Google has introduced a responsive design for AdSense units aimed at running on sites that automatically adapt to different screen sizes. It’s a technique that Verizon and AT&T use when repurposing ads from video on mobile phones.
The units rely on a new AdSense asynchronous ad code. Each URL serves the same HTML to all devices using CSS to change how the page renders on the device. It allows the developer to dynamically specify the size of the ad that serves up, making it fit into the way the Web site renders a page on a particular device. Developers need only make sure the ad unit matches Google’s standard ad sizes.
The online advertising industry has been debating responsive ad design for more than a year. The slow movement by the industry can wreak havoc on publisher sites. Responsive Web sites are one issue, but responsive ad units are another.
Nick Radicevic, AdSense product manager, in a blog post provides some advice. He suggests that marketers should always set a default ad size in case some media queries are not supported and specify fixed pixel values when setting the width and the height of the ad served, and reminds marketers that the new ad code is responsive on the initial page load only.
Subsequent changes to the ad size, such as a screen orientation change, will not cause a new ad to be displayed. Google knows it’s an important feature for many, so the company continues to work out the bugs.
Aside from Google, the photo-sharing site SmugMug also released a responsive Web design feature, allowing the photographs to adapt to any viewing screen, from smartphones to large monitors. The feature reflects one change in many that the site announced Wednesday.-MediaPost