SpotXchange Launch SkipIt: Users Can Now Dodge Pre-Rolls And Video Ads For Fee

SpotXchange announced this week the launch of their new service SkipIt, which was created to address high abandonment rates in online video advertising by providing the option to skip online video ads.

According to Forrester, consumers continue to gravitate toward online video content, with 77% of US online adults watching online video at least monthly. Despite this growth in online video consumption, according to a survey run on the SpotXchange network, 30% of respondents would pay to skip online video ads if given the option.

When consumers encounter a SkipIt invite on a website video ad, they can choose to skip the ad for a small fee. Using Facebook, Twitter, Google, or signing in on SkipIt.com, people can skip a video ad with one click, wherever they encounter the SkipIt icon. When they click to skip the ad, their account is debited, the publisher is paid, and the advertiser is credited for the skipped impression.

Andrew Moore, European Managing Director, SpotXchange weighs in on what this means for the European market: “European publishers recognise that delivering a good consumer experience is key to growing audiences and that users will actively abandon sites where there is too much video advertising. This was recognised by Forrester back in 2008 when they showed that 17% of European consumers abandoned sites due to too much advertising and since then, online video advertising across Europe has doubled year-over-year. This is why SpotXchange launched SkipIt.”

SkipIt aims to provide a better experience to visitors, which they hope will lead to lower abandonment rates and an increase in available video ad inventory. But the goal is to have advertisers benefit as well. When publishers give consumers a choice to watch or skip an ad, and a user chooses to watch that ad, they may be more likely to remember it. Choice enhances engagement and increases ad response metrics. Of course this service isn’t merely developed out of the goodness of SpotXchange’s heart -- SkipIt provides publishers an additional revenue stream that supposedly exceeds even the highest CPMs in the industry.

Michael Shehan, CEO of SpotXchange, comments: “When 10 – 40% of online video ads are abandoned, some consumers are sending a clear signal to the market. The online video advertising industry is shifting beyond the TV-model of forcing users to watch video ads, and SkipIt provides a viable solution to consumers demanding choice and a better online experience. The industry has long needed a solution that places control in the hands of the consumers while delivering value to both online video publishers and advertisers.”

Marc Ropelato, Marketing Manager of TechMediaNetwork, Inc, comments: “SpotXchange’s new ad skipping technology puts a new twist in the mix of video advertising. Our visitors have more control over the ads they view, providing a better experience for our consumers and driving more loyalty to our sites. We also can better track the ads that consumers view, providing important feedback to our advertisers. I’m expecting a positive response by our users to this new ad skipping technology.”

Advertisers can increase the impact of their media spend by not paying for ads served to the segment of consumers who don’t want to see their ads. This can help them strengthen the relevancy of their message to the target audience. Every time a publisher is paid for an ad that has been skipped, the publisher credits the advertiser for the skipped ad.

Francesco Rulli, Founder and President of Film Annex, offers the publisher perspective: “Empowering our viewers is paramount to our success as a publisher, and SkipIt will enable them to choose how they consume video. As the user experience becomes more interactive, it’s incumbent upon us to do everything we can to make it feature-rich, non-disruptive and flexible. SkipIt drives relevance to the unique and targeted specialties of our Film Annex Buzz corporate clients. This allows viewers to skip a video ad if they want. In Italian, we would say SkipIt is ‘perfetto’.”

Later in the year, users will be able to earn free skips at SkipIt.com by engaging with certain brands and giving them feedback.