this discussion. The topic around ad blocking is profound in that it helps to divulge more facts on the state of mobile ads.

      If ads are created more to meet the needs of the audience then there would be lesser worries for mobile ad blocking!

  14. Mobile ad blocking is carried out electronically, hence, I suggest that publishers and advertisers as well improve on their investment in technology that would counter digital and mobile ad blocking.

    A good system like the Paywall suggested by @judiechang will go a long way in preventing unnecessary blockage on mobile.

    However, the best technological development to prevent ad blocking of any kind will not work if posts are short of value and user experience of the site visitors are ignored!

    • Hey Paul,

      You made an invaluable point by stating that the best technological development will not to prevent ad blocking if the posts are of less value.

      Therefore, it becomes important to businesses first offer great value in offers and user experience before expecting and demanding any system to prevent ad blocking!

  15. Hi everyone,

    Just to add to this discussion, big sites are beginning to take a stand against ad blocking.

    Recently Forbes is now issuing readers with ad block an ultimatum, either they pause/block their adblockers or sign up with their Facebook account or move on.

    While I think this is a drastic move, I don’t blame them.

    It’s not cheap to produce high quality content, they have to monetize their sites or go out of business, and ad blocking doesn’t help.

    Wired on the other hand wants users to disable adblocker or pay $1 per week.

    If a site’s content is great enough, users with adblocker will pause/disable theirs when on the site.

    If what you have on your site can be easily found on many other sites, then there’s little hope adblockers will care, if turned away.

    To survive this, therefore, there’s the need to continually produce high quality content or whatever you produce, on your site, to keep visitors coming and disabling their adblockers to get access.

  16. Hello Sunday,

    It`s really informative and interesting discussion here including the member s`s comments.

    Ads by its nature are badly behaved, what we need to do as mobile marketers is add value to users to further improve the quality what they are doing

    The most crucial tips among yours is the relevancy. To get better results along with your mobile advertising campaign, you should always create ads that are relevant to your website content.

    Thanks so much

  17. As the nature of ad blockers is to block all ads, it probably doesn’t make much difference whether your ad is gross or highly targetted and attractive as it won’t be seen anyway.

    Although I don’t have a solution to those who want to run ads within mobile, what does come to mind is that when pop up blockers started to emerge for desktop, coders were able to design new variations of ‘pop ups’ that were not possible to be blocked. Perhaps the same scenario may emerge for mobile adblockers.

    Let’s see