Digital advertising marketing in India is growing by leaps and bounds, impacted by the global digital marketing industry. Statista predicts the market will continue growing at a compound annual rate of 29% by 2023. Despite its many benefits, programmatic advertising is not yet widespread.

Publishers in India who want to use an ad network may have doubts about choosing the right one and what are the available offers. Here you have a primer on ad networks and the top ad networks for publishers in India.

What Is an Ad Network?

An ad network is an ad tech company that acts as an intermediary between publishers (suppliers of ad space) and advertisers (buyers of ad space) to meet their campaign goals.

Ad networks collect and inventories from suppliers such as website owners and application developers, offering them to demand partners looking for ad space. Demand sources are companies and agencies looking to place ads on websites or apps.

Importance of Ad Networks

Ad networks are essential in the digital advertising ecosystem, acting as technical middlemen between advertisers and publishers. The ad network software provides integrations for the supply side to offer their inventory and advertisers to activate and monitor campaigns.

The goal of an ad network is to help publishers maximize their yield in their monetization efforts, control their fill rate, and sell leftover inventory.

Different Types of Ad Networks

There are numerous offers of ad networks. Some cater to a specific niche, while others work with multiple industries, and others hold premium inventory only. Let’s explore the different ad networks you may find.

Premium Ad Networks

These ad networks offer exclusive inventory from high-quality and very popular publishers. Their high standards for inventory often bring better results in conversions and engagement.

Examples of premium networks include Google Display Network, AdMob, Adcash, and Yahoo Gemini.

Vertical Ad Networks

These ad networks are dedicated to a specific topic. They work with publishers that deliver content around that vertical, like fashion, business, or technology.

Advertisers usually know where their ads are displayed in vertical ad networks. While the traffic volume is lower than in horizontal ad networks, the results are often higher because the ads reach a specific audience.

Examples of vertical ad networks for the technology vertical include Criteo, Koomona, BuySellAds, and Developer Media.

Inventory-Specific Ad Networks

Also specialized networks, these ad networks work with a specific type of inventory, or target a specific type of device, for example, only to mobile devices or selling only video ads space. Mobile ad networks, in particular, are very popular as most people spend more time on their smartphones.

Examples of mobile ad networks include Google AdMob, InMobi, and Apple Search Ads.

Affiliate Advertising Networks

Affiliate networks connect companies seeking to promote their products or services with content owners and influencers. These networks typically provide training, reporting and resources to support affiliates.

Why Do Publishers in India Benefit from Ad Networks?

The primary factor pushing digital advertising growth in India is the spread of mobile device usage and internet connectivity. The increasing popularity of smartphones makes mobile advertising a growing industry.

Digital ad revenue
246bn INR
Leading digital ad format by expenditure
Social media
Share of mobile in digital ad spends
Share of digital ad spends in India 2021

Sources: Statista

However, programmatic advertising is not widespread, with 62% of digital media ads bought via direct manual channels. Therefore, there is a potential market niche for ad networks. Indian publishers can reap the benefits of programmatic advertising, such as convenience and efficiency, higher yield, fraud prevention, and data privacy.

What to Look For in an Ad Network in India?

There are many leading ad networks available to publishers in India. And the digital advertising jargon doesn’t help when looking for the right one for your organization. What size network is the right one for you? Should you opt for a CPC or a CPM pricing model? What is a standard IAB ad unit? 

Some of these questions can be intimidating if you are new to digital advertising. But don’t worry. We compiled a list of factors you should consider when choosing an ad network.

Suitable Ad Formats

What are the ad formats the ad network supports? Formats can impact the ad performance, and one size that works for one website can be a disaster for another. Most ad networks offer multiple formats. For example, the standard IAB display units. Other formats include:

  • Custom display ads
  • Rich media ads
  • Interstitial ads
  • In-text
  • In-feed
  • Search boxes

Do you want to know more about ad formats? We compiled this guide: What is an Ad Unit and Which One Is the Best?

If you are not sure which of these formats will work best on your site or app, it is better to go with a network that offers multiple ad formats, so you can test.

Size of Advertiser Network

Without a doubt, a network with thousands of advertisers can give you a better performance than one with hundreds. Why does the size of an ad network matter?

  • A bigger network has more advertisers that will compete for your ad spaces
  • A large pool of advertisers may also mean the network may cover more geographic areas.
  • The higher competition is beneficial for publishers that can get a better yield for their inventory.

