54.5% of display ads in the UK were considered non-viewable in the third quarter of this year – not great by a long shot – but for video ads, the figure hit 67.9%.

Based on data collected from hundreds of billions of impressions throughout Q3, the findings derive from Integral Ad Science’s UK Media Quality Report, suggesting that video still has a long way to go in terms of reliable media quality.

Despite increased investment in the format by UK advertisers and a widening consumption among audiences, brands still face problems tackling viewability, brand safety and ad fraud.

Inappropriate content

Viewability suffers most when there are multiple players on the page, with impressions falling to just 10.5%, but – at the cost of the user’s free will – autoplay functions pull this number back up to nearly 50%.

Video also proves the less reliable option when it comes to protecting brand, with 16% of ad impressions having the potential to occur next to inappropriate content: violent, adult or offensive language, for example.

The report further states that the likelihood of video ads being contextually misplaced is highest (16.8%) when inventory is purchased through networks and exchanges.

Buy through publisher direct, however, and this falls to 9.3% – more in line with display advertising’s overall brand safety risk which sits at 9.1%.

Additionally, rates of ad fraud in Q3 were marginally higher in video compared to display, with fraudulent activity reaching 10.1% in video and 9.1% in display.