YouTube made an announcement that it is changing the attribution criteria for TrueView for action video ads, which are designed for performance advertisers and feature call-to-action banners at the base of the video ads.

The two key attributions points that are changing are:

  • YouTube will now count an ‘Engagement’ whenever a user clicks or watches 10 seconds or more of a TrueView for action ad when using maximize conversions or target CPA bidding. That’s a change from 30 seconds.
  • A ‘Conversion’ will be counted, by default, when a user takes action on an ad within 3 days of an ‘Engagement.’ If you want this changed, you will have to ask your Google rep to customize this time frame. That’s a change from 30 days.
  • For users who click your ad, YouTube will still attribute conversions according to the conversion window you have set (the default is 30 days).

According to YouTube, it is changing the default attribution window from 30 seconds and 30 days to 10 seconds and 3 days to better reflect “the relationship between video ad exposure and conversions.”

Nicky Rettke, YouTube group product manager, wrote, “We conducted large-scale experiments to analyze the incremental conversion volume driven by TrueView for action ads across a broad range of advertiser industries and conversion types.”

What does this change mean?  Google says that with the shorter engagement-to-conversion window, it will faster ramp up times for target CPA campaigns and more current reporting.

But with this change comes another issues.  Advertisers are charged on an engagement for TrueView ads.  This means that advertisers are going to be charged after a users watches 10 seconds instead of 30 seconds of your ad.  As an advertiser, you’ll want to make sure you monitor your TrueView for action campaigns more closely in order to understand the impact of this change on your budget and performance.

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