However, size is not the only factor that matters. Some publishers may benefit from a smaller ad network that caters to their specific niche.

Optimized Ad Placement

The primary task of ad networks work primarily with publishers to help them sell remnant inventory. They also improve ad placements through consistent reporting and tracking of ad performances. 

Publishers can look at the reports and adjust the ad placements to maximize their yields. Look for an ad network with extensive and detailed reporting. If they offer real-time analytics, even better.

Advantageous Revenue Share

Compensation and payment terms are important factors to consider when choosing an ad network. Every ad network has its preferred compensation methods. The most common ones are CPC (Cost per Click), CPM (Cost per a thousand impressions), and CPA (Cost per action).

  • Cost per Click: advertisers pay a certain amount of money each time a user clicks on an ad.
  • Cost per Mile: publishers fix a cost for every thousand impressions of an ad.
  • Cost per View: advertisers pay every time their ad is viewed.
  • Cost per Action: publishers get paid a certain among of money each time a user completes a specific action. For instance, completing a registration form.

Do you want to know more about pricing models? Check our guide CPC vs CPM Bidding: What’s the Difference in 2022. 

Payment terms are also important to consider. You can test the different payment models and see which one gives you more revenue. Choose an ad network that provides the pricing model and payment terms that match your needs. 

Fast Load Speeds

The underlying technology of your chosen ad network can impact the user experience, and ultimately, your revenue.  A good ad network should provide a solid infrastructure, and fast load speeds. You don’t want ads to roll up so slowly the visitor loses interest and leaves the page.

10 Best Ad Networks for Publishers in India

Now that we know more bout what ad networks are, how do they work and how to choose the right one, we can explore our pick of the ten best ad networks for publishers in India.

1. Google AdSense

Google AdSense

Google AdSense is perhaps the most popular ad network globally. Powered by Google, it enables publishers to monetize their websites, blogs, or YouTube channels by displaying ads. 

Here are some key features:

  • Google pays the publishers when a visitor clicks on an ad displayed in their property, or based on the number of impressions.
  • Advertisements can have multiple formats, images, video, or rich media.
  • Google uses programmatic bidding to select the highest bid among advertisers of Google Adwords.

What are the requirements to join?

  • You must be over 18 years of age
  •  You must own and manage your site. 
  • Traffic should be genuine.
  • The content of the site must be unique
  • Comply with Google Content Policies
  • There is no minimum traffic requirement
  • It’s free
  • The ads are created by Google
  • A huge pool of advertisers via the Google Ad Network
  • Cons
    • The minimum payout is $100
  • You cannot use another ad network together with Google AdSense
  • The pay per click is low, so to make a decent profit, you need a lot of traffic.
  • Related content: How To Make Money with Google AdSense

    2. Media.Net

    Media.Net is an ad network  that has become crazy popular over the last few years.  It is one of the biggest competitors of the Google AdSense program. focuses on  PPC contextualized ads. The platform targets sites of all sizes and offers  optimized mobile ads.

    What are the requirements to join?

    •  Your site content needs to be in native English
    •  Most of your traffic should come from the US, UK and Canada.
    • You need to feature premium content
    • No ad cluttering.
    • Your site  must be  user-friendly and easy to navigate.
    • Free to set up and use
  • Centralized dashboard allows an easy ad performance tracking
  • Customization options
  • Good customer support
  • Cons
    • High payment threshold
  • You only get paid after the second click from the user
  • The earning status shows the next day instead of in real-time
  • 3. PopAds


    PopAds is an advertising network specialized in pop-under ads. It is highly popular, legitimate and high paying. Here are some of its features:

    • Accept all kinds of websites
    • Low payment threshold
    • Cost per View payment model
    • Pop-under ads
    • High CPM rate

    What are the requirements to join?

    • There are no specific requirements for getting PopAds approval
    • You only need to register as a webmaster and wait for approval.
    • No minimal traffic requirement
  • Real-time reports
  • Advertisers outside Tier 1
  • Publishers can choose the minimum bid they accept
  • Desktop and mobile traffic
  • Cons
    • The reports are not detailed
  • They don’t offer other types of ads
  • Sometimes ads are not relevant to your site
  • 4. PropellerAds


    Propeller Ads is an alternative to Google AdSense, offering display, native, video and mobile ads with the affiliate services. The platform functions as an ad network for the publishers and a self-serve platform for advertisers. Some key features include:

    • Global coverage
    • High quality ads
    • Compatible with AdSense
    • Community of publishers
    • Push notifications

    What are the requirements to join?

