1. Introduction
  2. Creating your Order
  3. Creating your Line Item
  4. Basic Information
  5. Adjust Delivery
  6. Add Targeting
  7. Saving
  8. Adding Creative
  9. Approving
  10. Where's my Ad?
  11. Next
  12. Done

Creating your ads


So now you set up DFP SB and tagged your pages. The next step is to create your Ads.

DFP SB has three basic components to creating ads.

  1. The first component is the Order. The Order is basically a container and, for all intents and purposes, the settings are just for informational use only.

  2. Once you create the Order, you need to create a Line Item. Line Items are basically the important part. Line Items contain the settings for how your Creatives (next item) should be delivered. There are a lot of settings here and you can do some fancy stuff depending on how you configure everything.

  3. Creatives are your actual Ad. This is the Image or Flash or code given to you to display.

Creating an Order

Let's start the process!

If you're not logged in, please do so and navigate to the Orders tab.

Click the "New Order" button and you should see something like this:

Now, it looks complicated but it's really not. Or rather, Google combined the processes of creating an Order and creating a Line Item into the same page. That's why there are so many fields. The top part, "New Order", contains the Order information and the bottom part, "New Line Item", contains your first Line Item for this Order.

Let's go over the Order fields really quickly.

Name: The Name of the Order. I usually like to name it by using "[Website] [Advertiser if any] [Time Frame]".

Company: The company that gave you the ad or what you wish to name the "source" of the ad. Company field also provides some reporting options (to give company X reporting only on their Orders)

Trafficker: Trafficker is basically who created the Order. It should be prefilled with whoever is logged in. This field is helpful in that if you give other users access to your DFP Account, the "Salesperson" level can only access their own Orders.

Thehidden fields ("Optional order fields") Advertiser Contacts, Agency, Contacts, Sales Person, Purchaser Order (PO) Number and notes are all optional and help you identify the Order. For future use though, you can use these fields to limit what a person you invite can see (eg, all SalesPerson users can only view Orders that they are assigned to).

I'm going to quickly fill in the fields.

Creating the Line Item

Now that the Order information is done, we'll create our first Line Item.

Let's go over the fields here.

Basic Information

Name: Name of the Line Item.

Inventory Size: This is what the size of the Creatives you want in this Line Item. It's important to select the correct one and multiple sizes if you have multiple Creative sizes. Once you select the size the Inventory below will automatically filter out invalid Ad Unit sizes.


Type (priority): This is probably the most important setting in your Line Item. DFP SB determines which Line Item to display by checking several variables, the most important one is "Type". What are the delivery priority options?. The Types are listed in highest precedene to lowest precedence:

Please do note that the way is listed is the priority they have. If you have multiple Line Items, it will first check for Sponsorship -> Standard (High/Normal/Low) -> Network -> Bulk -> Price Priority -> House in that order.

Sponsorship and Standard are Guaranteed Priorities. The rest are non-guaranteed Priorities. This is important if you use Adsenes because Adsense competes against non-guaranteed Priorities on a CPM basis.

Start and End is is pretty self-explanatory. Please do note that Line Items (Standard and Bulk) deliver ads evenly across the flight. This means that basically they will deliver X amount per day. The Daily Delivery Goal = [Total Quantity] / [Total Days from Start to End].

Goal (Sponsorship, Network and House), Quantity (Standard and Bulk) and Limit (Price Priority) determine how many impressions it should serve.

Cost field for Sponsorship and Standard are for informational purposes only. For the other fields, they make a difference in determining priority within it's own level and if you have Adsense enabled for the Ad Unit.

Discount is for reference only and does not effect anything.

Adjust Delivery

You can adjust the settings of your Line Item in how they display by modifying these settings.

Deliver Impressions: "Evenly" or "As fast as possible". In truth, I'm not sure how this setting effects "Goal" types (Sponsorship, Network and House). I know that it greatly effects Quantity types (Standard and Bulk).

"Evenly" means it will deliver evenly (Daily Delivery Goal) across the duration of the flight. So if you have a Line Item set to 30,000 Quantity and have it for from June 1 to June 30, it will delivery approximately 1,000 impressions per day.

"As fast as possible" on the other hand means it will deliver as much as it can up-front and this can effect the priority of other Line Items to display.

Display Creatives: If you Line Item has multiple Creatives and is assigned to a Placement that has more than one Ad Unit attached to it, you can have it show up only in one Ad Unit, several (pending which Line Item wins for the Ad Units) or create a "Road block" and fill up all the slots.

Rotate Creatives: If you have multiple Creatives, you can have them rotate is a specific manner. Although I believe this setting only applies to Creatives of the same size.

