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All About HTML5 Ads

Our engineers are working around the clock to launch our new HTML5 uploader as soon as possible. In the meantime, if you want to take proactive measures to protect your campaign performance, we highly recommend pausing your flash ads and launching static ads in your campaigns.


Everything you need to know


About HTML5

HTML is the building block of the internet - the markup language that brings the websites you know and love to life. HTML5 is version 5 of this language.

We found this video helpful to learn what HTML5 is and why more and more companies are moving towards adopting this technology as a standard.

There’s a lot that can be said about HTML5 and how it differs from previous versions, but what matters in the context of advertising is that it opens the door to a new set of rich animation and interactive content features that work universally across any platform or device type.

HTML5 ads render just like web pages. This means any device or platform that is able to render a website can render your ad too. This is in contrast to Flash (.SWF), the incumbent technology for video and animation, which requires you to have a Flash player installed (a Flash plugin) to play.


The importance of HTML5

Major players in the industry are moving away from Flash. Apple has not supported Flash on any iOS device since early 2010, and new versions of the Chrome browser will “intelligently pause” any Flash elements that are nonessential to the content of the website. For example, your ads.

As the leaders in both desktop and mobile markets, this will significantly impact your campaign performance.

Read more about why iOS doesn’t support Flash.

Read more about upcoming Chrome updates.


Flash ads on Google Chrome

When your Flash ads initially load, it will be greyed out with a play button. Visitors will have to click to play, and then click again to go to your landing page. The image below shows you how a Flash ad will look like in Chrome:

The ad below is a functioning Flash ad. If you're using Firefox, Safari, or Internet Explorer it will continue to autoplay as usual. However, if you're viewing this on the latest version of Chrome, it will soon appear frozen (like pictured above) until you click on it.

If you're not using the latest version of Chrome already, you can download it here. It may be useful to see the difference in how the ad will look and function in a live environment.

Make sure you keep up with the increasing limitations on Flash functionality as more companies move forward with HTML5 standards. To help you make an informed decision, we’ve laid out some pros and cons in the table below.

You can learn more about HTML5 functionality and advertising best practices by reading through IAB (Interactive Advertising Bureau) guidelines.


HTML5 Flash


  • Works across desktop and mobile devices
  • Video and animation supported without an external plugin
  • It’s the future


  • Displays inconsistently on older browser versions or Internet Explorer
  • Tools for building HTML5 ads are not very developed; you’ll need someone with technical expertise


  • Established technology
  • Many tools and services to build Flash ads
  • Works consistently on older browser versions with the Flash plugin installed


  • Will not auto-play on Chrome
  • Requires Flash plugin to work with Safari & Firefox
  • Not supported on iOS (iPhone & iPad)
  • Minimal functionality on mobile devices


How to build HTML5 ads

Your best bet to build HTML5 ads that work is to work with a developer to build your HTML5 ads for you If that is not an option, IAB lists a few tools that might be able to help, but even these require some technical know-how. Be warned, we don’t make these tools so we can’t promise they’ll work. Good news is with growing adoption of this technology your options for building HTML5 ads should grow too!

If you are planning on proactively building HTML5 ads for future use, make sure that you follow these HTML5 creative guidelines.

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