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Announcing the Windows Premium Ads Publishers Program

As part of our continuous efforts to help Windows developers monetize better through ads, we are very excited to announce the launch of the Windows Premium Ads Publishers Program – a curated collection of ad enabled apps that are best in class in terms of usage, engagement and experience. These apps use one or more ad formats from among banner, interstitial banner, interstitial video and native ads to monetize. There are more than a million apps in the Windows Store and these premium apps represent the best of inventory that advertisers can target for the highest ROI on their campaigns.
Apps in the Windows Premium Ads Publishers Program satisfy a wide range of criteria, from having a minimum guaranteed daily ad request volume to maintaining high viewability standards, not having any fraudulent activity in their apps and following IAB standard ad sizes and placement methods. These are top apps and games with a globally distributed audience that is highly engaged, have identifiable users and are viewability certified​. The full list of qualifying criteria is as follows:
Minimum guaranteed daily ad request volume
High viewability rate for impressions
Good quality clicks contributing to a minimum CTR across all ad formats
Only IAB standard ad sizes and no hidden ads
Clean placement of banners – not adjacent, no using ad units across multiple apps
Clear defined user flow to the point where the video and/or interstitial banner ad is shown, no pre-caching
Controlled ad refresh behavior so that the ads returned from the mediation server are always played
Great Store presence with clear app descriptions, high fidelity screenshots and icons uploaded to the Store along with a video trailer (preferable)
How do apps become a part of this program?
Apps that meet the qualifying criteria are put through a rigorous manual review process to check for a smooth, well defined user experience and to make sure ads are well placed to avoid unintentional clicks. Apps that clear both the automatic and manual screening process are then added to the program.
Can apps get removed from the program?
Apps in the program are monitored on a frequent basis to ensure they continue to meet the qualifying criteria. Make sure the app usage does not drop significantly over time to sustain a minimum daily ad request volume – a great way to do this is by running regular promotions.
Can a developer provide additional marketing material to showcase their app in the program?
Any content uploaded as part of the Store submission is automatically used to showcase premium apps. In addition, if you would like to use more app or game screenshots, game trailers and rich descriptions, please reach out to aiacare@microsoft.com.
Advertisers from all partner ad networks can identify these apps separately and serve premium, high yield ads exclusively on these apps. The pool of apps in the program are continually reviewed to ensure they meet the quality bar and new apps that qualify are automatically inducted into the program. Early results have shown very promising improvements in ad monetization yield for apps in the Windows Premium Ads Publishers Program. This is currently an invite only program and merely meeting the qualifying criteria does not automatically entitle an app to become part of the premium program.
Developers who are interested in knowing more about improving their app experience to qualify for the program, please reach out to aiacare@microsoft.com. Details regarding the program are available here. To learn more about enabling ads in your apps using the Microsoft Advertising SDK, read the article here. More announcements coming very soon in this space!