Optimized basically means that the better performing Creative will show more often.

Evenly means that it will be split evenly between all Creatives dispite performance

Weight means that you can set a manual weight to each (in the Creative page).

Frequency allows you to place a cap on how many times a user sees the Line Item. Please do note that it's per user.

Day and Time settings allow you to modify when the Line Item should display. Please do note that all Line Items (or rather winning Line Items) are delivered more heavily in the morning (sometimes as much as double in the morning than in the afternoon). There is no way to modify this, unfortunately. If you don't like this, I would suggest creating two Line Items, one setting the Day and Time for mornings and the other for afternoons, and splitting the Quantity between them.

Add Targeting

You have just finished setting the basic settings for your Line Item. Now you need to do some targetting.

Inventory basically allows you to target what Ad Unit or Ad Placement.

Custom Criteria is used in tagging your pages with specific attributes and targeting those attributes. For example, a Newspaper website might tag pages with "sports" and others with "politics". Custom Criteria would allow Line Items to target those specific pages.

Geography: You can geotarget your visitors. Please note that you can only target by "geographic levels". What I mean is that if you target a Country, you cannot add additional target of "City". It must stay on the same level.

Browsing: You can target specific settings the user is using such as what type of connection (Bandwidth), what Browser they are using, what Operating System and language.

User Domains allow you to set your Line Item to show only when they come from specific IP addresses. So you might want to create a Line Item that is shown to users only when they come to you from Google for example.


We've gone over all the settings and are now at the bottom. DFP SB offers several options for you to save.

Save: Saves in your current Order.

Save As: Saves in a different Order.

Check Inventory: Utilizes DFP SB's Forecasting system to check if your Website has enough impressions to fulfill the Line Item. Please note that DFP SB uses the last 28 days of data from your website that it has been running to do the Forecasting system. If you are a new user, it will complain about lacking impressions ("not enough inventory"). This error is for reference only and can be ignored by overbooking it.

Since I only have one ad (my own), I'm going to set it as a Sponsorship with 100% goal.

And then save it.

As you can see, the status for the Line Item is now in "Draft". Let's click on the Line Item.

Once you're in the Line Item, you'll see multiple tabs: Creatives, Settings and Availability.

Add Creative

We're obviously missing the Creatives and you can see the big threatening yellow box there telling us. So let's add in our Creative by clicking on the link "new creative".

DFP SB allows you seven types of Creatives

Third Party Creative: Third Party is basically your own custom HTML/CSS and Javascript. You'll need to insert the Macros in your Creative.

Flash Creative: This is when you are given a Flash file (.swf). Please do note that in order to track clicks, the Flash file must be made to use the industry standard "clickTAG".

Image Creative: This is when you are given an Image file.

DoubleClick Tag Creative: If you are given DoubleClick Image tags which usually come in the form "http://ad.doubleclick.net/ad/sitename/;sz=size", then you can use that instead of messing around with the other Creative types. DoubleClick Tags provide higher accuracy and easier use as you don't have to worry about Macros.

Text Ad Creative: A simple line of text with a link.

Flash Expandable Creative: Allows you to create a Expandable Creative (overlays on content).

Flash Pushdown Creative: Allows you to create Pushdown (pushes content down vs expanding over it) Creative.

In my case, I only have a simple Image Creative so I'm going to add that.

And save it.


You'll notice that once you save it, it asks you to "Approve it". All Creatives and Line Items need to be Approved before they can start delivering. You can approve it here (option to approve shows up after you save Creative)

or go to the Line Item page and Approve it there.

Please note that you can't Approve Line Items on the actual Line Item page. You can't also approve individual Line Items.

Uh oh. Another error? Actually no. A few paragraphs back I mentioned about "not enough inventory" and overbooking it. Since this is a new site, DFP has no data on it and therefore has no forecasting data to check for "future inventory". We can safely ignore this and overbook it.

You're done now! You can see the status of the Order is now "Ready" which means everything is approved and prepared to go. It will change to "Delivering" once it delivers it's first impression

Where's my Ad?

But if you go to your webpage, you might be wondering "I'm done but it's not showing!". Unfortunately, changes made in DFP SB are not instant and take time to apply.

Google has this document giving a general outline of how long things take:

It's showing up on my new site!


So you're basically done now. We've set up DFP, tagged our pages and created our Ads and have it successfully showing in our website! Congratulations!

Comments, suggestions or problems with this guide? Tell me about it!

  1. Setting up DFP
  2. Tagging your Website
  3. Creating your Ads