What Does a Demand Side Platform Do?

What Does a Demand Side Platform Do? 1

In this era, buying and selling ad impressions happens in the blink of an eye. Traditionally, it would take a few days or weeks. But the Demand Side Platform (DSP) and Supply Side Platform (SSP) has made the process more efficient and faster. 

One of the most frequently asked questions within the advertising world is- what does a demand side platform do?

DSPs are one of the most important tools for online digital marketers. DSPs make it possible for marketers to buy ad spaces from publishers while targeting the behaviour of web visitors. Web owners can showcase their available ad impressions through ad exchanges. 

Double click manager  (DBM) or Google’s DSPs make the decision on the best ad space, based on the description a marketer gives. The price of the impressions is determined by real-time bidding. 

Some of the vendors that are currently using the DSP platforms include Google’s invite media, Facebook Ad exchange, DataXu, Turn, MediaMath, just to mention a few.

How demand side platforms work?

The advertiser submits their designs and the ad content. They also include their maximum budget and their ideal target market. The platform then chooses the best opportunity from the pool of ad spaces and gets the ideal one for the advertiser. The DSP chooses the ad space with the highest number of ‘eyeballs’ at the lowest price possible. The DSP continues shopping for ad spaces on behalf of the marketer until they exhaust the paid amount.

What does a DSP look like?

To fully understand how a DSP works, it’s crucial to learn what it comprises of. It includes the following.


For a DSP to operate, it has to be combined with other supply sources like ad spaces and SSPs. Every firm has a unique integration process, but there are a few basics of the process. The first step is mostly research and setting up the platform. 

The second step is to implement and develop the idea. And the last step is to test the DSP and the new integration. Many firms now expect a DSP to be integrated with supporting cross-media with at least 1 million queries per second (QPS). 


This part is responsible for placing bids of the inventory on behalf of the advertisers during RTB (real-time bidding). This is one of the significant parts of the DSP. Ad spaces are sold fast and efficiently when they are there.

Ad server

Some DSPs use external services, while others have their servers. An ad server helps in displaying the ads to the buyer as well as store the creatives. Ad exchanges help in optimizing, retargeting, tracking, and reporting all media purchase opportunities. The ad server has been a critical part of the DSP for a decade, and it will continue to be the best tool in campaign management. 

Campaign Tracker

This part records every detail of the campaign such as clicks, spends, impressions and then passes all the info to the reporting platform. Through the help of the campaign tracker, marketers using DSPs can now monitor conversions, retention rate and advertise viewability. And other essential metrics to analyze the metrics required to optimize a campaign.

Profile Data

The user interest databases stores data about web visitors such as their preferences, based on their activities online. Like, what are they viewing, clicking or buying? Anything they’re doing online. This is essential for optimizing campaigns.

User interface 

This is a dashboard where a marketer spends their time designing, optimizing and managing their campaign.

Why do media buyers need DSPs?

  1. Wide outreach. Most DSPs are integrated with international ad exchanges, which means marketers can reach a big audience.
  2. Premium targeting. Profile data is captured in a DMP in most circumstances, and DSPs are integrated with DMPs which assist in ad verification, ad targeting, and optimization. The most important role it plays in helping advertisers reach the right audience.
  3. The choice of inventory. The most crucial thing about every campaign is advertising to the right group of people. The DSPs allows media buyers to describe the kind of market they are targeting beforehand. As a result, it’s possible to showcase the products and services to their potential leads.
  4. Campaign analytics. DSPs assists advertisers in the tracking of their campaigns in real-time. It combines the information of all the campaigns running in different platforms together and reports it.

Take Away

Gone is the marketing era when you had to wait for a salesperson in a briefcase to come to negotiate the ad spaces at their highest voices. Now you can save both your time and resources by embracing technology.

DSPs help you bid for your best ad impressions, by simply submitting a description of what you need.