New default placeholders for ads in AMP


We want to share a somewhat small but visually impactful feature that we are planning to launch on AMP.

Content loads incredibly fast on AMP pages, but traditional ads often load relatively slowly. This leaves blank areas on publisher pages, which is a poor reading experience for the user as it can feel like the page is missing content.

To deliver faster, lighter and more secure ads that are as fast as your AMP content, consider switching over to AMP Ads.

In the meantime, in order to address the issue of blank ad spaces, we’ve added two default features to every ad placement on AMP pages. If an ad does not have a publisher-configured placeholder, AMP will automatically add:

  1. A clearly marked “Ad” label
  2. A subtle loading animation at the top indicating that the ad is loading

The new default ad loading indicator and placeholder feature

The clearly labeled placeholder allows the user to focus on the content and selectively shift their attention to ads. It also ensures that the user doesn’t think there is missing content while the ad is loading.

      A close-up of the subtle loading indicator

We realize this could be a breaking change for a few publishers who have already configured default placeholders on their pages, but these change come with significant user benefits described above. Publisher-configured placeholders will always retain full control over the ad loading experience.

We recommend that you try out how this treatment fits with existing content by opting into the AMP dev channel and subscribing into the ‘amp-ad-loading-ux’ experiment. This change is planned for a production release on Thursday Feb 9th, 2017.

We look forward to your feedback!

Posted by Vamsee Jasti, Product Manager, AMP Project