With an ads.txt file you can indicate the companies authorized to sell your digital inventory. By creating a public record of authorized digital sellers, you increase transparency, gain control over your inventory, and prevent counterfeiting across the system. Buyers can easily identify your authorized digital sellers and be sure that they are buying authentic inventory.
If you use an ads.txt file on a domain but you haven't added a reseller's Adform SSP account information or an Adform direct account into the file, Adform won't start an RTB auction for the missing account.
You may see bids before Adform initially reads the file, but Adform stops the bidding until it adds the account information and re-reads the file.
In August 2022, IAB Tech Lab released the latest version of the ads.txt file specification (version 1.1).
The main benefit of the new file is the addition of two new fields, OWNERDOMAIN and MANAGERDOMAIN.
MANAGERDOMAIN is relevant for Sales Houses who now need to label themselves as RESELLER, but represent the only direct path to the seller. If DSPs perform Supply Path Optimization (SPO) on RESELLER and only buy DIRECT as shortest path to supply, sellers not declaring MANAGERDOMAIN might miss out on spend.
OWNERDOMAIN helps to solidify the link between ads.txt and sellers.json and allows DSPs to cross reference ads.txt with sellers.json and Supply Chain Object (SCO) to add another layer of protection. It’s important to transparently declare OWNERDOMAIN to ensure requests aren't getting filtered due to mismatches.
Adform encourages publishers and sellers to adopt the latest version of the ads.txt file specification.
Place the ads.txt file in your root domain. The file should have records separated by line breaks. Each record has several rows with three (or four fields) in each row:
line1: <Field #1>, <Field #2>, <Field #3>, <Field #4> line2: <Field #1>, <Field #2>, <Field #3>, <Field #4>
adform.com, <InvenotoryID>, DIRECT example1.com, <inventoryID>, DIRECT
Use these guidelines for the different fields:
This is the canonical domain name (CNAME) of the SSP, exchange, header wrapper, or system that bidders connect to. It may be the operational domain of the system if it is different from the parent corporate domain. The CNAME helps WHOIS and reverse IP lookups establish clear ownership of the delegated system.
Set the advertising system domain name to adform.com for your accounts. In this field, do not include "www." in a domain name.
This is the identifier associated with the seller or reseller account within the advertising system in field #1. It must have the same value used in transactions (such as OpenRTB bid requests) in the field specified by the SSP or the exchange.
You can use your Inventory Source ID in this field, which can be found in the Deals page: in the Id column, the number between the dashes represents the Source ID. For example: DID-xxxx-123456 - where xxxx is the Inventory Source ID.
If you don't have any deals created yet, create a test deal with any settings so that a deal ID is generated and you can use it in this field.
line1: adform.com, 890 line2: adform.com, 333
This defines the type of account and your relationship to it. This field is not case sensitive.
DIRECT indicates that you (the content owner) directly control the account specified in field #2. This typically means a direct business contract between you and the advertising system.
If you directly control the account indicated in field #2, enter DIRECT.
RESELLER indicates that you have authorized another entity to control the account specified in field #2. It means that you resell your ad space through the system in field #1.
If you don't directly control the account indicated in field #2, enter RESELLER. If you directly control the account but resell from some other account, the data for each account should be entered in separate rows.
line1: adform.com, 890, DIRECT line2: adform.com, 123, RESELLER
This alphanumeric ID uniquely identifies the advertising system within a certification authority. (This ID maps to the entity listed in field #1.) A current certification authority is the Trustworthy Accountability Group (TAG).
line1: adform.com, 890, DIRECT, 9f5210a2f0999e32 line2: adform.com, 123, RESELLER, 9f5210a2f0999e32
Adform searches for and reads ads.txt files once every 24 hours. Therefore, placements through Adform start sending bid requests the day after you update the file.
Update to the latest version of the ads.txt file specification and learn more about working with ads.txt files.