Guidelines & Best Practice

IAB Display Creative Guidelines

Thu, 17 Sep 2015

The IABUS invited companies and individuals to submit ad templates designed to drive brand equity. Six templates were chosen to be validated by the market. Rising Star Display Ad Units are designed to be the only ad on a page. Their file load limits are larger than for other ads, so not only would a Rising Star Ad Unit overshadow any other ads on the page but they would also compromise the performance of the page should other rich media ads be allowed to load simultaneously.

These updated Display Creative Guidelines are the work-product of an exhaustive 9-month cross-industry working group effort to bring the industry in line with the creative demands of brand advertisers. The IAB had two overriding goals for this update:

1) Issue guidelines that empower creative shops to exercise the limits of their imagination, only tempering creativity as it relates to positive consumer experience; and

2) Further simplify the digital supply chain by making these new guidelines easily accessible, adoptable and understandable.

While the accommodation of every individual concern is beyond reach, near universal approval of these specifications and guidelines was achieved by the Working Group participants. Despite a few inevitable compromises, these updated guidelines represent a quantum leap forward— they embrace and foster creativity in ways never before possible. These guidelines should empower marketers and their creative shops to re-imagine online advertising, the result of which will represent a new generation of rich interactivity and "sticky" consumer experiences.

Please be advised that these IAB guidelines represent an industry recommendation. Accordingly, not all publishers, nor all IAB member companies, adopt these guidelines without modification relative to their own unique business offering. Marketers, creative designers and media agencies are strongly advised to consult directly with publishers in order to obtain their exact creative specifications.

These guidelines were reviewed for relevancy by IAB NZ’s Standards & Guidelines Council, Q4 2014. In addition to the examples and style guides offered in the downloadable Excel document for the six IAB Rising Star formats, test tags and creative files have been offered as a resource for IAB NZ members.

Click here to download the IAB Creative Guidelines in Excel Format

Click here to download the creative files

Click here to download the test tags


Click on the preview links to view the rising star formats

Billboard -

Filmstrip -

Pushdown Banner -

Sidekick -

IAB Slider -

IAB Portrait Ad -


Please note that any publisher can use the attached tags for initial tests, however, if there are any issues that require troubleshooting, it will require separate tags to the ones attached with changes applied.