    • No minimum traffic requirement
    • You just need to sign up as a publisher and verify the domain ownership
    • Free
  • Low payment threshold
  • Multiple ad formats
  • Multiple payment options, including PayPal, ePayments, Payoneer, Skrill and WebMoney
  • Cons
    • Non-English sites earn lower revenue
  • If your site doesn’t meet Propeller Ads quality standard, you will get a lower CPM
  • There is no header bidding
  • 5. RevenueHits


    RevenueHits is a self-service ad network that supports a range of ad formats both for desktop and mobile.

    • It supports CPA and CPM
    • Supports only English websites
    • Good reporting and central dashboard
    • Multiple payment terms

    What are the requirements to join?

    • No minimum traffic required
    • Because is a self-serve network a publisher only has to register
    • It is a close AdSense alternative
  • Uses CPA pricing model
  • Large pool of advertisers
  • Publishers can add and remove units
  • Cons
    • No real-time reporting
  • You cannot bring your own demand partners
  • Only supports display ads
  • 6. PopCash


    PopCash is an ad network focused on a single type of traffic. Pop traffic. Pop ads are very popular among advertisers because of its high conversion rates.

    • The platform is user friendly
    • Their proprietary technology opens the pop ad in a different window under the current browser page. 
    • The platform is easy to navigate
    • It has a centralized dashboard with an account manager feature
    • Works under the CPV model
    • Multiple payment methods

    Characteristics and Requirements

    • No minimum traffic requirement
    • Submit your website and place the popunder code
    • Quick approval
  • Low payment threshold
  • Large pool of advertisers
  • High revenue share
  • Cons
    • Reports are not and real time
  • Only supports popunder ads
  • 7. HilltopAds


    HilltopAds is a relatively new player in the ad network market. Working under a CPM pricing model, it is oriented towards publishers. 

    • They accept websites from all geolocations
    • Work with sites from a lot of verticals including gaming, social and dating
    • Specializes in pop advertising but also offers banners, in-video and native ads
    • Multiple payment options including Bitcoin and Tether

    What are the requirements to join?

    • High quality traffic (not specified)
    • To start, you need to sign up and add the site for approval
    • Good CPM rates
  • Reliable support
  • Weekly payout
  • Cons
    • No self service

    8. Tyroo

    tyroo Ad Network

    This ad network headquartered in New Dehli, is specialized in mobile advertising. Tyroo offers native advertising technology for e-commerce sites.

    • 15 focus markets across India
    • 100% fill rate
    • CPM based but offers also CPA, Cost per Download.
    • Multiple ad formats
    • Timely payouts
    • Partners with Snapchat

    Characteristics and Requirements

    • There is no minimum traffic requirement
    • The application and content needs to comply with Tyroo quality standards
    • Product listing ads
  • Multiple ad formats
  • Video ads
  • Cons
    • Focused only in India

    9. Infolinks


    Infolinks is one of the most profitable CPM ad networks in india. It offers many ad unit types, like in-text, in-rame, overlay ads, interstitial and tg cloud ads.

    • Multiple ad formats
    • High revenues for publishers

    What are the requirements to join?

    • No minimum traffic required for approval
    • Easy to join
  • 70% share revenue for publishers
  • Unique ad types
  • Partnership with other large ad networks like Amazon
  • Large reach over 130 countries
  • Cons
    • Not user-friendly
  • Sometimes ads are irrelevant
  • 10. adChakra

    It is an unified platform for cross device programmatic advertising. It supports desktop and mobile media ads.

    • Both free and paid options
    • Focused in the computers, electronics and technology vertical, but also caters other verticals
    • Focused in India

    What are the requirements to join?

    • No minimum traffic required
    • Crosschannel
  • Expanding rapidly
  • Cons
    • Still unknown outside of India

    Optimize Your Revenue Streams with CodeFuel

    What could be better than choosing an ad network from that list? Leveraging CodeFuel, of course. CodeFuel goes beyond ad networks, delivering a complete monetization solution. You have all the benefits of ad networks and more, for all types of digital properties. It is designed to maximize publisher’s revenue, delivering intent-based shopping and search ads.

    Want to know more about the advantages of using CodeFuel? Request a demo today.