YouTube will have fewer but longer ad breaks on TV

YouTube is making changes to its ad strategy on TV to enhance the streaming experience, aiming to strike a balance between fewer interruptions and more engaging content. In a recent announcement, Google shared its plans to reduce the number of ad breaks during TV streaming on platforms like Google TV, Roku, and smart TVs. However, the trade-off involves longer ad durations.

The current practice of offering viewers the option to skip ads after 5-10 seconds will now be extended, potentially lasting up to a minute before the skip option appears, according to Google’s demonstration. The silver lining is that, after enduring a more extended ad, users can expect fewer interruptions throughout the entire video. The YouTube app will actively notify users about the reduced frequency of ad breaks for the remainder of the video.

This strategic shift is rooted in YouTube’s analysis of viewer preferences, with a significant number expressing a preference for grouped ads rather than scattered throughout the video. YouTube initiated testing this approach in September, aiming to create a more seamless viewing experience on larger screens.

According to the company, early testing of fewer, longer ad breaks on connected TVs resulted in over half of YouTube CTV streamers enjoying 29% longer viewing sessions before encountering the next ad break.

In addition to adjusting the ad frequency, YouTube is expanding its Shorts ads to TVs. Similar to the mobile and web experience, viewers can anticipate seeing ads between Shorts content, and these ads can be skipped using the TV remote.

This strategic move by YouTube reflects the platform’s commitment to user experience while addressing the evolving landscape of ad consumption. By adapting to viewer preferences and optimizing ad placement, YouTube aims to strike a balance that keeps audiences engaged and content creators supported.

Written by Maya Robertson


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