On Quora, we want to deliver value to both advertisers and users with our ad offering.
We strive to ensure a good advertiser experience by showing ads to the users who are most likely to be interested in the products and services being promoted. We strive to ensure a good user experience by selecting the most relevant and highest quality ads to show to our users.
In order to deliver this experience, we hold an auction. In the way auctions commonly work, the buyers - in this case, advertisers - must offer a bid for the items being auctioned - in this case, ad placements.
Our ad optimization algorithms use a variety of factors to determine the winner of an auction.
These factors are constantly evolving but include ad relevance, bid price and the likelihood of a user clicking the ad. Bid price and the likelihood of a user clicking an ad plays a big role in our system, but many other factors may also be incorporated. These including feedback users have given on the ads, how often individual users have seen the ads in the past, as well as whether users ultimately take a conversion action on your website.
For every ad placement, we consider all eligible ads from advertisers based on the budget, status and targeting specified in their ad sets.
The winners of the auction are the ads that, according to our predictions, have the highest value for the ad placement. This value is determined by a combining the likelihood of the user clicking on each ad, the bid of each ad, and the effect of showing each ad on the user experience. If more than one ad placement is available, each advertiser is only eligible to win one per page.
Choosing Ads from an Ad Set
In general, our system will favor your highest-performing ads. We take other factors into account when determining which ads to show to any given user on any given page. This includes the likelihood of engagement on the ad, your bid, as well as the user experience of showing your ad.
Your individual ads will also never compete against one another in our ad auction. For more information, please see Do my ads compete with each other?